A Most Passionate Love Affair

On Thursday, I was at the office and some colleagues and I were discussing our weekend plans. One was grateful to be escaping the impending snow to attend a wedding in Florida, another was just looking forward to two days away from the office and I was brimming with the anticipation of filling the 10-yard dumpster that has been deposited in our driveway, hoping that the snow wouldn’t so apocalyptic that it interfered with my dumpster plans.

My colleague looked at me with surprise as I explained that I had even taken Monday off so that I could have three days to fill the dumpster.

“You’re taking time off to clean?” The look of disbelief on her face spoke volumes.

Yes. I take time off to clean. I revel in the delight of the dumpster. It would be a safe assessment to state that I am genetically predisposed to collect things. There are places in my house that if photographed and taken out of context could easily appear on Hoarders. The anxiety that stems from this knowledge is omnipresent. Despite the order and coziness of my living room, knowing what was lurks one floor below is a constant source of unrest for me. So, from time to time, we rent a dumpster and we fill it. Every toss of debris chips away at the hoard but, more importantly, at my accumulated disquiet.

Of course, this process is never a no holds barred purge of the clutter, which is why this is the third dumpster we’ve acquired in less than 18 months. The weekends devoted to the dumpster require thought, careful sorting, physical stamina and, God willing, a label maker.

My husband and children are always willing to help, which can sometimes, unintentionally, be a source of tension. My youngest daughter, bless her heart, actually likes to spend time with me, even if it means cleaning! However, I have a method to my madness and the best thing to do, until I need beasts of burden, is to leave me to my own crazy devices.

The payoff is a great. When the dumpster leaves us on Tuesday it will be filled to the brim and a bit more of our space will be reclaimed. I am sure that we will require at least one, if not two, more dumpster adventures in the spring but the good news is that there will finally be room for the Christmas tree!