Emotional clutter. It's sticking in my head for some reason. I had no intention to write about it this morning, meant not to, actually. But it keeps coming back to me. Or I keep coming back to it. Infertility
causes clutter. Living causes clutter.
Here's how it came up. A friend was talking to me about an Oprah show this week, (I think it was Oprah!) that showed people and their cluttered homes. The episode showed people who hoarded things to the point that it was almost impossible to walk into or around their homes. Stacks and piles of things that they felt needed to be saved were everywhere. On the tables, chairs, piled on the floor, creating narrow paths through the rooms in their home as the hoarded items took over. Things like newspapers and magazines and junk mail that were years old, piled all the way to the ceiling. Literally choking the space in their homes.
I didn't see the show, but I've seen shows like it. You really feel for these people as you can see what their homes could be without all the unnecessary items in it. I really feel for these people because you can see the emotional pain that they are in, seeing that that is unhealthy, and feeling unable to make changes.
And of course, being me, my mind jumped to the clutter and the saved items in our heads and hearts. Of course it did. If our brains and hearts are our real homes, as I believe that they are, how do they look? What are we keeping there, unable to let go of, even when we know that they are old and unnecessary? I am a visual person and I can just imagine how I need to tiptoe in certain, very cluttered parts of my brain because I have made such narrow pathways.
Unlike our physical homes, our hearts and minds have an infinite amount of space. That does not mean that we don't create clutter and just as importantly hold onto things that are so old and decrepit that they are crumbling and decaying. If we add enough things to our physical homes, at some point, they will be full, completely full. No room for more. There is only one way to add something valuable, beautiful or cherished to our homes when our homes are full. That is to create space. To get rid of something. To make a decision that something can be thrown out, recycled, given to someone who needs it more, buried, or even transformed into something else.
Create space. If we hold onto things, enough things, over the years, the space fills up, gets messy, and gets cluttered. This is just as true in our minds and hearts.
Always on Fridays, my heart and brain turn towards Fertile Yoga on Saturday. What do I have to offer to my students, what I choose to offer that I think is valuable or healing. Creating space may be the theme of the weekend, both for Fertile Yoga and the March of Dimes walk on Sunday.
As you move through your time in the next few days, perhaps doing chores and cleaning in your house, consider the idea of creating space by letting go of something. Often in yoga a teacher will invite you to let go of something that doesn't serve you. Put it down and let it go. You can always pick it up again later if it feels impossible to live without. But even for an hour in class or on a walk or browsing through a bookstore, or five breaths in a class, put it down, move it out of the space that it has been occupying.
Who knows what's waiting to take its place? More importantly though, how much easier to take a breath without all that clutter.