I cringe when I see those shows on tv-- men and women whose families come together for some form of intervention trying to convince a loved one that they are living a life of destructive excess. Hoarding things and holding onto them as if there were some value still in a broken coffee mug or a room filled with old newspapers.
I wonder when I watch those shows how close am I to becoming one of them with my book shelf stacked a little beyond its capacity with books found, given and bought. "I love books," I reason, "I want my kids to love books." Greeting cards in my bureau. Stacks of patterns under my bed and cabinets and boxes stuffed full of yarn and fabrics, notions and needles. Things that I am making. Classes that I will be teaching. And when someone comes to me with questioning in their eyes about the project they know I can, and will complete with the supplies out of my stash to mend or make...I reason.
And on those days when I feel particularly energetic I start to sift through things, a trash bag at my side as I wistfully toss what I know I won't finish, what I think I won't need, stickers that have lost their glue, paper that is faded, patterns for things that are out of fashion, yarn that is knotted. Those things I throw away. And in the throwing away I gain new inspiration in found things that had been forgotten. I am drawn into who I was created to be. I am drawn into a creative vision that I can't help but explore. I reason.
When I die, if you are given the task of cleaning up and clearing out you might be on the edge of referring to me as a hoarder. You will think I was almost there. The treasures of my life on bookshelves and tucked under my bed. You will think it was excess. But if you look before you throw it away you might find the treasure of love folded and tucked between sheets of unused fabric, you will find my sanity and my peace there, you will find my heart.