The Chrysalis of Doubt

She was so eloquent and passionate, but I just absolutely, at my core, disagreed. She was almost there; she had part of the truth. She was talking about doubt and how the Shiny, Happy People at churches don’t want us to talk about it. No, not just talk. They don’t even want us to whisper about it.

She said it was dangerous to hide this topic within ourselves. Yes, I agree. Hiding is rarely the answer. Then, she said doubt was the enemy and I cringed. She said there was ]’a war being waged over our belief and that doubt was the enemy. I just couldn’t get  on board. I couldn’t be moved from my foundation. War waging is rarely the answer.

You see, I have doubts and it makes people really uncomfortable around me. I either become a pariah or a project. Pariahs are avoided, unfriended, unfollowed and forgotten. Projects are prayed about and worked on. Neither of those roles is a comfortable one for me, but I’ve decided something recently.

I’m willing to be around people who are uncomfortable with me. I scare people sometimes. I talk about suicide, depression, darkness, pain, fear, ugliness. There are very few boxes here and they are not wrapped in pretty bows and paper. They are tattered boxes, used and crinkly.

They are perfect for playing in, I’ve noticed.

Doubt is a Friend

One of my favorite people that I’ve never met says, “The opposite of faith is certainty.” I think the favorite person might be Brene Brown or it might be Anne Lamott – not really sure. Regardless, it is a fabulous point. If you are certain of something, then how are you having faith?

In the lifecycle of faith, doubt is the chrysalis. In the cocoon of doubt, we can be fully ourselves – angry, fearful, tearful, sad, frightened, confused and absolutely breathtaking. It is the cocoon that people watch with bated breath, wondering what will emerge.

I personally imagine that I emerge an ugly, hideous moth. Ha! I am okay with this now. Moths are infinitely more useful than butterflies. Moths are pollinators just like butterflies and actually account for more of the pollinating action than butterflies. Go figure!

The other thing I love about moths is that they are largely nocturnal. You see them and are annoyed at how they flock to the porch light, I am sure. Yet, I have learned to love darkness. It is my home. There is beauty in darkness, just as there is beauty in the light. There is the darkness that brings solace, that brings rest and dreams. The darkness of caressing couples too. It is not entirely bad, as one might think.

Yes, I am a moth. In my cocoon of doubt, I have stopped fighting. This is only part of the process – to wonder, to guess, to be intrigued. Perhaps it is even the best part. I don’t really know if I will settle on “God exists” or “God is a myth” or ”

God is not concerned with me”. I sort of like being here – in this possibility. I can be all things to all people and connected to all people too. I understand those who believe wholeheartedly, because I have been in that phase of the lifecycle. I understand those who don’t believe, because I have been there too. And I even understand those who believe He is unconcerned, because I am sort of there right now.

All I can say to myself and those who find doubt in themselves is “Good, you are growing, maturing.” If in this lifecycle, you choose to believe or not believe, just remember that cycles repeat and next time you might choose something else. Nothing is forever. Today, I doubt. Tomorrow I might believe. The weight of today and tomorrow is more profound, more enriching when we are honest.

Truth is an evolution. My favorite words.

Candidly,

Ash

 

Please, Don’t Watch Me Sweat

This year, I’ve been on a bit of a health journey. Nothing serious, but just simply trying to make small, healthy changes. Drinking more water, eating more fruits and vegetables, exercising.

The last one is the thing I struggle with the most. I’m not a lover of running. I do not understand the running craze. People who love running are anomalies to me, though they seem to be occupying greater and greater percentages of the population for some reason. Just know this – If you see me running, then there is probably a child in danger or a mass murder following me. Those are reasons to run. My health? Meh.

I think its okay to not love every form of exercise. I mean, not everyone loves every sport – so why should I love burning calories in every single form there is?

Yet, sometimes I feel like this anti-running thing is precisely the problem. Surely, because I have no interest in running a 5K or mini or marathon or tough mudder or ragnarok thingy….surely, that’s not the reason I’m over weight? Right? Right?!?! Somebody, quick! Reaffirm me!!!

Okay, this is probably denial. I will admit it.

The truth is…I don’t like for people to see me sweat. Literally, even when I was in shape, people would comment on how red my face was when I exercised. The worst part is that it was usually one of those muscled powerhouses checking in due to liability.

“No, I am not dying, thank you. I am just part Irish and we get red in the face when we drink…and when we exercise, apparently.” I would say and then feel total mortification. I am a serial over-discloser. A “fine” would have been perfectly acceptable here.

I truly only have two memories of the gym/workout place that I enjoy. The first was when I lived at home with my parents. Maybe it was tenth grade? I had a gym membership and a license. Some mornings or some very late evenings, I would hustle to the gym and workout in bliss…I mean, solitude. Hmmm….

Solitude = Bliss

No surprise there! Perhaps my introversion extends to physical exercise too. It probably does, because I don’t even want my kids around when I get my sweat on. Though, in my defense, the eight year old tends to say things that aren’t so tactful. Like, “Mommy, why do your boobs jiggle so much?” Invariably, I end up screeching through gasps of air about not pointing at people’s private body parts. Then, the child will say, “Mommy, are you dying?” Because obviously, if I can’t talk due to exertion, then I must be dying.

Thank you, eight year old. You are a bright, shining ray of affirmation.

The only other time I have enjoyed working out was when I was at boarding school. I had a friend, actually two of them, who would randomly be in the gym when I arrived. Jimi and Shane. Both of these guys were hardcore gym dudes. What is a hardcore gym dude? Ummm….anyone dude at the gym more than I am.

Anyway, they were just these really nice guys who said nice things like “You can do it!” and “You are going to have abs like Shakira!” This sort of thing was really good for me. I did get pretty good abs by the time I hit 500 situps on an incline bench, but they were never near Shakira range. Still, the votes of confidence were incredibly appreciated.

So here I am, thirty-three years old, trying to like exercise again or at least tolerate it enough to be able to do it on my worst depression/anxiety days. I’m not sure that my depressive days are the problem though. The days I am high strung? Now, those are the days I struggle to exercise.

You would think that there is a certain level of energy surrounding anxiety. Perhaps I could just channel all of the angst into a turn on the elliptical or a few reps with the weights? One would think something like that if they didn’t have debilitating anxiety.

Now, I’m medicated so it should be fine, right? I wouldn’t say my anxiety is well-medicated at all. I could probably find something that works better or is preferred, but that is not something I’m ready for right now. Honestly, it took three years to figure out the medication for my depression. I really just want to maintain for a year or two and I’m giving myself permission.

So yes, when I workout, especially around other people, it usually goes something like this…

Anxiety Goes to the Gym

I walk into the gym. Someone makes eye contact with me. My brain cycles through whether they are thinking any of the following things…

“She is fat.”

“Bet this is her first day here!”

“Oh my god, why is she wearing that?”

“Oh my god, why isn’t she wearing (insert some item here – likely, a girdle)?

“Does she really think working out is going to help *that*?”

I scan my check-in card and turn towards the workout area. Five thousand machines are in front of me, as well as more people with eyes. My brain begins sorting the various eyes turned toward me – malicious or kind? Additionally, now I have these thoughts.

“Oh my god, which machine do I use?!?!”

“Which one is the furthest away from anyone?” (Because I can’t yet determine which eyes are malicious or kind.)

“Treadmill or bike or elliptical? Which one will I look less awful doing? My feet will be insanely loud on the treadmill, because of my poundage. The bike isn’t really full body exercise so the gym rats will know I’m a noob, even though my fat ass probably already gave it away. Eliptical it is! Now, furthest from anyone!”

Locating the elliptical, I hop on and try to get the thing going. It beeps loudly and I do this weird stop/start combo thing that probably looks like I’m having a seizure. Now,I’m thinking…

“F*ck!!! F*ck! F*ckity Fuck!”

“Everyone has now definitely stopped to look at me!”

“Yes, those are definitely malicious eyes!”

“Screw it, I’m just going to look like I know how to work this thing!”

I begin vigorously pumping my arms and legs, willing the machine to just cooperate. It does…sort of. Now, I’m thinking…

“Oh my god, is this thing set to mountain mode or something?”

“I can’t breathe….I can’t breathe…I can’t breathe….”

“What would my therapist say?!?!? Something about the moment….something about the moment…stay in the moment.”

“This moment f*ing sucks!!!! Damn it, therapist, why do I pay you so much money!”

“What’s that you say? Oh, breathe in/breath out? Do you see that I’m climbing mount Everest here? Breathing is a little tough right now.”

“Oh my god, I’m having an anxiety attack AT THE GYM! Oh my god. Oh my god…what do I do? What do I do?”

At this point, I glance up from the elliptical machine from hell and discover a floor to ceiling mirror. Said mirror reveals my bright red face infused with a mixture of horror and confusion, as well as the eight malicious sets of eyes looking at me.

“Who puts mirrors in a gym?!?!?”

“Hot people who are in shape and want to look at themselves – that’s who!”

“Damn, I’m not hot OR in shape!”

“Why is that hot, in shape lady looking at me?!?!?”

The elliptical decides that the warm up is complete and switches into actual mountain mode.

“Oh my god, oh my god. Malicious eyes. Malicious eyes. Mountain mode. Mountain mode. Can’t breathe. Can’t breathe.”

At this point, I decide that nothing is worth keeling over on the elliptical and being resuscitated by EMTs while the malicious eyes look on from their various perches in front of the reflecting glass.

Stumbling off of the elliptical machine, I beeline for the locker room, only to discover a naked, hot chick strutting her stuff. I pretend to be looking in a locker, even though I didn’t bring anything in here, because lord knows I don’t want to see *that*. Determining that I’ve stared at the locker for an acceptable amount of time, I rush out trying not to note how many people are probably watching me head for the exit.

I collapse in my car and notice that its 8:35.

I worked out today – for 7 minutes.

Solutions?

Well, after all of this reflection, I’m going to try working out at home. Did you know Amazon sells rowing machines, elliptical machines, stationary bikes, etc.? I put the power of Prime to use (shipping a machine to me definitely makes up for the yearly membership fee). I’m also going to listen to affirmations while I’m exercising. In fact, I’m actually considering having my husband read them while I record him. Things like “Your so sexy. Keep going. Shakira has nothing on you.” Ha!

Do I have social anxiety? Probably. Am I introverted or do I have social anxiety? No clue. It doesn’t really matter, as long as I don’t let it make my life too small…or my waist too large.

Candidly,

Ash

Oh, How I Run from Myself!

It is Monday afternoon and, truthfully, most Mondays I am eager for the day. I’m ready to get back into my to-do list, accomplish things. See here, where I disclose being a total productivity fiend. Monday is the one day that always seems to be productive for me. Maybe it’s because I’m fresh, unjaded by the previous week’s letdowns.

This Monday, however, is very different. Today, I didn’t want to pick up this laptop with a  cracked screen. I knew what was waiting for me. I say it often, that writing is like bleeding for me. Sometimes its extremely cathartic, like how people say acupuncture is great. I’ll never know about acupuncture though, because…needles.

There it is – needles, perceived pain.

I can’t get past the idea of needles, many of them in my face. A good friend of mine once told me that the needles are so very small that you don’t even notice they are being placed. Maybe she doesn’t notice. I, however, would be writhing in the anticipation of the pain and no needle would ever graze me.

Because that is what I do. I run from the pain.

This morning, I wanted to run from the pain. I didn’t want to sit here and bleed, cathartic or not. I wonder how thirty-three years of my life have passed and I am still afraid of that benevolent teacher known as pain.

Why do I not befriend her? Call to her and say, “Come, I will hear you out.” How long will it take for me to set the welcome mat out permanently.

I do not know.

I do, however, know that I will keep trying. Today, I will sit down at these keys and not run from myself. I will listen and honor the voice within.

She is saying….

I feel dead inside. Not like the autumn leaves returning to the ground, but like the decomposition of a slaughtered animal. Left too long in the sun, unburied and festering, I feel dead inside. How does a soul emerge from such noxious smells and grotesque twists of flesh? In nature, the decomposition is slow and lengthy, the byproducts nourishing.

Maybe that is what I need to expect from this sadness and angst that I feel – a slow and lengthy process that nourishes the world around me.

I wonder who is nourishing me, though. Ah, that is right, dead things don’t eat. They don’t need sustenance. They simply rot away, no one giving a thought to their sacrifice in the life cycle. Who will remember them?

I chuckle to myself, remembering my dear gardening friend, Lori. She loved her compost like it was a living thing and not quite the opposite. She marveled at the worms flocking to the pile of the dead and rotten. Their slimy, writhing bodies inching so slowly, purposefully in the direction of the deceased, the unwanted. I never knew anyone could love worms until I met Lori. I never knew compost could be an interest and passion.

Perhaps all that is dead inside of me, simply needs a farmer or gardener to see its worth. Perhaps I can be my own farmer, tending myself through a slow and lengthy process. I am reminded of how Lori explained all of the different ways to compost, the different tools. Maybe, if I don’t run from the dead things inside me, I can find the right process to enrich the earth.

That is, after all, what I most desire from my pain and the death I feel – that it live on in the things which grow.

Candidly,

Ash

The Story I Tell

I’m not sure how I made it to the age of thirty without hearing of the poet Rumi. Personally, I think this a basic flaw in our educational system. Of all the poets I have ever read, Rumi is by far my favorite. And today’s post is fully inspired by him.

I am not this hair,

I am not this skin,

I am the soul that lives within.

-Rumi-

(No doubt, I have a college professor snickering at me for my poor referencing skills. This is a blog. MLA and APA shall be outlawed.)

I love the simplicity of this poem interwoven with deep meaning. I find there is a constant dialogue in the world about our appearance. Even those who want to de-emphasize its importance actually end up doing the opposite. I mean, if you have to teach me that my appearance doesn’t matter at all, then maybe you are not being quite honest with me. Appearance is influential, which can make it important at any given time.

I know what “they” are trying to communicate though. Your appearance is not all you are and this poem says the exact same thing, but in a better way. It seems poetry can do what a 60 second Dove commercial does too – and in less time.

For me, when I read this poem, I extrapolate. I am not the surly wife or disconnected daughter – I am the soul that lives within. I am not the college dropout or failed business owner – I am the soul that lives within. I try to respond to pretty much anything I dislike about myself or that I’ve failed at this way. I’m not sure its entirely effective 100 percent of the time, but what is?

Control Your Narrative

Control is one of the words that makes me cringe, truly. Yet, this is a phrase that I think people are hearing more and more. Despite that icky word, it’s an empowering process. Maybe they should change the phrase to “Participate in your narrative”. Yeah, not quite as memorable.

My best friend once saw a therapist who shared that we all tell ourselves our own story, regardless of whether it is the truth. When I said earlier that I was a college dropout – that was a story I told myself. Now, as a demonstration, I’m going to attempt to rewrite that story here in this blog post.

**Cracking knuckles. Stretching muscles. Let’s do this.**

What Happened.

My siblings were older than me and the dialogue about college was a constant in our home before I can even remember. My brother went to college when I was in fifth grade and we would visit him in the great city of Charleston, SC (seriously, my favorite). College was adventure, independence and growth to me. Those were the things I saw about college from a young age. My brother entered the Citadel as a boy. I remember him. He graduated as one of the best leaders I have ever met to this day.

Yes, college held the answers.

When I arrived on campus at Indiana University, a young inexperienced freshman, I would get stopped and asked for directions. Now, I’m a smiley person, but I also looked like I might actually know the answers to their questions. Most of the time I did or, if I didn’t, I helped them find it. I remember talking to my dad about it on the phone and laughing. I gave someone directions on my first day!

He was proud of me. He knew I was going to succeed. I was responsible. These were the loving things he said in my ear. I believed him. (Also, I have really great parents.)

I had been at college for all of six weeks when I started to feel claustrophobic. No, not in the traditional sense, but in a metaphorical, restless sort of way. Classes that were interesting at first, became boring. Quizzes, tests and papers seemed pointless. I remember turning in a paper and the teacher really liked it. She wanted to share it with the class. Then, she proceeded to give me a “C” due to incorrect formatting in my MLA citing (now you know why I hate that shit).

Maybe she was just a bitch. Maybe quizzes, tests and papers were pointless.

On a campus of 40,000 students, college felt small. I was depressed and stopped attending classes, reading, studying. I managed to pass with decent enough grades. As I looked at my courses for the next semester, I decided that maybe I just needed a class or two that would be more interesting, more challenging. My first day of class was spent outside my advisor’s office, waiting my turn to make changes.

I told her that I had hated last semester and I didn’t want to keep doing this if it was going to be so boring. She asked what I had liked. I said that I loved my Italian course. We decided to keep that one then. She noticed I had aced Spanish 375. Maybe foreign language was more of my thing than music. We added French, because it was applicable to some classical music. A way to test things out. She asked if there was anything else I was interested in.

Jesus, was my answer, because back then I was a religious zealot. We added Biblical Hebrew.

I loved it – Italian and Biblical Hebrew. French was annoying and to this day, I really don’t have a desire to go to France or know French at all. Yet, college still felt constricting and small. My depression was awful and I started going to the mental heath center regularly, without telling anybody, of course. My dad, as always, knew there was something “wrong”. I still didn’t love college. What was wrong with me?

They paid for me to move to a single person room that semester. Maybe I just needed some autonomy. They gave me a car so that I could go places when I wanted. They bought me basketball tickets. Yes, more than one! They bought them so I could take a few friends. They tried. I tried. I almost failed that semester.

(All of that support from my parents – they really are amazing people with lots of love. They just didn’t know what was really wrong, because I never told them about my depression or that I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life.)

Convinced that living off campus in an apartment would be better, I returned for sophomore year. I don’t even remember most of that semester. My good friend, Matthew, tried to encourage me – go to class, get out, do things. He was worried about me. I tried. I really did. I was so depressed. Again, I almost failed the semester. In fact, I got an incomplete for my vocal jury so that I didn’t have to do it until after break.

I came back after Christmas break and didn’t even bother going to any classes besides Italian. I even skipped my voice lessons. I wanted to die, but I told no one. The one bright shining star in all of it was my engagement to Jesse, who didn’t know I had suicidal thoughts either. I’m pretty sure that without his love, I would have killed myself that January.

It was the beginning of February, I was still lying in bed at 2 pm. I didn’t want to get up, because I was pretty sure that I would hurt myself if I did. My phone rang and it was my dad. I’m not really sure why I answered, because I was definitely not up for talking. I am so glad I did.

“Honey, I need you to drive home today.” He said. I sat up in bed. Someone had died, that had to be it.

“Why?” I said with alarm.

“Nothing serious, we just need to talk and I have a meeting so I can’t come down there today.” I wasn’t doing anything better so I picked up and drove the hour and a half home.

We met at a Paradise Bakery. It is still very vivid to me, as I remember it. He told me that he wanted me to dropout of college. I wept, literally wept. And then, I could finally breathe.

It felt like I was breathing for the first time in years.

Life moved on and I called myself a college dropout for the next 13 years, except when I took courses. Because I did take courses, many courses. I tried to do college in different ways over and over again, different career tracks, different methods. I never finished, though someday, maybe even soon, I might.

That is the story. How it happened. What happened when I went to college.

The Story I Tell Myself

College couldn’t contain me. I couldn’t be forced into studying ONLY one thing or even two things. I needed the freedom to breathe, to search and quest. And now, at thirty-three years old, I finally have found it. This writing beast within me that can’t be tamed. She’s a writhing, living thing that must be let out.

It has been worth every tear, every college loan, every disdainful look from my family, every moment of time spent in the cage – to set her free.

And I can finally breathe again.

Candidly,

Ash

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let the Pain Move through You

I didn’t know adulthood would be this way.  I didn’t know there would be so much pain, so much less for which to live. Sure, there ARE so many beauties to behold, so many paths to walk, so many dreams to dream. Yet, there are just so many bills and crying children and lots of holding the space for people, for myself.

It’s a challenge – the holding of space. When I dreamed of homeschooling, I followed a lovely mother who had so much knowledge about “teach-moming”. She talked about holding the space like it was a sacred thing. Her idea appealed to me so much that I bought every printable, curriculum, book thingy she could possibly create.

The idea of “holding the space” was that sometimes the small people simply need people to be quiet. They need adults to be calm. They need others to pause. The instinct, when the shrill screaming of a small one rents the atmosphere, is to rush to them and say words, to instruct. I am instantly in their face and fixing/breaking things. I mean to fix things, but most of the time I break things instead. I break small spirits. I crush opportunities for growth and decimate plains of open feeling.

I found this principle, combined with assertiveness and observation, to be the most altering of any parenting technique. When I stopped and held the space, the small people could do all that they needed to do and so could I. The pause, the observance, the stillness allowed them to calm themselves. Sometimes they didn’t, but the holding of space also allowed me to calm myself. I always responded better when I was calm and still do today.

I found the idea of holding space to be similar to holding the note at the end of a song. In choir or band, we would look to the conductor and just hold the note, waiting for her to signal the stop. Similarly, in parenting a climax or crescendo might erupt from the small people and I would be the conductor to whom they were looking. If I cut the note short, then everyone was less satisfied. If I let it resonate, echo and dissipate, then the satisfaction of an ending could occur.

Pain is like a small child too. It needs me to hold the space – to pause, observe, resonate and diminish. It needs the process, the movement, the freedom to be the place where time and meaning great each other. The problem is that I didn’t have enough people holding the space for me while I was growing up. The eruption of pain was a geyser of uncontrollable proportions.

IMG_5388

Like a geyser with hot steaming water shooting into the air, my pain shot into the atmosphere spreading its deluge of scalding energy. It makes me imagine the person who discovered geysers. Frantically, they must have sought cover, desperately trying to reshape a world where water poured endlessly from the ground. Water from the ground – mind boggling.

This is the way I viewed pain my whole life, because the space was so rarely held for me. I needed someone to pause and watch, noticing the diminishing of the onslaught of scalding water from the ground. To show me that the geyser would come and go. Pausing to watch the magnificent spectacle was all that I needed. Watching it rise higher and higher, then temper to a small spray easing itself into a trickle that I could touch without being harmed.

This is the process of pain.

I need only let it move through me. Maybe through deep breaths or tears, perhaps pounding pillows or squeezing them tight, stepping into the heat or the cold and closing my eyes, walking the path in a nearby park, standing or dancing in the rain, listening to the music or holding the pregnant pause – these are things pain needs from me. These are the things I need from myself

“Surrender to the grief, despair, fear, loneliness, or whatever form the suffering takes. Witness it without labeling it mentally. Allow it to be there. Embrace it. Then see how the miracle of surrender transmutes deep suffering into deep peace.” Eckhart Tolle

 

Common Things

We recently moved from Indiana to sunny South Carolina. The change has been full of ups and downs. Being honest, there have definitely been more downs, but I do think things are starting to look up…maybe…but let’s knock on wood, just in case.

Today was full of running around and getting groceries, the babe in tow. He’s mostly amenable to shopping these days, as long as there is food in the checkout. I remembered most everything and got home earlier than expected. As I toted, the little dude into the house, the traffic on our rode stilled and I could hear the song of a resident bird. The sun was shinning, the mud from the last few days was drying and somehow the battle had ceased for just one moment.

What battle? I muse.

I never expected life to be so ordinary. Days and weeks and months pass, the seams of their pattern intertwining until I no longer see the individual pieces. How sad it is that our impression of time accelerates while our ability to appreciate it deepens! Perhaps, it is only the relative motion of time that causes us to wizen.

All I know is that the birds sang and the sun shone in the past too, but I do not remember those common things.

Beauty in the Mess

Recently, I’ve been trying to look at household chores from a different angle, because, honestly, this begrudging hostility that I’ve been using for a decade is about to undo me.

I need something new.

For a month, the new perspective I tried was to look at my chores from a metaphorical perspective, each room having a symbolic meaning. In the laundry room, there is renewal and restoration. As I wash my clothes, I am giving not only my image renewal and fresh appearance, but my heart and soul renewal. In the kitchen, there is comfort and communion with others, nurturing. As I wash the dishes, I am preparing myself for comfort and connection. This is all deep and meaningful and I’m sure it has some validity.

But I still hate my chores.

This morning, I was reading from an older gentleman’s work. He was describing how old farms always bring him such nostalgia no matter how ill-kept they are. Even in disrepair and destruction,, they hold beauty. It reminded me of all the reclaimed wood, rustic and vintage elements that Joanna Gaines uses in her designs. We can love the old and ugly in our homes so that they can become beauty.

As I read this, I looked at my atrociously maintained master bathroom and I tried to find beauty. Truly, the toilet has not been cleaned in four months. It’s disgusting. Clothes are strewn everywhere and about 4 square inches are unlittered on my generously-sized vanity. Where is the beauty here?

I couldn’t see it.

As I’m writing this, my laptop sits on mounds of unopened mail and shards of children’s homework and artwork. Next to me sit Lysol wipes and a box of hair color. It’s utter chaos – that’s what I see.

How do you see the beauty in the mess? All I see is a giant pile of overwhelm. I want so desperately to know the secret, to look at the areas of my home and know the value – to see the moments of joy instead of the drudgery of chores.

I often come to the conclusion that I’m just not one of those people who loves to clean and organize. Are there people who love those things? According to Pinterest there are! What is their secret? I.e. Please tell me their exact myers-briggs personality types so that I can see how much of myself I will have to change in order to become an enthusiast of chores.

Maybe when I know the answers, I’ll repost this as a series with all of my enlightenment. Until then, I’ll be folding laundry with ill temper.