Thursday, April 21, 2011

the cluttered mind

Thanks to the horrors of AT&T and a busted wireless adapter, the only way I can connect to the internet is by plugging my laptop into the wall. And the only room that has that exact wall plug is my studio. Ergo, if I want to do my job, bug my friends, or browse Etsy for lobster shirts, I'm stuck in my studio.

And it's a mess.

It always is.

Not only because it's the place where STUFF gravitates, but also because despite my dreams of an all-white room with nothing but a couch and a desk, I somehow end up with things that are absolutely essential exactly where they are, which is in the middle of my bidness.

It makes me mad, too.

I'm smart. I should be able to keep one stinking room clean, especially since it's the only room the children aren't allowed to enter. Ever.

But you know that old aphorism about "A cluttered desk denotes a cluttered mind?"

Yeah, that's so me.

I'm starting to think it's an integral part of my creative process. I don't think in straight lines. I puzzle and play. I write down forgotten bits of dreams and force creative trances in the bathtub and bolt upright at 3am, screeching I FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT. Like my studio, my mind is not a tidy place, but I generally find what I need.

I'm a sucky housekeeper. I'll just say it here. I don't get that high other people get from having everything just so, perfectly matching linens, or magazines attractively fanned on a table. I don't own a single decorative wreath. In my mind, I always want clean, empty spaces. But in my heart of hearts, in the part of my life where I actually get stuff done, I'm a total mess. And for me, it works.

I'm not saying we're going to be on Hoarders, and we've never had mice, and, honestly, people come over all the time and don't run away screaming. I just look at my sink and think, "Well, I could do the dishes. OR I COULD WRITE."

And then I go into a room where I can't see the dishes, and I write.

I wish I was tidy. I go to people's houses and am so jealous of their pretty tablecloths, their grown-up furniture, that look that says, "Everything here was chosen for a reason besides well, if the kids ruin it, we can just throw it out later."

I like to think that one day, when the kids are off at college and I force Dr. Krog to buy me a regrettably small dog in a regrettably ugly sweater, I'll have the spotless, all-white, sun-lit office I've always dreamed of, preferably somewhere by an ocean.

And right next, door, I'll have the messiest goddamn studio you've ever seen.

1 comment:

Tripped Up Family said...

I so get this - the jealousy of neat homes that my friends have, the real desire for simple & white & clean. And then there's my house.

I choose to believe it's because I'm creative. Loved your post.