Yesterday I got the carpets cleaned in my apartment.
The prelude to this was having to get everything off the floor. Books, papers, toys, small furniture, stuff found lurking under the books, papers, toys and small furniture, and more stuff under the stuff lurking....yeah.
So I get all the junk somewhat moved and put away. And I see my baseboards. Ew. Time to wash those. Then I glance up at my windows. Fingerprint city. Ugh. And randomly up at the ceiling fan where there is enough dust on the blades to plant a garden. Sigh. And the walls, now uncovered are totally in need of a paint touch up.
It's kind of like my life. Every time I think I'm making progress on a project, or getting one area of my life cleaned up and in order, or somewhat disciplined and moving forward, I look around and there's another mess. And something else to clean up. Or something else that comes to light I need to work on.
It would be easy to get discouraged. As discouraging as it can be to note that my living space never quite lives up to my desire and expectations of cleanliness and organization.
But then, the reason this apartment has stuff, fingerprints, papers, toys, books and blankets is because people LIVE here. And the reason my life is sometime a mess is because, well, because I'm alive. A corpse doesn't make messes. Or even if I sat with my hands folded 24/7 I wouldn't make as many mistakes(trust me, even sitting still I could still wreak some mayhem), but I wouldn't accomplish much of anything either. Or have much of a life.
Dirty dishes in the kitchen mean I cooked a meal. Books everywhere mean my kids studied and read. Toys mean my kids played. Jackets, shoes, and bags scattered randomly mean we went somewhere. Papers on my desk, and the coffee table, and the floor, and the counter top could indicate any number of projects were being worked on that have implications for helping people all over the world. Or they could be my daughter's Manga drawings. Or a grocery list. You never know.
I know it's better to give up my impossible vision of clean perfection and accept the messes that goes with daily trying. After all, it's a sign of life and progress that there is something going on around here to clean up after.
'Cause the alternative is.....clean and dead. ;-)
Now wouldn't that be boring.