Return to Sender: A Story About Self Care… sorta

Image result for tiny cluttered house

I like my house even though it’s not that big. Even though it’s not that big, it is my house. I like it. I like its small living room that doubles as a bed room. I like the kitchen with the little sink right next to the refrigerator that opens backwards. I like the bathroom and how I can sit on the toilet and the tub at the same time. And even though it’s small, it is all mine so I like it

There isn’t much furniture in my little house. There is a small twin size bed, a table and a chair, a desk with a TV on top, a microwave. I don’t have guests over ever because there’s nowhere to seat them. But I love the people who I love and will gladly share my time and energy with my loves even though I can’t share my space.

One evening , after a long and grueling day at work, I came home to find a package on my front porch. Just a plain brown box with no return address or message implicating who this package was meant for. But it was on my porch at my home so I opened the door. Inside the box was a beautiful picture frame with a beautiful picture of a couple who I had never seen before. It was just a picture frame and just a picture so I convinced myself that there was room. Here was this trinket that didn’t feel like mine but I knew wouldn’t take up much space in my home. I hung the frame up on the wall right above my TV. It felt fine and I felt fine with it.

The next day, I came home to another package propped against my door. This box was a little bigger and a little wider than the previous. Inside was the makings of an end table and all the tools needed to build it. So I built it. It took my 3 hours and 18 seconds and after it was done, I found space for it right beside my twin size bed. Nothing to put on top of it but tt felt fine and I was fine with it.

Every day for the remainder of that month, new packages arrived at my door. Lamps and chairs and pillows and decor and art and food and clothes and gadgets and gizmos and whosits and whatnots. And with every new box that came, I found space in my home to allow something in my life that wasn’t there before. With each box, I convinced myself that I could find space. Because It felt fine I think and I was fine with it. I’m sure I was fine with it.

All of a sudden, there was no space anymore. Instead of toilet paper, I was wiping my butt with frilly pillow cases that had been delivered by the dozens to my porch. And since I couldn’t find my hair brush, I stroked my hair with some spider man plastic forks that came complete with the matching cups and plates.

And I haven’t been to work in days because the doors been overwhelmed by a neon moccasin slipper collection from JC penny. And I haven’t eaten because the fridge is somewhere beneath 4 dozen gingerbread houses and 14 fruit cakes. And I would eat those but they’ve been munched on by the ferrets. Because someone sent to my house 20 ferrets, 15 porcupines, and a pigeon.

And with every last thing that was sent to me, I was convinced I needed it; convinced it was fine. I thought I could find space for all the things. Things they said would make me better. Things they said were better off with me. It took me a while to realize… nothing sent to me was even brand new. This was a used blender, a half eaten watermelon, a book with the spine already broken, a shirt with a hole in it, a teapot with no handle, a teddy bear with no cotton, a stroller with no baby, a love letter written to someone else.

There’s no space here. I see that now. I wish I would have seen it earlier. Before the last package came. Before my space and my home imploded and left me completely undone underneath all of someone else’s stuff. Stuff they said I needed and now, I can’t even remember who they are. I wish I had found the nerve to see the mess and leave it on the porch.

(So one by one, I began to clean. Things useless and broken and just too painful to think about, I cleaned it all up. Making sure not to leave a trace unremoved, I packaged it all back up. Bit by bit, I put trinkets back into their platic, folly back into its fold, unscrewed and unglued and unused if I had used. And I made sure not to sweep anything under the rug or hide anything in a closet. I cleaned until my home looked like the one I once remembered. Until I could see the floor and the walls again and that twin size bed that was all mine. And once everything was done, I put it all in a box and marked it “return to sender.” Because someone had sent me some stuff but it had always beem my choice what to receive and what not too.

I like my house even though it’s not that big. Even though it’s not that big, it is my house. I like it. I like it.)

People keeping looking at me funny…

asking me if I’m okay….

why I seem so distant and jittery all the time

I don’t think they can see it

All the packages

all the useless stuff

all the broken parts and missing things

trying to be put themselves off on someone else

It’s fucking everywhere


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