|Merle helps Mom do the dishes.|
Among the things I wrassle with, and you know those numbers are legion, is focus. As I was getting dressed to go out and tackle the patio problem in advance of the salon bbq tomorrow, it struck me that perhaps I need to try to do only one thing at a time. (See? Right there! I thought AND I put on my clothes.)
Is it my nature (to attempt) to solve many issues in as short a time as possible, or my profession as a producer wherein multitasking is essential to the successful completion of a project? I rarely do only one thing at a time.TV plus needlework or web surfing. Doing the dishes plus listening to audio book. Even sleeping now requires management of podcasts to help me fall asleep.
So, this morning, I am to see if I can limit the number of things I am doing and see how that goes.
And I can hear CB quoting Yoda: There is no trying, only doing.
And meanwhile, if anyone has any practical ideas about how to detach from "stuff" I'd be open to hearing them. I have too much and, so far, no practice has helped me to learn to let go.
In general, just as a caffeinated side note, I attach a lot of reasons and "noise" to things, causality and consequence and possibility clauses. That might be worth something. So and so gave that to me. So and so might like this. I acquired this at such and such time. I could repurpose that to ... I could make that into ...
I am struggling with this. Perhaps some of you are as well.
|Front yard tomato/pepper patch.|
I can barely force myself to do any of this. Not to place any particular blame, but my mother's way of dealing with things, like so many of us, is to shove them into cardboard boxes, place them on the leaky patio, and never think about them again. Where, not only do they get moldy, but they can get plenty of dirt from the Los Angeles Basin polluted air, augmented by freeway dust, the freeway being less than a mile away.
I emptied a box that was full of my brother Carl's keepsakes: diplomas, letters, cards, machine heads for his guitars, cassettes of his old band, Gush, and other such things. A card from his dear friends Fico and Debee on the occasion of his 50th birthday. He didn't live to see 51. All going to the trash.
And in my mother's papers, I found all the documents relating to her reverse mortgage. That's a great place for legal documents, right? Where stray cats can pee and dust gather. Ugh. I am sorry. I had to take a break and hope that I can dig in after a calming down session.
In better news, I found my dad's shop vacuum and it still works! I don't have all the attachments, but it is easier to vacuum some of this mess than to sweep. At least the first time through. Maybe I will even make it to mopping sometime.
I have been more successful at not yelling at her. And her memory loss seems to have evened out. But she is so passive. Even I ask her to do a simple task that she is fully capable of executing she wants me to do. Not because she can't. She doesn't want to do much of anything.
Going through this stuff on the patio is huge. And I am not even working on my own belongings moved from Berkeley last summer that need sorting.
Non-attachment is a survival skill that should be taught early and often. But I guess that goes against the capitalist, acquiring culture. And, yes, there is more to it than that, so I am not advocating not having anything ever, just figuring out how to let more go more quickly.
And I remind myself that if I could let go of all my records, in actuality if not in my fantasy mind, perhaps I can use that as a yardstick of value. Is this item more valuable than the original copy of Elvis Presley you let go? Those early Beatles albums? (Not going to detail any more. I am sure Amoeba made a lot of money.)
Well, progress has been made. I need to get out and make room for my guests in the patio and backyard. My garbage cans are getting full of papers and cardboard. And, my mom and I powered through getting the refrigerator clean. Plus, James came over last night and hung up my new pot rack.
I think I have a new motto, taken from a fine film, Babe. "That'll do, pig." (I am not calling myself any names here.)