Empty Spaces

Well, I might be crossing the line into being a little radical with this letting change come into my life thing but I think sitting around that fire last week with a bunch of women burnt something up in me that I had been holding onto for a long time. So yesterday I was sitting in my dining room and I was looking around and I saw so many things that I kind of like. I kind of like them, they are sort of beautiful and they have a place on my shelves or my walls that they fill without being clutter or making too much extra stuff. They are things I chose myself when I used to go to antique malls a lot the first few years after I moved into this house. They are things like unfinished paintings and brown pottery wine glasses. What I didn’t tell you about the fire last week was that it was also a swap, and we all brought things from our homes that we didn’t need anymore to give away and we had a chance to take things that others brought home with us. So last week I had to think of things I could let go of, and I thought it’d be a little bit of a challenge because, like I told you, on New Year’s Eve things got a little crazy around here with me cleaning out what I felt I no longer needed. I took quite a few bags of stuff to the thrift store back then from my already pretty pared-down house. So the idea that took hold yesterday that I am about to tell you about was really formed last week when I was preparing for the swap. I ended up looking in the kitchen cupboards for the swap and pretty easily found some things I had forgotten about that I could give away and barely notice their absence. But a new idea was born. What if I also let go of the things I kind of like even if they have a perfectly acceptable place in my home and are not causing any sort of trouble? What if I only have things in my house that I absolutely love? And what, and this is the radical part, if I let there be empty spaces for new things of beauty even if it takes a long time for them to show up and I have to work a little to get them? Like, a beautiful new painting with vibrant colors to replace the one of white snow which I don’t really like looking at won’t come and find its way to my wall tomorrow. In fact none of the things I send to the thrift store will replace themselves. I will have to spend many weekends going to antique malls over the next year or two to find the right new things of beauty. And meanwhile, on my walls, on my shelves, there will be empty spaces. Did you hear that? Empty spaces! Spaces that had formerly been filled with perfectly decent things. But they were things I didn’t absolutely love anymore. Things I really could live without. So, as I write this those things are sitting quietly on my dining room table. A few paintings, some non-functional pottery, some green man faces that I thought long ago would bring the energy of a partner into my home. And some more dried flowers that I held onto the first go-round because they had been a gift. But I am so done with old, dusty, faded dried flowers. And paintings of snow. And pottery that you just can’t do anything with but look at. Okay, with those last few sentences I convinced myself! I say yes to having my home and my life being filled with only what I absolutely love. Even if that means for now, and maybe for a long time, I need to be okay with empty spaces. Even when I just can’t predict how or when those spaces will be filled. Okay, I have to go now. The stuff on my table just started to get a little loud. It wants to make its way to the the trunk of the car because its eager to start its new life. In someone’s home who actually appreciates it. I think, with that, we all win. I am going to say goodbye to all those old things and hello to the empty spaces and new possibilities. I am going to say yes to being surrounded and held by what I absolutely love in my life. Wish me luck.

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