Back in 2014, when “the life-changing magic of tidying up” by Marie Kondo was first published, I was all in. She had me at “life changing.” The mere fact that the cover title was written in all lower-case letters made it seem so unintimidating.
I embraced this new way of living, all based around the concept of “sparking joy.” I decluttered, carefully rolling every remaining piece of clothing with military precision.
Fast forward to 2020 the Quarantine. My tightly rolled clothes have unraveled. Time again to Kondo-ize them using all this extra time.
Gazing inside my closet I gasped, “Hell no!” It was far too daunting to take everything out. I was going to have to Waffletude-ize it!
My rule was this: 3 things a day. Find 3 things I didn’t like or never wore and throw them into a bag. That wasn’t scary at all.
First day: I had 3 shirts in different colors and the same style, but they no longer sparked joy. Into the bag they went. I wanted to do more, but no, I held strong to my rule. Three-a-day, no more, no less.
I was obsessed with filling bags with clothes, shoes, purses and socks. Well, maybe the socks could go into the trash. Does this dress spark joy? How could it? It still has the tags from a store that is now out of business!
What else in my life needs to go? Old souvenir mugs that filled the kitchen cabinets from past vacations? Time to go.
Lindsay looked at me like Cindy Lou Who, “Mom you’re starting to scare me.”
“Don’t be silly,” I countered, “Next I’ll do your room.”
My attention was sharply drawn to the cat sharpening his claws on my couch!
“He is NOT sparking joy!”
“Mom! No! You’re bagging Skippy!”
With my closet cleared out and everything remaining rolled up tight as a cinna-bun, I was feeling joyful. But, I had to wait for the Goodwill to open up again. To my wellbeing, it was an essential store. Once opened, I loaded up the back of my car.
I was not alone. The line was socially distanced around the block.
“Someone will help you unload your donation bags in a minute. Go look around, we have a huge selection these days thanks to the Quarantine and Kondo,” said the masked man.
“Kondotine? Take your time,” I said, “I used to come here for costumes when my kids were little.”
Reminiscing, I walked up the coat aisle, then the pants and shirts. He was right, the racks were jammed. I had never seen it so full of fabulous clothes.
Oh! I had a jacket just like that. I slipped it on over my gloved hands. It fit perfectly. Purple velvet will come back in style. It was only $7 and the tags were still on it! Was this a famous designer? I don’t know why I never wore mine. Oh, and a matching shirt, cute skirt and…
With my arms so full I could barely see my way clear to check out, I asked the nice kid who was helping me unload my donation bags from my car to also help me reload my car with purchased bags.
“Don’t judge me,” I murmured timidly.
He giggled, “It’s been like this since we opened back up.”
Joyfully, now my closet is very full… with other people’s hand-me-down clothes.
Live with Waffletude.