I hate clutter! All kinds of clutter! Clutter to my ears; clutter in my space, clutter in my emotions,
and clutter in my life!

I am a very organized person in about every aspect of existence. I require my house to be
orderly, my closets to be neat and tidy, my cabinets arranged for easy and ready access to what
I need when I need it. I also must have the radio, stereo and television modulated so as not to
offend my ears. I even require the interior of my car to be clean and shining.  Now, imagine this
scenario: Guests!  Including my husband's daughter and his twin 5-year-old grandchildren.

We adore them and cherish them. We really do! However...

They come into my very neat home and promptly disorder EVERYTHING in it! I know my
passion for neatness makes it very hard to enjoy their company for who they really are.  
Perhaps it's been too long since we have had little ones in our lives and have become what I
cringingly call "sedentary".  Please, God,  never let me be called sedentary!

They never pick up after themselves and they leave toys, crumbs, and NOISE everywhere!
They are vivacious kids and never move at a normal pace, but rather in a frenetic fashion. We
had an old toy poodle that had cataracts so badly that he could only see peripherally, and those
movements threatened him; ergo, he would dash at the twins, barking as though they were
some foreign intruder about to harm his "parents"!  When either of the kids would sit on my lap,
Frosty was immediately on top of them trying to reclaim his place! Although hysterically funny on
one hand, it's confusing to my sense of order on the other.

The kids think that the normal range of voice is at 97 decibels! My ears' normal desired range is
about 30! Our dog, also offended by the height of the noise, was constantly under foot trying to
make out what the ruckus was about. Karen, their opperendus guardiani has equally as strident
a voice and she was constantly shrieking at the twins to calm down!  Is that oxymoronic
behavior, or what!

Yet another disruption is my dear husband's behavior:  he never picks up after himself, never
closes a drawer he opens, never closes a cupboard door. If he takes milk from the fridge or a
slice of bread from the loaf for a snack at the breakfast bar, that is where they remain along with
his dirty dishes.

I have a 10-gallon crock sitting by his recliner to stow the newspapers after he has finished
reading them. They wind up on the floor all around his chair. He wears jogging shoes to his
workplace and when he gets home, slips them off in front of his chair and replaces them with his
house slippers. The shoes reside there until he needs them again to wear to work. If we happen
to go out to breakfast or some other event, both jogging shoes and slippers reside in front of his
chair, later accompanied by the dress shoes until he needs either pair again! When he brushes
his teeth, he never puts up his denture glass, toothbrush or bottle of mouthwash. Never does he
wipe the white marble counter of splatters and smudgy hand prints.

So you can see:  I have a lot of disorder to contend with, but in the normal course of living I try
to assign a somewhat low priority to reminding him of all those offenses in the name of harmony
between the two of us.

Trying to find a way to cope with all this disruption ~ the clutter, the noise, disarray, and frenetic
activity, I remind myself of the more important things in my life: These are the people whom I
treasure in my life and want them to remain there. I try to consider their lives lived away from
me, or gone forever, and give a vast amount of latitude, because I know that if they weren't in
my life, I would be less of a person than I am now and that would be more of a total disruption
than I could bear.

When I think of the loved ones whom I have lost from my life permanently, I ask God to forgive
me for letting the CLUTTER I may have caused in their lives take away from the total enjoyment
of having them there. I do sorely miss them AND their clutter. I guess what I am trying to say is
that no matter how fixed we are in our routines and desires, balanced with the vastly greater
good we get from those loved ones near us, we need to just live in the moment for the joy of the
moment, and not let anything or anyone take one iota of that precious gift from us; not even
ourselves!  ~ Betty
Clutter, clutter everywhere,
and not one spot to think!
© Betty Sue Eaton


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I honestly cannot read this story of Betty's without laughing, imagining her being so totally
"discombobulated". I have felt the same way myself at times, although I must admit I'm not nearly
as neat and organized!

Her story reminds me of a plaque that states: The most important things in life aren't "things".
Times change, people change, things change. The things that are important to us today, may
not be as important tomorrow, and vice versa. But the one
thing we must always keep our focus
on, is that God never changes. We should strive to live a life that is pleasing to Him. A life that
honors Him.

What will you leave behind when you move on from this life? A hundred years after you are gone
the things you left behind will pretty much all be forgotten. But the words you said, the
kindnesses you shared, the gentleness of your spirit and the love you gave, will live on!  It will
live on in the lives of people you knew ... and it will live on in YOU! ~  Ferna
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