We all have messes we need to clean up

This year my personal theme is “Start at Home.” I borrowed it from my favorite TV channel HGTV. Start at home by loving my husband, daughter, and dog, by serving my family, by giving myself time to do things that I enjoy, and, the BIG one, by getting my house in order.

You see, I’ve never been organized. I’ve wanted to be organized. I’ve read all of the organization-themed magazines, watched all of the shows designed to help you get your house in order, I’ve collected organizational gadgets, gizmos, and what-nots. But knowledge & gadgets does not an organized person make.

I’ve been spending quality time with Flylady. She is one of my favorite angels on earth that I’ve yet to meet. She breaks things down into manageable steps. She suggests that my disorder is due to my perfectionist tendencies. I like that. That sounds so much better than saying that I am just lazy and can’t seem to get it together. Yes, I am a recovering perfectionist. That has a much better ring to it.

Well, even with Flylady on my team, I still need help. I related my home chaos with my mentor, Cristie, and she offered to get down in the trenches with me. She did this for me years ago when I was trying to convert my catchall room into a nursery for my daughter Halle Kate. She knew what she was getting into and she still offered. Now that’s a friend!

We decided to trade services. She is gifted in this area, I am not. She knows what it looks like on the other side being able to have a place for everything and everything in its place. She would help me establish order in Halle Kate’s playroom/our guestroom and I would help her get her home office projects filed away and organized. She brought her girls over and her two youngest, Paige and Carley played with mine. Her oldest daughter Morgan got right down in the dirt and dustbunnies with us and was a champion helper. Sorting and distinguishing between puzzle pieces and Chutes and Ladders, telling me what I could let go of. Did I need to keep this or was it just the toy that came from a Happy Meal last year? Her help was invaluable. She has more organization skills in her 10-year-old self than I’ve ever had. Like mother like daughter.

It was scary to let them help. To show my mess, my dirt, and to expose the yuck that I can’t seem to deal with on my own. It isn’t that I haven’t tried. I have started in with a donate box and a trash bag many times and then gotten overwhelmed with all of it. Quitting before I even start. I need my friends to get in there with me, set a timer, and look at my mess with objective eyes. I want “like mother like daughter” to be a cherished phrase and compliment in my house, not a sign that Halle Kate is following my messy footsteps and inheriting my junk.

I’m hoping by sharing my need for back up, I am encouraging you to tackle your own mess. We all have a mess somewhere whether it is in our home, our marriage, our parenting. Maybe it is an addiction or a secret that needs to be shared with someone safe. Maybe it is clutter in your brain that you’ve collected from people who have said hurtful things to you and now you have trouble separating truth from fiction.

John 11:10 instructs, “It is when people walk at night that they stumble, for they have no light.” Be willing expose your mess; to bring it to light. Share it with someone and then grab a trusted friend or counselor, a trash bag and a donate box. It will be embarrassing at first, it will probably get worse before it gets better but with God’s help and a good friend, you can and will clean it up.

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