By Regina Rosenberry
Organizing. Just hearing the word makes me want to crawl into bed and pull the covers over my head. Organized closets, cupboards, and drawers are as a mirage – I strive for them, but they disappear when about in reach.
So I cower like a student in front of the schoolmarm. In my imagination, she is standing over me, her arms filled with lists, cleaning schedules, and day planners. I am an adult. Will I let a simple word intimidate me from learning? So I sit before her and study the Art of Organizing. In one book, I cogitate on how to organize my entire house in a week. I scrutinize photos of expertly arranged closets in a magazine, then learn about the ease of organizing with labeled, color coded containers. I ponder the theory of, “A place for everything, and everything in its place.”
Armed with my acquired knowledge, I head to Martha Stewart's organizing aisle at the local store. I check to see how much grocery money is left for the week – money now for Miss Organization – then meander about the aisle. Excitement fills me. Clear containers, tiered racks, stacking drawers, cloth bins – perhaps I have finally found the answer to my woes. Just maybe there is magic in the brown baskets with blue-striped liners that was absent in my recycled, Payless shoe boxes.
Minutes pass as I ponder my options and finally make my choices. When I hear the total, I wince, but surely it is money well spent for my husband has even added his blessing on this endeavor.
I go home filled with fervor for the job. I have studied the art and have armed myself with the containers and shelving recommended by experts. Miss Organization should be very pleased.
Only a few days flip by when my bubble of excitement develops a small but sure leak. So far, only the bathroom closet is organized and the one week promised by the expert is fast disappearing. The bubble shrinks smaller when I realize my children have not caught the organizing fever. I go to the bathroom closet to find my extra rugs – who were surprised to find themselves folded and organized in the brown and blue-striped basket – dumped onto the closet floor. In their place, curled inside the basket, is my three-year-old. She is baby Moses, she says. And would I please be very quiet so the King's daughter doesn't find her?
I ease the door shut to protect her safety and walk into the living room, only to find my four-year-old lining her stuffed animals and Fisher Price people on my three-tiered spice rack (that hadn't yet made it into the cupboard.) She is having a chorus program, she says. Would I like to be the old lady in the rocking chair her chorus can sing to?
I sigh. Gathering my books and articles and pictures (oh, those lovely pictures) on the Art of Organizing, I stash them in the bookcase. On the top shelf. Miss Organization can just give me an F on my report card.
Let the mirage keep haunting my dreams, and I will keep secretly admiring my organized friends. Maybe someday, the brown and blue-striped basket will hold rugs in folded stacks, and the tiered spice rack will have alphabetized spices. Until then, baby Moses needs a safe haven, and I best hurry to my rocking chair. The Fisher Price chorus program is about to begin.
Regina enjoys life with her husband and five children on a farmette. She takes pleasure in digging her fingers in the garden soil and tending her milk cow, chickens, and goats.