Once More into the Decluttering Fray

When it came time for our kitchen renovation to begin, we had a number of items in the current kitchen that needed to be rehoused while the construction happened. And in true Bryce fashion, I handled that by . . . throwing all of those items into the family room next door. They remained there throughout the long reconstruction process, but when that was all over, I put them right back where they belonged, because I’m awesome.

Ha. No.

I left them there, untouched, because I had lots of other things to do. And they’ve stayed there and stayed there and stayed there, and every time I thought about cleaning the room out, I wilted in the face of just how bad it was. I didn’t know where to begin. Everything was coated in construction dust, and there were a ton of things in there that I didn’t know what to do with. This would be a job that Denisa and I would have to do together.

It probably would have stayed that way indefinitely, except I was asked to play the piano in church on Sunday. The regular pianist would be away, and I needed to pinch hit for a single song. That’s all fine and good, except I hadn’t touched a piano key in years. And where was my piano? In the middle of the mess that was my family room. So in the end, my desire to practice (so I didn’t look like too big of an idiot in public) overcame my reluctance to start on that decluttering job.

Saturday, Denisa and I spent most of the day cleaning. We threw out three big trash bags of stuff, and made a huge pile of other stuff to be given away. We swept and wiped and mopped and scrubbed (and practiced the piano). And the room went from a place where you literally couldn’t sit down to a place that’s close to what it was like before. There are still some piles that need to be gone through, but it was a huge improvement.

I kept that momentum going the next two days, working on the kitchen itself. Since we’d just been putting stuff anywhere into it as we went, there’s a lot of efficiency lost in terms of storage. And it was also easier just to put something somewhere instead of actually decide if we needed it or not. I’ve been making a lot of those decisions, as well.

In the end, it was a very helpful reminder that no matter how hard the job, starting it is often the hardest part. Once you’ve got even a smidge of momentum, things begin to get easier. I took photo and video to track the progress, but Denisa made me swear never to share it publicly, since the room looked as bad as it did. Sorry, folks.

(As for playing the piano, I did well enough. Made some flubs right at the beginning, since I was nervous and it had been so long since I’d played in public, but it went fine after that.)


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