I am a closet hoarder. No, really. I hoard things in my closet. When I finally admitted this to my husband, his response was “Ya think?” I’m not a messy person. I can’t think in a cluttered room and dust bunnies make me dry-heave. After giving birth to my daughter, I began taking Zoloft to prevent an unmade bed or a dirty dish from sending me into a postpartum tailspin. But take one look in any drawer, closet, cupboard or attic in my house, and you’ll see a different side. That is, if the rubble doesn’t topple on you first.
My Daughter’s Closet
My daughter’s closet is the worst. And it’s my fault, since she’s smart enough not to risk opening the door unassisted. It looks like the drop-off station at a Goodwill. To remove a dress from its hanger, I have to first wedge my shoulder between the clothes that are pressed so tightly together, they iron themselves. I have filled every inch of her closet. It’s crammed with boots, mittens, blankies, etc. When I ask her what she wants to wear, she just stares into the black hole of consumerism, unable to make sense of it all.
Each storage space has its “thing.” The cupboard under the bathroom sink houses every wrinkle-fighting and hair volumizing product known to Woman, thrown in a heap like the emptied shells at a Lowcountry Boil. The attic was once filled with cardboard boxes, just in case I needed to send something in the mail. My husband said that unless I’m sending our child’s clothes to outfit an entire African village, then I needed to recycle them. There were A LOT of boxes.
The real problem is that I’m a hoarder of the binge-and-purge variety. I do not have any sentimental attachment to beauty products, cardboard boxes or even my daughter’s clothes. So about once a year, I use my boxes to rid myself of my “collections” and I cart them off to charity. It feels good, this environmental exfoliation. But six months and twenty-four Old Navy sales later, the collections have mysteriously returned.
Trying to Do Better
There are closet drinkers, closet eaters and closet Judge Judy watchers. The first step is admitting it. And now I have to do something about it. Today I filled seven boxes, three of which were stuffed with Ava’s clothes and dance leotards. Tomorrow I will tackle the cupboard under the sink, limiting myself to one shampoo and one conditioner for my one head of hair. And in the future I will try to do better.
As I haul the boxes to the car, my husband smiles at me and says, “Is it weird that I find you really hot right now?” And I didn’t even wash my hair.
About the Author
Andrea Goto writes The Culinary Coward, a monthly humor column for PaulaDeen.com about her struggle to become a domestic goddess, or more simply, to cook an edible meal. She writes her own Blog, Mom Without Makeup, which discusses the messy art of modern mothering. Andrea lives and writes in Savannah, Georgia, with her 4-year old daughter (who thinks she’s a superhero), her husband (who is a superhero) and one geriatric cat.