Sunday, July 10, 2011


If you've ever given up or lost everything material you own - voluntarily or involuntarily - you probably know just how insignificant stuff is in the scheme of things.

I was lucky in that, when I gave up everything, it was voluntary and thus, I didn't lose literally everything. I had a bit of wiggle room to pick and choose a few things to keep. But I didn't keep much.

Since then, I haven't accumulated much more than what I arrived at The Grotto with. The furniture is nearly all second hand including the bed (I've never had a bed that was purchased just for me). I bought a couple of book shelves and a desk but not for aesthetics merely for function. None of it is what I would pick if I had unlimited resources and the space. But it gets me by and that's really all I need.

As a consequence, there's a bit of sterility to my room. It's nearly as devoid of character as the unused living room. And few people would find it a welcoming place to be. Although, if you look closely you'll see elements of me in what you find on the bookshelves - children's literature, regional ghost stories and folktales, trinkets picked up on the world travels of Blind Betsy...a rosary from the Vatican City, a wooden figurine from the Czech Republic, a nesting doll from Germany, a set of trouble dolls from Africa, and old books purchased not for their published content but for the long forgotten inscriptions written by strangers and discarded by the objects of their affection.

But you wouldn't see any of that if you didn't look closely.

And I likely don't want you to look too closely.

I'm weird about my space. I'm weird about my various spaces in the world. I, as a rule, don't mix family, business, and friends. Each is kept decidedly separate from the other two1. Part of that is that I wear different hats for different people and places - no one less genuine than the rest...just different facets for what's required. But it's also uncomfortable for me to have worlds and circles collide. I'm not quite sure why except perhaps I feel like sharing these aspects of me across "genres" is somehow taking something away from what is distinctly mine.

And that's how I feel about my room. It's the only safe space I have. Everything in it - materially, yes, but also the energy, the emotions, the love, the angst, the fear - it all belongs to me. There is no confusion about that. And while I have an open door policy for my room - the cat, after all, insists upon it - there is a distinct barrier for most people who enter. A subconscious KEEP OUT or, at the very least, ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK feel to it.

It's been a problem (for lovers) but one I'm not sure I'm willing to fix. Because lovers? Come and go. To have anyone this far under my skin isn't worth it. As I'm figuring out.

1. I actually have extended the invitation to my family to tour my place of employment - a pretty interesting place actually - but, like with most things related to what I'm doing, the invitations to know and see were declined.


Teresa said...

I totally understand about having your worlds collide. I'm kinda like that too and would like to change that.

But how?

Anonymous said...

Hmmm- I have never noticed the lack of stuff. You don't need stuff to proclaim yourself, you let your actions and voice do that. I hide behind my stuff in hope that you will see my stuff and know me or at least be curious enough to want to know me....