I’ve experienced chaos and disorder, having moved house three times in three months. It’s an additional strain that’s made me feel fraught and over-stretched, and left me unable and unwilling to expend excess energy. Having no excess will to give, my principles are taking a holiday. More than ever I absolve myself from responsibility and the convenience-based choices I make in the short term. There has been no mental energy left for reducing waste or avoiding creating waste in the first place. I am in slash and burn mode, and if I want something because it makes my life easier, I buy it.
I tried to count the houses I have lived in over a ten year period. It’s more than 15. I moved out of home when I was 17 and in between living with family and renting, people have helped me out when I’ve needed somewhere to live. Although I’m used to being transient, it doesn’t make the change and hassle of upping sticks that much easier to manage. When one lives out of a bag routine is impossible. Without structure and order I can’t function.
With each move has come the burden of coordination, cleaning, and streamlining my stuff. Anyone who has moved so much in 10 years will be able to appreciate the reasons I lack the desire to acquire many possessions. Part of the disruption has entailed living among the physical presence of other people’s stuff as people move in / out, and you try to find a space for your own crap amongst it. Seeing boxes of stuff around drains me and saps my energy for creative tasks. Seeing a car filled up with the random crap I have amassed is a sorry sight. To know that that’s all I have – a car of sad objects - is pitiful.
The most taxing aspect of each move (there were 2 moving-in days and two houses) was dealing with other people’s crap, mess, and dirt that was left behind; I have spent hours scrubbing away the chicken fat and mold ignored by other people. I have spent hours chucking out other people’s rubbish and hoarded crap.
So fraught with the never-ending process, I don’t care about eco cleaning products. I splash bleach around as I can’t do more and give any extra time to eradicate the filth left by people I don’t even know. I chuck out their belongings onto to the street because there is not a trace of energy left to organise it any further to take it to the charity shop. I discard things that could be reused in a million ways because I can’t be bothered. I refuse to take responsibility for the junk of others. There is no will left to pull up their slack for them.
I must be merciless because there are years of crap abandoned by people, spilling out around the house. Objects telling personal stories that nobody can remember. Things nobody even cares about; forgotten, broken things on an outdated inventory and sentimental trinkets left to molder and rot in the basement, which must supposedly be preserved.
Under the stuff and the effort there is a home but it takes time to uncover it. I have seen and dealt with so much crap in the last few months that I have no energy left to care. When I am confronted with the crap of others, I realise my personal actions are insignificant. I can do what I can for myself but there is nothing left to intervene for the sake of others.