Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The long game

Elli's room is a disaster.  By disaster I don't mean it is messy by my standards, oh no.  By my standards the room is a strong case for casual arson.  It is messy by Elli's standards now which means that the toys are so deeply stacked on the floor is a real challenge to push them aside to make a small path to the bed.  It is so messy that even if we used every single storage option available to us there would still be stacks of junk on the floor just as the job was finished, never mind three hours later.

This used to make me crazy but I have successfully walled it off in my mind.  For five months now I have refused to worry about it and it has slowly gotten worse and worse.  Each time she gets presents whether it be a birthday or Christmas or just another Kinder Egg purchased with her allowance things pile a little deeper.  I push it aside, refuse to let it get to my inner neat freak, and continue soldiering on hoping that someday she will want to tackle it herself.

The problem is that she is right off the charts on the 'keep all the things' measure.  She has a cardboard box that has been sitting in her room for a year and a half.  In 2014 it was used once.  My attempt to remove the box was met with hyperventilating and tears welling up.  If I can't even get rid of a box how am I going to pare down the mass of plastic bits that are far less replaceable and far more suited to pretending to be a princess?

I have come to the conclusion that I need to take drastic measures.  The new plan is as follows:  I will leverage the intense power of a teenager's desire to look grown up.  That is, I am going to simply wait until Elli decides that her toys are an embarrassment and gets rid of them herself.  This is the long game for certain - the decision to simply ignore the problem and pile the junk higher and deeper until she gets to be thirteen is not going to be easy to stick to.  However, I know that I can ignore the ever increasing pile of stuffies and princess figurines for five months so there is no reason to think I can't go five years.

So now I just need to do some extra yoga to develop that additional patience and inner serenity required to watch the piles get ever higher and deeper.  When looking around my filthy, disgusting student residences years ago I never thought I would be the sort of person to develop a five year cleaning plan but we all end up surprising ourselves it would seem.

1 comment:

  1. You're taking the path of least resistance. She needs to learn the skill of how to control and decrease her hoard. The 3 piles: discard, donate & retain-in-some-type-of-order. Catch her on a boring, cold or rainy day.