So I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about the whole “big why” extravaganza.
Do you know what I’m talking about?
Your “big why” is your motivation behind everything. The thing that keeps you going when things suck. The thing that punches you in the gut and kicks you in the butt when you want to give up.
It’s something uniquely yours and once you figure it out? No one can ever “unfigure” it out of you.
I figured it was time to let you guys in on MY big why. The REAL reason why I organize other people’s stuff for a living.
In a nutshell?
I think home and family are the most important things on Earth.
I mean, yeah, I think organizing is fun. And yeah, it comes naturally to me. The thing is? Those two things aren’t enough.
You see, I wanted to do this whole professional organizer thing WAY before I actually started doing it. I kept hitting roadblocks though.
I couldn’t think of a name.
I didn’t have the time.
Blah. Blah. Blah.
The rubber didn’t really meet the road until after November 16, 2006.
Let’s go back in time a little bit, okay?
Ever since I can remember--seriously, since I was like eight years old--I've loved babies. I remember staying in the nursery every Sunday during church. EVERY. SUNDAY.
I couldn't get enough of holding babies and feeding babies and changing babies and rocking babies to sleep. I was in there so much that some of the women in the church gave my mom a hard time about letting me stay in there instead of being in the sanctuary listening to the sermon.
Well, they gave her a hard time until they actually stayed WITH me. (I was GOOD. Even at eight years old.) After that, nothing else was really said. Well, the preacher's wife said to just make sure I got my butt to Sunday school.
When I was nine, my baby cousin was born, and I was over the moon. She even stayed with us for a while. I couldn't get enough of her! I mean, even when she projectile vomited during Fraggle Rock, I was unfazed. Mostly.
My older sister, eight years my senior, would sometimes take me with her to babysit the really teeny ones. She was no dummy. I'd do all the work, she'd “supervise,” and then take home the cash!
Needless to say, I couldn't wait to be a mom. I based my whole life on that fact. I never saw myself as anything else. I had a running list of baby names AT. ALL. TIMES. During my One Life to Live days, my favorite was Cassie. Once I hit college, I fell in love with Bailey. Justin became my number one boy name because of a student in my language arts class that I absolutely adored. (He was Chandler Bing incarnate.)
Along the way, I met a handsome man who loved me and sorta bought into the whole kid thing. He wasn't as dedicated to that dream as I, but he was relatively happy to go along for the ride.
Until the ride didn't even get off the ground.
Until that ride pretty much blew up in my face.
See, turns out, we couldn't have kids.
I know, I know. There's IVF and adoption and all that stuff but when all you've dreamed about your entire life was feeling a life move inside you? Knowing it was part you and part the love of your life? Grief-stricken doesn't begin to describe it.
When all of a sudden your relatively “easy” life gets run over and dragged for several hundred miles by a smoke-belching, unyielding Greyhound bus...Well, let's just say it wasn't pretty.
So there I was--about twenty-seven years old. A successful middle school teacher. A wife for about four years. A girl who cleaned out her friends' attics when she visited. A woman grieving the life she'd never have.
And as you can imagine, things got worse.
I mean, in hindsight, I know that was Jesus whispering to me to stop just believing in Him and fall back into Him. But I didn’t or wouldn’t hear Him.
That hole that was left inside me?
I filled it with friends and clothes and classes and pretty much anything I could find that would make me feel better. Anything that would distract me for a little while.
I drifted away from my husband. We hadn’t been great communicators before all this. But now? Let’s just say that even if I was home long enough for us to actually have a meaningful conversation, I wouldn’t fall apart in front of him. Not truly.
See, I was a control freak. Like REAL bad. And I didn’t like to be vulnerable. And I was only about 97% committed to my marriage because I always thought that I had to be able to “be okay” on my own. I wanted to be seen as strong. And capable.
Little did I realize that in that façade of “strength” I was at my absolute weakest.
By age twenty-nine I was on the verge of divorce. I'd had an affair, turned into a selfish, arrogant, self-indulgent human I no longer recognized, and told my husband--the man who rubbed my back when I had migraines, the guy who got me to the stage at any concert we attended--that I didn't love him anymore.
Miracle in the Mess
As my husband and I raged at each other the night of November 16, 2006 (ironically five years to the day later we'd find ourselves rocking out at a Kid Rock concert amazingly close to the stage) a miracle happened in our little house.
Jesus--whom both of us knew and hung out with from time to time--showed up in our living room. And I mean SHOWED. UP. A sense of supernatural calm descended upon a home that was, for all intents and purposes, broken beyond repair.
And everything changed.
I'd love to tell you it was easy. I'd love to tell you that from that moment when both of our hearts softened, my husband and I never struggled. I'd love to be able to say that no more tears were shed after divinity settled next to us on the couch.
The truth is that we've never worked harder in our life. Blood, sweat, and tears. Prayers, friends, family, and counseling. Good old fashioned soul searching. Time spent every single day walking with Jesus. Crawling after Him when weariness all but overcame us. Jesus chasing us down and grabbing us by the collar when we tried to sneak away.
Thankfully, almost twelve years later I can tell you that my husband and I are the strongest team there is and that as long as we have each other, we can get through anything. Infertility? Finally dealt with it. Unemployment? Yup. Got through that too. Relocation? Uh huh.
So you see, I know a little bit about the importance of home and family. I know how precious all that is.
Because I almost threw it away.
And THAT'S why I do what I do.
Working with One Organized Girl clients and writing and speaking for Rock This Revival isn't just about cleaning out all your random crap, making cute labels (I do love me some cute labels though!), and hopefully making you chuckle a little bit.
It's about helping you make your house a home. About giving you back the time to devote to your family. Teaching you skills and strategies, so you can have the space and emotional juice to love your kids and your husband the way you want to.
I know your cup runneth over. And I'm here to make sure that the overflow is sweeter than you could ever imagine.