I had another post in mind for today but I got busy and then I got a link on Twitter that I want to write about but I’m too fatigued for that either so I’m just going to write about why I was busy and this will be fairly pointless except for my own memories in a year when I look back on cleaning the cats’ room. How’s that for a run-on? Future self, I want you to ask yourself a question right now. How’s the cats’ room? Have you been keeping up on it? Please, oh please, tell me you have.
I might have mentioned the spare room here recently since it is included in all the cleaning I’ve been doing. Basically it’s been the catch all room since B and I moved in here February of ’08. I haven’t tackled that room since going blind. You can imagine the clutter and dust, I’m sure. Add to that the fact that before I got Jayden, we moved the litter boxes in there so I could put a baby gate up. It was already pretty much the cats’ room, since there was an old chair from B’s old apartment in the corner, with an old comforter over it which created a nice little cave behind it. Spinelli had also enjoyed an old robe on top of a cabinet thing in the closet for a long time.
When L gave me a couch to replace the old and battered one I’d had forever, I decided to put that in the cats’ room as well, since they had already clawed it to high heaven and well, I spoil my animal kids. It had just gone into the room in front of the growing pile of clutter and eventually, there was just enough space in there to get to the litter boxes for cleaning. The closet wasn’t arranged in a way most conducive to space. Old clothes and scrubs from my days in medicine hung there, collecting dust and providing a medium for smells to cling to.
In a word, the room was gross. I was mortified at the thought of anyone seeing it and when B’s dad visited here the first time, I couldn’t believe B actually showed him the room. Why, oh why, would you purposely point out that room?
Now that I’ve begun work on it, and made a huge dent, I think what that room symbolized for me was the last of my sighted world. I put things in there when I could see, when I had plans for the room. Combine that with my tendency for pack rathood and what’s left is oh no, don’t go in there. Close the door. Don’t let anyone see.
It’s been liberating to clean out that room. Carol has been offering to help me with it for over a year now. I decided to make a start on it on my own though, to decrease what dust and clutter I could before allowing her to inhale that air. I’ve thrown out so much stuff. So much had been ruined by being left untouched and so much junk had been kept by the old sighted and sentimental me. I wish I had counted how many pens I threw away. Pens? Why did I keep so many pens?
The last time I worked in there I managed to move the couch along the wall to get it out of the way so I could get at what was behind it. I knew I needed to move the chair in the corner over a bit so the couch could move towards the corner and give us more than a six inch path between it and the wall so that was my goal today.
I found the Harry Potter braille book Georgie got me when I was about four months blind. That, along with a braille labeler, extra tape I had lost, which I also found today, and my white cane, was how she pushed me into action and put me on the road to learning how to live blind.
The book was in a cardboard box, the top volume covered in dust. I retrieved a plastic zipper bag, the one my bum cushion came in. It was perfect to store the book just in case I ever learn contracted braille. Maybe that will be a project after the room is done, to sign up for Grade 2 braille at Hadley.
Long story short, I had to kill Spinelli’s den behind the chair so I could vacuum. I hope she forgives me; it had to be done. I’m vacuuming every bit of carpet I end up freeing. There’s only one more corner left to tackle in the room, and then I can have Carol go through the stuff I’ve set aside. Most of it for possible donation, some of it because I can’t quite remember what it is. I had moved the bookcase that was taking up room into the closet, so now it’s perfectly set up for storage once I clear out the “Carol pile”, as we’ve been calling it.
Today I was able to reach the window. It was like a long awaited destination, to be able to straighten the blinds and scrub the glass. The room hardly even smells dusty now. What a hard job, but it’s leaving me with such an incredible feeling of accomplishment and liberation that I’m not even embarrassed to write the details of just how bad it was anymore. Look all you want! I think we might even be able to do away with the baby gate once I’m done. B found an igloo style litter box that seems pretty impossible for a dog to get to the contents.
After I met the goal for today I showered off the muck and finished reading ‘Carri’. That might be another post. It’s amazing how much I related to that book. I had to finish it because since I listened to music on the iPhone while cleaning, I lost my place in the book and it was just easier to find my place on the laptop. The book had been burned from CDs, so the iPhone doesn’t hold the place like it does an Audible book. Such a luxury problem. 🙂