Monday, May 05, 2008

Spahetti muscles be darned!

In my imagination, I am an Amazon Woman.

I am strong. I am healthy. I can move furniture, and plant gardens, run marathons, hike in the mountains, lift boxes, take road trips, and do all the interesting and fascinating things that my mind dreams up.

In reality, I am the proverbial 98 pound weakling—

—except I'm a woman and I weigh a little bit more than 98 pounds.

When I was in 6th grade, my P.E. teacher told my mother I had muscles like cooked spaghetti. That has not changed in the years since then.

And speaking of my mother, she's always been a big supporter of my dreams and ideas—my biggest fan. She has always encouraged me to try new things, to be brave. But one time I told her I wanted to live on a farm and grow vegetables and have horses and chickens. The thought of ME doing the physical labor required by a life on the farm had her laughing so hard tears were literally streaming down her cheeks and she could hardly catch her breath. For 10 minutes straight. Her face turned bright red, bordering on purple. Even after she calmed herself down, for the next few hours, every time she'd look at me she'd make this funny snorting kind of noise and have to excuse herself to go laugh in the other room (to spare my sensitive feelings, I presume).

I was so well-known for my lack of strength and stamina that my cousins once had this calf that was so skinny and sickly they didn't expect it to live. They named it after me.

The great divide between my mind (who I think I am, what I think I can do) and my physical body (who I am, what I actually can do) gives the Grand Canyon a run for its money. It's been this way for my entire conscious memory of life on this planet. I've spent a good portion of time puzzling over this: why would God give me so many wonderful ideas and the desire to do so many, many different things, yet not give me the strength and the stamina to do them? I'm sure there's a lesson to be learned in there somewhere but I haven't got it yet.

But—on to the practical application of all this: the Home Makeover aka Clean Sweep aka getting-all-the-crap-out-of-my-way-so-I-can-breathe that I started 19 months ago is still an ongoing project. I will start on a room, then get so overwhelmed and tired out that very little gets done. In 19 months, I have cleaned and organized my DH's room. I have cleaned and partially organized the living room, with the exception of the bookshelves. And I have painted and moved into my room, but it is not yet organized. I also had a huge yard sale and got rid of several truck loads of stuff, but you wouldn't know it by looking in the garage now.

So, I've decided that even though I move very, very slowly and I can't just whirl through my house and dejunk it the way an Amazon Woman would, I am re-committing to doing a little something each week.

With before and after photos.

And I expect appropriate cheering and compliments in the comments section.

This week's project? I'll decide after I take a nap.

See more artwork by Marty Devine here.


Rebecca Talley said...

I get totally overwhelmed trying to dejunk, too. It just seems like no matter how hard I work, it never ends, there's always more junk.

Anna Maria Junus said...

I am convinced that things have their own reproductive system.

Tristi Pinkston said...

I think it's best to do things like that a little at a time -- you can take the time to make sure it's just how you want it. And no point in hurting yourself.