Welcome to my digital writing journal, or mydigitalclutter. What started as a family blog almost two years ago has morphed into my writing therapy. This is where I do a lot of free writing, mostly about my life with my family and the things that catch my interest. While nowhere even close to perfect, in each post I like to see how my writing is changing with time and practice. Most posts are left unedited for this reason, so if you don't mind, take the journey with me.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Today's Post...Total Failure


We’ve all had that feeling, where our breath catches and then, spiraling downward, our stomach drops to our ankles and we know the truth.  It’s gone.  Photos, words, hard work, all encompassed into micro pieces of data, suddenly thrust into realm of unknown.  Something that was there, just mere moments ago, suddenly disappears right before our eyes.

I lost the data on my external hard drive.  Yes, it’s gone, and unrecoverable.  It failed.  Daniel tried, taking it to work and putting it through all the methods he could think of, and to no avail.  Gone are the digital scrapbooking supplies, some photos (although I lucked out with iPhoto not deleting them) and some of my writing.  Needless to say, for a moment, I lost all my senses and became completely numb.

Today, I am surprisingly calm about it.  I didn’t lose the memories that are associated with the pictures; my stash of supplies can be replaced; life will go on.  I can take more pictures; buy more supplies; and write something that may or may not be more brilliant that what I had before.  It is a chance to start fresh and look around at the digital clutter (pun totally intended) that I’m holding onto and start with a new perspective.

I need to de-clutter a lot of things in my life…my bedroom closet, the garage, the stash of dvds, books, the storage room.  There is so much ‘stuff’ that creeps into the peripheral vision of my life I ignore, mostly for convenience sake rather than blindness.  I need to eliminate useless activities, like staring at the box of other people’s ideas, otherwise known as the television.  I have found that I’m doing it a little more than I should, or even like to.  I’m not a huge fan, but I’ve entered the habit of letting someone else do the thinking for me, and I don’t like that.  Oh, it is fun occasionally to sit with a bowl of popcorn and cheer on the witty antics of a fun sitcom, or get completely involved in the crime drama of the season, but wouldn’t my time be better spent creating those stories myself?

Do you hang onto clutter?  I do.  I seriously think that there is a gene in some of us that is predisposed to horde things.  I swear it comes from knowing someone that lived through lean times, i.e. The Great Depression.  When my grandmother moved in with my parents and we cleaned out her house, we found jars of twine, rubber bands, bread sacks, and fruit that was over 25 years old, still in the glass jars she bottled it in.  While I laughed and shook my head, I had to wonder what I was holding onto that my children will shake their head at when it comes my time to clear out the clutter.

I remember hearing someone say that we are selfish when we horde things.  I never really understood that, until I thought about all the people in the world that can benefit from the clothes in my closet that I’m holding onto until I can fit into them again, or the perfectly usable bag that I keep because it’s perfectly usable, but I never use.  I love shoes.  But why keep a pair that I’ve stopped wearing?  I am sure there is someone in the world that would love my pink, taupe and lime green mules that I don’t have anything to wear with anymore.  Size 6 ½ if anyone is interested….
*Thanks to Google for the image*

What ideas do you have to de-clutter life?

3 Lovely Scribbles to Me:

Diane said...

I had that numb feeling when an apartment of ours flooded. I just sat there and couldn't move for a while. They say Carbonite is good... :O)

Stacy Dean said...

ohmygosh. i am running out and buying a back up drive. this has been haunting me forever, and the signs are everywhere...horror stories of crashed harddrives...everything gone gone gone. alright. I'm inspired to pony up the dough now and be prepared! ideas on de-cluttering would be...techno-de-cluttering. I had an assignment in college to completely stay away from cell phones, tv, computers, etc. for 24 hours...it was so hard, but the world was so quiet and peaceful. it was amazing! and i wasn't missing anything! life went on and I felt less...constricted. It's exhilarating. 24 hours is a good amount i think. it really helps!

Terresa said...

I'm so sorry about your lost files. In a perfect world, our backups would work every time. But, as it was with missionary work, sometimes even our plans B, C, and D don't even work. And we're left with scooping up the bits of whatever is left.

This is a timely post. I've had decluttering on the brain ever since I went through our 6 boxes of baby clothes (!!!) and decided to only keep 2. And getting rid of all my maternity clothes except one purple dress I wore when I was very pregnant with the twins.

I'm glad you're calm and rationally thinking about it now. That's a good place to start again.

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