Out of focus

There are these days when I’m on a declutter mode. All I want to do on that day is to declutter spaces around me. Work space, leisure area, kids room, kitchen, bathrooms, you name it. Over the weeks (actually months), I keep making these notes in my mind till the day this list refuses to accommodate another new task. Today was one such day. This list was finally transferred on a post-it and stuck to the refrigerator door with the intention of being ticked away at regular intervals. All set in my work gear, I chose to start with my little office space.

My make shift office /den is a small room with a work station, a futon and a home theatre system. I decided to start with my desk. I wondered about my junk collecting habit as I cleared and dusted it. The amount of stationary on that tiny desk of mine would put a laureate to shame. I don’t know why is it so difficult for me to resist the attraction I feel towards coloured pencils, pens, textured paper, bright post- its and all the other kind of stationary. A stationary shop makes me feel like a kid in a candy shop (please disregard any thoughts related to the song by this name).

I did a good job with my desk and moved towards the most boring and time taking task on the list. Paper Work. It was time to attend to the piles of documents that had collected over months and were sitting smug in a big cardboard box. Glimpses of neatly arranged and filed bills, medical papers, bank documents and school papers flashed through my head as I dusted off the box and opened it. I leafed through the papers and started segmenting them. Midway, I discovered some old pictures tucked away in a corner of the box. These were my first year college pictures and I was seeing them after almost a year or two. Coming across them accidentally in middle of a boring, mechanical task was like a breath of fresh air. The pictures were of a trip that a bunch of friends had taken. With a backdrop of mustard fields, our flying hair and carefree looks captured the spirit of college days. I felt like sharing the pictures with some long lost friends who I had recently connected with through Facebook. But I realised that I do not have digital copies of those pictures and in order to post them, I would need to scan them. So scanning the pictures was a new task added to my list.

Looking at the old pictures brought along a slew of memories and I contemplated giving in to this sudden urge of leafing through some old albums. The album box was in the upper closet of the same room so all I needed to do was pull a chair, climb on it, pull out the box full of albums and quickly go through them without wasting much time. I managed to convince myself. Within minutes, I was right in the middle of my most treasured possession. There were pictures of vacations taken with my parents, weddings, school and college functions and some other random stuff. My favourite amongst them, my school album had all my class photographs neatly arranged in a sequence. As I was going through this album, I was drawn to my second standard  class photograph and especially to Mrs. Sharan- my class teacher. She taught us english. I remembered how she used to roam around with a sharpener in her hand and made sure there were no blunt pencils in the class. She was also a woman with an impeccable sense of style. Her kaftans and stoles added a spacial charm to my winters. She always used to tell me not to let my mom get my hair cut. I used to love her for that but I still wonder why over so many PTA meetings, she could not manage to convince my mom that girls look prettier with ponies and not with super short boyish hairstyles.

My mother made sure that my hair was short cropped till I was in ninth standard. And then, I finally discovered that I did have a say and refused to cut my hair to that length ever again. With all these thoughts rustling in my head, I felt like talking to my mom about it and dialled her number instantly. For the umpteenth time I complained, cribbed and nagged her about the injustice she had done to me over my precious growing up years. I also told her how I’m taking special care and helping my 4 year old daughter Avi grow her hair. Then I caught up on some family gossip before hanging up.  

The moment I hung up I realised that  a big pile of papers were yet to be sorted out and there were a few more albums yet to be seen. I also realised that my shoulders and back were hurting at strategic places because of sitting on the floor in an awkward position and if I continued any more sorting of papers, I would land up with bad back pain. A bad back pain would interfere with my regular activities like playing with the kids and cooking for my family which I felt were much more important than sorting of some odd documents. I promptly put the papers back in that box where they belonged and kept the remaining three albums on the table next to my bed so that I could leaf through them at leisure. It struck me that hubby and I could go through the albums together later in the evening and that would also give me a chance to share with him some trivia related to those pictures . There was a fair amount of chance that I would be reminded of something that I haven’t yet told him about. May be a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon would aid my memory along with lubricating our conversations. Viola..here I was with the recipe of a perfect evening with my spouse who often complains of not being able to spend quality time together.

So making a task list and deciding to act upon it was not such a bad idea after all, I thought. What if there is one more task added to the list. With a promise of ticking them all off real soon, I headed towards the fridge for some dark chocolate. They say dark chocolate is good for back pain.


8 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Meraj said,

    not to mention the benfits of dark chocolate in spending ‘quality time’ with hubby (they also say that)

  2. 3

    Rajiv said,

    Supposing I was unaware of the identity of the author of this write up, this would have been my comment

    “Well, you have displayed a quality of urs thru this piece that can only make me say that u must be my lost sibling in Kumbha mela. Because your chain of activity follows a pattern of thought process that uncannily resembles mine. Starting off to do a task, finding something interesting in between that makes us forget the original task altogether, imagining and planning for the future to be pleasant using that “something”, and end up doing things u didn’t intend to do originally.”


    Waise I remember once i asked u long back about the field that u wanna be in. u had said that there wasn’t a specific field that motivates u, but it is the excellence that does. This is the pattern that i’m talking about, not concentrating on a specific field but on quality, how to make life better and enjoy it more

    May excellence keep on motivating us. By ur blogs I am quite confident that it still does for u.

  3. 4

    lilmorethanamommy said,

    Both of us are ‘work in progress’ and that’s definately the best state to be in!! 🙂

  4. 5

    I so know this ‘declutter mode’. Did u say dark chocolate was good for back pain too? I thought it ensured a trouble free heart, and a ahem rocking sex life. With this new health’ benifit, seems like i need to stock up my Lindt dark thins…Loved reading stuff on your space, girl. keep writing and whats happening to Mothers and others?

    • 6

      lilmorethanamommy said,

      KG.. thanks for visiting my blog. I’m workin on a broad outline for Mothers and Others. Need inputs from some hands on mommys too. Will soon ping you for that! Meanwhile, njoy your Lindt dark thins. 🙂

  5. 7

    Rajiv said,

    Just read this quote, and thought that this line will suit this blog of urs the best

    “The true worth of an experimenter consists in his pursuing not only what he seeks in his experiment, but also what he did not seek.” – Claude Bernard (1813-1878)

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