…Because some of life’s most precious moments
are found in the messiest moments.
Once I committed myself to Why This Blog, and that I would do it, the next hardest part was what on earth to name it. I knew lots of names it wouldn’t be, like: “The Shannon Doyle Blog” or “Look at How Well I Have My Life Together Blog” or “I Have So Many Great Pinterest Ideas to Contribute Blog”. I had to have a name in order to get the blog ball rolling. But nothing was jumping out at me that wasn’t too abstract, cliché, or already taken.
So I took a nap. It lasted a mere 33 minutes, when I abruptly awoke with “In The Messy” rolling over my tongue. And “Because That’s Where Life Happens” thumping on my heart.
There are many reasons why messy fits my life, at multiple depths. In this particular post, I’ll visit the shallow end (literal messiness), and then wade into the 3-foot waters (taking off our floaties). I’ll save the Deep End for another post. So, let’s get started. Why “In The Messy”?
#1: I am a messy person.
At any given time I have like 14 piles of papers on multiple surfaces. I get analysis paralysis and don’t know where to start, so I just walk away (it’s much easier that way). I hate to dust. I deplore putting laundry away. My clothes live in piles on my floor, my chair, my closet, my basement. I walk by clutter (or egads, even trash) on the floor over a dozen times before I finally succumb to it and put it where it belongs. (Mark likes to see how long it will take for me to do this. It’s a cute little game we play.) But allowing myself to be messy gives me the time to actually do more living. So, I survive by enjoying life while living in my messy.
#2: My kids are messy.
They love being dirty. Like really love it. My own messiness helps me accept (and even embrace) their messiness. All three of them are creative, imaginative kids. If I squelch their messiness, I might squelch their creativity. Right? At least that’s what I tell myself. And I won’t go into detail regarding their bedrooms. (In my mom’s defense, she did teach me to straighten my room and expects me to teach my children as well. I am working on that one.) But time and time again, the messiest times for my kids are the ones I see them really living…and loving…LIFE.
Truly experiencing childhood means getting lots of dirt under the fingernails.
#3: Our dog is messy.
This is Moz, our 2-year old English Springer. She is definitely messy. Absolutely without a doubt, Moz is loving life most when she’s messy. Life just isn’t as meaningful if you’re always clean.
Let’s take off our floaties and wade a bit deeper into “the messy”–
like to the 3-foot mark.
One of the current authors / bloggers whom I love the most is Glennon Doyle (no relation) Melton, of Momastery. She writes about how life is messy, which is so much of what makes it beautiful. EXACTLY. The first time I read her words about being messy, I had literally thought right beforehand about how messy my home was, how messy (unorganized) I was, how messy my car was, but also how that’s okay. I live my life and spend time on what I feel is meaningful, and I leave the rest unattended at times. So if there are dust bunnies the size of cats on my floors, toothpaste skid marks the length of Niagra down my sinks, and my children’s handprints from last month on my glass doors, that is okay. I am needed more elsewhere, and so I spend time elsewhere. And it’s obviously not in my children’s bathroom…
And about it being okay to be messy? An image was being shared around Facebook recently; I think I even shared it myself (I lose track; I post so often). But I altered it a little:
So as much as I cringe when a friend unexpectedly drops by and sees my messiness, I don’t pretend to be someone I’m not (okay, maybe 20% of the time I might). Rather than feeling ashamed of my messiness (faults), I am trying to embrace it. The Truth is often messy. And sometimes messy hurts. But it’s better than living a lie. It’s more fun just owning our messiness. It’s real fun. And sometimes really fun. And then other times… it’s just really funny. Like this:
So the lesson I want to learn from all of this messiness–whether it’s a by-product of me, my children, my dog, or just simply, the world— is this:
Don’t be discouraged in the messy.
Find the beauty of life there, then share it.
P.S. If you’re comfortable without your floaties and would like to swim on out to the deep end, I’ve already written about it at In The Messy. You can find it here. Just scroll to the bottom of the page– and, oh, you might want to grab your goggles– you can see better underwater if you open your eyes.