"Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt." Kurt Vonnegut Slaughterhouse-Five. I am a Vonnegut fan. I am sure I've read every one of his novels and short stories and countless essays. In all that, this quote has always stood out to me. Fans of Vonnegut might not choose Slaughterhouse-Five as their favourite novel. It is, in my opinion, not his best work but many would disagree. See Mother Night or God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater. What is crucial about the novel for me is this quote, which in the novel is an epitaph but for me has always just been a sentiment that I am drawn to. Obviously, an impossible to achieve existence (which may very well have been Vonnegut's message) but a nice thought just the same. I find myself drawn to simple things since our life took this turn when we realized Kate and our family were going to have some challenges to deal with. It is not a huge stretch for me to simplify my life as I have always been less of a hoarder and more of a purger. So much so, in fact that Alex is regularly worried about what I will get rid of next to satisfy my need to keep fewer things in our house. When something goes missing he immediately looks at me and and I am usually guilty (but seriously, if you haven't used it in a year, what the hell do you need it for?) Even though I seem to pour my heart out on here I am less sentimental than you might imagine, or at least I don't get too attached to 'things'. I like photographs and art and have a very difficult time throwing either away but everything else in this house must know, its days are numbered if we do not regularly use it. Surely, some of you out there are the same way. I know some of you have challenges that you would never speak about, things that take up some much room in your brain that you struggle to fit anything else in. It's the trivial stuff that that has to go. I wrote a post awhile back called "You're Not Even in Our Top Three" and it kind of speaks to why there is no room for extras right now. I can see how this could be annoying and I try to manage it but the more chaotic our life gets the more I want to remove some of the excess. I have not done any research on this topic but I can imagine that most people who are feeling a little overwhelmed might tend to wish for simplicity in other areas of their lives. Sounds pretty text book to me. So, lately, I have been drawn to uncomplicated things and uncomplicated people (if you know what I mean.) I don't think I have room in my brain for anything more right now and I am fine with that.
Happy Mail to:
27 Wellington Row
Saint John, NB
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Grace and Kate's mom. (Shanell)