I’m participating in Sharon Salzberg’s 28-Day Real Happiness Meditation Challenge again this year, and my plan for this blog series is to write a poem or reflection on each day’s practice. You can find all the responses on the landing page.
So here’s another negative emotions meditation.
Today, trying to find one particular plastic bag someone had given us (image at top of page), which was last seen yesterday, I pulled everything out of one shallow kitchen drawer, the drawer that holds aluminum foil, wax paper, plastic wrap, and parchment paper … and these bags. Some of the bags had been pushed to the back of the drawer and into the drawer below. (The bag I was looking for wasn’t here.)
Then I pulled all the plastic bags out of the pantry, the secondary baggage storage area. I didn’t take a photo of them but there were at least as many as in this photo. These aren’t grocery shopping bags; they’re used produce bags, used bread bags, used freezer ziplock bags, that size. Hundreds. Hun. Dreds.
I kept ranting to myself, ridiculous! (That was actually the word of the day, if you didn’t get that memo. I used it on the vacuum that kept breaking down, too, as it has about every 10 minutes of use for more than a decade.) Ridiculous! All these bags, and this mess, the utter disintegration of order and method (channeling Poirot). Ridiculous! Negative emotions were felt and experienced and spoken of aloud. Sighing, growling, and fuming occured as well.
Then I sat among the bags and sorted them. Got rid of the worst, the least usable. Then bagged those remaining together by type: bread bags, sturdy farm stand bags, flimsy produce bags, ziplock bags. Still hundreds — because, they’re useful? — but now organised, manageable. Very satisfying.
Only a few are in the bag&wrap&waxypaper drawer — how is there not one word for these items? It’s not neat, but it’s accessible in an unfrustrating way. For now (cue ominous music). The rest are stored in the pantry for all our future bagging needs and those of our nieces and nephews and their children.
And, when I was ready, I opened my eyes and went on with my day.