The 1950s Housewife Challenge: Day 11

For people who do not have depression, I think one thing that’s often misunderstood is the physical toll it can take on your body. According to the Mayo Clinic, “Pain and depression are closely related. Depression can cause pain — and pain can cause depression. Sometimes pain and depression create a vicious cycle in which pain worsens symptoms of depression, and then the resulting depression worsens feelings of pain.” Yesterday, I mentioned in my post that I was having a difficult mental health day. Today, I woke up and although my mental pain felt lighter, the physical pain in my body was worse. Everything ached and my body just wanted to shut down, but I convinced myself to get out of bed because not only am I so close to finishing this challenge, but my weekly deep clean task for the day was the living room, which is arguably the easiest weekly task.

Have Decided to Go Live in a Fort Made of Books, BRB

Our living room is pretty minimalist, so daily dusting and vacuuming takes care of most of it…except for the books. Because I’m a writer, you’re probably not surprised to hear that I love to read.


So, like many avid readers, I used to have a lot of books. And when I say a lot, it wouldn’t be hyperbolic to compare my stash to the library in Beauty and the Beast.
Now imagine when Jon and I lived in a one bedroom apartment and stuffed this number of books inside.

However, a few years ago, I, much like every other white woman in America, got heavily invested in the magic art of tidying and KonMari-ed the shit out of my stuff. I thought purging my books was going to be really difficult, but that turned out not to be the case. And now, in the midst of doing this housewife challenge, I’m feeling pretty glad that I chose to embrace some more minimalism in my life, especially when today’s weekly chore involved me individually dusting every book in our living room (which is still a lot, but it’s a fraction of what it used to be).
Now it’s only about a third of this

Because I’ve been doing this intense, high level cleaning for eleven days, this challenge has made me more aware and appreciative of my belongings. Sure, it started out with me complaining about how many loads of laundry I had to do in order to wash all the linens for two bedrooms, but that kind of excess has now been brought to my attention and I’m trying to correct it by getting rid of what we don’t need. The more stuff I have, the more stuff I have to clean.

I’m hoping I’ll be able to hang onto this feeling even when the challenge is over to help keep me conscious of how much stuff I acquire. Do I think it’s necessary to get rid of everything? No, of course not. Could I benefit from doing another Marie Kondo-style pass on my belongings? Probably.

Screen Shot 2020-06-18 at 8.03.05 PM
Note to self: don’t overdo it this time.
Also, fun fact: nothing sparks joy when you’re depressed.

Who knew dusting could spark a whole train of thought about the value of possessions? Marie Kondo probably did, but I’m not interviewing her because one, I don’t know her, and two, she seems like she has her life together like a Real Grown Up™ and I find that intimidating.

Case in point.

Day 11 down and only three more to go!

You know, this whole challenge would’ve been a lot easier if woodland creatures had arrived to help me like they did Snow White.

Day 12: My appliances are in revolt.

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