It’s odd how we see things as identical when they are at best just similar. I am at this second fighting to type as I have bought a new keyboard. Surely a keyboard is a keyboard, is a keyboard, clearly it’s not. My days of fighting with keys without anything on them to even give me a clue as to what letter they really contained, might be over, but of course, because it’s my life, fixing that problem created another. To be honest, it’s not fair to blame the keyboard. It’s actually rather beautiful, with its low profile, smooth keys and zero distracting lights. No longer will there be that annoying rattle when lifted from all the odd things that have fallen in through the gaps between the keys. There are no gaps. No more keys that stick or if not struck right in the center results in my long nails slipping off the side and striking two keys at once. Each and every key is almost flat and requires just a light touch, but luckily it’s still a true touch, not one of those mad ones that produce a million letters more than you meant to produce. Not only have they removed the gaps that more than once has resulted in a broken edge to my nails, they have used it to make the keys bigger. Which is wonderful, as I don’t seem to be hitting quite so many neighbors rather than the one required. So if it’s so perfect, what is causing the struggle? All of the above.
Having spent the last few years being used to all the things that once annoyed me, I now find myself somewhat lost by their absence. I am finding myself stopping over and over again, just to double check that I have actually in reality, written several lines without an error. I have for the last year actually been convinced that my typing was going down the hill rapidly. It appears that the truth was it was being caused by the keyboard. I am sure that skilled typists wouldn’t have had the slightest issue with it. To say it was the keyboard is probably unfair. It was the design of the keyboard that was causing me so many problems. As my dexterity has diminished, working on a standard old fashioned keyboard was getting harder and harder. The style of the key meant I missed the middle of them with ease. These larger flatter keys seem to be the answer. I can actually once again type at a reasonable speed without leaving a million errors to have to go back and repair. Which is wonderful, but still it all feels wrong and it’s for one reason only. Becuase of all the issues that I perceived the old keyboard to have, I felt it had a personality, a soul if you like. Anything that is perfect to me just doesn’t have that, it is yet another lifeless object that does nothing other than it is told to. I have lost my annoying friend and gained a wonderful, well-designed piece of plastic, that will make my life so much easier, but somehow just that tiny bit emptier.
All my life I have lived in a paradox. I have strived to not only be as perfect as I possibly could be but to also surround myself with perfection. As I just admitted, though, perfection is soulless, and I fall in love with things that don’t quite work as perfectly as they should. Those quirks of imperfection somehow brings the inanimate alive. Just as I know that drivers all seem to have a place in their hearts for that old car long gone, that never quite worked perfectly. They may now have that beautiful shiny one that’s stats say is perfect. But they still love the one that had be coaxed and cajoled into starting on cold days. I may not have quite gone as far as drivers do, as in giving everything a name, but I have always known that I pour love into things. I always have and I always will.
I know that Adam just doesn’t get the attachment I have to what he calls “just things”. There isn’t an ornament in this house that I haven’t spent time, lots of time, just holding, turning, admiring and enjoying, over and over again. In my mind, I can picture every single one of them and many that are now long gone through accident or even deliberate loss. I honestly believe that my love of things is part of the reason that I am happy here day in, day out surrounded by them. I never get tired of looking at them and I often find a smile appearing just because they are there. It would be fair to say that I must spend an hour out of every day, just looking at all the things that surround me whichever room I am in. Adam calls it my clutter. It’s not. Clutter isn’t displayed, it isn’t set out with carefully arranged gaps, that let the light play between. Space is as important as the objects that surround them. Clutter is a mass, of stuff, no spaces, no design, not thought out and deliberate, just stuffed in where there once was a gap, probably too small for it in the first place. Clutter isn’t loved, it’s just there. Everything that fills our home was bought for the exact place that fills. I have never bought something without knowing exactly where it will sit to be seen at it’s best and to assist the display of what surrounds it. Everything has it’s exact spot, it’s home and its neighbors that compliment it, not annoy it.
I remember somewhere back near the start of my blog, I wrote about the importance of building your cocoon. I spent the years between diagnosis and housebound doing just that. My cocoon wouldn’t suit everyone, but if you aren’t welcomed every time you enter a room, it isn’t going to be a place where you will be happy. I know that my perfectly laid out space did at first a creator one huge problem for me. When I was no longer capable of keeping it perfect every second of the day, I became extremely stressed by the mess and muddle that I saw where ever I went. Adams idea of housework wasn’t mine and for that reason only it did backfire on me for a long while. Anything that wasn’t where it should be, every speck of dust, or dropped letter or book on a surface that should be clear, drove me up the wall. It took me a long time to come to terms with it. To find ways to hide it from my mind, but once I had, I once again began to find the comfort it was designed to give. I had built my cocoon without allowing for the fact that I couldn’t care for it. Without a doubt, if I could go back and build it again, the finished result would have been very different. But none of us can see the future.
Whatever it is in life that you love the most, has to be on shown in your home, because once housebound, you can’t go anywhere else to find it. Even if you doubt you will be housebound, almost every chronic condition will lead to you spending more and more time at home, so make your home special, make it your cocoon. None of us can expect to be happy, forced to live in a space that we hate, surrounding by things we also hate. For all of us, depression is our greatest nemesis, happiness is the only tool we have to avoid it and our surroundings, play a much bigger part in that happiness than many care to admit.
Please read my blog from 2 years ago – 16/08/2013 – Compensation comes from you
The phone just rang and when I answered I nearly hang up as it was one of those automated system, but when it actually said my name, I listened further. It has to be the first time I have ever been called to confirm…….