I am not a hoarder.
I do, over the course of time, acquire and accumulate things. It’s all a very normal business that starts out small but inevitably becomes a corporation of clothes opening new offices in every room of my house.
But this is not hoarding. Hoarding is something else altogether that involves plastic bags, reclusiveness, and maybe Iyanla.
I am currently living in the largest home I’ve ever lived in as an adult. It’s definitely the newest and probably the nicest place I’ve ever lived. I should be thrilled, but now I am plagued by a singular question, a question so paralyzing that my fingers tremble to type it:
To decorate, or not to decorate?
Everything inside of me says go for it, make this place into the home of my dreams for the time that I’m here. I have this vision of myself opening up the sliding glass doors of the main floor and throwing beautiful parties on my front porch. I can see the twinkling of the lights I’m going to make The African™ string up and I can hear the laughter of my guests standing around the fire pit. I can feel the rug I will buy on my trip to Casablanca under my toes. It’s all there in my mind, as if all the Pinterest boards and IG hearts and HGTV homes chose my house as a showroom.
But there are other things to be considered. Of course. There always are. For one, the financial cost of decorating. For two, the expense of moving when it’s time for me to do that again. Ya’ll. If you want to go broke, move across the world and start over from scratch.
And I suppose that’s what I’m most afraid of right now– the hidden emotional cost of starting over from scratch. I’m not the phoenix of international moves. I don’t live with a consistent awareness of my power to reinvent myself. I discover it on an as needed basis only.
When I left Kuwait, I was determined to make Bangkok home. In some ways, I still feel that determination. But. I’m also becoming acutely aware of the transient nature of the life I’ve chosen. The international teaching world is a circuit of comings and goings, meetings and saying goodbye. We don’t have to love the nature of all things, but we must know that all things have a nature. Selah.
What I know tonight is that Bangkok is home now, so I’m sure I’ll buy a few more items. I am, after all, a grown woman. I feel entitled to a kitchen table and a microwave, matching dishes and a soft throw blanket for my couch. But about the rest– the twinkling lights and the conversation pieces–I’m still undecided.