Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout
would not take the garbage out…
brown bananas and rotten peas,
chunks of sour cottage cheese…
As the words of this delightful Shel Silverstein poem come to mind this morning, I cannot help but let my all too stoic lips (as of lately) curve up a bit at the corners. A little levity is just what I need to help me evaluate the heavy concerns that have been my recent and oh-so-relentless companions.
Just like Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout let pizza crusts, dried mustard and chicken bones pile up until they “raised the roof,” I realize that I have also acquired a hefty collection of garbage. And while my trash hasn’t yet run off my neighbors, it has certainly been threatening my personal ability to feel confident and hopeful.
Holding onto hurt feelings is like brown bananas.
Lack of exercise is my rotten peas.
Worries of things which I cannot control are no better than sour cottage cheese.
“(Insert full name here), it’s time to take the garbage out!” A closer inspection of my junk reveals that I have been giving some things in my life too much attention while neglecting others. (Yep, time to make adjustments and find that balance… again.) I will sort through my piles and discard those things which have lingered beyond their expiration date– too many social media connections, tasks that take inordinate amounts of time, and negative thoughts and feelings. I can use the freed up energy to progress in areas more deserving of my attention– reaching out to friends, planning healthier meals, and nourishing spiritual beliefs.
So, while I feel completely unqualified to offer words of wisdom and encouragement right now, I instead share a little of my own struggle to recognize and take out the trash before it overwhelms my soul.
At last the garbage reached so high
That it finally touched the sky.
And all the neighbors moved away,
And none of her friends would come to play.
And lest I meet the undisclosed “awful fate” of Silverstein’s Sarah, I’m taking the garbage out.
What are your brown bananas and rotten peas? When you throw them out, what will you do with the gift of more time and energy?
This article was written by Clair Dickson.