Monday, November 15, 2010


Over my life I've tried to collect. My first childhood attempts included troll dolls (don't you judge me) and rocks. More recently I've been trying to collect Russell Wright chartreuse dinnerware (I am making some progress there). However, I find that generally I am a terrible collector of things. I lose interest and I lack motivation to gather more/spend money on stuff. If you've been a long time reader you probably know how much I love to edit and purge myself of belongings. I am also married to a real collector so we find a good balance that way.


While I am not a collector in the traditional sense I stumbled upon a little personal insight last night as I lay in bed. Every living creature in my home was asleep. Eric and Cordelia were both soundly sleeping. Bumblebee was snoring in her bed. Mia and Ophelia were lounging at the foot of the bed, eyes closed. I was awake. I had been reading my Kindle until my eyes couldn't focus on the words. I flipped off my lamp, intending to fall asleep, but my oldest friend insomnia made an appearance. I closed my eyes and my mind whirred back to life. Ugh-- I thought, just let me sleep, but I knew I had to just sit there and think until I got it all out of me.

So my mind bounced around for a while. I thought about books, conversations I'd recently had, obligations that were piling up. Eventually I thought about a term my mother used to describe herself, a serial hobbyist. She's right, she is definitely a serial hobbyist and so am I in many ways. However, as I pondered this further I realized that I, more specifically, collect responsibilities. Man alive, do I ever. I have always been that way.

Eventually I began to wonder if this is an actual problem or if it's something that is beneficial to me/others. I decided that it's a little bit of both. I tend to get carried away with the responsibility business and I find that I will take on responsibilities that should never be mine in the first place (saving worms is one that I just can't remove from my list, ever).

I began to wonder how I can set some parameters for myself. Finally I decided that my only 3 responsibilities include:

Loving: My family, friends....oh and everyone. Oops so much for narrowing down that category.
Giving: My effort...where needed. Man alive strike two.
Creating: Uh oh, no help here because I mentioned that, like my mother, I am a serial hobbyist.

So I finally drifted off realizing that I am destined to collect responsibilities and somehow that recognition was enough. What do you collect?


Keia Kato-Berndt said...

hm, that is an interesting realization. I am seeing all the responsibilities dropping into a glass jar like marbles or something from alice in wonderland.

I collect WAY too much. tea, cooking appliances, pins, rabbits, plants, pashmina scarves....the list goes on.

Robin said...

I decided a couple of years ago, that I needed to SLOW down on all collections! I had too many groups started and no space! Walls were closing in around me, the air was harder to breath. Ok, a bit dramatic, but I sure felt better when I purged a lot of those things. Now it is just a few choice items. The green and amber glass are about the only things I am collecting now. Which is good because they are hard to find!

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