THE BLOG
02/27/2013 12:52 pm ET | Updated Apr 29, 2013

Paring Down

It wasn't enough that I begin my uninvited subscription to AARP when I was still 48.

Now, at 71, I received -- unbidden -- a magazine called Time for Me. The remarkable thing is it's everything from "anti-aging" creams to vibrators. And furthermore, I didn't throw it out immediately. That's how I know what's in it.

I can relate to lots of things in this little magazine. Most of its stories are relevant to my life. Most catch my attention sufficiently enough to warrant a "yes" or a "no" to this product or that one.

Here I am, sitting in this large house by myself. Feeling so small. So liking the taste and the "things" around me, but feeling so ridiculous and non-cozy in a space too large for one. The task ahead is awesome and I mean awesome in the way it's related to horror.

From the Free Dictionary online:
awesome
adjective awe-inspiring, striking, shocking, imposing, terrible, amazing, stunning, wonderful, alarming, impressive, frightening, awful, overwhelming, terrifying, magnificent, astonishing, horrible, dreadful, formidable, horrifying, intimidating, fearful, daunting, breathtaking, majestic, solemn, fearsome, wondrous (archaic or literary), redoubtable, jaw-dropping, stupefying, gee-whizz (slang) the awesome responsibility of sending men into combat

The definition ranges from wonderful to fearful, from majestic to terrifying.

On my back, I carry a three-bedroom, 2,200 square foot house, not including the basement where I keep my books and my crafts.

It all looks great. It would be great to live here with someone. But that is not going to happen, so I'm trying to get out of here.

I've finally hired someone. We need a multi-level plan. Shoving out and organizing. I don't know whether there is a way to do both at the same time. I'll ask her opinion.

I have to take this on as a job. I hate it so much. I tell myself, Ruthie, dear, you probably DO want to deal with EVERYTHING one more time. Or do you? I guess it's a reasonable question. It's kind of my style to do this in a thorough way like I do everything else. But I think it's important to understand there is indeed a choice here.

I worry to myself, what if nobody else actually cares? It's likely the case. I vanish without a trace. My parents pretty much have. Vanished, that is. Certainly without all those traces.

In some ways, I don't know whether or to whom it matters if an item is from my maternal grandmother. Or that she knitted this little sweater with her hands. By candlelight. Or that these are her initials on this little purse which I can imagine she had on her arm on a date or wore for some special occasion.

Between writing and doing art, I guess I want to see what is there. And organize it. And pare it down. Even if it stays in boxes. I could leave it for others to decide.

That feels like a good compromise.

Which means yes, I have to do the job.

Because I want out of here.

I don't yet know to where or to what, though. Ideally, I'd find a new home with the following requirements:

one level
2-3 bedrooms
good natural light
a good view -- meaning trees.
a beautiful view -- up in the trees

high ceilings if possible
quiet
wood-burning fireplace
a balcony would be divine

That helps.

Knowing that I know this part helps.