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  • Writer's pictureRoxy SZN

15th Century Preparation

It all started two Sundays ago. One look into our utensil drawer and I was disgusted by how dirty it looked with all the breadcrumbs that had creeped in there. So, I organized and cleaned the utensil drawer. The next thing I know, I was cleaning every drawer and cabinet in the kitchen. After 4 bags of items to donate to Goodwill, I thought maybe I should consider cleaning the linen closet, and the rest of the week, I regressed into my obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). I had to overcome OCD after the kids became toddlers, but somehow my disgust with a dirty drawer, brought back my tendency towards excessive perfectionism, orderliness, and attention to details of the house.

One week later, I was not satisfied with inside closets, drawers, windows, or surfaces in the house. so, I decided to attack the spider webs that had built up over the years, inside and outside. (I had been shallow cleaning for a few years). Every spider web I swiped apologetically; with my fancy spider web remover, I thought of hurricane Isabel and how the spiders may be experiencing the same sentiment we did in 2003.

Next thing I know, I was cutting dry or semi-dry bushes and plants in our front yard. Every semi-dry plant I removed, I asked for forgiveness and explained to the plant how they will sprout somewhere else soon... Ironically, my OCD caught on to others in the household and few days later, we had folks come and trim all our trees. Every branch that came down, held couple of bird nests. The trimmed foliage from palm trees, held homes for squirrels. There I was again saying sorry to the little sparrows and squirrels while asking them to rebuild quickly.

You see, in my heritage, the Persian new year, known as Nowruz, (Some spell it Norouz or Nowrouz) falls on the first day of spring and includes a ritual called “khooneh takouni” meaning “shaking the house,”. This year is the beginning of the year 1400 in the Persian solar calendar. This means, I shook my house to prep for the 15th century. Meanwhile I caused so much angst and agony to living things around me.

I am not sure how to change the business of cleanliness, or how our species went wrong with the obsession to clean. I don't understand how some creatures' home became unclean, but one thing is for sure; I want to live in a world where my comfort, does not cause discomfort for any other being. Though I had a choice to live and let live, I chose to shake the house. I honestly, don't know how to change myself at this point, but on this new day, I hope the new generation, finds a way to not disturb the peace for any other creature.


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