Facing death and the art of cleaning

A few weeks ago I had a massive allergic reaction – to moving. Well, okay, to be honest it was more a reaction to the mounds of dust I unearthed while trying to start getting ready for my Big Move in January. (Yes, it needs the caps)

I live in an old house, and while I must admit I don’t clean properly often enough, it tends to let in dreadful amounts of dust. Seriously, it comes through the windows, under the skirting boards and I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s sneaking its way in through the floor boards too. All excuses aside though, a few weeks back I decided to just get down to cleaning. I pulled furniture out, I beat my futon mattress to a pulp, I swept, I dusted, I threw stuff away – and ultimately I spent the next few hours coughing, wheezing and throwing up. It wasn’t pretty.

At one point I thought it was tickets. I sat in the kitchen, gulping down water, each breath hissing threateningly in my throat and contemplated just leaving all my stuff and moving out with nothing.

I get a bit dramatic when I think I’m about to die.

In the end I took two Allergex pills and by the time my wonderful boyfriend person came around for a visit I was passing out. Nice, Terri, really nice.

I left the cleaning for a while, simply because now my chest closes at the mere thought of a black bag and a broom.

But last night I managed to face the fear. I tidied up a few small spaces and threw away some more stuff. Baby steps. Mind you, with 24 days until the Big Move, they should be teenaged steps. And not the drunken stumbling of the general pimply teen either. They should be the self-assured, cocky strides of one of those adolescents who just can’t be told.

Tonight I tackle the box at the foot of my bed.

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