Netflix's Tidying Up Doesn’t Spark Joy for This Mom

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If you are present on any form of social media these days you are likely aware of the latest craze - purging and organizing your items Marie Kondo style.

My instagram feed, once littered with squishy newborn cheeks and cat fail videos, suddenly switched to drawers full of perfectly folded clothing and overflowing boxes destined for the donation bins. All with the hashtag #konmarimethod.

And it’s all inspired by Marie Kondo, the Japanese organizing consultant and author of four books on organizing, which have collectively sold millions of copies.

I was a bit intrigued, and found myself faced with a choice, continue with my Downton Abbey Netflix marathon or switch it up and see what the fuss is all about. Admittedly, this wasn’t my first (or second) time watching DA start to finish. Nevertheless I opted to drool over Lady Grantham’s wardrobe and giggle at the not so subtle shade of the Dowager Countess one more time.

See the thing is, I don’t particularly like “tidying up” myself so I cannot imagine why I should like to dedicate my time to watch others do just that. My husband is constantly on my case about organizing our house and I think I’ve just come to realize that it isn’t a strength of mine. My real strengths seem to lie in the actual purchasing of the items that need to be “tidied up.”

I’ve picked up a few of the main concepts of the show through friends and social media. One is to pick up an item, hold it in your hands and decide if it sparks joy in your life. Keep it only if it does.

This is hysterical. So I’m to throw out my vacuum? My razor? My husband will be really happy about that. Hell, if you ask me on the right day I would probably toss my husband with the lot of it.

Some days there is literally nothing in my home that sparks joy besides my cozy bed and my cats. Instead of tossing all of my items in the middle of the room and sorting through them it would probably just be faster to set fire to the house and walk away. I’m not sure that’s what Marie Kondo had in mind.

And I find it incredibly hard to believe that any of those people with their little origami shaped clothes have children living in their home. There would be nothing more infuriating then perfectly organizing my drawers just to have my threenado come crashing through and ruin hours of work in just seconds.

Now don’t get me wrong, I totally get the concept of living more minimal and organized. There is definitely a solid argument that children are happier when given less with more organization. We moved houses in September and only brought a few of our kids toys along with us. We still have some minor renovations to do and don’t want to have to finish baseboards and paint around clutter.

Having fewer toys seems to make our kids appreciate what they have far more than before. They have mastered their puzzles and built more intricate castles. Our son’s imagination has really taken off in the last few months. In fact, for the last three days he has spent a considerable amount of time playing shipwreck with a flattened cracker box.

Wait, are we allowed to keep recycling around as toys if it sparks joy in our kids?

There’s no doubt in my mind that clutter puts stress on our marriage. My husband grew up in a small family with an orderly house and he can’t handle the chaos that I was used to. Having less stuff equates to less clutter and mess, resulting in a happier husband.

Last night I finished my Downton Abbey marathon. The Lady Mary love saga has once again come to a happy ending and I had to decide which was up next on my list. I picked up my remote, scrolled over the Tidying Up icon and held it in my hand. It sparked no joy so I did some online shopping instead.

Kristy Symes