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Closet Cleaning-Emotional Freedom

Emily Dean



I'm a closet cleaner.


An under-the-bed-stuffer and a professional hider.


My room is sometimes clean, but with these hidden spaces filled with things, I guess it really isn't clean. My floors are bare but I am the only one who knows about the mountain of clothes piled in my closet.

Every once in a while I will spend a day doing what I call gut-cleaning; clearing that mound of clothes in the closet, excavatingeverything out from under the bed. I know it is there.It weighs me down and soon I get overwhelmed, eventually picking a time to tackle it.


This kind of cleaning takes the whole day and is an extremely annoying task. Half-way through I consider quitting and by the end it feels like I really didn't accomplish much. But I can breathe. That hidden burden is gone - tossed away in the trash or on its way to goodwill. There's something about this cleaningthat makes my head just a little clearer, my worry go away.


When I was younger I did the same thing with my emotions. I would stuff my anger away until the closet was too full. Suddenly I was a torrentialavalanche of a woman cascadingonto my brother for a tiny comment. Maybe I was just ateen full of angst, trying to live the artist life.  My mind wouldsomehow keep track of all the bad.Instead of confronting it or mending it or evensending it down the path of forgiveness, I would hide it away.But I knew it was there. I remembered.



It was a struggle. Answering the questions truthfully didn’t come naturally - toask what had hurt me and try to fix it. I always thought it was better to smile over my coffee in silence, or that 'fine' was good-enough of an answer when someone asked me how I was doing. It took sharp eyes to notice the stuffing pushing out of my closet.A clean floor couldn’t always fool everyone.


Today my life is a much different story. I'm an independent,Italian nightmare who will most likely tell you exactly what she’s feeling. I concluded that I wasn't going to do that to myself anymore. I wasn’t going to shove my emotions in a closet or ignore the mess when it piled up.I think this was the greatest change that could have happened to me.


If you try to hide away your emotions or feelings, you'll become a closet ready to burst. Trust me; been there, done that. It is a place where nobody should be and I hope you'll roll up your sleeves and make a change if you find yourself there. Don’t be afraid to speak the truth with someone you love.They love you for crying out loud. They want to hear your bad days, tounderstand how their words might have hurt you and mend to it. To speak from the heart means being vulnerable, working through the mess and clearing it out. It means moving forward.


Yet, what keeps us from sharing our hearts?


Fear keeps us from facing the situation, that bulging closet that is stuffed to the seams, and we decide that it is better to simplyforget about it.


But please, trust me. Your heart and mind do not forget. They both hold onto those ill feelings and trap you without you even knowing. However, grace and forgiveness are powerful.Theyhave the power to change you for the better.


The process might be long and tiring. You'll have to take a deep breath of courage and speak up when you'd much rather be quiet, but you can do it. I did it.And I am a much different person because of it.


With this new year, I hope you will clean out those closets and leave space for a clean and healthy mind.

It will turn you into a better person, a better friend and a better sister.


Words by LaRue | Photography by LaRue Photography & Liz Rachel Photo