bringing comfort

Not necessarily joy.

I depart from Marie Kondo’s whole thing about what brings you joy in this. There is a difference between joy and comfort; beyond a utilitarian purpose; comfort in the familiar. Not joy. Simple fulfillment of that first level of basic needs being met. A quick review of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, even the updated versions, shows me that I am right.

Well, of course. But that is because I am finding what speaks to me, and I will define my needs accordingly. And I need to say that comfort is more basic than joy. After all, joy is fleeting; comfort needs remain high. Frog in pot, and all of that aside, comfort needs considerable constant adjustment. Sort of like arranging pillows. There is the physical comfort and the psychological one; I wouldn’t dare venture which is most important. Maybe it’s like driving; when all elements are equal, you can drive with kids fighting in the back seat, music blaring, and any other part that may come into your picture. But as soon as the weather starts changing for the worse, what does every parent say? “Kids! Stop that fighting! Can’t you see that I’m driving?” or something similar…

Joy, like driving conditions, is temporary.

Okay, I did say so is comfort; it does require continual adjustment. So let’s put it this way: comfort is the underlying layer; sort of like the cupcake with the icing on the top. You need the cupcake before you can get to the icing. And both are not “necessary” after all…but we are creatures of comfort.

We have made great progress on the sorting of the boxes. We are down to four small boxes in the kitchen, and the only boxes in the hallway are those that belong to our daughter, plus maybe one or two others. We’re not there yet. We still haven’t found ISHI’s pillow. There are a few more things that are AWOL, like the prayer books for the High Holidays that we put aside very carefully last year in their own little box. But basically, it’s the pillow. It’s always about the pillow, isn’t it, as we move from place to place in our lives, looking for that extra comfort that will make all the difference.

Getting down to the boxes with  pictures has brought me joy insofar as I was looking forward to the comfort of home; having my pictures on the walls here makes me feel at home.

There’s no place as comfortable as home, as long as you can recognize it.

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