Plenitude: its dark underbelly

Plenitude: abundance, copiousness; the condition of being full, complete. From Latin: plenus = full.

Whenever you’re feeling cranky, mingy and stingy, like you just don’t have ENOUGH (enough whatever – money, love, time), the pop psychology wisdom is to open your heart to the gifts you already have and to feel gratitude for the bounty in your life.

And I do that. I feel grateful for the abundance in my life most of the time.
I am satisfied and want not.


Right now I’m clear that plenitude is not necessarily all it’s cracked up to be.

In fact, I’ve got too much of a good thing. Too much of MANY good things. Too big a house. Too big a (beautiful) garden. Too many books. Too many interests. Too many commitments. (You can never have too many friends.) My life is plenus to the max.

If I were still married* and had a partner with whom to share the physical space and the physical chores, that would help. But I’d still have the rest of it – with the addition of the company and requirements of my partner – resulting in a net wash.

I was reading a book on feng shui recently in which the author suggested that if you wanted something new in your life (new career, partner, social circle, home) you have to go beyond ordinary clutter clearing. You have to create a VACUUM. Only when there’s a nice hole will something rush in to fill it.

I feel certain that if I got rid of half my stuff and found a place half this size with little or no yard, other opportunities would appear. And if I’d complete my divorce and stop being friends with my ex, a new romance might appear…

But all these things are WORK. It’s so much easier to complain about plenitude.

*True confession: I’ve been legally separated from DH since 2002, living happily apart all this time, but we’re still not divorced – we were each busy and it didn’t seem pressing to finalize it. I now see the foolishness of my ways.

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