Shaking my head at the family circus

“SMH.”
For those of you who have not yet been sucked into the vortex of cellphone texting and Internet acronyms, the three consonants stand for “Shake My Head.”
The letters also represent an Australian newspaper known as the Sunday Morning Herald, and likely also are a short form for other places or things in the world.
In my neck of the woods, SMH is plain and simple. Shake my head. A lot.
Sometimes SMH is accompanied by the closing of eyes, the gnashing of teeth, a sigh, a groan, a guffaw, or an expletive uttered both above and below the decibels detected by the human ear, a stomping of feet, and/or a throwing up of hands and arms in a gesture of surrender to the moment at hand.
I’m upgrading from a double to a queen-size bed and decided to mess with my bedroom chi in light of the change. I have wasted more time standing in the middle of the room contemplating the re-design of the overcrowded space than I care to admit.
Given that I only have 120 square feet to work with, there are only so many options at my disposal. Leave it to me, though, to spend innumerable hours of my spare time fine-tooth contemplating every inch.
SMH.
Miss “Smartie Pants,” who is home from university for the summer, suddenly has become the expert on counselling me, akin to a reality show about hoarders.
“You don’t need a bigger house, Mom. You need to get rid of some stuff,” she said, chuckling.
SMH (the peanut gallery comments came from the one whose heavy suitcase required an airplane of its own to fly it here last month).
Nonetheless, I probably could downsize. Moving my stuff from one room to the other isn’t exactly working.
Every time I put something in the “donate” pile, though, I can hear my brother’s voice of reason whispering to me, “But you might find a use for that.”
Come to think of it, I have a pile of stuff my brother bought for himself at a garage sale in 2007 still stored in my shed.
SMH.
As an aside, I did clean a bit of financial house recently when I decided to cancel my term life insurance policy—you know, the one you buy when you’re 25 years old that at the time cost peanuts.
I don’t know where the time went, but I do know the monthly insurance payment skyrocketed at a recent renewal term, so I cancelled it.
You should have seen the look on two of my offspring’s faces when I told them there was no pot of gold after I kicked the bucket.
“Now what are we supposed to do!” one of them blurted out, as if I was going to vanish into the mystic upon my next breath.
Obviously, they have forgotten that I’m going to live until I’m 110.
I couldn’t help but laugh (followed by SMH) at the honest panic in the response to my tell-all.
I wonder if I also should tell the kids that I’m going to take all my “stuff” with me when I go.
After all, maybe my brother is right. I might find a use for that.

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