Loretta’s Linen Closet

Getting all you want or wanting all you get

An article by Fran Kick

You’ve heard the expression before, “Happiness isn’t getting what you want, it’s wanting what you get.” Well, I can’t think of a better living example for that than my mother-in-law and her almost famous linen closet.

You see, my in-laws live in one of those mega-sized 55+ only communities that are popping up all over the place. It’s a wonderful place. It has more activities, events, and community involvement than many of the college campuses I’ve spoken at over the past two decades! They live in a townhouse area of the development where most of the homes are “variations on a theme” and almost all have the same basic layout.

One of the features that are exactly the same in everyone’s home is the linen closet. Since almost all of the homeowners have moved into this development from a larger home, they are quite chagrined to discover the quite small, they-call-this-a-linen-closet, micro-sized space they were given to store towels. Or as my father-in law refers to it, “the napkin pantry.”

In spite of this, Loretta’s linen closet is the envy of many who have had the opportunity to see it. Rather than fold her towels the way she always has and try to cram them all into a too-small-for-most-kind-of space, she folds her towels to fit perfectly within the small space she has. Most neighbors want to know how she fits so many towels in her closet. They are so neat, so perfectly aligned, maximizing space and never appearing crowded, crammed, or cramped. “It’s simple,” she kindly says. “Some people fold their towels to fit their closet and some people expect their closet to be the right size for their towels.” A lesson in accommodation par excellent!

How many of us want to do things the way we’ve always done them and expect it to work no matter what the circumstances? Maybe parts of our lives are too crammed and cramped because we’re tying to fit things in without regard to how we fit it all in? Rather than assume the responsibility ourselves, it’s easier to blame the circumstance or complain that “our linen closet is too small.” In reality, it just depends on “how you fold your towels.”

FRAN KICK has been inspiring people to KICK IT IN® and TAKE THE LEAD since 1986. With a B.A. in Education, a M.A. in Educational Psychology, and three children of his own, Fran knows What Makes Kids KICK!

© 2006 Fran Kick. Used with permission. www.kickitin.com

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