Couple (dad appears to be of white European extraction, mum is Pakistani), with two small children, who want to have another. They have a large house but it is very packed with stuff. Some of this is exacerbated by hanging on to everything the other two children have outgrown in case of third baby.
They tour the house. When they enter the elder child’s bedroom, it is evident that Mum has taken over part of his closet for her special-occasion Pakistani clothes. “When was the last time you wore them?” her husband asks, which immediately gets my back up. I have textiles and clothes from the Philippines that I may well never wear (including my mother’s wedding dress) stored in boxes. I don’t care if they stay there for the rest of my life. I’m never getting rid of them. As Sunita (Mum) says, “I don’t have an Indian-Pakistani community here in Los Angeles. That’s a little piece of connection I would like to hold onto.” 100% AGREED, husband can suck it up on this one.
They proceed to the master bedroom closet and it becomes clear she does have far too many clothes, many of which she can’t wear. She has reasons for not getting rid of anything, some of which are rational, e.g. if she has a second baby, she will need maternity clothes and doesn’t want to buy them again, and others aren’t, e.g. she might one day fit into them if she gets to her goal weight. My rule for too-small stuff: Unless it cost a bomb and/or is irreplaceable (e.g. my velvet Shrine dresses; my Transmuter boots, which are both), it goes.
Nested suitcases. “He thinks we should get rid of them. I think we should take more family holidays.” I mean, I’m with you but, but also, you live in the USA, where nobody has enough holidays.
There is, however, a touch of the same kind of weird MK worship evident in the couple in Ep 1. They keep talking to her like she is some kind of oracle who will magically solve all their problems. MK: “I don’t use any magic.” Sunita’s face falls. Oh dear.
MK suggests chimes, incense and candles for creating the right atmosphere for tidying. Technically this might not be magic, but it is far too mystical for me.
Hilarious husband/wife bickering, very heavy on mutual sarcasm, as he goes through his clothes quickly and she struggles. Her: “Aren’t YOU great. Don’t the teachers like YOU.” Him: “So angry.” LULZ
At the next MK visit, they show her a mountain of bags of stuff they’re getting rid of, so clearly she managed eventually. Sunita shows MK her Pakistani clothes, none of which she seems to be getting rid of (GOOD), and asks for help folding everything up.
They move on to books. Predictably, Sunita doesn’t want to chuck books. Her, holding a stack of children’s books: “We’re not getting rid of them, we’re going to keep them for the other baby.” Him: “Why are you whispering?” Her: “Because I’m trying not to yell.” Eventually they do manage a cull, but the books seem to end up in the garage rather than the charity shop.
The cat is enjoying the new open spaces. Sunita: “I want to feel the joy that cat is feeling.”
The bickering gets a bit more serious. Husband Aaron is getting impatient for that actually throwing stuff out to happen. Sunita has a teary moment on camera in which she says a good many contradictory things. After a sleepless night, she has a sudden and total conversion to wanting to get rid of stuff (“Like, why am I holding on to a seven dollar shirt that I got really cheap and doesn’t really fit?”), and utters possibly the most sanctimonious thing recorded on this series: “Every single one of us should be examining the things we have and deciding if we need it or not.”
It gets worse. She goes through the kitchen. “These things that are just taking up space in your own house: you gotta give it up!” Hey, I mean, I’m glad for you that you finally got the memo and are accomplishing what you set out to do, but you don’t have to get everyone in the universe to agree with you in order to make it the right thing for you to do. CHILL OUT.
Him: “She’s getting rid of a lot, she’s giving away a lot, and I’m really proud of her so I just wanna give her those kudos. Good job. Still cuckoo. I mean kudos. Lots of kudos.”
MK’s last visit. Most of the rooms have been transformed but the garage is still pretty packed, even if they can fit a car in there. Her: “There’s some mental space that has been cleared up by this process. That’s just something that I’ve needed for a really long time so it feels very good.” Him: “It feels like the way we’re trying to live our lives is vastly different.”
I’m glad for them, but I also found it rather sad that even at the end the husband seemed to always talk about her or about the family, but she consistently reverted to speaking about herself. I end up feeling mildly depressed, because I wanted to feel more kinship with this couple than I actually did. Because, you know this is really all about me. :D
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