Things In a Pile

Posted by on Jul 24, 2012 in Wifery | 3 comments

I hate the postman. I suppose these days we call them mail carriers, because there are just as many women doing the job…maybe more? How would I really know? Most days I don’t see them arrive. They come late in the afternoon, during our daily pick-up-the-house-as-fast-as-we-can madness that begins precisely at 4pm. It is precise because around 3:45 the mayhem and madness of clutter and junk that has steadily been rising like the tide has reached the edge of my sanity. I watch the clock for those last fifteen minutes of utter chaos the way a woman in labor watches for her coach through the process to tell her she’s made it through the contraction. It is painful, but the lady with the coach wins in the pain department.

The point is that I dislike this person who keeps bringing me junk. Sometimes there are bills in there too. Even when we have finished paying off our house (hopefully much sooner than the thirteen years still left on our official statement) there will still be bills – for lights and trash pick up and natural gas and doctors visits from years before and lawn care and phones and some other such thing that we are required to pay in order to keep our life moving. I don’t mind paying the bills. I mind that they show up, which is why I place them on the desk and then promptly forget that they are there until the moment that BILL PAYING comes crashing into my month and I sit down and deal with all of the envelopes and piles and stacks.

I should be better at all of it. I’ve been through Financial Peace University. I understand that an orderly life, especially with the bills, is a life under control and running smoothly and, truly, it is like getting a pay raise when you keep track of all the dollars. I have less of an issue with that part. It’s the paperwork that makes my mind goopy and my eyes glassy.

Today was THAT day. The day I wade through the stacks, find all the bills, make the phone calls, go to the websites, WRITE OUT 3 CHECKS (what is this 1995?!). I’ve survived another month of sorting and stacking and now I have in front of me, more piles. Different stacks than before.

Now all of the papers in the stack just to the right of the keyboard have been processed. The bills that were just paid now sit on top of the ones from last month that were just paid and the month before that too. I suppose I do the filing quarterly. At least if I put it that way, it sounds like there’s some kind of method to my madness, but I assure you it has much more to do with how the pile leans every so slightly to one side, threatening to topple over and on to the keyboard that makes me actually take action and walk them into the basement.

There is a pile to the left of the keyboard that includes the things that I have to GIVE BACK to the mail person. I hate this pile the most. Let’s all embrace online bill pay in a very effectual way. Please. Let’s.

There’s a pile of books. Things I am going to read. Things I already have. Things we are leaning on to build lessons and sessions and things.

There is a piece of paper that Piper drew on while I paid the bills – she claims it is a thank you note to about three people, although she does not know exactly for what she is thankful.

There is another solitary piece of paper, that I almost threw away, that contains a gift card for $100. And I almost threw it away, believing it to be junk mail. This is just another reason why the mail is such a horrible thing. You don’t know what is contained in all of those white envelopes and if you think something is nothing and ignore it for quite a while, you will inevitably discover that it is the kind of thing you really should have opened immediately and now something is past due or could have been used at that restaurant you were just in on Sunday. That’s the price you pay for ignoring the arrival of what is usually garbage every day at 4pm.

And then there is another pile of love notes from my husband. Tucked into the bills and the paper and the envelopes and the stuff that keeps our lives moving, I’d placed the cards he wrote out for several occasions this summer. I reread them. I smiled and then I paid the bills. The things that tie our lives together in a small ways were taken care of while I thought about the things that have kept us together in much larger ways. I think I’ll tuck them back in the bill pile to discover and reread next month when this day rolls around again. Meanwhile, the count down to 4pm begins again.


  1. Telling ya — I still love BillPay through the bank. Practically no bills and never a late fee! But I’m an electronic junkie when it comes to financial matters.

    And I hear ya about bills even though no mortgage. We paid ours off in March, but still, there are bills. It’s even more grating when there isn’t a mortgage cause it feels like your house should be ‘FREE’, but it isn’t. You still pay rent to the government aka: property taxes. IRG!

  2. And if you do billpay, then it also makes more sense to go paperless on this bills. Love that too!

    /rant over.

  3. i can’t tell you how much i agree with this post. i’ve been putting off the mail filing for awhile now, and the piles are getting overwhelming. you’ve encouraged me to put it off no longer! 🙂

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