Yesterday I started packing – in earnest anyway.
I know this is generally pretty high on the list of priorities for a person about to move, but packing has really been the least of my concerns.
There are a few reasons, I’ve been telling myself, as to why I think this is.
First of all, I’m not a packrat. I get rid of things I don’t need. I don’t collect anything, I’m pretty good at throwing out papers, and what I do have is pretty organized.
Most of this is just my personality, but some of it is because I don’t have a lot of extra space to store a bunch of junk, which is my second reason. (The readers who have razzed me about this for years can just keep their comments to themselves here!)
Based on this I really have thought it won’t take me that long to throw what I do have into some boxes.
I realized yesterday this is not so.
Now, I’ve moved before, several times actually, but not in the past seven years. I kind of forgot there’s a whole sorting and weeding out process that a person about to move usually goes through. Shoot - the better part of my morning was spent trying on clothes I hadn’t worn in ages and trying to determine if I’d ever wear them again.
Then I remembered all the drawers where old CDs, stationary, wrapping paper, spare cell phones for just in case (this is necessary with my track record), tools, phone books, the harmonica I have yet to learn to play, markers, vases, etc., are stored.
So I got some boxes at the grocery store and got to work.
Let me clarify that yesterday was my first serious attempt at packing. I kind of started going through things last weekend, beginning with the books on the shelves by my bed. But after looking at the empty space I stopped. They just looked so bare. Then my imagination got the better of me and I thought, soon, this is the way the rest of my apartment will look.
In one swift second I could see the naked walls, the vacant shelves, the open spaces that I’ve filled over the last seven years…and reality hit me, along with a wave of emotion. I haven’t put a thing in a box since.
So, yesterday was a big step. I felt that, instead of talking about it, thinking about it, (blogging about it), and planning lots of dinners and happy hours because of it, I had finally started acting like a person about to leave. And I did it without any waterworks.
Does that mean I was totally unaffected? Of course not. I mean, come on, let’s be realistic here.