Friday, April 21, 2006

Lightening the Load

We recently moved. Only across town, but the exact distance was mostly irrelevant. I'd been at the old flat for 12.5 years. That's a lot of crap to wade through.

I don't think I'd ever been so physically exhausted for such an extended period of time. Maybe in college, but I was younger, more resilient, and not really used to getting enough sleep on a regular basis anyway. The late nights...the heavy lifting...the emotional drain of leaving the place I'd called home for so long...I don't ever want to know for sure what it feels like to be hit by a truck, but I think I may have some sense of it.

The new apartment is a lot smaller, so we had to be ruthless in our purging of junk. As a recovering pack rat -- second generation, so I come by it honestly -- I'd been getting better and better at tossing things I no longer needed. I felt fine about recycling/selling/trashing many items that I hadn't been ready to let go of in the past. We'd set aside lots of things to give away to friends, or else to Community Thrift (which donates the proceeds to a nonprofit you choose). By the time all was said and done, we'd tossed/sold/donated about two-thirds of our stuff.

I'm revelling in the new sense of lightness. I felt some kind of switch click inside me when I finished filling the new kitchen's built-in hutch: each glass bowl had its place, all our pots and pans had cupboard space, every plastic tub had a matching lid. Everything fit. And it was all beautiful. Without the random mugs and useless appliances in the way, I could better appreciate what we had.

We still have some boxes to unpack, and perhaps even a little more purging to do. But I'm enjoying the chance to build this new household from scratch and make every corner count.