I am moving. After living in New York City for twenty-five years, I am moving. Where to, I don’t want to say just yet, just that in the last two or three weeks my world sort of turned upside down. Well, I turned it upside down, actually. So I can’t complain. It’s actually a good thing, a positive move, a choice, a decision landed upon, an adventure, new life, new land, a new civilization. I just wish it wasn’t so much hard work, risk and stress on the body/mind and spirit, but there is no way around those things. Change is change is change. It was my decision. Burp. Where’s the wine?
A friend of mine is also moving, from a house she lived in for many years, had children in, a career and a huge life, to another state where she also has a life, but a new life. A life with history, but not the same history as when her children were little and cakes were made and homework was checked. She knew I have moved a rather large amount in my life (literally about 27 times in 42 years) so I was pleased when she called me and asked, “How do you do it? How do you manage this moving thing?” She sounded really depressed, and understandably so.
Inundated with my own impending day of change, I decided to sit down and write her an e-mail. I had a lot of ideas rolling around in my head and sometimes, well most times, I write better than I speak. I don’t know why, my brain just stops sometimes and I can’t recall a certain name or very obvious word. I blame years of memorizing lines. So I wrote her an e-mail and then called her back.
She told me not only did my e-mail help her but that I should publish it. This was a very sweet thing to say. So here goes. If you are moving I hope it helps you. I may have to read it a few times myself to remind myself of what I know when the moving trucks come.
I do understand the pain of moving. All I can assure you is that it’s always hard, but it’s SO much harder if you’ve been living in one place for a long time.
Try to remember that all those good times are yours to keep forever in your heart, and now you are moving forward to build new happy memories. Thank god you have happy times to look back on. They will be a great comfort to you when you are old and gray!
I think we always have a dream for our lives when we move into a new place. A dream of who we will be and what will happen there. The fact is, our lives rarely are like those dreams, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t full and joyful. The dream is just the match that starts it all going in a certain direction.
There is no arguing that change, no matter how you look at it, sucks. But it’s an indisputable part of life. There’s nothing you can do about it but accept that change is going to happen. At least this change is one you are choosing, and that’s an important thing to remember. You made this decision and you can always change your mind. If you choose to see it through, remind yourself of the good reasons why: the freedom you will have, the new good times to come, etc. If you change your mind, look at other options!
Memories can sometimes be overwhelming when you are moving. It’s not good to linger over every dish or every box of toys, you’ll make yourself crazy! If you can’t get rid if it, get a storage facility and deal later. Sometimes its the only way. Try to remember the present is the most important thing, and you can’t take any object with you when you die. It’s just stuff. The memories live in your heart. If there are bad memories, try not to linger on them too long unless you are going for a therapeutic purge!
That’s the best wisdom I have for you right now. Try to look forward to the future and make new plans. When you look back, remember how well you have handled situations much more difficult than a few pieces of furniture! Don’t let the past OWN you!
Finally: Be kind to yourself and don’t overdo it. You’re only human and moving sucks.