Well we did it. Reese and I are out of our house, bags packed, and currently on the last leg of our flight to Edinburgh. Safe to say that we didn't sleep much last night - it was akin to Christmas Eve's as children, anticipating what all lies ahead of us. Sheer excitement.
But over the last few days, as we finished packing things up at the house and stayed with our family for our final few days on US soil, I kept feeling as though a weight was lifted. I assumed it was just the fact that our gargantuan to-do list was nearly finished. After some thought, relief seemed to have little to do with us completing our moving preparations.
It was because we had stripped our lives down to our necessities and a few wants. From our townhouse, we saved four large pieces of furniture: our desk, dining room table and chairs, our bedframe, and a small Lay-Z-Boy chair. They were all of the pieces of "adult" furniture that we had slowly purchased. The rest of the furniture in our house was purged. Donated, sold, or thrown away.
We combed through the rest of the stuff we had accumulated over our lives, careful to only keep items that were truly cherished or useful. Over the matter of two weeks, we realized how much crap you keep because it takes energy to decide whether or not to get rid of belongings. The usual questions pop up: what if I want to use it in the future? What if it comes in handy? The answers are you won't and it won't . Many of these things were items that I had kept with me from high school or college. Little things that didn't take up a lot of space or weigh a lot, like graduation tassels. These little things take up space not just in your dwelling but in your heart and head too. Space you never knew was being occupied. Space you never realized you needed back.
And after five trips to the dump and just as many to the Value Village donation drop, I felt lighter. I could focus on stuff that actually mattered to me, not stuff I had assumed responsibility for along the way. It has been an incredibly freeing experience.
I hope and intention is that as I move forward after this purge that I take the time to be more thoughtful about the items I keep in my life, only welcoming the needed and useful material goods into my world.