*Lyrics from Eva Cassidy‘s Songbird. One of the saddest songs I could think of, yet somehow beautiful, and sweet, and true. I think this song has become a dreaded ‘wedding song’ so now I can ruin it for everyone by using as my ‘leaving the only home I’ve ever known’ song.
**UPDATE: Rain date for the yard sale will be June 2nd, same time, same place. Something tells me that 49 degrees and raining won’t bring the shoppers out in droves. **
FYI: LOCALS We’ll be having a yard sale/tag sale/garage sale next Saturday, June 2nd, from 9-3pm, so come with cash, and don’t be afraid to ask for a deal. Everything must go. Unless we can’t bear to part with it, in which case we’ll be making the fool-hearty decision to store it in the hopes of using in the future. So, yeah, come by and talk some sense into us.
As the rain sprinkles down on the lush and green lawn, lilac scent still hanging deliciously in the air, I look around at the madness, clutter and chaos of our move, and sigh. We’ve spent nearly 6-1/2 years here, more than I can say I’ve ever spent in one spot – ever – and I can’t really imagine not having this spot to come back to. This house, this home, has come to represent a childhood dream realized: to have a place to call home was that dream fulfilled, and one that I am reluctant to give up.
I grew up in apartments, moving frequently as a child, and on into adulthood, so moving isn’t particularly the traumatic part. Sure, it’s hideously time-consuming, and dreadfully boring, and basically a huge pain in the ass, but it’s just boxing up stuff to bring to another place. Usually. But, in my case, in this case, we’re not only boxing up our world, we’re shrinking it, and we’re being forced to make judgement calls about things that normally might not come up during a regular move. Will you want those ornaments in the future? Maybe. Do you still like these lamps? Yes, I only got them about a year ago. Will you like them still in another year? I sure hope so. Do you think you’ll want to use our barware in the next twelve months? Possibly, do I have to decide right now? And these are all questions I had to ask myself. Add all that to the part where I have to give up on my childhood dream, and you’ve got yourself a huge, stressful event.
Moving is an emotional process. Not just tedious, physically demanding, and chaotic (which it totally is), but melancholy inducing, and nostalgia inciting. Going through all of my things – and I’m a good purger, only having two small boxes left over from my entire childhood/life before marriage – has been difficult and freeing all at once. I mean, we’re downsizing, so I’m being forced to be more brutal with my purging. But, it’s also giving me liberty to let go of things that I might have previously felt the need to hold on to. All of my former hair school stuff (from, gulp, 10, yes TEN years ago) isn’t relevant in my life anymore, so why keep it? Even some of my design school stuff is old news – I’ve moved on, as has design, so why linger in the past? It’s a good exercise to do every now and again – sift through your personal detritus and then make your way to the recycling bin. You’ll feel lighter.
But this move is also signaling the end of something in my family. Since my parents are no longer married (and haven’t been since I was three), our house had become neutral territory for family gatherings. No one had to choose who to spend time with because inevitably everyone ended up here. One Christmas (2011), we had something like 16 people here, including boyfriends, girlfriends, extended family, and our then 3 month-old baby niece. We went through at least a half a case of wine in one night (ok, now that I think of it, it was probably more like a whole case, but my wine-soaked memory is apparently still wine-soaked), laughed, cooked a feast-like dinner, slept in, made a huge breakfast, laughed some more, and just generally basked in the glow of a large, merged, and diverse family unit. It was my favorite holiday here, and the one I think of when I realize that we won’t have that again in the future. My parents are at the stage of their life where they’re downsizing, too, and with no ‘family home’ to lay claim to, we’re just going to have to float about and do the best we can.
Now, it’s not all sadness and gloom over here (or sturm und drang – any excuse to blame the Germans on my sadness). I’m genuinely excited to see life from a new vantage point. But, that means giving up the old one, one that I had wanted to inhabit for my entire life, and one that I shall miss in a part of my soul that is impenetrable by reason, logic, or studious analysis. It is primal, and I am in that primal emotion.
So, until the spectre of Christmas past has, well, passed, I shall be forced to meet my emotion with each box, each pile, each minor decision, each release of material possession into the world. I look forward to making new memories, new traditions, and new experiences in the future. But I’ll never forget this place. Even if I try.