Sunday, July 24, 2005

Weighty Issues

We have five weeks to go until moving day, and some days I feel like I have things well in hand and other days I feel like I will never be ready on time.

Goodness it is hard to pack your whole life's accumulation into boxes. I have discovered that nothing fits easily into a box. Handles are too long or bottoms too wide to fit into most boxes, and if something does fit on the first try, it won’t fit snugly with other things in the same box. I feel like I am working on the world's largest jigsaw puzzle, and don't even like ordinary jigsaw puzzles! I carry things from room to room and box to box to see if I can get a better combination than the crushable rose wreath snuggled next to the cast iron skillet!!!!!!

As hard as it is to fit things into boxes, I wish that was all I had to contend with on this move but it isn't. This is not just a move where I can put items into containers and move them, I have to look at everything I own and decide if I want to keep it or not because we are moving to a much smaller house, and some things just have to go.

Also, because of our bad backs, we cannot do the lugging and carrying of the boxes or furniture ourselves, so we are paying movers to come in and load and unload the truck. We are doing our own packing, but not the lifting and carrying. The mover calculates the cost of his part of the deal by weight and distance travelled so I have another reason to get rid of stuff, especially heavy stuff. I am literally weighing in my mind, almost everything I touch and asking myself if I really want to lug it across country with me. If I pick up an item and it is light it gets a fairly easy pass, but it if weighs more than a loaf of bread it demands lots of thought and has to pass a critical test – does its value to me weigh more than the cost of its weight to transport? If not, out it goes. In the battle of the cast iron skillet and the rose wreath, the rose wreath wins and the skillet goes to the Goodwill.

You can see from AC's post that we are getting rid of literally "tons" of paper!!! I must admit that it gives me shivers to shred all the papers I have so diligently filed and kept all these years, but it has to be done one day, and it is better that we do it now, instead of leaving it for our kids to do without us during a time of grief. I cleaned out my mother-in-law's house after she passed and it was a very difficult task to get rid of "stuff" she considered treasures. As I work away on my own house, I keep telling myself that I am giving my girls a gift by doing this instead of leaving it for them to do. As hard as it is for me, it is easier than it would be for them. Right?

Amazingly enough, as I weigh everything in my mind and put only what I think is really important into the boxes that come with me; and the boxes to give away get heavier and heavier, my spirit gets lighter and lighter. This incredible lightness of being is bringing such joy. There is a wonderful freedom in getting rid of the stuff that weighs us down, emotionally or physically. Clutter is clutter no matter what type it is – physical or spiritual, and both kinds seem to have the same affect on our lives- weighing us down, limiting our view and restricting our movements.

Here's to losing weight and feeling light and free. It is wonderful, positively wonderful. Almost an ecstatic experience.

The soul should always stand ajar, ready to welcome the ecstatic experience. Emily Dickinson


Chelsea said...

Dale's Mom and her husband did that a few years ago when they moved to a smaller place. I'm very grateful that it's done and we won't have to do it when they are gone.

So I thank you on your kids behalf.

Mel said...

I wish I were there to help pack and declutter. I love that sort of thing.

Cuppa said...

Thanks Chelsea :)

Come on over Mel. I will make you a cup of tea and then put you to WORK!

I love the clean swept feeling when I am done de-cluttering, but I don't love the actual doing. I am trying though. I am always telling myself to enjoy the moment I am in no matter what I am doing, but I must admit that I am struggling with this one a bit. I am finding bright spots in all the gloom of sorting out the basement though, so onward and forward.

"Out of the strain of the doing into the peace of the done."
Julia Woodruff

I am so looking forward to the "piece of the done".

Rurality said...

We've been going through the same thing. I am such a packrat! Think there is a 12-step program?! :)