I really “nested” when I moved to Seattle. Maybe I hadn’t quite thought my future life plans through 100% or maybe the fact that my company paid me a big chunk of cash to make the move swayed me, but I really made my house a “home” for the first time. I invested (yes, that implies $$$$) in furniture, decor, an organic home garden (oh yeah), and really loved my house – so much so that at one point I attempted to buy it off my landlord.
The dream of living abroad hadn’t disappeared, but I suppose the foresight of what a hassle owning a home, nice furniture, etc. would mean for a major international move had diminished somewhat. It was so far in the future it didn’t matter. Fast forward to the “future,” and it completely blows.
Most of my “nice” or one-of-a-kind things I’ve had a really hard time letting go of, and add to that the fact that I have to discount to mere hundreds of dollars that which ultimately cost me thousands, I’m kind of hating my 3-year-ago self. Which means, kids, that I’ve learned a really important life lesson, that I’d really like to impart to you: Your shit is not important, please don’t spend too much on a freaking coffee table, and get over having “stuff” and focus on having experiences.
I won’t pretend that I’m not one of those ridiculously lucky people who has gotten to have her cake and eat it too – I’ve traveled just as much as I’ve purchased an expensive couch. And I still believe 100% in a comfortable and stylish personal space. But if Pinterest as taught me anything, it’s that you can most likely DIY the crap out of some Craiglist BS and spend the money you saved on a plane ticket to Manila, or Abu Dhabi, or somewhere equally as awesome.
I will say the one area of packing that brought me the most joy was my basement. Yep. Basement. After digging through mountains of crap that all went to the trash bin, I discovered that I had shoved years of photographs, old middle- and high-school notes, short stories I’d written, etc. into told tupperware boxes in my basement, and promptly forgot about them while I fretted over window coverings. Pulling those out, seeing the pictures, reading the notes and stories was wonderful. Many of them I sent back to the original writer of the note, because I thought it would do them just as much good to see how far we’d come as it had done for me. It was a nice opportunity to take a step back from my crazy trans-continental moving frenzy to appreciate the talent I had as a 12-year-old English student, see pictures of myself and other amazing, accomplished women I grew up with in our private school jumpers and braces, and allow myself to be humbled at how much growth I’ve packed into a relatively short amount of time. Not that I’m anywhere close to done, but… I’m glad I started with my basement, because it helped solidify the realization that these are the things that matter, not my mattress.
Which is why I’m not going to give more than one fuck about where 99% of my “stuff” comes from once I move. Except for my sheets. That shit’s portable, and I’ve evolved into a 1,000 thread count minimum. If I’m spending 35% of my life in bed, it better be a damn comfy ride.