10 July, 2011

A photo of a mindmap I've drawn for our lounge room action plan for Sunday.

Today we started packing in earnest and began sorting stuff we will take with us, stuff we will dump and stuff we will sell. Tomorrow: more of the same as per my enthusiastic mind map pictured. Please forgive me for this reflective brain dump as I prepare to move to a different city and minimise the things that have come into the possession of Nick and I.

I don’t really ever think anyone will want my crappy shit but Dad is insisting on helping us with selling things on ebay. It’s difficult… basically all our belongings are hand-me-downs or gifts and scaling back possessions means having to throw out old birthday presents or sell wedding gifts. I mean, they’re obviously things we have little use for or that we flat out dislike but I worry about offending people. Then there’s family furniture we’ve accumulated that needs to be stored with Mum or rehomed. Nana’s display cabinet, Mum’s old washing machine, my parents’ liquor cabinet, a chest of drawers I used when I was little, and my uncle’s desk. Oh and the lounge suite.

A photo of my legs and feet draped with a pink blanket with a coffee table and a cabinet in the background.

This is what I did tonight. I’ve been snuggling up on the couch with my baby blanket at nights for the last week. We have to get rid of the lounge suite Mum gave us and even though it’s hard to get out of it’s super comfy for snuggling up in and reminds me of being safe in my parental home. I don’t think anyone will want the suite. The once gorgeous floral upholstery is stained and tattered, even though Dad always says that the frame is solid and sturdy. This couch has lots of memories that people can’t see. Like how Phoebe (our black toy poodle) used to walk around the base of the seats grooming herself and leaving dirt stains from her frolics in the yard. How we’d come in from swims, assuring Mum our hair was dry and watching TV as the salt water and chlorine leeched into the cushions behind our heads. When I was sick I would pass out on the couch and Mum would bring me tea as Phoebe sat in my lap looking after me.

At this moment what I’m experiencing is perhaps a kind of grief for things that have furnished my life for the last four years in the same space with Nick. At times I feel so frustrated that I just want to take everything we can’t bring with us to the dump! And then other times I wander around our unit completely overwhelmed before being drawn to the warm hug of the tatty floral couch. I see “lifehacking” articles about people embracing minimalism in their lives, but I’m just not comfortable with that idea. Obviously!

They’re just things, man, but they’re things that prompt me to remember and give me a sense of home. We’ll be moving in a fortnight to live with Nick’s Mum, and then we’ll have to readjust to a new sense of home. I suspect things will go better than expected, it’s just that the transition is quite discomforting.

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  • Ponyboy Press

    I totally understand this. Take pictures of the things you are having a hard time giving a way. It helps to have that and with the picture, it’s easier to let go. Good luck!

  • Stephania

    You can sell anything on ebay. I sold a moth-eaten rug on ebay yesterday for $96! (of course I fully advertised that it had moth holes in it). Be honest about what you’re selling, highlight it’s good points, keep it brief. We’ve made some good money selling unwanted items on ebay!

  • Deathbylightning

    I feel your pain as we are getting ready to move this week. It is a whole world of stress. I myself become anxious when my house is out of sorts. when things are in their place i feel at one with the world, right now….not so much. good luck and ps things we sold or dumped that we felt bad about i took a picture and keep a scrap book of the memory or person attached to it.