I am moving in exactly one week. Not very far, just over to the next neighborhood, just a 20-minute walk away. But after living in the same apartment for over 9 years, I’ve amassed quite a bit of memories and experiences. I’ve lived most of my adult life in this apartment. And it’s not just that I’m moving to a new apartment. I’m starting a new chapter in my life, moving in with the boyfriend.
Taking things off the walls, packing up the books…it’s hard for me not to touch something without having an emotional connection. This, of course, makes me very slow at packing! I came across an old photo album from October 2000. It was after I went to Paris. This is the opening page:
I think about the questions and uncertainty I’ve had over the past 10 years, how I’ve wanted the answers so desperately, and how many of them have been answered. I think about all the experiences I’ve had that have shaped and formed me into the person I am today. And I think about all the questions that still remain, hoping that I can be gentle with myself, experiencing each day as it unfolds, trusting that I will live the answers when I am ready.
When I leave this apartment, I plan on saying goodbye by writing a letter to myself, listing all the good memories and experiences, and then mailing it to my new address. And, on the flip side, for complete closure, I also plan on writing a list of the things I want to let go of, ceremoniously ripping up the paper and tossing it in the garbage when I’m finished.
It is both the good and bad experiences that shape you, but it doesn’t mean you have to hold onto the bad when they no longer serve you!
I have big big news coming soon, but in the meantime, I thought I’d share a little inspiration.
For years I was lucky enough to live in the same building as a very close friend. We would drop off secret surprises to each other, leave magazines at the door, hang a bag of homemade cookies on the doorknob. Since she’s moved, I’ve missed these little ways of saying “I care.”
Recently she dropped me a link in my e-mail inbox. It was just a little dose of inspiration and fun:
These days with connection happening more and more by computer, it’s nice to get a secret surprise every once and a while.