Monday, September 09, 2013

Letting Go

Over the weekend I had to make the decision to let go of my past. It wasn't easy.
It may sound obvious, simple, and straightforward to some, but it wasn't for me.
All of my earthly belongings have been in a storage unit in another state for the past 3 years. I've put a lot of money into holding on to that unit. I always intended to go back and get my stuff when the time was right.
But now that the time is right, it was apparent that it wasn't cost-effective to go back for my stuff.
But you see, it wasn't just stuff.
It was all of the things that I had worked hard to procure and collect. It wasn't yard sale stuff or hand-me-downs. It was the physical evidence of the life I had built for myself. It was the evidence that I was once a competent, functioning, productive adult who had her own home, and pretty things.
There have been many nights over the past few years where I would close my eyes and mentally walk through my old home and remember all the little details. The antique lamp on the end table I refinished. The dresser I bought for $10, painted, restored, and put new handles on. The red striped drapes. My framed pictures. The little plaque in French I hung over my bed- what did it say? I can't remember anymore. The kitchen table I saved up for months to buy. The under the sea bathroom decor.
The time had come to fish or cut bait. Pay another $300 on the unit? Or just walk away, and let them auction it off. I tried to come up with an alternative plan (give everything to a friend who lives a few hours away) (if you are said friend, I owe you a much better explanation and apology). But that didn't work out.
Did I want to spend more money to hold on to this stuff I would likely never get to retrieve? I've held on this long. Was I ready to let go?
I won't pretend the decision was easy. In fact, there were a lot of tears over it. Never see my book collection again? (Nothing defines a girl like her book collection!) My antiques? All of my classic, vintage movie posters?
It wasn't just the "stuff." It was admitting that I'm not picking up my life where I left off 3 years ago. And that I have no choice but to start over from scratch now.
I like my job, and I am getting settled into my new life here. But... the move hasn't been completely without its difficulties. Although I have returned to my hometown, I'm still starting over again as the new girl. I have a few friends here already, but they are deeply rooted in their own lives and patterns. I'm a disruption, looking for a place to fit in.
Letting go of my stuff meant letting go of what left of my hopes that I would "be me again."
It meant I had to accept that I am building a new me. Growing, changing, and starting a new life. Not resuming my life where it was rudely cut off so long ago.
(It was all made that much more emotional and complicated by seeing my friends and family from Roanoke over the weekend. I am happy here, but it broke my heart to see everyone and not get to go home with them.)
But I did it. I let the storage unit go. Some storage auction hunter got some good stuff this weekend.
Deep breath.
Let it go.
Look forward, not back.
And accept that I have no choice but to buy a new vacuum cleaner now. My new life is going to be rather stinky and covered in dog hair if I don't do it soon.
So do I get this one?

Or this one?

There is a $70 price difference for pretty comparable "pet hair" vacuums.
Anyone have a vacuum they recommend for less than $150? 
And preferably one that won't remind me of my old life and make me unreasonably emotion when I look at it?
(just kidding. i actually like vacuuming.)


  1. Considering you have may want to save your pennies and get a Dyson. I haven't bought one yet because I have hardwood floors, but my allergist and others remind me all the time to get a Dyson.

  2. Oh, and a big hug. Sorry you had to let your things go. That's hard.

  3. What a brave thing to do! I don't know if I can do that!!!


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