So, 25 days ago I started blogging my daily experience with selling everything I own so I can move with my family to another state and live in an RV. Initially I wrote because it was just so surreal, and writing the plans down made it more concrete. And then, as the concreteness settled in, the reality and permanence became so overwhelmingly real I needed a place to vent. I thought that it made a good story, too…such a ridiculously outrageous experiment! Selling everything!!! Me, a hoarder by nature, who saves gum wrappers for sentimental value!!! Living in an RV!!! Me, who loves my oversized kitchen with enough cabinet space to live in.
I’ve shared the happy and the really really sad. I haven’t held back because doesn’t every story need an arc? The heroine starts off one way, then changes as the story unfolds…the climax reaches it’s lowest (or highest, depending on the story told…) point, and then it resolves itself in a slow winding down denoument. I couldn’t write the beginning and ending without putting in the lowest lows in the middle.
Today I watched the last final remaining posessions I owned, except for the things I’m bringing down in my minivan or keeping in the house until it sells, be carted off the sidewalk by strangers.
Not too long ago, all those things were a part of me, my story, my memories, my connections. And today they were just stuff taken away by strangers to resell, or use, or who knows what. One man’s junk is another man’s treasures works both ways. My treasures are another man’s junk. Some people cruised in with a horse trailer and just threw everything in to the back of it, then drove away.
If Ashley weren’t here and I was alone, I think I’d be really sad. Especially when Sassy ran in with tears in her eyes and said, “Mama! Come quick! A stranger is taking my scooter away!” I’d forgotten that her things were there, and that she’d be upset seeing them go. She’s been doing really well with the moving process, except she tells me every night that today wasn’t her favorite day, because I didn’t play with her. She also is crying quicker when she can’t find a toy or loses something. I know it has to do with the upheaval, and until the scooter incident today I’ve kept her things all together in her room so she feels secure that she has everything she needs. I’m trying to be extra patient and extra gentle because she needs the TLC from me to make everything alright.
This is the best and the scariest part of being a mama. The absolute trust and dependence kids have that you will make everything OK. And this at a time when I’m already stretched to the max myself. This is where the superhero cape would come in handy…not that I think I am one, but I’d just like the superabilities that come with it. I’d like to be super fast, so I could move around from room to room like a whirlwind and still have time left to play with her. Or levitation so I could levitate everything around my house and into proper order just by wiggling my fingers. Stopping time would always come in handy…freeze frame and then run around doing everything so when I unfroze time, it would all be done in the blink of an eye. Super memory…ah, yes. Please!
But at the end of the day, I’m just a mama. No superpowers, just super determination. Just like lots of other mama’s out there! We’re all we have…and in one sense it just seems so inadequate. But in another sense, from the child’s view, it is so awesome to know that mama and wonder woman are one and the same.
I found an old diary I kept when I was 7 (yes, I really really do love to write all about my life, and always have apparently!):
I name everyone in my family, and sum up my existence with this: “I love them all, and they love me.”
As I finish up this move, totally exhausted and at the end of my emotional rope…trying to be equally as good at organizing, packing, cleaning, mothering, cooking, schooling, etc…it was a great reminder that my discouragement at failing miserably at doing any of those things equally well is misplaced. If, at the end of the day, my kids can feel like they love me, and know that I love them, then everything else is gravy.
I’ve been pushing hard to finish this transformation from hoarding home owner to a more well balanced RV’er in a month’s time. With Todd already down in So. Cal to give me incentive to get my family together, it was a no brainer. As this packing and moving chapter in that adventure is coming to a close (I hope!) I already feel freed up to focus more singly on the things that matter the most to me. Truthfully, the material things we allow in our lives takes little bits of our focus and energy. I know that now, because without anything to take those tiny bits of my energy anymore, I really do feel more present and focused on what’s important. I’m looking forward to bringing that with me to the next chapter of the adventure I find myself on.
And I think the universe agrees with me…as I spotted this sign in the parking lot of Beau Jo’s pizza tonight. Just let go and be happy!
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