The Purge, The Best Thing about Moving

There are many things that you can learn while attending college, but the most important one come when a friend asks you what you are doing the next day. You always tell them you are busy even if you are not. This goes double if you are the proud owner of a truck. The reason for this is because nine times out of ten, that friend of yours is looking for your help to move them. This is never a fun experience, and the only reward you usually get for all of your time spent might be a slice of pizza and a Keystone Light. Never think that they will be around to help you when it is your turn to move because they already played the mental chess game of asking you what you are doing the next day, and where that will lead them.

I know that moving is never a pleasant experience. It is even worse if you are only moving from one storage unit location to another. When that happens, you don’t get the joy of actually putting your new place together and getting to feel what it is like living there. During this experience you are just looking through your stuff that you haven’t seen for awhile, and putting it some place else where you won’t look at it again for another long time. Even though this is the case, there is something to take out of the experience.

The reason we got a storage unit in the first place was because there was a lot of our stuff that we wanted to hold on to, so when we wrapped up living overseas and moved back to the United States, we could have that stuff to start over again. What we didn’t realize was that we would soon forget all of the stuff we packed into that tiny space, and what was not really worth holding on to in the first place. This opportunity of going through that stuff again allowed us to rethink what we were saving. In other words, it was a great time to purge and reduce our possessions down to the think that really held value to us. Too often, when we are living in a space, we collect stuff, and have a belief that this stuff is important because it is what we can see and hold on to on a daily basis. But as soon as you pack that stuff up and move it to a place out of sight, it quickly moves itself out of your mind.

But that’s the thing. If it is out of mind, how important is that thing really for you. This was the standard that we created for ourselves as we went through our storage unit. We had to do this. We went from a 10 by 15 foot unit to a 10 by 10 unit, and not all of our stuff would fit in the new space. So if the item wasn’t unique or special to us, or we would have to buy it again when we moved back, it went into a pile that went to Goodwill. There were some tough decisions made along the way, but in the end, we were able to organize ourselves, and load up the storage unit with just the stuff that was really important to us.

Most people would think that this kind of purge would leave them feeling deflated, like the years of living ends up in a pile on the donation site at a Goodwill store. It can feel that way, but if you are being honest, there is a lot of stuff that we collect over our lifetimes, and we need to purge it from our lives. These stores that collect the stuff that you no longer need know ways to repurpose it. There are plenty of people out there that would love to have that stuff in their lives for a reasonable price as well. and when you look at the clean and clear space that is left behind, you will feel better about your lives because you will no longer have that clutter hanging over your head. So, yes, the two days I spent moving from one storage unit to another, and the various trips I took to Goodwill to purge some of this stuff was exhausting, but in the end, I feel a lot better for having accomplished the task. I feel like I have simplified my life, and what I have now own, I truly appreciate.

I will close the door on my new space as I get ready to move back overseas for another year of teaching, and I am sure I will forget about all of the stuff that I have collected in that space. Who knows, maybe in another seven years, I will have the opportunity to purge again, and bring it down to exactly what I need, but I am not sure if I can simplify it more than I already have. Then again, in seven years, I may wonder why kept all of this stuff and feel the joy of bring it down to an even smaller unit that will be the essence of my life.

The Heirloom

Right before I moved overseas, I was given this old clock. It used to belong to my father’s uncle who had just passed away, and it was given to my as a family heirloom. It no longer worked, but I was told that if I invested a little time, energy, and money that I could get it working again. At the time, I didn’t have any of those things to offer, but I thought that it was a cool looking old clock. I knew that one day I would look into getting it fixed, but until then I needed to store it some place. We had just sold our house at that time, and we were moving most of our worldly possessions to a storage unit. Obviously, the clock was going to be one of these things that went into the storage unit, and as I started on my adventures overseas, I soon forgot about the clock.

This was until recently. The price of our storage unit kept on rising over the seven years we were overseas, and we noticed that if we moved to a new storage unit, we could lower our price by almost a quarter of what we were paying. It seemed like a no-brainer, except for the fact that we were going to have to go through all of our old stuff, get rid of some of it because we were moving to a smaller unit, and go through the toil of moving it from one place to another. While we were in the process of moving, I came across the old clock again. I recalled the vow I had made to get it up and working again some day, and I knew that it was small enough that I could find a place in the new storage unit that I would be able to get it fixed when I moved back to the United States. So there it sat as I worked on moving stuff from unit to another.

Once again, I put the clock in the back of my mind. That was until, I started to hear it tick. At first, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. The clock was supposed to be broken and badly in need of repair, so I moved closer to it to see if what I was hearing was accurate. It was working now not only because of the ticking, but the minute hand had advanced seven minutes from when I first pulled it out of the storage unit. This would have been a creepy enough thing even if it wasn’t for the fact that I had just watched the fourth season of Stranger Things a couple of weeks earlier. I looked around to see if Vecna was going to pop out and take me away to the upsidedown. I did not see him, but I did see my wife walked back to our original storage unit.

Of course, I beckoned her over to see if she would hear and see the same thing that I was at that moment. I pointed out how the clock was ticking away, and I started to take a picture of it with my phone. She agreed that she could hear it too, and when I finally snapped that picture, the clock let out a gong that made both of us jump back. It only took a couple of minutes after that when the clock returned to its usual state of not doing anything, but my heart was still pumping away from just having gone through the experience.

For those of you who were worried, first, thank you for your concern. Second, I am sure that it was a freak occurrence that had something do with me triggering the clock to get it started up again, and Vecna is not going to come out of the woodwork to take me away. Despite all of this, it made what would have been a dreary day of moving into something a little more fun, and lively. Plus, now I know what this clock will sound like the day that I get it up and running again. At least it will not be out of my mind until the next time I run across it because it is too good of a story to tell to forget about it now. I guess that is what makes it a true heirloom.