Two years ago we were officially on our way, traveling the world with our entire journey before us. We had sold it, quit it, packed it or gotten rid of it. We quite literally purged our small one bedroom apartment in Washington, DC, donating hundreds of household and clothing items to any cause that would take them. We neatly packed everything in cardboard boxes and tucked it away in my parent’s basement. Two years later it’s time to unpack and staring at the boxes before us I can’t help but wonder if we didn’t get rid of enough.
We sorted and packed for weeks before we carted boxes to my parents. I thought moving day would be a breeze and we’d just carry out our boxes and be out of there, on our way to traveling around the world.
Life it seems, had other ideas, and we stayed late in the afternoon sorting, packing and throwing out things that somehow we had missed. The afternoon passed so quickly I can’t remember what was saved and what was tossed. Going through our boxes now I find myself saving over and over again, didn’t we have a… or where did we put the… and ultimately not finding it. And you know what? I don’t miss it at all.
Interestingly enough, the sort of the opposite has happened. I want to ger rid of more. The stuff I cared so much about saving I’m now ready to pitch in the can. Some of it I can’t believe we saved. At the time I thought we had gotten rid of everything we could. Now, I see more.
Perhaps distance and time were all I needed to realize that this stuff doesn’t define me.
In fact, it weighs me down.
All this stuff keeps me tied to something that I’m not anymore. To a life that I no longer live. We lived with 50L backpacks for two years and you know what, I hardly missed anything material. I want to keep it that way. I don’t want to surround myself with stuff I don’t need.
Maybe it’s just that time of year- spring – that makes me want to fling open the windows and rid myself of all this stuff. Maybe it’s because we’ve just hauled it 1,000 miles to our new home, or maybe it’s that we are putting down roots again. Either way I’m looking forward to going through those boxes a second time, this time as we unpack and getting rid of even more.