It's three hours past my bedtime. And I can't stop.
It started right about the time Forrest Gump ended. I always cry, not just because I can so relate to Jenny's early life at home. It's because of the kindness, the endless and simple kindness, and the feather.
Feathers can't fly if they're attached- on their own, that is. They can't float.
I got up and grabbed something. That was three hours ago. A box, I think. I don't remember. Then, three hours of constant trips up and down the stairs, carrying stuff to the garage.
I have already stripped much of the unique personality that I had created in this house, a house that I've already said goodbye to at a very deep level. Now, with the determination that has made me famous among my closest friends, three carloads of really nifty stuff is staged for taking to the local fine consignment center where I bought a fair bit of gear to begin with. Some of it is theirs, most of it is mine.
I am letting go of a great many things. Some I had just bought before my Africa trip, back when I still thought that HERE is where I would stay. Barring a major miracle, I can't. I did the numbers today. I'd be okay if this house wasn't a regular parade of very big pricey projects. That's really what did it, along with my company's going belly up because online writing went the way of the dodo bird.
Sorry, I should qualify: decently paid online marketing, that is.
I looked around this wonderful place, took in all the glorious visuals, the original paintings and the vases from Santa Fe and the African masks. Years of travel and collections. The colorful textiles from Peru and the photos from a very talented Canadian. Much of it will go. Some I will keep as it means too much. But the rest is just stuff.
Stuff weighs us down.
I have all the memories in my inner video reel. I will keep the notes and photos, the pictures from all my journeys. The stuff goes and makes someone else's house look like the home of a seasoned traveler. My face more than makes up for that.
In the corner of this office is a print, a watercolor done of the Pacific Northwest by an excellent Canadian artist. I had discovered it in Australia, bought it and schlepped it home. I always wanted to live near that place. I did it, too, I came here. Took me forty years, but I did it.
Now, having done just that, and having bought a house that has turned out to be a gorgeous and pricey prison, I am tonight starting the process of letting go. For it is way too comfortable here in this house, this Venus flytrap. Everyone who walks in goes crazy with compliments but it is lonely in this big place. I'd rather be traveling and have a different set of options. I don't need to own all this to enjoy memories.
Attachments are heavy.
I can't anticipate what will happen once I let go of this place. By then, I hope to have a plan in motion. The short term plan is to communicate to the Powers That Be that I am willing to let go and be lifted by the breezes. Lots of work to do between now and then.
My friend Maggie and her husband just downsized from a big mansion to a 1400 square foot apartment. Lots less work. Sounds good to me. As much as I adore this yard, the greenery, the soft rains...Well, my social media guy JC was staying here while I was gone and he commented about the endless, endless work to maintain the place.
I needed that validation. It IS endless work. The first eighteen months I did it happily assuming there'd be a point where it was just maintenance. You should have seen the weeds in my yard after five weeks of travel. It boggles the mind, and it will never, ever stop.
That was the push I needed.
If I were Lord Elrond, I'd give this a hefty title, worthy of a ring-bearer:
The Last Journey of Julia's Worldly Belongings
Sounds impressive. It isn't. It's just work. But it will pay off. The Universe is listening, and I am giving the hint. I've got some body work to get taken care of but it's time to start letting go.
Who knows what will happen next? It will take a few months, but the journey begins tonight.