I tend to think there are two types of people in the world: those who attach emotional meanings to objects and those who don't. But I think I’m most accurately placed in an obscure subset of that first category. I attach meaning to stuff that doesn't matter, and I get emotional at really weird times.
This makes packing difficult. When I graduated from college, I mentally prepared myself for the moving/packing part, realizing that this process is often symbolic of the end of a great era of life, and that people like me often find it emotionally draining.
Except that it wasn’t. I was totally fine taking stuff off the walls, putting away memories, saying goodbye to the house. Gift from my (deceased) grandmother? Check. First picture The Boyfriend ever drew me? Got it, done. Countless pictures of college memories? Throw dat crap in.
Pair of mismatched Puma ankle socks?
Tears. Sobs. That kind of body-shaking crying that leaves pools of snot on your upper lip and generates (reasonable) concern in your housemates.
"Ames,” my housemates might have said, “are those...socks?"
“Why are you crying?”
“These socks made me emotional.”
“The socks made you emotional?”
“YES THEY DID AND IT’S NOT WEIRD.”
My housemates are good people.
So, as you might be able to imagine, condensing my worldly possessions into three suitcases was a bit of a challenge. Not an impossible challenge, but one that requires lots of planning. I started pre-packing (it’s a thing) several weeks before I started packing, because it takes me so long to figure out what is actually important and what only seems important to me during a moment of emotion. I have to revise the list many times.
And even after several revisions, I still discover some blaring oversights. For example, a few days before my trip you might have asked me, "Ames, did you pack any coats?”
And I would reply that no, I didn’t, because there wouldn't have been room next to my collection of bookmarks from elementary school WHICH IS OBVIOUSLY MORE IMPORTANT.
There is probably a metaphor here about how I have a hard time prioritizing my life, but I’m not going to go too much into it. This is mostly because going on about the Great Metaphorical Suitcase of Life sounds a) trite and b) like something I would make fun of. (Except actually, it was good for me to ponder my Great Metaphorical Suitcase of Life for a while, because I have the weirdest stuff in there. I have this fear that I’ll be unpacking it at the end of my life and be all, “Why is there so much Netflix?” and I just feel like that’s a pretty good source of motivation.)
Suffice it to say that I checked in my (overweight) luggage with two coats, an exercise ball, plenty of socks, and no bookmarks. There were also some other things, but they feel less important right now.
I'm off to the train now, which you'll probably hear all about in an upcoming post. Don't forget about donations, which are still a thing, and know that I think you're all pretty swell.