It keeps staring at me from the back of our storage closet. That box with the moving stickers from many different PCS moves. On the side, “Living Room” is scribbled in black marker, but that doesn’t mean much of anything. Which living room? The one where we had that open floor plan and every single room was thrown together so all of our stuff was packed the same way? Or the living room that I used as an office for a while? Or the living room that was an honest to goodness formal living room, and we had a separate family room? Who knows. I know I could just pull the thing down and take a look…but part of me isn’t ready.
Moving is one of those things about military life that brings about a flood of mixed emotions for many of us. Sure, getting to live in many different locations has been an adventure…but we long for the stability of living in one place for more than a couple of years. Meeting new people means the opportunity to make new friends…but moving means leaving behind relationships that we treasure. Frequent moves means a new level of spring cleaning and starting over…but the process can be overwhelming.
That is where I find myself today. Overwhelmed. We are currently awaiting a move in just a few short months. Because of circumstances, we have chosen to live apart for a year so we are not only making plans to live in another state (and all of the many things that go along with that) but we are arranging to support two households as well.
Today, as I sit here writing, I am looking around at the furniture and belongings in this house. We have too much stuff for this small dwelling. I need to get rid of so much of it. We have started to separate the stuff that is leaving and what is staying in the camper my husband will reside in for those 12 months. We have sold a few things, we have hauled half a dozen bags and boxes to goodwill… and yet, it doesn’t look as if we have done a single thing. In fact, it feels like a budding episode of Hoarders; honest to goodness I think the stuff just multiplies when we sleep. Or when I pretend to sleep, but am tossing and turning trying to remember everything that needs to be done.
I have military spouse friends who with every single move are able to get rid of almost everything. They love the process of cleaning out the clutter, minimizing their belongings, re-organizing and preparing to start fresh at their new home. I envy them….