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Thread: No longer prepared to move at any time...

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Jul 2015

    No longer prepared to move at any time...

    The recent prospect of getting a new job somewhere else brought to light that I am no longer prepared to move at the drop of a hat.

    I could not fit all my stuff into my car anymore. It'd take two car loads and I would have to get rid of my couch.

    I have "settled in" here it seems.

    More than that, there are more things keeping me here emotionally than ever have. My sister and BIL. My niece. My nephew about to be born. Some friends in the atheist and minimalist community.

    And believe it or not, some of my coworkers are cool enough to make me think: "Do I want to risk this and leave?"

    So I have been doing some thinking. Should I lighten my rucksack of life so I could move anytime? Or should I keep digging in here and become even more a part of my community, family, and friendship circles?

  2. #2
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Interesting questions.

    A) "Should I lighten my rucksack so I could move any time?"

    I was just reading about how a certain religion (not a mainstream one by any means) required its adherents to move frequently so they wouldn't get attached to any one place--their goal was detachment from everything in life. Even though you are an atheist, I think "detachment" figures into your value system, at least from the perspective of not needing or wanting superfluous material possessions.

    If you were to plan your life around an instant get-up-and-go exit strategy, you need to ask yourself why? Are you seeking a higher level of freedom? Are you afraid of missed opportunities?

    Also, are things like your couch really holding you back? When my son and DIL moved a very short distance away, my DIL sold EVERYTHING. I was amazed. So your couch and a few possessions don't have to keep you from moving. Just sell them and buy a new one at your new place.

    b. "Or should I keep digging in here and become even more a part of my community, family and friendship circles."

    I think the value of good relationships and community can't be understated. It's interesting it took this "almost" job to make you re-evaluate your home relationships. I love the term "digging in" because it's a great metaphor for establishing roots and gaining "soul nutrition" from the humus of our home place. It's up to you how much that means to you.

    In any case, neither alternative requires a life-long commitment. The good thing is, you can change your mind any time.

    I love my home(s)... I only had one brief twinge of homesickness since I've been here--ironically it was in Newark Airport. I was returning from a business trip and I had to make a connection through Newark. Standing at the Burlington gate, I thought about my back patio, my zen garden, my comfy couch, the bathroom DH and I demo'd and rebuilt with our own hands, and a twinge of nostalgia got to me--even though without a doubt my life up here is filled with beauty and fulfillment and family. I think we'll always miss "home" but we have to decide when it's time for us to be "repotted" (sorry for all the cheesy gardening metaphors!)
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town

  3. #3
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
    Ontario, Canada
    Very thoughtful OP and response UL and Cath. Feeling a sense of being rooted is a precious feeling. It took me decades to find it. I kept planting a new plant or trees at every move possible. Where I am now in thought as well as physical presence is 'home' and I love it.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  4. #4
    I can tell you that uprooting yourself after being dug in for a quarter a century is a monumental task .....but it is fitting. We shouldn’t take leaving a place where our heart has been, lightly. If it were easy, I fear I’d not value many relationships at all. The melancholy or wistfulness associated with a move are expressions of healing and they are tentative explorations of a new neighborhood.

    Speaking for myself, I need a home base where I can come to feel comfortable without working too hard. I need to reflect on my last expedition out into the world in a place where it feels like therapy, where I’m not threatened by intrusion. I think some people are wired to make that transition quicker than others. I have always told my family that I don’t travel well. And it’s true ....but I still travel. I think what you describe is a more intuitive function of the brain than it is a cognitive function. Meaning, all your senses are involved....not just your technical mind.

    Does that translated to actually uprooting yourself and moving lock, stock and barrel to a strange location? Everyone gets to evaluate that one opening door at a time and it is the blessing of a freedom loving society that these types of challenges exist. Many entire classes of people had no such options.

    My guess is when the time comes, the couch won’t matter much. You’ll hit the road knowing it’s the right thing to do.

  5. #5
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Mar 2012
    Saint Paul, Minnesota
    I think catherine makes an excellent point: being able to just go is/was an ability to which you gave a lot of value.

    Why? Is being able to put all your earthly possessions in one vehicle a handy quantitative measure of minimalism? Does it support the belief that you are not attached to a place and could leave without arranging for a moving vehicle and to sell large items, etc.? Or is it something else entirely? Look for the question behind the question.

    It's okay to change our minds and reprioritize values as life brings us additional experiences and challenges. You're not the same person now as you were when you made this a prominent value. You have a good relationship with someone now (how rooted is she?); you have a chronic illness that may or may not degrade your ability to just pick up and go wherever whenever. That's OK. It's life.

    And it's not like you couldn't go back to this. You're not an Olympic-caliber athlete giving up the next Olympics to sit in a trailer watching the game show network and sucking down corn dogs. That opportunity won't come back. If you develop (more) roots and then your situation changes, you can always sell your stuff, say goodbye to people you know, and strike out anew.
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Jan 2011
    I still get a little heartache when I think about the house/place/family we left behind almost two years ago. In my rearview mirror, it was in many ways perfection but no longer affordable. However, the thought of living life without even trying something different kept pestering me as I went to work every day. I can't say I am regretful to have made the leap but I more fully appreciate the value of place/familiarity that is cultivated over many years. There are so many options in our lives these days so I guess the lesson is to enjoy where you are right now. As far as stuff, it is very easy to lighten your load over a weekend via craigslist, garage sales, Goodwill...especially if you only have two carloads.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Dec 2013
    Having lived in 5 different states I love having roots where I am and would not move again. It is getting expensive here but we own our house which is the biggest expense. While visiting Kenosha it hit me how cheap things are there compared to here. We went out for appetizers and drinks one night. The bill for 3 people who had a total of 9 drinks and 2 appetizers was 62. It would have been double that here.

  8. #8
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
    Yes, $62 is cheap for that!

  9. #9
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
    I am constantly thinking of how I would move, what I would move. In my mind I guess I could leave this house to live in
    Hermann IF I could retain an aprtment in the city of St. Louis. The apartment has to have architectural features
    i like, none of this loft crap. And while there are many fabulous pre-war apartments in the city, I would likely have to live in this same neighborhood in order to retain community garden rights.

    You see, I cannot seriously grow lilies in
    hermann because the fkg deer will just eat them. Hate those fkrs. But I digress...

    in my current neighborhood (community garden rules require
    I live in the neighborhood) there are limited choices for pre-war apartments. There is a set of buildings I oove but those are condos. I reeeeasaaaly do not want to buy a condo in an old building because I dont want to own real estate with other people, usually they defer maintenance and manage the property poorly.

    But to get back to the idea at hand, yes,
    I regularly go through the stuff in this house as a mental exercise to think about what stays and what goes in a move.
    Last edited by iris lilies; 7-26-18 at 1:49pm.

  10. #10
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Huh. I have mountains of stuff here, but it doesn't mean anything to me really.

    Yesterday I briefly contemplated simply hopping on a plane, flying to New Zealand, and buying myself citizenship there, travelling with just my carry-on.

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