On Moving

For Sam. 🙂 This just felt like too much for a comment, and maybe it will help someone else!

I don’t have too many tips, I did a lot of research before I moved and the conflicting advice became redundant and overwhelming after a while. But these three things that I did and which actually worked will be my gold standard from now on:

Pack at least one box a day, marking them with the room/area they will go into in the new place.
I packed my room and most of my boyfriend’s apartment, and I was basically living out of boxes by the time moving day actually arrived. I bought tape with room names on it for about five bucks at a Uhaul and just used that – it was super convenient. I also marked (or remembered because I have a photographic memory) the boxes with the room they came from if it was very different. So, for instance, if I knew his screwdrivers were in his kitchen junk drawer, but junk drawer stuff went into the laundry/utility closet, I find the box that has both labels, make sense? Which leads to:

Get rid of everything you possibly can.
I used to be a packrat, but now I just take pictures of things I know I won’t use and give them away. A clean start is way more addicting and convenient than having to carve out space in a new phase for emotional baggage. I have a little lock box with very special things in it (a dried rose, the notecard, and the menu from our first valentine’s day, or wedding invites from special friends, etc.) and a shoebox with handmade cards or papercrafting gifts my younger sisters have made that I think they might want someday, but that’s it. I came to this house with clothes, books, quilting supplies, and my few culinary possessions.

Don’t damage your relationship with them (if it can be helped), but be honest with your parents or roommates if they ask you why you’re leaving.
It might make it easier on the next person to move out! Not long after I left, my Dad would still worry and ask how I’m doing every day and be generally hurt if I didn’t come over several times a week – which was weird because we saw each other every day before but we didn’t really talk too much. I’ve always been a daddy’s girl, but we both worked a lot so most of our contact was cursory and often overshadowed by exhaustion. But I moved an hour away and worked full time, so being at his house all the time after moving out wasn’t exactly feasible or – let’s face it – healthy. Finally one day I told him the truth, that I was taking a break from the family to get my new life in order and make the separation real, for everyone. And that made sense to him. He slowed his roll a little bit and let me communicate on my own terms. Now we do text almost every day, mostly about food, and our relationship is healthier than ever.

Let me know what you think, or comment below with more tips.


5 thoughts on “On Moving

  1. Hi Allison!
    First of all, thank you so much for the time and effort you put into this, it was so sweet of you!
    I read a bunch of articles about the whole moving thing as well, but just like you said, they all pretty much say the same things.
    I’ll be moving into a small loft in the same building where I live now and I’m sure the proximity to my new place will make the process seem way easier and quicker than it will actually be, so I’ll definitely follow your advice and try to pack at least one box a day.
    Your second tip will be the most difficult to follow, yet the most important of them all. Being accustomed to a lot of storage space, I never really had to decide what to keep and what not to, but I’ll definitely have to make this decision in the next months. The most problematic aspect is the fact that I’ll be moving in a much smaller place and I’ll have to get rid of most of my clothes. I have two sisters and they usually borrow my clothes on a daily basis, so it probably would be a good idea to go ahead and give them to them once and for all.
    As I said, I won’t be moving far away, but my Mom is already starting to tell me that she’s afraid that if I’ll become completely independent I’ll rarely come to visit them and so on and I feel bad because that’ll probably happen sooner or later: I have no intention of moving out of my parents’ just to basically keep living there.
    Thank you again for your suggestions, they were really helpful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re welcome, of course! I’m glad to have helped, or at least eased a bit of the anxiety. I wish someone had told me those were the important things before I moved.
      I totally understand about not wanting to get rid of clothes but I gave a lot of mine to my sisters, too – at least in that case you’ll still get to see them sometimes, and maybe borrow them back!
      Sounds like you might need to have some serious truth time with your mum though. Maybe tell her not to worry, that you’ll be taking a bit of time and not coming over for a bit, or only once a week or something – but offer a monthly one-on-one lunch date or dinner at your place once things are settled so she doesn’t feel abandoned and you guys can catch up regularly like grownups or on neutral ground?
      Pick your battles though: think logically about what will work for both of you, go from there, and stand your ground. If the people in your life can’t respect small or temporary boundaries they certainly won’t the big or important ones. For instance, I mentioned above about my Dad and I, but here’s one I decided not to push: The Honey (as my grandmother refers to him) and I can more than provide our own groceries, but both his parents and mine give us food every single time we visit, just in case – Haha! We’ve learned to just be thankful. It’s the only way they can take care of us anymore so why not?
      Anyway, good luck with everything, Sam – and keep us updated! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, exactly, I’ll probably be able to borrow them back if I were to feel the need to. Also, that would be a great excuse to come by and say hello once in a while.
        You’re making a good point: since I still have some months before the whole moving thing I’d better start some conversations on the matter now and try to solve the (at least) biggest problems before they actually occurr.
        The food situation made me smile: something very similar already happens whenever I visit my grandparents, I’d have to grow another stomach if my parents were to start with this tradition as well! 😉
        Thanks again for everything! I will, absolutely 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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