Sitting on my bed early Sunday morning surrounded by piles of papers, I look up for a moment and breathe. September has been a crazy month.
A new city, a new life, a new routine (if winging it can be called a routine), a new me… same old me. There’s always challenges in newness. You have to adapt to and learn all these elements that have now become part of your life.
The most difficult thing for me about moving so far away from where I spent the last few years was letting go. Letting go of friends, my ex, my former life, has been challenging (understatement). Yet the letting go can be most tangibly explained in the difficulty I had packing, choosing what to keep and what to get rid of. It was an excruciating task. Not necessarily because I had fancy or expensive things – I don’t – but because attached to many items are memories or hopes.
Like my tennis racquet. My Mom bought it for me one Christmas, an extravagant gift considering we had little money to waste on such expensive non-necessities. But she got it for me because I loved tennis and had Wimbledon dreams. My reaction? Well like any insane teenager I cried and fussed because it wasn’t the right shape. It didn’t have the shock-resistant handle I wanted. To this day I’m ashamed of my reaction and the racquet reminds me to always be grateful – especially to my loving and generous Mom.
I also held on to the racquet for so long after I stopped playing tennis because I hope to get back into the sport. Memories and hopes… The racquet went into the donation box. It couldn’t fit in any of my boxes or bags. Hopefully someone else will give it a better welcome than I did.
What I’ve learnt though is that the memories and hopes aren’t left behind with the “things.” The memories and hopes, not the “things” make up part of who I am. The lessons learned stay with me. If I really needed a “thing” to constantly remind me of the lesson, then it really wasn’t learned was it?
Now I’m in new situations with all my old memories and hopes. It’s been rough. It’s a challenge that I’m growing to meet, and I am grateful every step of the way (especially for my Mom!).
Photo by Kelene Blake: my piles of paper.