So, we slowly begin to pack. I mean, we don't want to live on boxes for the next 4 weeks, but I love, love, love getting rid of things, going through memories, pairing down, de-cluttering, and donating. It is just me (and my sister) who are complete nuts when it comes to saying "goodbye" to stuff. My parents, as they are the "war children", keep every nook they ever had (especially mom, you can die trying to find anything in her closets). My sister and I used to go through their library (over 1500 books to start with, which neither one of them read) and pull ones from the back, taking them to the bookstore for sale. We did same with some old clothes, taking them to Consignment stores, and to my mom's jewelry - we pressured her to get rid of a full box and buy a pair of good diamond earrings and a diamond ring. She still can't forgive us for succumbing (some almost 30 years later). My sis and I had lived under a few grand ideas:
1. we are not that rich to own cheap stuff
2. we move around way too much to drag all the stuff with us
3. if it doesn't bring you joy and/or not getting used consistently, you don't need it
4. nothing can't be replaced but memories
5. what will you take if you need to go in 1 hour? what leave sthe best legacy of you when you go for good?
I tend not to bring attachments to items in my life. My most prized possession (stuff-wise) is a wooden box full of my belt buckles and a few especially tender medals. When I was at one of those seminars to discover thyself (with my older trouble teen), and the question was asked what will you grab when the house goes on fire, I, without any hesitation, and before even thinking about documents, said "that box". My ex was pissed - he "took" photo albums, as they bring memories of happy times (who, in their right mind, takes pictures of bad times, you know?). I thought, well, in the last 5 years at least all the pictures I have digitized, and my baby stuff can be found in my parents' home, along with first years living in US (we always printed doubles and sent to them back then). Buckles, though, speak to me of the character I cherish, of what I was able to overcome, remind me how string I can be - and how nobody, nobody on this Earth, can take away from me what I had achieved by finishing those races. Buckles, while I rarely look at them, just sitting in the box, remind me to strive, to move forward, to not be afraid, and when I do get scared, to keep putting one foot in front of another, even if life seems to almost come to a stop at times.
But I digress. Although my "I don't care about crap" attitude definitely helped me to make those 11 moves (and that's in US only), 2 of which were across the country. In 2004 we drove from NYC to Portland, OR, putting 10 years of life of family of 4 into a 10 foot UHaul track. In 2009 I drove a Honda Civic (packed to the brinks) with my son and a cat from Portland to Austin. Now, I am not saying it's the only correct way to live. Because while my boys are not clutter-holicks by any stretch of imagination, and our family will never, ever end up on a show "Hoarders"(rather "Skimpy living" by any American standards), I find a lot of resistance, and I have to step back and let them keep what's important to them. And so we go...
But I can still get rid of my stuff, right? And since I lost all that flab, and surely hope to keep at least most of it away in the future, the (very small) closet got smaller by numbers. And hey, look what I found!
A pair of pants I wore when interviewed for my UT job in Austin, a week of my Cactus Rose 1002 years ago! Now, honestly, I don't recollect how they felt on me, snag or loose, I just know these dress pants don't allow you to wear belt, so they must have set on my hips somehow. I also owned them for a few years - back in 2006 my dad gave me $500 and told me to buy clothes that fit an adult mature woman (and not a bunch of running shorts). I obeyed, these were one of the purchase - I kept it for special occasions, like interviews (I managed to return 90% of the clothing items I bought on that trip simply because the "serious woman" style is not me and I would never wear them anyway). So, the day came, and I had to part with these pants...and I actually felt sad. Not about the pants, God forbid, but about my ass that had disappeared. Even my dear husband complains there is nothing to grab anymore, and I used to be proud to be a "normal size" woman who runs, despite the wind resistance - back in NYC, at Armory track, when I surprised my Van Cortland Track Club teammates by running a 6:20 mile, (not fast by any stretch, but a hell of a surprise for the coach in the club coming from an ultrarunner and sucky marathoner), the result announcer raised his eyebrows and said: "With the width of your hips you can block the wind for drafting others, if you find many folks behind". It is also unbelievable of sorts to realize I lost so much in my waist and hips, come to think about it - on a daily basis we tend not to notice it. And there goes my belief that I was born wide and stocky...what excuse will I be using now?:-)
On another news, the weather is awesome! This morning there was a breeze and practically cold, jacket-like! It'll be 60's in the morning and 90's during a day next week!!! I can't believe it finally happens, Fall is here...I thought this day will never come. This was the longest most miserable weather stretch in my life, by far worse than however many months of greyness and drizzle of OR or snow and cold of Russia. Now I just need to recover quickly and go for a run!
I actually have to report that today was the first day my heel didn't hurt as much. I'll take that - not much is better than no change in over 3 weeks! I had an MRI last Wednesday because I got frustrated enough with the fact the foot pain level hasn't changed despite my obedience of no running and no walking (beyond work-related) and I used the last day to squeeze the procedure before the new insurance year and it's deductibles kick in. Still haven't heard results yet. May be, keep your fingers crossed, I am over the hump.
I've been a really good girl, working out and doing cardio and eating right, and doing my second Stairmaster session no matter time and state I am at by the end of the day. I am, frankly, quite exhausted, but pushing it through. Next week shall be a tad better on double-job front, and the 3 days of sleeping more than 5 hrs a night due to a long weekend should be very helpful to revive me for the next 5 weeks cranking. I ordered my swimsuit and a spray tan, so, I guess, I am not looking back. May be next post I'll announce where it is going to be and invite all the local ultrarunners to come watch - this way I will have to buckle up and represent:)
p.s. speaking of Subway - I actually truly do love their sandwiches, favorite of all is whole wheat toasted with meatballs and swiss cheese and lettuce and tomatoes and those banana peppers...but, alas, I can't eat them as the bread is not gluten-free. I miss this travel-meal big time though...