10 hard life lessons you learn when you have to move…

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My new living room, complete with a dog in an inflatable cone…

It has been a CRAZY month. Like, I knew it would be crazy, but not CRAZY. I basically spent the month packing and unpacking, and running around all day while at work because Orientation – the largest single piece of my job – took place not 10 days after I moved. And then, on top of it all, I decided the best time to have my dog’s uterus removed was two days after Orientation was finished. I am not a smart person.


And my goals have fallen off track a little bit, as was to be expected when I’m eating on the run everyday. I gained five pounds in water weight during Orientation week. Luckily, I’ve seemed to have deflated since.

But when you move, you learn a lot of lessons that you try to abide by, but tend to forget once it’s all said and done.

  1. You have too much shit. Before I started packing, I looked around and thought “this won’t be so bad”. After I ran out of boxes and gave away FOUR re-usable bags of books, TWO garbage bags worth of clothes, and a garbage bag full of blankets, plus some, all I could think was “why do I have this much crap!” I even recently donated a large plastic bag worth of yarn (GASP!) to the university’s knitting group. I need to remember this the next time I feel like making an impulse purchase.
  2. You only thought you cleaned. Everyone has the best of intentions with cleaning. You sweep, mop, dust, etc. But nothing calls you out more than having to move furniture and finding enough cat and dog hair to make another pair. I tried, I really did!
  3. No really, you can’t lift that much weight. Remember that one box you decided it was ok to pack tight with books because it wouldn’t be that heavy. Yeah. Go back and unpack it because you’re going to give yourself a hernia trying to lift it.
  4. Putting together a house is a lot of work. At first it may seem like an exciting challenge – how fast can I make this look perfect? But quickly it turns into sore muscles, frustration, and struggling to find that one thing you know you packed in THIS box but it’s not here and you need it NOW. However, it does help when you have someone helping you out and not just expecting it to magically put itself together (Thank-you Boyfriend!)
  5. It takes weeks to “settle”. Just because everything is out of the box and in its new place, doesn’t mean you’re settled. I’ve been in the new place since August 27th and my routine is still out of sorts. I’m still trying to figure out my morning routine, the balance of hot and cold water in the shower, where the dishes go, the new counterspace layout, etc. It’s a big change and it can really throw you off for a while.
  6. Moving is exhausting, physically and emotionally. Not only is moving a physical challenge, but as mentioned
    My new yarn room!

    My new yarn room!

    above, you tend to be out of sorts for a while. It can be emotionally draining to have to retrain yourself, especially when you don’t have a lot of time to deal with it before getting back to work. There were so many days where I just wanted to go to bed as soon as I got home after a tiring day at work, but had to unpack or clean from the move.

  7. You’ll never be as organized as you need to be. I’ve been referred to as “Monica” from friends more times than I can count. I enjoy and operate best with order and systems and my middle name might as well be “planner”. And even I found myself opening boxes and wondering how a candle, a DVD player, a sweater, and a phone charger all ended up in the same box.
  8. Sometimes, you should just go to bed. There comes a time that you start to get frustrated and lazy, poking things in places just to get them out of the box. This is the point that you should get a shower and go to bed or sit down and watch a movie or something. Trust me, you’ll save yourself the trouble later.
  9. Animals do not like change. When the animals were moved to the new place, the first thing my cat did was find the darkest corner in the basement and curled up in an anxious ball there. The dog, who has been crate trained all her life, needed to be retrained for the new house. It takes a while for us to adjust, but probably even more for them. And that can only add to the confusion and frustration of moving.
  10. Sometimes you need to leave an old adventure behind to start a new one. Moving is exciting, especially when you’re also moving in with someone for the first time. But it means leaving my little apartment and my established routines and habits behind. It involves a bit of an identity change. And while that is most often a good thing, it can be scary. However, the good news the fears we unfounded and everything has been great thus far.

So as I sit and watch Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets for the millionth time, comfy on my new couch, knitting, I am so excited that the “moving” phase is over and now I can start to settle and build a little life here. I’m sure there will be many more lessons to be learned yet.

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