I’m in an odd headspace right now, feeling teary-eyed without feeling sad—although it’s not a happy feeling, either. Have you heard clinical depression being described as feeling sad without knowing why? The best I can describe this is feeling melancholy without (quite) knowing why.
I’m back at tugrik’s for the night; I don’t expect I’ll really be finished moving for another two weeks. Today I moved over the third carload of boxes from the garage here, boxes that I never unpacked after the move from Florida. There’s an old rule of thumb about packing I’d heard, that if you’d never unpacked something you didn’t really need it, but my case was a little unusual. In September of 2002, I was busy getting rid of as much non-bedroom furniture as I could manage to, and packing up all the non-furniture contents of my life: electronics and books and CDs and dishes and cookware and on and on. I gave away boxes and boxes of books, more than a few stereo components and other gadgets. I kept what I thought I’d need… eventually.
A lot of it, I haven’t seen since. This weekend, though, I’ve been unpacking.
My old dish set, an “apartment-warming” gift when I first moved out to my own place. All the old flatware I inherited from my grandmother (plastic handles, a little discolored with age, but still serviceable). Books. Comics. Magazines. Tons of old fanzines. My stereo system—arguably obsolete these days, and of course, untested for all this time. Baking dishes, cooking utensils I remembered from years of use…
Understand, a lot of this stuff objectively just isn’t that good. My old kitchen knife set is, honestly, pretty much crap; I have a “lazy susan” utensil holder that came from the same place the crappy knives did, the now-defunct Lechter’s Housewares. But it’s all the stuff that made my old apartment’s kitchen my kitchen. What made it my living room. My home.
Since I’ve been out here I’ve bought a CD rack and unpacked (nearly) all my CDs, and even added a few to it. The bookshelf I bought out here is filled mostly with things I bought out here; I’ll probably need two (or three) more units like it to get the rest of my books shelved. I could stand to get a closet organizer, too, or just to build some makeshift shelves in the closet to store stuff.
I digress, yet that’s the whole thing of it, isn’t it? Back in 2002, I wrote,
In one of those cheerful emotional paradoxes, I really am looking forward to moving—but I don’t want to leave the place I’m in now. Despite the logic against it, I really would like to take my living room with me.
And that’s what’s causing my feelings tonight. See, I have the same emotional paradox—I want to move, yet I don’t want to leave the place I’m in now. But what I’m unpacking? What’s in those boxes?
Continuity. These boxes have little pieces of home in them that, up until this weekend, I didn’t know I was missing.