It’s been a hot second since you’ve heard from me. A part of me is apologetic. The largest part of me knows, however, that it was time that I very much needed. I needed some time because if I’m honest (and we both know I enjoy being honest), I’ve been having a hard time.
I wrote once before about how I am in tune with my tear ducts. We are a dynamic duo, like it or not. This past 11 days I feel like that connection has been very much in my face. Literally and figuratively. Because y’allz, I have crieeeeed myself a river.
It’s easy to say now, easy to poke fun at, but yes, it has been a tough 11 days.
So what has transpired? I could walk you through it blow-by-blow but the best way I can describe it is in the following way:
Chances are, you’ve been on a treadmill before. Either you’re on one every day, or you tried it out once or even a few times. And even if you have done none of those things, chances are that you know how a treadmill works. When you’re on a treadmill, you have to keep moving. Fast or slow, that doesn’t matter, but you need to ensure constant movement. One foot after the other. Keep walking (jogging/running).
I’m not going to lie, I don’t enjoy treadmills. When I’m on a treadmill, there are one hundred different things I would rather be thinking of, one hundred things I’d rather be doing. Instead I am having to think step, step, step, step, step, step. I think in steps so that I can break it up into manageable bits. I break it up into steps so that I, in fact, keep moving.
My favorite treadmill at my gym is one that faces a window. The window looks out across the street at someone’s front door. There’s a lightbulb above their front door. I stare at that lightbulb. I focus on it – keep looking, keep walking (/jogging/running).
The past 11 days have felt a lot like that. The past 11 days have felt like doing a whole load of stuff I feel neither ready or willing to do. It’s been doing a whole lot of stuff that I don’t even know how to begin doing.
Over the past 11 days I started packing my apartment. This sucks; keep looking at the light bulb. Over the past 11 days I quickly realized that’s quite a task. Keep looking, keep walking. Over the past 11 days I have filled up holes in my walls and painted them over. Keep looking, keep walking. I had the first inspection of my apartment; I finalized my contract for a storage unit. Keep looking, keep walking. I packed more. And more. And more. Looking, walking. I moved, with a tremendous amount of help, all my things into this new storage unit. Looking, walking. I began training my replacement at work. Looking, walking. I finalized all my tasks at both of my jobs. Looking, walking. With another huge amount of help I took all of the leftover things in my apartment to a thrift store and to recycling and yes, yet again to the storage unit. Looking, walking, looking walking, looking walking.
Looking, walking, looking walking, looking walking.
It’s now 11 pm on Sunday November 18th. My apartment is empty save for my backpack, 5 garbage bags and a mattress. The walls are crisp and white. Suddenly, I’m not walking anymore. Instead, I am feeling everything.
You see, the past 11 days have been difficult because as much as my nerves have been setting in and I’ve been feeling emotional saying goodbye to one person after the next, I haven’t really had the time to sit in that. Instead, I have been in treadmill mode, crossing seemingly endless tasks off a to do list. And this treadmill has been overwhelming and it has been difficult – it really would have been easier to stop working a week earlier, but when have I ever chosen easy? At the same time, though, being in continuous motion has meant that I haven’t been able to process my thoughts; I haven’t been able to process my feelings.
With everything building up inside, this has meant that in the small moments in between that I have actually let it out, it’s a-come bursting. Seriously, I have had so many outbursts of tears. Mostly the short, grateful kind that come with saying a “see you later” to another person I hold dear and realizing how wonderful they are. But there have also been a few of the long, terrible kinds of outbursts that come with – I’m so overwhelmed I don’t know what to do, what on earth have I set in motion?
It has been a trip. But today it’s Sunday November 18th. It’ll 11 o’clock and I am going to make a few more phone calls to my family back home. I am going to clean my apartment a little bit more and sort out my backpack for the final time.
Tomorrow I will wake up and I will take out 5 garbage bags, I will move out my backpack. And I’m still overwhelmed. I’m still scared and nervous and excited and about a hundred other feelings all at once. But I’m happy that I get to sit in that a little bit now.
Tomorrow I will walk through this empty bare apartment one last time and I will hand in my keys. I’ll feel what that feels like to me, and then I’m out the door.
I’ll have more one day left before I depart.
Are you excited? Yea, me too.