I am very tired and more than a little incoherent at the moment so you’ll have to hear with me but amen glory hallelujah, I’m in the new house now. I moved over the weekend with the help of my friends John and Treasa and Matt, who are excellent wonderful people and spend two days out of their long weekend hauling stuff down in and out of cars and vans and up and down stairs. We got all eighty-four million little boxes of books and the futon and the bed and the six boxes of kitchen stuff…how did my itty kitchen hold six boxes worth of stuff?…and the shoes and the pictures and the disco balls and the Decorative Crockery. I haven’t taken anything out of these boxes yet, of course, and I did have to clear a little path from the door to the closet this morning so I could paw through the various bags of smushed-up clothes for something to wear to work this morning. And I hurt my foot on some files. And I was disoriented waking up in my own bed but in a new room. But I’m moved, and that’s the important thing, right?
I’m moved in to the new place but I’m not exactly moved out of the old one, though, and that’s the thing that’s really bothering me. I have to pay double rent this month and am paid up on the old place through July…which means, in purely practical terms, that I didn’t feel a huge need this past weekend, to leave the old place in a pristine state or anything. So, my toothbrush is still there, as is a fully prepared peanut butter and jelly sandwich, as is my stereo, as is my cell phone charger, as is my 1996 laptop, as is my silver formal skirt and the crown from a play I was in when I was ten that’s supposed to go over my bed, as is my aluminum foil and my knee high boots, my wastepaper basket, my marble magnets, my kalamata olives and Parmesan cheese. As is a lot of stuff, still. There is, in fact, a thin layer of detritus liberally blanketing the entire apartment and it will be my sad duty this week to go back over there and throw it all away, and then come to the new place and put the rest of my stuff into some sort of pleasing configuration. It’s like another job.
Yesterday after we moved the big stuff and I’d made another Value Village run and was finally at the new place I was so tired. I was filthy and stinky and I collapsed on my unmade bed on a pile of blankets and pillows and things. The disassembled futon was in the living room and one of my two lovely new housemates, J, allowed as how she was pretty excited at the prospect of a new comfy couch. Did I want to try to put it together some time that evening?
Well, sure. We dragged things around and screwed things together and she mentioned that she had this towel, this awesome towel that was purple and green and had a silkscreened picture of the young David Bowie on it. She noticed that the futon itself was purple. My beautiful antique lamp is green. She had some green glass candleholders with purple candles in them, and a green painting, and a lime green leather chair. All that remained was to display the towel proudly on the mantelpiece (did I mention this new house has a fireplace? Yes!) with some of my disco balls underneath and just like that, the Bowie Room was born. I feel this bodes well for my future in this house, don’t you?
Still, I’m not going to lie to you, babies, this weekend was possibly the worst I’ve had in a very long time. I began scheduling my crying spates…once in the morning about nine and then again around four, with maybe a brief bout during the course of the day as circumstances demanded. I got very anxious at various points and did that thing where I was talking myself through the various things I had to do, out loud. I made all sorts of declarations to all sorts of people and I sort of think that nothing I said this weekend should be held against me because I was tired and crazy and sad and sweaty and freaked out for the majority of the time.
I kept catching myself saying stuff like “The ironing board’s at home…I mean, at the other place” and “I’m just going to go ho…I mean, back..for another run and then I’ll be done.” I miss the cats. There’s a cat at the new place who is a very nice cat so that’s good, but it’s not the same. I heard J walking around last night after I finally collapsed into bed and I got freaked out for a minute, wondering who was in my house. I couldn’t figure out how to work the shower at first and I was confused about which switch turned on what. Having my curtains up and the futon assembled in the Bowie Room helps, certainly, and I think I’ve figured out how to open the front door now, and it was really exciting to just walk to my bus stop this morning instead of driving to it, but still, I feel uncomfortably in between and I can’t believe I don’t live in my little hobbit hold apartment anymore. I haven’t done any “This is the last time I’m going to look out this window/cook in this kitchen/get hot chocolate at this coffee shop” because it hasn’t really been real to me. It’s still not real. I sort of think that I’m just visiting these nice girls in their pretty house for a little while, and that they happened to have put me in a very messy guest room for some reason. I can see my old house with all my stuff in it very clearly, I can imagine the walk from the bedroom to the kitchen in the middle of the night for a glass of water, I know where everything is supposed to go. Right now I think I’ll be going back there in a couple of days or weeks.
But I know it’s going to become more real and that soon I’ll be comfortable there and have routines and know what goes where and how to do everything and how to make it my own. (I feel the Bowie Room was a very auspicious start though and I don’t even know anything about David Bowie except that he’s awesome and also I sat through Velvet Goldmine one time). Today I walked through the rain to the new bus stop and introduced myself to the barista at the new coffee place and she was very nice and made my hot chocolate less sweet for me and I had a little inkling of the time not so far in the future when I won’t be in transition and I won’t be avoiding the word “home” just because I can’t decide where I belong. The hard part isn’t yet over (and I’m not just talking about moving boxes, of course) but I am hopeful that this new part of my life is going to take root soon and that I’ll feel like a whole person in no time at all.