This has been a summer dedicated to shedding extraneous stuff and, boy, has it been stressful. As our oldest is off to college and our days of having exchange students feel over, it became clear that our house was too big. Time to walk our talk and DOWNSIZE.
Not as easy as it sounds. It's hard to let go of stuff. First you have to go through it all and decide what to let go of. That folk art Ferris Wheel? Throw it away - Give it away - Recycle - Sell! Try not to think about all the memories. Let it go. Then, there are the trips to Goodwill, the postings on Craigslist, the showing furniture to prospective buyers. (Of course, I had problems letting go of books - I think I ended up moving almost 20 boxes.) I've been drinking more than usual.
And, of course, there were the projects around the house that had never been finished, or even begun. Why didn't we carpet the bedroom years ago? How much more energy can you put into a house when you are ready to leave? In all the flurry, there has been the, not so subtle, knowledge that this is a major transition. Even though our son is still in high school, soon we will no longer have children at home. We are aging.
I'm not particularly sad about this. I'm ready to be done with the mommy thing. As much as I love my children, I spent far too much energy caring for them. I feel a restlessness and a certain impatience, a need to get on with life. As we downsize physically, I want to expand mentally and emotionally. We only have so much time.