I'm packing tonight. Nursing a root beer and serenading my dog to feel a little less lonely. The paper towels are peeling off of rolls, the packing paper is in piles and my beautiful china sits nestled in a box that is destined for storage.
I'm not stranger to this dance of stuff to stay and stuff to go, the sloughing off things that we've gathered over the last two years. This isn't my first rodeo. In fact, I think it's my twelfth. And this next one still won't be a forever home.
In between the moves, the disassembling and the reassembling, the friendships tentatively made and subsequently lost, I've realized that I never needed a place to feel like I belonged there. It's never a house I remember, or a neighborhood. It was things like tupperware cereal bowls filled with Cheerios and raisins and honey. It was playing musical chairs with my parents' bedroom set because their room was too small to house it all.
It's the frames we hung on the alter on our wedding day. The Alice in Wonderland tea-mug from my world-travelling bestie. The road-sign that reads "NO STOPPING ANY TIME" we hung above the desk to inspire our inner writer.
I am the sum of all my memories. My experiences define who I have become, but sometimes it's the "things" in our life that have a meaningful impact too. Packing my great-grandmother's china isn't pleasant, but my inheritance keeps me grounded. Let's me know that I belong here, too.