I can hear thunder, and the wind has picked up. From my vantage point, I can see that it's raining in the valley below me. The first monsoon? Will they come early this year, after practically not even showing up for the last couple of years?
I had all my moving boxes stacked on the balcony, but if it rains, they'd all get soaked. So now, they're all stacked in my living room, which isn't so much a living room anymore as a storage room. I've packed quite a bit so far and I've got tall stacks of packed boxes sitting all over my space. I don't move until the end of the month, but I want to get as much packed as possible as soon as possible so there is, hopefully, no crisis at the end. I'd like everything to go as smoothly as possible in terms of being ready for the moving truck when it arrives. It costs a small fortune to move across the country, and time is money.
I work through the packing at a slow pace. Not everything will go, and so thought must be put into what is being packed. Decisions must be made as to what goes and what gets given away. Some days I'm quicker and some days I'm slower. It all depends on what's being packed and which room draws me. Lots of memories are being triggered, not only by what I go through as I pack, but also because I'm moving back to my home town, and specifically back to the part of town I lived in during my late teens and twenties before I left for what I then thought were greener pastures.
My cats follow me around and constantly check in, needing assurance as their world is thrown into chaos. I sometimes spend hours just sitting and remembering and processing, what went before and what's happening now. This is why I'm not waiting to pack. This is why I'm doing it now. If I have days after everything is packed before the truck gets here, that's fine. But, I don't want to be rushing around at the end, still trying to throw things in boxes so they can be loaded onto the truck.
I've taken down all the art that has graced my walls and either packed what could be packed, or stacked it in the hallway. I spent more time looking at it when I took it down than I have as I have lived with it. I've taken it for granted in the way we do with things we see everyday. So, packing it, or getting it ready to pack, has given me a chance to appreciate it and choose to continue to live with it. As I pack, I get to re-choose what I keep. And, over the last two moves, I've downsized a lot, so what stays is important. And, I realize how little I really need.
I've been wandering like a gypsy for the last 40 years, but my feeling in moving back to San Diego is that my wandering days might be through. That is not to say that I might not do some traveling, but I do feel that finally it will be possible to put down some roots. There's a peace to moving back, an internal settling, an ahhhh. Being near the ocean in San Diego makes me happy. And, even though I've mostly enjoyed the places where I've lived in the last 40 years, being happy isn't something I would have said about myself. But, I can feel happiness bubbling up from deep inside at the prospect of going home.
I love Albuquerque. And, I'm grateful for how she's held me and nurtured me while I've been here. I'm grateful for the wonderful friends I've made here. And, I will always hold this place of immense beauty close to my heart. I talk to the Deva of the city as I drive around her. I thank her for all she's given me. And, I say goodbye. This goodbye is not an easy one. I've left so many people and places over the years, and I don't remember ever having this much emotion in a leave-taking. This city has been very good to me.
I've been emotionally raw and many tears have been falling. Much has come up for review on its way out, and my being has struggled to process everything and keep up with all the movement. But, I know that everything that's showing itself to me as it goes, must go in order to make room for what is to come. So, I'm grateful for the movement, but I go in and out of the overwhelm that it can cause.
I'm happy with what is before me, and I honor everything that has gone before. Honor, and sometimes mourn, for there are things I realize as they come up, that I have not mourned, and the mourning must be done, or we are not complete with what has come before. I am receiving gifts of awareness from that mourning, and growing in ways I wish I could have grown when I was younger. But, at least the lessons and gifts are settling upon me now; and, better late than never.
So, this period of packing and moving is exciting and bittersweet. And, it gives me a chance to feel gratitude for many things that have gone before, as well as for all of what is here now. This gift of reflection is a wonderful thing, part of the letting go that must happen as I move forward. And, it helps me to move forward with a full heart, ready for what Life has in store for me now. I'm excited for the next chapter, and I'm embracing the ever-expanding happiness that's growing within me. And, I am grateful. Ever grateful.