Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The weed-out

We recently sold our house and are getting ready to move into a new house. I've got a month or two to pack, so I'm not panicked. I've moved 27 times in my life, and my personal record is 4 times in one year. I have no fear of moving, I guess you could say.

This year is no different. Prior to moving, I've been weeding out. Bags of clothing are gone, garden tools that are no longer functional, several boxes of 'why the hell did I buy that?' and 'I'll never use that--give it away.'

I was surprised how easy it was to box up books and give them to the library. I remember moves from one house to another that were composed mostly of books -- box after box after box. Now I'm keeping a few hand-picked selected ones, some reference books, and a few writing reference books. The rest: to the library. I think I've finally gotten to that point in my life when I realize that I'm not going to re-read those books. I have a limited amount of time left in this world (no, the end isn't imminent, but let's be realistic) and I don't want to spend what little precious free time I have re-reading books.

There are some authors I'd love to re-read (Diana Gabaldon springs to mind), but I won't take the amount of time required to read those books. BUT (and it's a big BUT, so to speak), I can download and listen to the books as I drive. This is an excellent way to experience a big book that I just can't commit the time for. I'm almost done 'reading' the Wheel of Time series by Jordan (I'm on book 13 of 15), and after that, I'll toss in a few other authors then tackle Gabaldon.

After my mother died last year (aside: sympathies to you, Janet; I know how you feel) I started to realize how fleeting life really is. She was 33 when I was born. Assuming I have inherited her genetics, I have 33 more years to do what I want to do in life. That was a sobering thought. All of a sudden, all of those "I'll get to it" plans have been re-evaluated and many are shelved. I'm now focusing on what is truly important to me, right now.

So that's why I'm moving, that's why I'm changing what and how I write, and that's why I'm re-evaluating some hobbies and goals. It's been a process of weeding out in more ways than one. I suspect it will continue for many more weeks and months to come.

And you know what? It's fun!

Obligatory publishing mention: The Deadly Landscaping Romances are all out now -- check my web site for details!


Jill James said...

JL, I'm so there. My mom passed at 61. OMG, that is like, around the corner. I started deciding what I wanted in my life and what I didn't have time for and what I wanted to achieve in my lifetime. Sometimes having priorities is a very good thing.

Paisley Kirkpatrick said...

Good luck with all the cleaning out, JL. My daughter says I am a #2 on a scale of 1 to 10 as far as hoarding goes. I figure once something is mine, I can't give it away. Of course, in my own defense I have had to clear out my parents' home after 59 years of marriage and my daughter's belongings after she died. I found that I can only get rid of stuff for so long and then emotionally I can't do anymore for a long while. We live in a three story house so you can tell, I have a lot of sorting. I do find that giving items to people I love who I know will take care of them and love them, too, is a lot easier than sending them to Hospice. :)

I've a store of books I love to re-read as well. I am finding I can get rid of them after the next time through. The Kindle is going to make life easier because from now on they will all be in one place. :) Modern technology can be a good thing sometimes.

Josie said...

Gosh, moving is such a huge, difficult task to me. You must have it down to a science after all your moves through the years. Best wishes that everything goes well for you.