Wednesday, August 25, 2004


Packing to leave has caused me to think about at least two distinct social stages in my life when things were crazy busy. Recently, I really did think that I would be able to vacate my house all by myself if I just kept at it. How wrong I was. I would have had to be working every spare moment for the last month to have done it all myself. Needless to say, that did not happen. The 26th just seemed so far away! I did little things, working for an hour at a time before getting distracted by some project of leisure. I would watch whole DVDs of The West Wing and The Gilmore Girls at a time. I was confident that at some point a natural instinct of urgency would take over and banish this overwhelming procrastinating state of avoidance that I was in. I forgot that my whole being is still in recovery mode. It's only been a year and half since my husband left; I had a crazy school year, working 60 hours a week for 5 months of it; I got fired for no real reason and then had to work for 3 more months with that hanging on my shoulders while I struggled to remain professional. I was going to work two part-time jobs this summer before I knew I was moving and my friend Gigi looked at me and said, "Are you going to take ANY time to rest?" I'm glad she said that because I didn't take the internship even though it seemed like good experience.

So, this recovery mode, combined with the cognitive dissonance of wanting to go but not wanting to leave combined with the fact that I've never actually moved myself before (I actually have managed to stay mostly absent while my stuff was packed and moved for me) made me pretty slow moving even when I did get started. So, thank goodness I have fantastic friends. Elena, Susan and Sue have spent a lot of time doing grunt work so that I could focus on sorting things out. I'm sure it doesn't seem like that big a deal to them, but I realize that to get the same amount of work done would take at least twice that amount of time. I don't have twice that amount of time anymore!

Opposite of this experience of lots of friends helping to get a major task done, which requires me to be the anti-micro-manager, I was reminiscing with Camilla about planning my wedding. Within 6 months, I got engaged, graduated college, bought a car, moved out of my mom's house (was moved out of my mom's house), started work in an urban high school and planned a wedding that involved a lot of do-it-myself aspects because I had a budget. My colleagues tease me about making ridiculous phone calls two weeks before the wedding during lunch. "Oh shit! I need an organist!" "Can you tell me if I can order Leonidas roses AND daisies?" I remember being at the reception hall with the caterer at 8:30 at night and saying, "Can I leave you guys to finish this up? I need to go for a dress fitting." Camilla lived over an hour away! So, I wouldn't be home and in bed until like 11:00. Then I would be at school at 6:30 the next morning. I did everything myself and didn't even realize that it was a lot of work until I've looked back on it.

I like that I've experienced both of these styles of intense projects. I'm amazed at how providence seems to cover both of them. All of these people just showed up without my even asking them to help with vacating the house. I didn't even know I needed them. And I was so young when I was planning the wedding that I didn't realize that I should be overwhelmed. Life is a beautiful thing.

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