Boxes, boxes everywhere. The movers just left and I’m sitting in our NYC living room for the first time (amen)! Our 15-month period of displacement is drawing to a close with the delivery of our worldly possessions not seen since they were put into storage in September 2010. I’m not going to rehash the exasperating details of our odyssey from Ardsley to the Upper West Side via a 51-week layover in Yonkers, but in the words of the Grateful Dead, “what long strange trip it’s been.”
So here I am on December 30th staring at all of these boxes filled with stuff that we accumulated over the decades and realize that if I never saw half of it again, I wouldn’t miss it. I honestly don’t remember everything that we decided to pack up and deemed important enough to pay $400/month to keep in storage. But as I delved into the first cartons, I was struck with a certain curiosity as to what our mind-set was when we were deciding what was worth keeping. Interestingly, the first three things I randomly unpacked were a beer stein, our wedding picture, and a book about dental esthetics (all very important). Then came the plastic potted plants, LEGO’s, old college text books, decorative ornaments of all types including an assortment of soap dishes, countless chargers that don’t match our current phones….I mean what were we thinking?
So I stepped back from the columns of corrugated containers and began to ponder (metaphorically) about the baggage we all carry. Much if not most of it is volitional; that is, we have what we have because we have worked hard to get it. But some of this baggage that we schlep around is not wanted at all-we’re just too busy to notice. The baggage I am referring to is stress and the burden of carrying this extra load does take its toll both physically and mentally. These past few years have been extremely difficult for many of us. Some are working harder than ever just to keep their heads above water. Being bogged down and pulled under by the “extra weight” of stress only makes for tougher going. While as individuals we can’t change the reality of a poor economy, we can unburden ourselves by taking better care of ourselves. Being more health conscious when eating, exercising more, perhaps joining a yoga class or taking a time out for a walk are just a few suggestions to help reduce stress.
I know that aside from a lot of useless stuff that I have boxed up and carried to New York at no small expense, I have put on 25 unwanted pounds (talk about extra baggage) over the past 15 months because of stress. Comfort food can be so soothing after battling with contractors. But when it’s all said and done, I’m the one stuck holding the bag (actually it’s more of a roll and a belly.)
So, as we are about to embark on a new year, I wish you all a happy, healthy and prosperous 2012. And if I may be so bold, take a moment to take stock of your stuff, perhaps there is some baggage you can shed to lighten your load.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!