I saw a recent study that indicated moving can be as stressful to a family, or moreso, than divorce. The researchers could have asked me and saved themselves a lot of time, money and trouble: It is. …
I saw a recent study that indicated moving can be as stressful to a family, or moreso, than divorce. The researchers could have asked me and saved themselves a lot of time, money and trouble: It is. Moving could be the worst thing ever.
It isn’t just the actual physical work involved. It is the sorting and deciding if there is really a need to move two reciprocating saws and three slow cookers. Let me offer a clue here. If it belongs to the man of the house, it is absolutely necessary and must be taken to the new location at all costs. Leave some of the children behind if necessary.
There is no way there is any need for three slow cookers. That is, until the first holiday after everything is unpacked and said slow cookers are needed to keep the feast warm until everything is done. Then there is an uproar over how in the world did anyone think it was a good idea to get rid of the surplus slow cookers and now we need to go get another. Or two more.
There is the stress involved in searching for the appropriate socks. No matter that it is standard operating procedure in all our many moves that necessities — socks, clothes for a few days, medications and the like — are always packed in separate bags kept in plain sight until we are settled. No matter. The right socks are always missing, packed in a box or bundle somewhere they cannot be found ... until we go to unpack the duffel at the new house and there are the socks, right where they were supposed to be.
There are the awful last few days when all the dishes and food stuff have been boxed up and the family is relegated to paper plates, plastic utensils and takeout food. Then there are the first few days on the other end where the situation is the same until the dishes are located and put away.
Usually our moves have been to and from places where takeout was sketchy at best. When it is 13 miles to the blacktop, takeout doesn’t happen at all. The best you can hope for is frozen prepared food that can be heated in the disposable container it comes in.
One thing we have learned and will always employ during a move is never, ever pack the coffee pot. Oh sure, pack the backup pot, the camping pot, but don’t touch the one in use everyday. It is the last thing packed and the first unpacked, along with a sack of coffee grounds. Because there is one thing that makes all the stress and upheaval of moving better and that is the first cup of hot coffee in the morning, whether that morning is moving out day or moving in day.
Perhaps it is the liquid itself, but more likely it is the continuity of life, the sameness and the routine that comforts us when nothing else is routine.
But this unrest will end, life will find its own rhythm and flow, and return to some semblance of normal. So we take moving in stride, with a grain of salt and a cup of coffee.