For most people, especially those going through a divorce, moving and starting over is challenging. The redecorating, and the smell of sawdust is stressful. I’m a little different. I love the creative aspect of setting up a new home. I enjoy picking out fixtures and working with contractors and designers. If I had another life… I would be a contractor like my grandfather and brothers. I would definitely choose to build or redo buildings. That’s why redoing life is so exciting and fun for me.
Before you stop reading, let me try to ease your heart palpitations because I know I’m not like most people. Most people get completely stressed out with moving. The overwhelm of doing a renovation is often too much. Buying new furniture and everything that re-decorating requires, especially during a divorce, isn’t easy. For me, it’s the fun part.
Working the exterior is similar to imagining a new future free from the stuff of the past.
I think of moving and starting over the way I think of September when school began. When the back to school shopping made me think I could be prom queen. Or like when I went to college and stepped into a new identity. Those were the moments when the future appeared doable. They made it seem as if I could become anyone I wanted to be.
The same goes with leaving the stuff behind in divorce. By leaving the furniture you got from the in-laws or the clothing you wore because someone else liked it, you get to start anew. When you let go of the books, antiques and dust collectors that you purchased on your honeymoon, you’re saying goodbye to a different part of your life.
All that stuff you had during that relationship carries energy, memories and lost dreams.
They may be things you love. Maybe, the stuff is stuff you’re willing to fight over. (I’m not a big fan of that.) Perhaps you think you can sell it for good money. Maybe all of that even.
But starting over looks like starting over with a clean slate. Finding new furniture and new clothing that you love today. Getting new dishes, silver, and glasses to feed the friends you want to spend time with. Finding artwork you love and items you admire.
Starting with the exterior allows you to work from the outside in. Then it pushes you to work the inside out.
That may mean setting up a man cave the way you always wanted. Or throwing out the clothes that don’t fit. Then applying for that 0% credit card with your excellent credit report so you can go shopping for the things you want. Moving and starting over means making what you imagine as a new future for yourself real.
Moving and starting over instead of being wrapped up in a fight gives you a chance to stop being involved with someone from your past.
Leaving the stuff to avoid a fight means letting go of competition. When you walk away from the drama of the past, you put up boundaries. You create faith when you imagining a happy future for yourself. Getting your money and finances in order so you can purchase what you want is being responsible. Making courage to shop declares you believe in you. When you tap into your creativity, you remind yourself of who you really are.
You welcome a new future when you set up a warm and inviting space to call home.
I’ve moved homes 17 times. Not counting the summers my family went from Massachusetts to Maine when I was a kid. Or, going back and forth to college. I guess looking at it that way, I’ve been forced to find it fun. But each and every time was a chance to be different. To grow and to become happier than I was the day before. Even if things were great the day before.
Each moving and starting over opportunity came with its challenges. At the same time, each required I change the exterior and the interior at once. I find it fun, an exercise in imagination. The re-organization, a huge relief. The past is left physically in the past with everything that belongs there.