The Most Stressful Things

There are lots of reasons I’ve been stressed in my life.   Studying for the LSATs (even though I didn’t end up applying to law school), library job hunting, planning a destination wedding from Boston, being a temporary single mother, having my little sister refuse to talk to me.

And then there are the smaller life hiccups that have stressed me out: not getting enough sleep, running out of oatmeal on a cold morning, headaches, ripped inseams, broken heels, running late, arriving early, public speaking, typos.

All this experience with stress should make me well prepared to greet the challenges that lie ahead in the next month.

We’re moving 1,000 miles away.  It is a logistical puzzle made of really awkward pieces:

  • a nine month old infant
  • a dog that hates staying in hotels (conservatively, the drive will take 3 days)
  • a husband who has to leave before the rest of us to start his new job
  • moving quotes upwards of $10K
  • years old house plants that said moving companies will not ship
  • storage units to pack scattered from Maine to Massachusetts to Washington DC
  • trying to visit with dear friends who I might not see again until October (or gasp, Christmas!)

They say that moving is one of the top life stresses.  And while I’ve moved countless times (I lived in 12 houses by the time I graduated high school), its never been this epic.  Or stressful.  Husband and I are definitely getting on each other’s cases a bit more than usual.  He reprimanded me for not putting my dishes in the dishwasher last night; I gave him a hard time for not buying the right types and sizes of moving boxes.

This morning, after spending the last few days recovering from dehydration and heat exhaustion, I was finally able to get out for an early morning run again.  Today was not one of those perfect mornings (you know, like the rarely achievable ones where I wake before the rest of the family, sip water and write 500 words before heading out the door to greet the sun, returning 40 minutes later to find the family still asleep, eat breakfast and shower in the quiet).  Even though I got in a solid 25 minutes plus 5 minutes of sprints, it wasn’t the goal I had in mind and I was a little hard on myself because morning runs are typically the one part of my day and life that is completely in my control.  But as I was getting dressed for the day, I noted that my bathroom was still perfectly in tact.  No evidence of the move is yet apparent there, and I carried on through my imperfect morning without another mote of judgment.

As I stumble through these next weeks of immense change, I will be sure to remind myself that at the other end lies a [bath]room of my own.  Whatever great trials I have along the way, it will calm me to know that lavender bubble baths always exist, that we decided to move for very rational reasons, and that my definition of perfection is always changing.

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