Moving Out and Moving On by Ren Martinez

I have less than two weeks to move out of my current apartment. Moving, in short, is a frustrating, nearly traumatizing hassle of organizing trinkets you don’t remember purchasing and figuring out how to fit all those boxes in your 1998 Pontiac Sunfire that needs two people to open the trunk. It’s one of the least pleasant of human experiences, right up there with stepping on a LEGO piece and stubbing a toe.

And yet, packing for a move is almost cathartic. It’s sorting through the debris of the past two years, coming across memories that had been thrown into the junk drawer or pushed beneath the bookcase. It’s figuring out what’s mine and what’s borrowed and what remains without an owner. It’s smiling fondly over my DVD collection and wondering why I have so many pairs of shoes. A girl cannot live by chucks alone, but apparently I made a very good attempt.

At this stage in my life, I can’t help but feel restless. It’s like the opposite of motion sickness, where sitting still has acid boiling up in my stomach and the fear of stagnation is akin to physical nausea. I have this image, no doubt concocted by Wes Anderson films and John Green novels, where I’m running through the city streets with a pack of friends, a streak of bright blue in my hair, or climbing out of the sun roof of a car at night and trying to reach for the stars as we ride down the highway. It’s these images of freedom that haunt me when I wake up to find myself chained to a lease agreement and cheap Ikea furniture.

As it is, each box is an adventure in itself, taped shut and waiting for the journey to commence. I know where the road will take me (this time) but it’s when my feet hit the pavement that I’ll finally feel free.

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