My husband and I are preparing to close on our first apartment, sifting through 15 years of stuff we’ve somehow managed to pack into 1,000 square feet. I’ve put off calling movers until the closing date is set, not yet ready to face the looming mountain of cardboard boxes.
Before settling down in NYC to raise our family, I spent countless hours transporting my belongings in cardboard boxes from coast to coast and across the Atlantic. I was born in Evanston, Illinois, while my dad was studying for his PhD at Northwestern. We moved to Norman, Oklahoma, so he could continue his studies with his thesis advisor, and eventually moved to California, where my dad took his first of several jobs. I lived in seven different houses in the first 10 years of my life. A peripatetic soul!
I headed to the East Coast for the quintessential college experience, went back to California for law school, then moved to New York to start my career as a corporate attorney. In between, I spent a year abroad studying in London and Oxford in college and a semester abroad in law school studying in Paris, where I met my husband. We settled in NYC with a brief two-year interlude in Paris. As we went through the pain-staking exercise of itemizing our belongings for the insurance inventory, I secretly hoped our shipping container would be lost at sea. Then we could start fresh without the burden of unpacking our accumulated junk. Alas, our container and cartons arrived fully intact, although we did manage to lighten our load on the return trip.