For the love.

So, I’ve started the packing process at my apartment, because I like to be slow and deliberate about it, and pack like three boxes a day and go through my things and talk to myself about what I need and what I don’t and really eliminate lots of stuff. Besides clothing, and shoes and potentially jewelry, I like to not have very much stuff at all, actuallly. There’s something peaceful to me about having just enough stuff to fill a small one bedroom, even though I currently haphazardly occupy a three bedroom, a misfortune that occurred when I thought it would work out to live with my sister.

The great purging process began last year when I was sorting through my shit in the divorce. I just left a bunch of crap there — a 1500 square foot condo allows you to accumulate 1500 square feet worth of crap — and I kind of reveled in taking tons of books to resale shops and tossing out clothes I hadn’t touched in a few years thanks to psych med weight gain and a style overhaul. I like imagining that paring down my possessions would lead to a new life, cleaner and more carefree.

In a certain way, I have a lot less, but I still feel like it’s too much. The burden comes in books, because they are cumbersome to move, but some I can’t part with because the remembrances of their stories make me smile. Other things have a family memory tied to it, and now that I have so little of that left, I am trying to hold on to what I have so that there is just something, I guess. Something that proves I mattered to someone, or belonged to someone, had some roots, maybe.

I don’t really notice things, I guess; I’m not too possessive about stuff, which is why, two months after moving back in, I am still noticing things that are missing from when my family raged on in here, moved my sister out and stole things from me. Just now I was putting away some cords into my cord box — because I tend to collect random AC adaptors and RCA cords and such and need a special box to hold all of these things lest I need them later. And I noticed the most ridiculous thing of all had been stolen: This goddamned animatronic monkey head that my dad had bought me for Christmas like three years ago in a fit of manic glee — his, not mine.

He got it at the Sharper Image. It is motion sensitive and Hollywood grade and utterly ridiculous, and at 27, I had really no purpose for it. But he gets in these moods, and we get gifts like this. This is what Christmas has always been for us: gifts that are totally random, or totally passive agressive.

As a fat little child, and then as a fat teenager, my mother would buy — purposefully, I think — clothing that was too small for me and not at all stylish. One year, when I had begun getting fatter, I got a pair of white cotton cable knit tights. My mom had been at work and we had opened Christmas presents without her. I tried on the tights, and saw that they didn’t fit. I was ashamed and disappointed and angry at my body. Of course there was nothing wrong with the tights. It was my body. When my mom got home, she insisted that they fit and we stuffed me into those tights. It lasted a few short minutes until they started rolling down and eventually split in the crotch and thighs. Humilated, I secretly threw them away.

This followed for years, and usually it involved pants that were too small, pants with pleats, pants that were tapered, pants that were garish.

Just yesterday, jonesing for extra cash, broke as a joke with the cost of this too-big apartment, I took all this ridiculous gold-and-diamond jewelry my mother has given me over the last number of Christmases and tried to pawn it. I don’t wear gold. I don’t wear diamonds. I wore diamonds once: in my wedding ring and band, and they were reclaimed from my ex’s ex-fiance, and I didn’t really give a shit about them. And the gold was white, because really I prefer silver, and silver set with large semi-precious, non-faceted stones. Really earthy, big, bohemian, stuff. I have always worn jewelry like this. I’ve made it off an on like this since I was a kid. It’s pretty obvious what I prefer to wear if you look at me, for like, 2 seconds. It ain’t gold and sparkly.

So I took it all to sell, and it turns out it ain’t worth a fucking thing. Ten cents on the dollar, and they’d have to melt it all down. God, even in the aftermath, I’m still getting screwed.

So this is where I’m at: stuck with Christmas gifts I don’t want and can’t sell, still finding shit that has been stolen around my house because I’m too daft to pay attention. I mean, just last week I noticed rubbermaid containers that I used to move books in had been stolen.

Usually people start off the process of “hurt” with anger. You know, you get angry first because really it’s masking hurt, and you have to work through the anger to get to the more vulnerable hurt feelings. I’m the reverse now. I was already devastated and broken. Now I’m just pissed and annoyed. Like, can we get on with it already, people? Can I possibly request a list of other shit that may have been taken so I don’t have to discover yet another item that’s missing in a week? Like it’s a reverse scavenger hunt in my own home? It’s really rather tiresome. Will you be sending me a bill at the end of all of this for the two Regular Absorbancy tampons I borrowed and the time you bought an extra roll of paper towels and the 99 cent toilet brush you bought me? Should I be tracking this in Excel with macros and such? For the love, I just don’t have the energy to be so spiteful, but boy, you guys are really pushing me to the limit.

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1 Comment

  1. Bri said,

    May 17, 2008 at 2:17 am

    I had the same issue when I went pawn my jewellery from my previous marriage. It wasn’t worth it. So I still have the engagement ring and another diamond one and I threw my wedding ring off a bridge the day my divorce papers came through : )


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