On minimal packing (and emotional bagage)

We went on a little trip this week. Prior to the trip I have been reading a lot on minimalism and a minimalist lifestyle online. I have always found myself to be a minimalist in a way. Not because I have little stuff but because I know I can get rid of everything I own easily. Anyhow, I came across an  interview with minimalist  Courtney Carver and one of the things she said on traveling is to pack for half the time your going. As I was about to pack our bags I realized that, even though I pack minimal, I always take items with me I do not wear or use. And so I thought to give the minimal packing (for half of the time) a go. This is what I took with me:

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-2 dresses

-2 leggings

-3 tops

-a cardigan

-underwear for four days

-1 jacket

-washingcloth (2) towel (1)

-1 pair of sandals

-toothbrush, brush, shampoo bar, soap bar, toothpaste and skin cream.

 

As I packed I assumed it would be nice summery weather… and when we arrived it was windy, but still sunny. On day two it started to rain though and it kept on raining until we left after 4 days. At first I felt so uncomfortable not having any socks or boots or even a raincoat to keep me protected from that darn rain. I wanted to go out to wander about the neighborhood but all the “what if’s” started to tumble trough my head. “I need to get me a pair of boots and some socks.” i said to my husband. I had already taken a pair of his socks and was walking around with socks in my sandals everywhere. As the words had left my mouth I questioned myself “do I really NEED the boots? What if we just wait and see what happens.” Worst thing that can happen is that I get wet feet when I go out but I can dry them and dry the socks on the heat. So I accepted the fact that I had do cope with the things I had taken with me not because there was no money to get me a new pair of boots but just because it is not always necessary to act on your discomfort. It is ok to be dis comfortable, nothing really happens to you, you just feel awkward for a moment but that will pass too. It felt good not to have bought another item to carry around with me even though it would have been an article of -almost- every day use where I live (the boots). Besides of that I already have a pair at home and did not need another pair.

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I had also decided to take just one book and some crochet gear with me. The crochet gear was for my stone crochet project. The book was one of many books I have inherited from my mother. I have kept them all for a long time and started on many of them many, many times but never got past chapter one or two I never got rid of them before because I always thought “one day when i am old, I will read them”. As I stood in front of the bookshelves I thought: “But if I do not want to read them know, why would I want to read them when I am old?  Also IF I would want to read them when I am old I could get them at the library.” So I decided to take one of the books and if I would not read it or read it but not be interested enough after a view pages I would leave the book behind for another to enjoy. And so I did. I left the book behind because after realizing i had read that first page for the seventh time in my life it was enough. For far too long I have been holding on to my mothers stuff just because I was afraid that maybe one day I would miss them, I would really really miss her. Which I did and do but, stuff does not make her come back. Stuff does not make her stay closer to me. She is with me. Always. In my heart, in my voice, in the things I do, in the things I don’t.

Close your eyes. Fall in love. Stay there. – Rumi

Thank you for reading,

Sophia

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My stone crochet project

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3 gedachten over “On minimal packing (and emotional bagage)

  1. Beautiful and inspiring account of your minimalistic lifestyle Sister. I too have rid of alot of things I carry around as they were overwhelming me with the chaos of not finding what I wanted or the stress of looking at it and realising it was another task I did not complete. Whenever I am low on money I also find that dealing with it presents me with another level of creativity, for example finding something to cook with what’s in the cupboard, or just letting go. Loving the adventures. Grote knuffles en kusjes voor jou en de familie xo

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  2. What beautiful words about your mother. It can be so hard to let go of items that belonged to someone else but you are totally right, it is not the books you miss but the person; keeping the books doesn’t keep her near. I am on a bit of a minimalist and slowing down journey myself and books in particular can be so tough to give away but I figure if I have read something it’s unlikely I’ll want to read it again- there is always something new and exciting out there to read – and if I’ve owned something a while and not read it yet then there must be a reason I haven’t read it and so I just let it go. I read for pleasure so why force myself to read something I really don’t want to? Be true to yourself. I think there is only about ten books that I can truly see myself reading over and over and those are the ones I keep.

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