Edit Blog Post
Published: August 15th 2007
Letting go is an interesting process. As I declutter my flat, give away furniture, cancel my BT phone line and broadband, and let go of one bind after another, I am reviewing everything else in my life. It's a wonderful, purifying process that puts everything in perspective, especially what is important and what isn't.
Before I moved to Warwickshire three years ago, I lived in a big three-storey house with a cellar and a loft and a garden shed. All of these were full of stuff I had accumulated over the past ten years - furniture, records, books, ornaments, clothes, old letters, antiques... you name it. I also had an office for my publishing company which was full of paperwork, stock, and so on.
When I finally sold my house, I had about two weeks to clear both house and office before I was moving into a two-bedroom flat in Leamington Spa. Apart from the tight deadline, the process was exhilarating. All of my friends came around and helped me sort through the stuff, took what they liked, and helped me to cart car loads of junk to local charity shops - so much so that after a while they groaned when they saw us coming! When the moving date approached, I felt so much lighter - I still had stuff, but it was much reduced, and I had kept only the necessary (at the time).
Now I feel I am doing this process again, but much more thoroughly, and on a different scale. As I will not be moving to another property, but simply put the remainder of my belongings into storage, I let go of so much more. It's quite a strange concept that I won't have an address any longer in a few weeks time, no rent, gas and electricity bills to pay, no subscriptions and no paperwork hassles. Everything is open-ended; everything is possible but nothing is cast in stone. It's a great feeling of freedom, if somewhat daunting. Daunting because I am leaving my friends and my community behind, and they are what keep me sane. No doubt it will be really hard at times when I can't just pick up the phone or meet a friend for lunch. Having said that, I am feeling very supported in making this journey. It's almost like my community is accompanying me in spirit. We're having a big leaving party and a smaller, more personal letting-go ceremony on the day I am leaving, and my friends are going to see me off, which will no doubt be beautiful and very emotional!
On a different note, I am noticing how attached I am to the most ridiculous things. For example, I'd never have thought I would find it hard to sell my car! I had the car for almost ten years, but the thought of letting that go seems much worse than selling my CD collection or flat.
Then, the other things is, I am making a will before I am leaving. Just in case, and for completion's sake. I think it's part of this 'simplifying my life' process, the death of one chapter of my life, and the birth of a new one. That's almost like dying in a way, I suppose. The most interesting question that came up for me whilst thinking about my will was: 'who will I leave my journals to?' Indeed, what happens to one's journals after one's death? There are so many of them, detailing life, love, loss and growth. Another good point is: how would I like to be buried? If I were to leave it up to my parents or sister to decide, I would probably get a sickly catholic ceremony on a sterile graveyeard. Being a Pagan, that would make me turn in my grave - so I'm looking at Natural Burial sites, and at appointing a Pagan Priest/ess for the ceremony.
Synchronistically, there is a great article about the Return to Mother Earth in the Lammas edition of Pagan Dawn (http://www.paganfed.org/pdawn.php) with a lot of links to alternative funeral and burial arrangements, such as the Natural Death Centre (http://www.naturaldeath.org.uk/)
Yes, it may all sound a bit morbid, but it's a good meditation - in the vein of the Indian Saddhus and followers of the Goddess Kali who meditate in graveyards, smear themselves with ashes and contemplate human transience. Or the Buddhists who often have human skeletons in their temples. It's all quite fascinating, really - how we in the West shy away from death as though it doesn't exist, whereas in the East it's just part of the process of life.
Tot: 2.379s; Tpl: 0.045s; cc: 15; qc: 95; dbt: 0.0698s; 2; m:saturn w:www (184.108.40.206); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.5mb