Things Done. Things to Do.
I have accomplished an enormous amount with regard to my upcoming move. Most of my home, not including the kitchen, is packed, and I have gotten rid of hundreds of pounds of things I no longer want/need. I would bet that between books and clothes, I’ve donated more than 300 lbs of perfectly good stuff to the goodwill and a local nursing home. I was surprised to learn that the library was not interested in a box of perfectly good books. But they turned me on to the local Catholic nursing home system, who happily accepted a box of books so heavy I thought I would crumple beneath it. My generation, when we’re seniors, will be happily accepting old Call of Duty XLVII games for Playstation 10011101.
I’ve given away much furniture and other equipment, including a lovely pair of Magnepan SMGcs. I still have a bit of stuff to get rid of. Craigslist was a total bust for me. Not one inquiry for my sofa. One scam offer for my entertainment center. One legitimate inquiry – I think – for my small wardrobe, but which fell through. Luckily, my tenant will accept the place with a few furnishings. And since I don’t really care about them, I’m not particularly fussed if her cats rip them apart.
I’ve made an arrangement to get an estimate on the move. I’m terrified at the expense. The piano alone is going to be absurdly expensive. But the truth is, I have no idea what to expect. I won’t be shocked to hear anything from $2K to $10K. Thank god moving expenses are tax-deductible if you go more than like 100 miles (I’ve been told. Right? Right?!). I’ve rented an apartment. I’ve done all of the tasks I’m required to do for starting my job at PECMC, though I still have to deliver the original copies of the fingerprint report. I’ll do that after I move there.
There are a number of things I have left to do:
1) Talk to my insurance company about the issues associated with renting out my home.
2) Arrange for the actual move to be planned.
3) Create and sign the lease with my tenant.
4) Deal with utilities (ending the ones at my home, establishing the ones in ECC).
5) Figure out how to sell my car (this is harder than it sounds, if you want a decent price).
6) Decide if I’m keeping my parrot.
7) Figure out what to do with my parrot if the answer is “not”.
9) Everything I’ve forgotten.
Seriously. This is amazingly complex. The last time I moved I was still a drunk. Doing this sober affords me the ability to do things well and correctly and on time and without incurring extra expense. But it also forces me to handle it without chemical relief from the stress. Obviously, I have no desire to drink. I know what happens when I drink. But I am at least occasionally envious of those who can work hard at something for a long time, and then relax with a drink that makes them feel happy and helps them unwind.
But of course, drinking doesn’t do that to me. If I have one drink, I don’t feel relaxed and unwound. I feel utterly obsessed with having a second drink. Then I obsess about a third. I wonder if normal people can understand what it’s like to be thinking about how you’re going to get your next drink while you still have a full glass in your hand. The entire day’s drinking consumes my thoughts from the moment I have the first one. From before I have the first one. When I am a drinker, nothing but drinking can matter. Everything else is just the stuff that I have to do to get back to the bottle.
So, yes, I fantasize occasionally about being able to have a beer and relax from the stress of moving and changing jobs. But as I’ve written many times, what I fantasize about it not how it was. It’s a gilded version that was never real. I was a drunk from the beginning. And it’s important to understand the difference between a fantasy and a craving. I don’t have cravings anymore, thank god. I can’t say I’ll never have another one, but it’s been nearly five years since my last one. And thank god. Cravings suck.
I also fantasize about being able to fly, being an object of adoration by underwear models, and winning the National Medal for Science. Fantasies are fun! But I have no need for them to be grounded in reality. Alcohol is part of my past. I have left it behind, gratefully. Now, I confront my life on the terms that it has for me. And all things considered, those terms have been pretty good for me.