The furniture’s gone

to a charity that assists women who suddenly find themselves in need of an entirely new apartment. Sofa, chair, two end tables, lamps, microwave, box spring, a box each of books, clothes, dishes. Gone, really, in five minutes. A van and three men pulled up, knocked on my door, handed me a receipt, shifted it all out of my sight, and left. Great condition, the man says, we’re happy to take it. Well, then, let it be gone. Then practice losing farther, losing faster.

I bought it all for $700 US from a company that rents furniture to visiting executives and had it for three years and it was in near perfect condition coming and going. The end tables were covered with dust. Well, when was I ever in that apartment? To sleep, mostly. When I was sick. I worked at work, and I wrote in a café, and the vacations I spent at home because of mom. I didn’t even eat there all that often. Now, in the corners, even, bags of things I brought there, never home, from the various long car trips, and never even unpacked.

I’m good at that, not unpacking. I used to be proud of how good I was at renting apartments I’d never seen. Not that I had any choice, half the time, but it wasn’t what happened in the apartment, I thought, that mattered anyway. Just a room with a place to sleep and a door that locks. No stuff collecting — but of course, I can’t avoid the stuff collecting, and it’s not all material. Just this week, the cheap plastic key fob that the apartment complex gave me with the keys when I moved in split and fell off. If I’d’ve stayed here any longer, I’d actually have lived here.

I remember the night I got to this city, in the middle of a shower, and then sitting here, in this café, the morning before I went to new faculty orientation, the hopes I had, and the sometimes inexplicable tears back then, which were about the wake of the previous job. And here I sit, in this café, two days before my lease expires — I wanted to be gone ten days ago, oh well — and I’m looking at the sky and weeping again. After what? Lost opportunities? That I did somehow, find a home here, even if not in my apartment? That the second chance turned into something entirely different, but in any case didn’t lead to the resurrection of the professor? losing … where it was you meant to travel. Why am I crying for her? I hated her so often, in the end, so that even the pieces of the performance I kept up nauseated me.

I wonder, in the face of concrete circumstance, about the things that seem so easy, that I do just do because they are the next thing. I was just reading a fanfic that concluded with the sentiment that the real adventure does not lie in going to all the other places, it is found in figuring out where you are at home. But those fics always defy belief, the romance against all odds, like Mr. Thornton and Margaret fighting all the way through North & South only to find themselves embracing in the last chapter as if that ever in a million years made any sense. For all the skill with which Richard Armitage kisses, I didn’t believe that when I saw it and I don’t believe it now. We keep choosing these things over and over again because of some social rule or some notion of safety or some story we’ve been told. I didn’t know what to do three years ago and I don’t know what to do now.

Except vacate before the lease expires. Despite all the other skills I’ve lost, I’m still good at that one.

~ by Servetus on May 29, 2014.

27 Responses to “The furniture’s gone”

  1. Yup. I relate. I am moving on also. Back from the suburbs to the big City. Lots of trepidations. Will miss lots of freedom here that I will not have in NYC. Too many many many people. Grateful beyond belief that I have somewhere to go, since the house didn’t work out. It is hard to let go, but good things will come of it. Life goes on. We don’t have to keep choosing the same things over and over. We can make new choices. And move on.

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  2. Hope you’re okay and good luck to you.

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    • thanks — I will be okay, but at times it’s not okay, if that distinction makes any sense to you 🙂 I appreciate the support.

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  3. Good luck with the future you choose, whatever that may be! 🙂

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  4. My thoughts and prayers are with you at this time.

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  5. You seem to travel lightly through life, at least where furniture is concerned. But really, all your heavy baggage is on the inside. I hope it becomes lighter as you move forward. Change is definitely worth tears. But you are doing it anyway. Well done and safe journey.

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    • books — it’s books that are heavy. But I paid a grad student to do that. Thanks for your support.

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  6. I’ll be thinking about you and I’m sending you all positive thoughts. I think I understand that you’re OK but it’s not always OK. Makes sense to me.

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  7. Where ever you end up, I hope you will feel happiness/contentment/satisfaction as you move forward.

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  8. Wishing you all the luck in the world xx

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  9. Sending you much love, keep strong xx

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  10. Thank you, Servetus, for sharing your feelings. It is hard to leave something behind and I admire you for your bravery. Good luck on your new way and may it bring you happiness and joy every step of the way!

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  11. Best Wishes to you, Serv. hugs

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  12. A difficult time. The end of a job. The end of a career path. The end of some dreams or hopes. Eternally optimistic I will say that the end of all this only denotes the beginning of a new job, new career, new dreams and hopes. But that may be a bit too up-beat now. The tears are good, as is the reflection. I firmly believe that the only lesson worth learning from history is that humans don’t learn lessons from history. Neither collectively nor individually. But a kernel of memory will always be there with you. And that’s good.
    As for why we choose to look to the unlikely intervention of coincidence in fiction? Because it gives us hope that the impossible will become real. Or that an equal if not better alternative pops up. Hope is the lifeblood.
    Hugs and positive vibes!

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  13. These posts are so well written. I feel like I am sitting in that empty apartment with you.

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  14. I’m glad you’re OK, Servetus…. that means everything around you WILL eventually be OK. I get that and know firsthand that it can take time and digging down deep to things (almost) forgotten. My thoughts and prayers for all the best to you …. the way you express yourself always touches me.

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  15. Best of luck x

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  16. Serv, I have a million thoughts about all this…… and for me all this sounds more than overwhelming. Although you really seem to have a lot of experience in relocating!
    More than anything, I wish you good luck and all the best for your pending journey. Hope there is somewhere, besides other much needed things, a comforting shoulder to rest that assumedly tired and exhausted head of yours…. Hugs (as many as it takes) … and you know where you find us….

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  17. Dear Serv,
    Moving is not fun, period–done it lots. But moving on is harder–because we’re charting a new path, you’re charting a new path. And you can make your new path whatever you want it to be–no restrictions. You are in the beginning of rewriting your life. That’s rather exciting, scary, daring, daunting, and hopeful, etc. And along your journey, we’re all here for you.
    Love & Hugs! Grati ;->

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  18. Thinking of you Serv, and wishing you all the very best hugs

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  19. Moving on. I’m good at that….The end of something. Beginning of….
    Well, good luck. I’m thinking of you and wishing you all the best. Agnes

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  20. Thanks for all the supportive comments, everyone!

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  21. Oh I DO believe! It is one of the reasons that I love North and South so much. I believe the story. All things are possible to those who BELIEVE.

    Onward and upward towards your next adventure.

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  22. The previous comments said it all. Take care my dear!!!

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