The deadline of a move

I do not like deadlines. Never did. Never will. Who does? Who does enjoy all the stress that comes with that?

Original photo by http://www.oprisco.com

Well, starting with early ages of our lives we understand the importance of deadlines and how they become pieces of puzzle we put in the frame along with all the others that form our time-frame.

We might have an exam or a project to finish at work, we might have a date or the new “Harry Potter” book will hit the shelves, you will have brunch with the girls next Sunday and in three weeks you will raise a glass of champagne on New Year’s in Thailand. Like you and me, we all have planned events and dates saved in our calendars, some of which bring us joy and excitement while some come along with a terrible feeling of fear and a possible anxiety attack.

I remember perfectly how during my school years I always delayed finishing long papers or studying for an exam. I almost always ended up doing all that in the last days if not many times the exact last day before the deadline. And guess what? It worked. Actually that is a lie. It failed one time when I decided not to sleep and went directly in the morning to an exam, which I failed. I then learned the importance of a quick nap.

Getting back to our story, in my school years it might have worked not to stress about deadlines as I enjoyed school as well so it was easy for me to study. But as an adult in a world that is beyond my control I learned also the importance of planning especially when you move to another country. And I did that twice. We might not like deadlines but moving to another country implies some thorough planning and decisions to make like what do you take with you. It makes you think of one those questions from the notebooks that were fashionable many years ago. What are the 3 items you would take with you on a deserted island?

I first moved away from home six months prior to my move to Sweden. I lived in one place for 2 months where I brought almost all my belongings with me, then 4 more months in a studio close to my parents’ house, this time I left the winter clothes at home and only took spring/summer clothes to the new place. So I was already used to packing, unpacking, packing while organizing the clothes per seasons before I started my packing process for the big move to another country. I slept one more night in my bed at home and off I went to Malmö. I remember it was a bit chaotic but I managed to move all my stuff back to my house and also picked and packed the clothes I wanted to take to Sweden.

And there I was at the airport at the end of August with two suitcases, one big and one small and a backpack. All my life packed in 3 pieces of luggage. I thought I had everything I needed. I did, but boy did I not enjoy the cold weather. I was going from 30 degrees to 18 I think. I had some warm clothes with me but I did not take them all as I knew I was returning to Romania to visit in a month or so and I would take some more then. However, it was cold. After some days I realized that even if I had my lists it did not help as my notion of autumn was not the same as the Sweeds’.

For one year I went back home around 5 times and became an expert on packing and weighting every gram in order not to pass the limit. I now know that you have to seal your food such as jars of delicious gems made by your mom in some fabric and then tons of tape, or that in winter time you can also put frozen meat in your hold luggage, also taped. What can I say, we Romanians like our food.

When time came to move back to Romania panic kicked in. How on earth will I manage to carry everything with me? In one year I gathered many clothes, either brought from home or new, kitchen items, boxes, all the stuff in the world that a woman might collect. I was relieved when I found a Romanian bus company that travels through Europe and also ships boxes. Everybody can use it, not only Romanians. I shipped back home seven boxes, 70 kilos for which I was imagining I will pay a lot of money but I didn’t. I was only 110 euros. Rather cheap. They brought the boxes at my mom’s door so it was all very easy.

After a year spent at home I moved again. I came to Holland, where I live now. This time I came prepared and I arrived here with 3 big pieces of luggage, one small luggage and a backpack. I struggled a bit to push the cart to the taxi while one of the guards was amazed by that fact that not that big of a human is pushing something that looks so heavy. And it was heavy, around 80 kg. The magic of wheels! Then I got in front of my door and when I opened it and saw the tight Dutch stairs, I said a swear and 10 minutes and only one floor later I was in my new home. At least this time I am not cold and I have everything I want and need with me. I even made room for my egg timer. I know you can buy them around but I like to have small pieces of my home with me.

I understood with both experiences that it’s not that complicated to move. Stressing about not having enough space in your luggage for your favourite books or blanket should not happen days before you move. There are always options, some cheap, some pricey, but there are. So you should focus your energy on your feelings, your family and friends, on what is about to happen in your life, on the step towards your future.