There was a time – going away to college, moving into that first apartment, settling into our first real home, or possibly moving into that dream home – when moving was fun or at least exciting. There was the anticipation, the getting ready, and all of the plans for how everything would be better and different from what it was at the time.
As time as moved, however, that moving process has become more daunting and less exciting. We are still willing to move – some of us – but we understand all of the work that must happen. Moving is very hard – and stressful.
Let’s leave out all of the hours, days, and weeks that transpire to even find a new place to occupy (presumably to purchase and ultimately own). That given, there are two more major steps that need to happen, along with several associated lesser ones. First, we have to get ready to vacate our current home. Second, we actually have to take up residence in the new home.
At one time – when we had only moved once or twice – packing up everything we owned and moving into a new adventure was something we looked forward to – or at least we didn’t dread it. Maybe it was because we didn’t own that much or the place we were moving into was so much more exciting than the one we were leaving that the move itself was relatively stress-free and easy to manage.
As we moved from place-to-place a couple of times, it likely became more of a big deal to accomplish each time. We had more stuff to box up and pack. We knew that some of our stuff (although there was no way to know which specific items in advance) would somehow get lost in the process or be damaged. Still, the thoughts of moving outweighed this concern because we needed to be closer to work or family, we needed more space or more yard, we had other needs in terms of floor space or layout, or we were changing cities.
At some point, we realize that we have amassed so much stuff that the thoughts of packing it up and transporting it to a new location become somewhat overwhelming. Besides, we have moved a few times already, and each time it gets less and less glamorous and exciting. At some point, we may start to think that moving really isn’t something we are interested in doing anymore.
We have clothing, sporting goods, vehicles, cookware, dishes, glasses, silverware, personal hygiene items, towels, shoes, outerwear, tools, small appliances, electronics, books, and so many additional items that have to placed into boxes, cartons, or other containers – many of them only after they are sufficiently wrapped and padded to cushion the trip and hopefully avoid injury to them.
Then, after we arrive at our new address, there are days of unpacking. We literally live out of boxes for several days, weeks, or months. Some people never fully unpack from a move before they are moving again. At the same time, there is putting everything away, organizing the space, and being to settle into a new normalcy. While this is a lot of work to go through, some people will overlook the challenges and make it happen for themselves.
Nevertheless, there is an alternative. For those of us who feel that we have made our last move and certainly don’t look forward to trying to sort, package, and put everything we own onto a truck to move to a new location, we get to forgo that and age in place where we are.
We have either selected our current home wisely so that it affords the comfort, accessibility, and maneuverability that we want and need, or we know that we can engage the services or aging in place professionals to help create and eliminate some of the deficiencies. Of course, we can just continue as is, even with shortcomings. We would hope, however, that people would elect to modify their homes – at least a little – to justify their wanting to remain in their homes and have them be safer than they are right now.