I like moving. I like the feeling of renewal it brings, enjoy sorting all of my stuff, and am energized by new hair dressers and bank branches. Relocating makes me re-think my day-to-day, and that’s valuable.
JF, on the other hand, loathes moving with every fibre of his practical body. He hates it for the reasons I love it: change, challenge, newness. Packing boxes give him anxiety.
Though our opinions on moving are opposite, there is one thing we can agree on and that’s the beauty of settling into the post-move routine. For me, it’s a great reward for putting so much brain, heart and muscle energy into building a new life. For JF it’s “thank mother Mary, things are back to normal!”
We’ve been in our home for five months and I’m pretty sure we just hit our stride two weeks ago. It took us that long to find our mechanic, our pharmacy and our preferred routes to work. We’ve finally re-programmed our thermostat, de-coded all the buttons on our dryer, and met most of our neighbours. Our errand list has dwindled down to the usual get gas, get wine, get groceries.
But what I think really makes a routine a routine is that sense that there is a regular rhythm to the day. For me, it’s knowing that if I hit the snooze button at 7:02 a.m. I’ll get to work at 8:42 a.m.; putting my keys in the same bowl when I get home; having a favourite living room outlet to plug in my MacBook.
The only problem with routine, really, is that it breeds complacency – the reverse of that feeling you get when moving. There are hundreds of pathways to self-betterment, and they can all be obstructed by Netflix.
We have about a bazillion projects to tackle in this house – holes to patch, walls to paint, trim to fix – but I notice them less and less. We know we want to re-finish our floors, replace some electrical, and blow the second floor bathroom to smithereens, but does any of that have to happen while there are still fresh episodes of Star Trek to watch?
I guess as long as I don’t wake up in 30 years and think: “that closet door has been broken since we moved in,” I’ll be alright. Perhaps we’ll move before then – toss the pieces of our lives up in the air and try to catch them again, or see where they land.