On conquering the material self

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The initial blush of excitement has faded.

In its place the question of “what have I gotten myself into” is answered only with a creeping chill of fear and dread. I’ve always thrown myself into the well headlong and waited to wonder what was at the bottom until I was halfway down. For a long time, being burned by that mentality has kept me from making such leaps of faith.

But I had to make one, and now reality is setting in. The slow, painful process of shedding your accumulated earthly belongings by choice is like molting off your identity. You know yourself by the things you choose to own, or want to own. When you let them go, in many ways you lose yourself. It’s disorienting and isn’t something to take lightly.

In essence, I am saying goodbye to Rachel, the homebody with her chickens and rabbits and gardens and passionate interests in agriculture and homey shit like cooking and putting up food and crochet. Adieu to the selectively social creature that loved to shop, go out for dinner or music, and loved her job behind the bar.

Keep in mind, I am trying to say goodbye to this person while simultaneously wrapping my brain around being the kind of person that lives in a 30-year old RV with her dog. I will not have a job for a while. I will not have a home aside from the one I will be driving.

Maybe the implications of this seem like they would be something I should have conquered emotionally before taking on the project…but would anyone take such a thing on if they thought it through first? I know myself well enough to know I wouldn’t have, because I have passed up opportunities such as this before. It’s really rather unreasonable on many levels and may even speak to some textbook case of mental illness to forsake everything you own, everyone you know, everything you love and run away to Mexico.

And yet, I know the fear is fleeting and I will box up these belongings and pack them away re-discover happiness in simplicity and minimalism. And I will certainly be a better, stronger person because of it.

When I was a child, I spake as a child, i understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. (1 Cor. 13:11 KJV)

Maybe this is what growing up feels like.

It’s about damn time.

One thought on “On conquering the material self

  1. It isn’t possible to process that change before you make it, so that’s a shoulda you can give yourself a break on.

    Like

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