I recently had an opportunity to write about what downsizing and moving to a new state feels like. And, yes, it sucks!

By Jacquelyn Kung

A few weeks ago, my husband came home and asked me (ahem, coerced me) to move to Dallas. To be closer to family, for security, and for a bunch more reasons.

It felt like I was 82-years-old and being told we’re moving into a community in another state to be closer to family, for security, and yadda yadda. 

My little world closed in. I mean, I have loved living in my little home for these many years. It doesn’t matter that the tiles are falling out in my bathroom or that my mail is piled like the Tower of Pisa on the corner of my desk. I’m part of the San Francisco fabric, and I even blog about this weird little community where we live, right?

So I gulped and saw it as an opportunity to write about what downsizing and moving to a new state feels like. This is what I’ve learned so far:

1. I constantly worry about who we’ll know, what we’ll eat, how we’ll live.

Does this sound familiar to anyone in sales and marketing in our sector? What has helped is spending as much time in my new community as possible. This past weekend, we walked and walked around our new community in Dallas. We sat in the nearby Starbucks and observed the new breed of people we will be around. What I didn’t see is the SF crowd: No thick beards rubbed with coconut oil, no Apple pay being waved around cash registers. Instead, this new breed of people that we will be around seem to be clean shaven and actually talk to you when you say hi. Ok, mirabile dictu, now I feel a teeny bit better. 

2. We have a move date and I see it as Armageddon.

A phalanx of movers, cleaners, and “who have you” will arrive on or immediately before our move date, and I will need to pay a lot of money. All hell may break loose. I do not like any of this prospect. Plus, compared to our home that we bought long ago, we will be paying more for our rental unit, even though it includes all utilities and amenities. (They say it will be cheaper, but I am good at math. Grrrr and I’m not so sure.) 

3. Downsizing involves figuring out what lotions and shampoos will be my go-forward companions.

Everyone says downsizing is hard. Well, duh, of course, it is. But what is killing me is looking at my 9-step Korean skincare routine, my mountain of device chargers, and my flossing kits gathered from dozens of dentist visits — and figuring out which items to pack and bring. Most things won’t fit into our new shower or bathroom or closet, all of which will be a lot smaller. (I know the skeptics on this Forum may read this and ask, aren’t you getting more space in Dallas compared to SF?) No, we’re actually moving to a much smaller space. But it does have a gym and common areas and five restaurants next door where we can go if we need extra space. (Doesn’t this sound like the way we advertise our assisted living apartments?)  It is a lot of LITTLE junk and a LOT OF LIFE to go through. I want to keep the memories, but we won’t have space.

If you have any tips for this 82-year-old whose family member has persuaded her to move out of her comfortable home, please leave your comment below.