My best friend walked into my room the other day, looked around and asked, “So, is most of your stuff packed?” (My mom and I are moving into a smaller place.) Her voice echoed off my walls, a sound I’ve grown accustomed to since drastically emptying out my room.
“Nope.” I took a look around myself at the bare walls and lack of furniture that she was referring to. “This is everything I own.”
While I take a lot of pride in this, and even still believe I could get rid of even more, I find people respond to that announcement with less enthusiasm than I feel about saying it. I always thought it would be so cool to own nearly nothing and to be freed of clutter, but other people seem to feel differently. Whenever I tell someone that I could fit everything I own in one room, their response always seems slightly confused, as if they can’t understand why I wouldn’t want more stuff. I can’t tell if they’re confused about why I chose to do what I’ve done, or if they’re trying to imagine themselves getting rid of so much stuff.
I’ve been looking at apartments a lot lately and pricing out studios. A few years ago, the idea of a studio was appalling to me. Why would anyone want to live in one giant room, and where would they put everything? Now, I can only hope that I will be able to find a studio for the few items I do own and keep it as empty as possible.
It occurred to me that people will walk into my apartment–should it pan out the way I hope–and think that I must be poor to live in such a small space with so little. In our society, small living areas and few things imply a lack of money and opportunity. However, I’m hoping it will be just the opposite: that living in a tiny apartment with few things will allow me to save money by not paying for space I don’t need, by needing to use less electricity, and by decorating as minimalistically as possible.