Even though it only involves shifting from Hayes Valley to the Inner Richmond (a mere, two-mile journey), it's still a really big move for me. For one, I'm moving in with someone, as in "we're moving in together," so that's a big deal. For another, my tiny studio has been my home for longer than any other place I've ever lived.
I moved into this apartment nearly six years ago when a relationship ended. It was, in fact, someone I was living with. So the next risk is not at all lost on me. That failed relationship eventually healed into a friendship I'm grateful to have, but the first year was just plain ugly. My neighbors probably thought I had some kind of wailing disease. With supportive friends and time passing, I was eventually able to stop thinking of my apartment as that place I went to at the end of the day to feel bad about myself. And I started to invest some actual energy into decorating it, and making it my own. I'd never lived by myself before, but I've always been an introvert, and it slowly became a sort of introvert paradise for me.
So, while I'm thrilled for the next chapter in life and the challenges and joy it will bring, it feels very important to honor what my apartment has meant to me in order to let it go. So I made a photo album of all my favorite elements: