Change: Building a New Pyramid

The short story is that I’m moving from Boulder, Colorado to Eugene, Oregon at the end of this month. This did happen rather quickly….

My brother-in-law, who lives in Eugene, Oregon, was recovering from recent quadruple bypass and carotid artery surgery.  That, and other upcoming surgeries are a lot not only for him to go through, but of course for my sister, too. For a variety of reasons, it seemed right to move there to support her, well, both of them, in whatever way I could while they go through this.

I believe he had three near-death experiences before, during and after his surgery.

I’ve come to think something happens to you after a near death experience; something in you changes when that happens. I don’t usually talk or write about God, but I do think it’s like having a moment with your Maker, so to speak. And that can shift your perception of life, on things big and small, on a lot of things.

He had a perspective about this move of mine, prompted by his heart attack, that seemed to come from this “New Him.”  He said to me, “You’re building a new pyramid.”

At first I was inclined to ask what he meant, then I suddenly realized it made all the sense in the world.

Building a new pyramid has to start with building a brand new foundation. It seems that’s what’s happening with this move.

It certainly means CHANGE. It means changing EVERYTHING.

It’s daunting, exciting and overwhelming to move from my house just outside Boulder, Colorado, to Eugene, Oregon.

I’m observing the part of me that wants to pick up everything, every piece of life I have here, bring it with me and reconstruct the same life there.

In some ways, that’d be the easiest thing to do… fewer decisions about what to keep, what to store, give away, sell, throw away, etc.

This “going through everything” is overwhelming and at times makes my head spin! WHAT? Gone in less than a MONTH?! So many decisions. Everything is a decision.

And then I have a chuckle; it’s a personal joke, of course.

Picking up and packing everything is NOT “building a new pyramid.” It’s trying to rebuild the same pyramid!

So how willing and able am I to “let go?”

So many questions arise way beyond things like, “Have I worn it in the last 3 years?” “Will I ever read that book”, or “… “listen to that CD,” or “How many years has it been since using that special double boiler?”, the one really good for the Persimmon Bread Pudding even though I don’t eat bread anymore?

It’s as if I’ve allowed my books and music to define me. If you don’t really know me yet, and you come to my house, well, I can show you my bookshelves or music collection and you’ll know who I am!

We all know how silly that is, right?

The next joke on me is that I teach, coach and speak about change being easy, right? And here I am in the middle of a big change. Changing everything, it seems.

Sometimes it feels dauntingly difficult. And then I take a big breath in, remember I have help and support, feel the rightness of this, and recognize I really am living a blessed life.

I step into the flow of what’s next, what’s next . . . what’s next. And let the current take me.

What’s been YOUR experience of your “stuff” defining you?


I’d love to talk with you about building your new pyramid!
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17 thoughts on “Change: Building a New Pyramid”

  1. Hello Andrea, Your happiest smiles were in photos of your Siblings Visiting! It was my hope to visit you in your outskirts of Boulder Home, yet there may still be a serendipitous moment! Let me know if you need any help packing or loading a “Take It Away”. See you at the Oregon State Fair! Love, Kindly Kate

    1. Hi Kate,

      I had hoped for our visit, also. After the move, life got so busy…. how does that happen? And I never did get around to having a housewarming party! And yes, there will surely be serendipitous moments, including — yes, very likely at the Oregon Country Fair!!!

      And what a kind offer for packing and loading the “Take It Away” stuff . . . Gosh. I think I’ll take you up on that. It’ll have to be in the next two weeks though . . . Any chance?


    1. Great to hear from you, Nancy!

      I’ve been hearing about the Oregon Country Fair since forever . . . now that I’ll be living in the area, maybe I’ll go! Do you think you’ll go again?


  2. Going through a similar move, also for caregiving reasons. Best of luck to you, Andrea, in your new location and life. You’re a kind, caring person, and your family is so luck to have you. We all are. Remember to take time to care for yourself.

    1. Hi Suzanne . . .

      Oh my . . . Then you know what it’s like!!!! And where are you going?

      And yes, I’m doing my best to care for myself . . taking time to be with close friends I won’t see again for a while, doing things I love, like hiking in the mountains, biking and swimming . . .

      And let me reflect that back to you — remember to take time to care for yourself!
      Love, Andrea

  3. Dear Andrea,
    I wish you all the very best in your new adventure to Oregon. I grew up there-Medford, Ashland, Jacksonville. Collage in Corvallis. You can’t go wrong. Beautiful coastline!
    May your new life there be filled with blessings beyond your wildest imagination!

    1. Dear Lindell . . .

      Oh my . . . I had no idea you grew up in that area! Yes, it’s beautiful, isn’t it?
      I’m looking forward to the next adventure, though I will miss the Colorado sunshine!

      All best wishes to you, too!

  4. I also relocated during this past year, first from Los Angeles to Spokane WA, then to Flathead Valley MT to be closer to my daughter and 5 year old twin grandsons. Donating and giving away 40 years of stuff was exhausting and frightening even though I had 6 months to do so before our house sold and we hit the road. It was truly “a shedding of old skin” and an identity shift as well as a move from place to place. I read many books on downsizing and one I liked a lot was “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning” by Margareta Magnusson. The idea of downsizing before death so my daughter wouldn’t have to go through what I did when my own parents moved from a condo to a nursing home (they are now deceased) shifted my focus from hanging onto “terrific” stuff I had accumulated (but didn’t use or need) to what was really important to me — the people in my life. Moving from one state to another instead of just across town also made it much easier to let go. My husband can live well out of a suitcase but I cannot — or could not, as it is now easier for me to live and travel with less stuff than ever before. I have also become highly conscious about not accumulating more “new stuff” I don’t need or love. So I applaud your choice to build a NEW pyramid which reflects who you are now and who you are still becoming. Hang in there and enjoy each day of this transition — it does get easier, especially once you are settled in your new place. And you know that what’s most important in life, of course, is already inside of you!

    1. I love your comments, Barbara, and how you described your journey. I’ve seen and read many de-cluttering books, but hadn’t hear of “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning.” Even that title is very captivating. I have recognized a new disregard for acquiring anything new… Of course, this is before the move, though I’m hoping it’ll last after the move!

      Lightening my load will sure make everything easier afterwards, including travel and other future moves (?!!!).

      The most important thing, as you say, is acknowledging to myself who I am, without needing my books, music, clothes or shoes to acknowledge or show who I am! It sounds silly and even embarrassing to write or say these words, but hey, there’s a truth in them.

      Here’s to believing in uncluttered BE-ing-ness!

  5. Ah, Andrea! Thank you for your thoughts. I also have to relocate, to Oregon or Northern Ca. For better air. I am thinking about Medford- Ashland area but nothing is finalized yet. It is the letting go, getting rid-of that has been daunting. So your thoughts-comments are timely indeed. And I didn’t even know that you’d moved to Boulder. Much love, surely you could send a letter to the “women.” Sharon

    1. Dear Sharon,

      I had no idea you were looking for “better air!” Though I’m sorry to hear that, I’m delighted you’re thinking of Oregon as a possibility! Please come visit and check it out!!!!!

      And you’re right — I will write a letter to our “women!” A friend is coming over shortly to help pack — so afterwards!
      Good luck exploring possibilities — and let’s talk soon!
      Love, Andrea

  6. Andrea,
    Very lovely description of your process, very insightful. You’ll be more than welcome here, double boiler or not.

    1. Thank you, Duane! And — as you well know, you were very much a part of why this is happening! So glad to know I don’t need the double boiler to feel welcome!!!! See you soon . . .

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