Finally Moving Out? Here’s What You Need
Finally Moving Out? Here’s What You Need
There comes a point in life when change is inevitable. If you’re a typical African like me then you know that there automatically comes some stage in your life when you have to move out of your parents’ or guardian’s nest and start out on your own. Failed relationships and marriages are also a great recipe to start life afresh. We’ve heard of worse cases and its always best for either partner to decide or mutually agree with their spouse that the relationship is a wrap and each party involved take their separate ways.
I’m not well versed with marital matters, so I won’t dwell much on it but just wish all the courting / married people, me included, a very happy, prosperous and life-long relationships. For those whose boats are rocking or who’ve ended their relationships I’m sure you can pick a leaf or two regarding this topic.
I remember moving out of my parents’ house in the year 2013. It’s something that had been on my mind for so long, to a point of getting stressed since my peers were years into living alone, some even married. Peer pressure is real out here. It doesn’t only apply to teenagers, but you can attest that the pressure is part and parcel of life, regardless of your age. We know of the phrase “Keeping up with the Jones’”?
How does it feel deciding when and how long you’ll sleep for? How does ‘freedom’ taste like? Imagine being in ‘your own space’ and deciding who to let in. These are some of the thoughts that crossed the mind of a young man, and looking back now that I’m also and wiser, I can say that things will always seem impossible until you take the first step in fulfilling them.
No parent ever wants to let their child out of their sight. I should ask my mum how she felt about it because unlike her, my dad literally pleaded with me not to leave. He was like “Dadi unataka kuniua, kaa hapa kijana yangu” (Dadi you want to kill me, stay here with us, son). The first few months of moving out were tough emotionally. I was so used to my younger siblings noisily playing around the house with me there to bark commands “don’t touch that”, “wash your hands”, “stop fighting”, …
The biggest question that young people have in mind is what to buy, usually on a limited budget, when they move out and start living alone. It’s always best to buy items when you’re still at your parents’ or guardian’s house before moving out. Holding other factors constant, we assume you have enough space to store them, and they won’t end up being used before you start your new life.
The key is to make sure that when you move out, you start with the most basic stuff, before moving to buy luxuries. So, here’s the formula I used and would always recommend it to anyone starting out life as a loner.
First and foremost, assuming you’ve already paid the required rent and deposit (plus other charges depending on your tenancy agreement), you need to purchase a padlock for your main door, and curtains for your windows (and door) to ensure that whatever you’ll have in house is secured. Next, get a pen and paper, listing what you’ll need based on the following questions:
When I wake up in the morning, what will I need?
You’ll need to wake up from a mattress, blanket/ duvet (plus a bed and pillow with pillow-cases, beds switch, etc. if finances allow. Then you’ll need to go to the washroom, meaning that you need tissue paper, toothpaste and toothbrush, bath soap, towel, bathing rag, lotion, comb, shampoo, basins, etc. for you to take a bath.
Before stepping out of the house, you may need to comb my hair, apply make-up, check yourself in the mirror. You do need to take breakfast, meaning you must have a matchbox, stove/ gas cooker, a pot/ sufuria to prepare the tea, tea leaves / coffee / drinking chocolate. You will also need a sieve, fork, spoon, knife and at least two cups and two plates. I like starting out with pairs of essential items so as to accommodate the basics of any visitor in your house.
Next you may need to polish your shoes, meaning you’ll need shoe polish and shoe brush. Now you’re ready to leave for work / school. See you in the evening.
It’s Lunch time. What will I need?
Assuming that you need to carry packed lunch, which saves you time and money, you may need to purchase a lunchbox / hotpot or even recycle the tab you purchased your margarine or ice-cream in.
Back Home in the evening, what do I need?
When you get home, you need to take a seat for a few minutes before you start your evening routine. Do you have a table and chairs, or you’ll just sit on your bed / floor? Don’t worry, God will bless you with enviable seats in the next few months, hoping you work hard toward it.
Did you wash the utensils you used for breakfast or you prefer washing them before going to bed? I hope among your utensils is a small basin or rack to put your utensils in. By the way you also need jerrycans (and super drum) to store your water in. Will you need to cook ugali? Have yourself a mwiko (cooking stick). I hope you have items to clean your utensils too.
You just did a full 24hours since you started living by yourself. You can break into a happy dance, congratulations!
Stay at Home Weekends
It’s a Saturday or Sunday and there are things that must be done – general cleaning. Did you buy a mop, broom or rag to clean your house? Next you have to wash your clothes, you already have at least a basin, add pegs, clothing line, bar soap, detergents to the list. You may also need to iron them before wearing them next time.
That should cover the basics, let’s get just a little comfortable. You may need these:
- An extension cable for your electronics
- A backup torch in case there’s a blackout
- An electric kettle to warm your water
- A Bluetooth speaker for your music
Now that we’ve covered the basics, make a list of other things that you would want to have in your house. Is it a TV? Sofa set? Carpet? Cooking gas cylinder or music system? Write it somewhere and save it safely. Start saving and every time you have enough to buy something, go ahead and buy it, crossing it out from your list.