Friday, February 24, 2012

Confession: I Cannot Pack Lightly To Save My Life

I wish I was the sort of woman who has a talent for packing lightly.  You know who I'm talking about.  The sort of woman who packs a scarf, a dress, and a pair of capri pants and looks MAGNIFICANT during a two week European vacation.  It's as if she packed Magic Clothes that are perfect for every occassion in every climate.

But I am not that sort of woman.  I am the sort of woman who packs way too much.  For a two night trip, I'll pack eight outfits, convinced that if I pack less, the trip will be ruined. 

Last week, Nathan and I went to Las Vegas and Phoenix, and once again, I packed way too much.  For example, I brought a dress and high heels just in case I wanted to dress up for dinner - even though, I secretly knew I would just wear pants and flats at night to stay warm and comfortable.  Other items I packed but never used: a Southwest guidebook; bathing suit; flip-flops; a rain jacket; and several sweaters and t-shirts. 

Before a trip, I always tell myself that this time, I am going to streamline my packing list and only bring the bare essentials.  And every time, I fail.  Spectacularly.  But last week, even I was impressed by my ability to pack too much.

When we arrived at the Bellagio, Nathan offered to wheel my suitcase to our hotel room.  His suitcase weighed about 10 pounds (including the weight of the suitcase itself).  My suitcase weighed at least 60 pounds.

But I insisted upon wheeling my own suitcase.  If I had packed it, then I could haul it up to the room.

The next day, my chest/shoulder area hurt.  For several hours, I thought I had heartburn from eating rich food at the Paris breakfast buffet.  Then I realized the truth: I was just really, really, really freaking sore from pulling my too-heavy suitcase the day before.

Seriously?  It was a four night trip!  How did I manage to pack so much crap that I actually injured my shoulder?  And I wasn't just a little sore.  My shoulder hurt so badly, I could not carry a purse.  When I went to bed that night, I had to creatively layer several pillows to prop my body up into a comfortable position.  The next day, I was a little better, but I still had to take Advil to numb the pain.

I need professional help.  Can anyone recommend a good Packing Consultant?  Or maybe a trained Overpacking Therapist?  I need to learn how to pack lightly or next time, I might pull my arm out of its socket.