Now that I’m in rotation 2 of 3, obviously I’m a seasoned veteran.
But, one thing I’ve learned is moving is a predictable ebb and flow sort of process. The first month in a new place is marked by that saccharine feeling of everything being new. The gym, the job, the chick-fila down the street (wait, is that just me?)—all of those things are awesome just because they’re new.
Around the second month is when reality (also known as homesickness) sets in. This is the time when it goes from “Everything here is awesome!” to “Oh, wait…I actually have to make a life here for the next seven months.” What’s interesting now, however, is that I don’t actually miss home (as in Maryland). In fact, that seems sort of like a foreign concept. Now, I miss the East Coast. Fast pace. Rude people. All of that.
So, last night as I drowned my nostalgic sorrows in buffalo wings and breadsticks courtesy of Pizza Hut, I realized this journey often times leaves us without any touch points. I’m now in a place where I don’t necessarily fit in, yet I now feel so disconnected from a lot of the people and places I grew up with. (I ended that sentence with a preposition. But, I’m not sure how else to end it. Oops.)
In some ways, moving is like love. Only the people actually experiencing it know what the hell is going on. They can describe it to others and other people will punctuate those descriptions with smiles or frowns or questions. But, ultimately, only the people living through the experience will know and understand fully the triumphs and challenges associated with it.
So, I’m kind of an emotional (and physical) nomad, plopped down somewhere and left to sift through the pieces myself. I guess I have to become my own touch point.
One of the quotes I live by is something I stumbled upon a year ago on the cusp of college graduation while reading Ellyn Spragins, “What I Know Now About Success: Letters from Extraordinary Women to Their Younger Selves.” It’s the letter author Suzy Welch writes to herself at age 23 as a reporter for the Miami Herald.
“Look, every journey—every daring leap we make—has its tough patches. Its hours of loneliness, its days and nights of doubts. Every journey takes you outside your comfort zone and away from what is familiar—if it is a journey worth taking.”