I’m still mulling over our time together, but I’m sure I will be for years to come. A year ago we were just getting to know each other from the heights of Mount Washington to the depths of the snowbanks on the sidewalk. Google and Facebook remind me daily of all the new places I visited, people I met, and experiences I will cherish for a lifetime. Never underestimate the fullness of a year.
Leaving isn’t easy, even when you choose it. I’ve grown fond of Boston’s constant hum and the freedom I’ve had to work through some of the hard parts of me. I’ve learned to be okay sitting at dinner alone or going to a show by myself. I never felt unsafe, but somehow incredibly held by all the tall buildings and the bustle of the city. Work was never a party full of glitter bombs and champagne with gilded edges and the perfect golden-hour light, but it wasn’t terrible either. We laughed a lot, even in the midst of the chaos, and my office window was incredible. There are friends there I will hate to miss seeing everyday and new friends I will miss getting to know.
I spent a lot of time thinking and reading (and listening to new music) on my 17 hour drive to Kentucky (to see Liz). I finished Julie Andrews’s first autobiography, Home, which chronicles her life from birth to the start of Mary Poppins. Besides the most endearing details of our Dame Julie, it contained the most delicately woven web of what home really means. Most of my adult life has been filled with these ideas of home – longing for a place I can’t quite pin down, buying heavy furniture in an effort to create it, and learning that it’s wherever I’m with you. Home is where and what and who you make it. In all this, I realized I don’t necessarily want to be in a place I call home as much as I want to be home for someone else – the one whose door is always open, who is never too far away, who will come running. Loyal, loving, present, always up for a celebration or picking up the pieces when things fall apart.
I’ve been asked countless times in the last few days if I made the right decision – leaving a job that pays well in a big city for a bit of an unknown future. I could spend my life in a world of what-ifs over this. There will always be things I’m missing out on – in Boston, in Rome, in Atlanta, in Africa, in all the places that hold a piece of my heart. Time doesn’t slow down for us to change our minds. We keep living and growing. The fact is, the decision has been made, the risk taken; there’s no time for second-guessing or regretting. This move is right because it happened and I get to move forward with another adventure, another season of learning who I am and how I fit in to this big-Boss plan of a world. I chose this move., the first since I set my sights on the hills of Georgia (ol’ Berry, tried and true). This wasn’t a fleeting decision or an action taken out of necessity and that feels so much different. More than almost anything, I’m excited to be back in the South where biscuits and pimento cheese can be found in a flash and it’s just a smidge too warm for feet of snow.
In the words of Barbara Brown Taylor, here’s a few things that are saving my life right now:
- All my friends with spare bedrooms
- Flat-rate boxes from USPS for mailing books