This started as a ramble without much thought in the beginning and turned into a very long blog post that may be helpful for others trying to make a life decision. I was going to leave this in my drafts because it is a bit more personal but decided last minute to share it. Let me know if you like posts like these on the blog.
Now that plans are a finalized and our house is boxed up, I guess it is time to share on the blog that my parents have sold our house in New Jersey and are moving to North Carolina at the end of July. This has been a plan for many years, but somehow with my move to Philly in April and just seeing what would happen if we put our house up for sale, everything kind of fell into place. Very quickly I might add. For the last year or so, my parents and I have traveled the South trying to find the perfect little town for my parents to retire to. We would find a perfect house in their budget, but there was nothing else in the neighborhood to keep them busy with all this new free time. There would be this perfect town that had everything they were looking for, but the house prices were too high limiting their quality of retirement life. There was a trip a few months ago that my parents took back in January to drive around towns in North Carolina that I couldn’t go to because of work. Just two days into their trip, I got the call that they found the perfect town and it had dozens of perfect houses. My parents finally settled on the perfect Southern home that has everything my mom loves about a home and my dad is in love with the backyard.
So now I have been driving to New Jersey every weekend this month to help them pack up the house and finish sorting through my life belongings deciding what to take to Philly, what to send to North Carolina and throw out the rest. I love coming back home because it feels like I never left in some ways. It still hasn’t hit me that come August, I will have no reason to ever visit the little town I grew up in again. I have been taking time to just appreciate sitting in my backyard or taking a walk through town. In just a few weeks, I will no longer be a local but be a tourist instead and that is difficult to accept.
On Sunday, I had plans to hang out with friends but decided to stay at the house a little bit longer. I kept saying I would pack up one more box to put off driving back to Philly. I think it is starting to hit me that the house I grew up in the last 15 years is no longer going to be in my life. For years, I dreamed about having my own apartment and I am so happy with the decisions I made a few months ago. But on Sunday, I just wanted a few more hours sitting in our tv room on the couch eating chips and salsa with my parents talking in the other room. In the next month or so, there are going to be a lot of changes for my family and I with this big move. Right now, my parents are just an hour or so drive away and soon they will be six hours or a short flight away. We are not really talking about how things will change in the next few months, but we have dates set where we will visit each other already scheduled.
Would I make the decision to move to Philly instead of going with my parents to North Carolina again?
The answer to that is that no answer is wrong because both of them would have turned out okay. I knew that if I moved with my parents to North Carolina that I could live with them rent free, get a job or go back to school and build up my finances for a bit longer. That was the safe choice. The decision I made was the scary, expensive one moving to a new city, starting a new job and learning how to be on my own. My dad and I actually spent a lot of time talking about my options. Of course, I would be welcomed to their new house in North Carolina and I would be taken care of financially. However, life starts when you start making the scary decisions and learning to be on your own. In March, I had zero responsibilities and could do anything in my life. I had the savings to move somewhere and start new. So that is what I did… I chose the scary, unknown route and it has turned out to be a learning experience, difficult at times, and simply wonderful at the same time.
My gut told me to just do it…
Before moving, my life had become very repetitive because all I did was work and schedule everything else in my life around work. Now I loved my job a lot, but I wanted more out of my life besides work. I knew deep down that I needed change. I am reminded every day when I walk into my apartment after work how lucky and brave I am. For years, I wanted my own Pinterest worthy apartment and after some hard work and taking a big risk, it worked out! My favorite thing to do is to sit on my couch at night and watch something on my Apple TV. I am reminded that this gorgeous apartment is mine and I am sitting on my couch and watching tv in my apartment. Seems silly, but I still have a hard time accepting that this is apartment is all mine. When I get ready for bed at night and turn off the lights, I go to bed happy so happy I made this decision.
The next step…
I was a workaholic the last three years often working 7 days a week between two jobs or finding other ways to keep me busy. I often felt that everyone was out there living their life and my phone rarely rang with a “let’s go do something text”. I didn’t have a group of girlfriends or any hobbies outside of work. Throughout my whole life, I always felt like the plus one and was rarely invited to things. Right now I have the apartment in the city, I have the job, and the next step is finding my place in it. I am focusing on trying to find lifelong friends that I can go out in Philly with and create those memories. My dating life isn’t that much of a priority, but I am “practicing how to date” as my mother would say and have tried a first few dates. Emphasis on first dates because clearly, that part of my life is going nowhere! I want my twenties to be memorable so the next few months are going to be focused on the next step. Working on self-improvement and trying to take advantage of everything life has to offer.