That’s the amount of time left before I trade in my beach towel and burritos for spray tans and fist pumps.
Yup, that’s right. I’m moving back east (in case you missed my constant, almost-to-the-point-of-annoying stream of social media posts). After 10 years of bouncing around the country (first to Boston, then San Diego, then San Francisco, then internationally to London, and finally back to San Francisco), I’ll be reconnecting with my roots in the tri-state area. And I’m pretty damn excited, just as I’ve been excited for all my previous moves.
While packing up everything I own and relocating is nothing new to me, I STILL (even after 10 years) get the same responses from people. Typically, I’ll retort with something snarky like “Yes, I’m running away from you,” then shrug it off and move on, but now that I’ve finally finished packing and have nothing to do, I’ll address these once and for all.
1. What are you running away from?
This is probably the most confusing, yet most frequent, thing that I get asked. For some reason, there’s a common misconception out there that if you move (or even travel) often, you must be running away from something distressing or depressing in your real life.
Let me tell you how completely absurd that notion is. If anything, both moving and traveling has enriched my life, has even strengthened my relationships with family and friends, and helped me grow into the person I am today. It’s forced me get out of my comfort zone, challenging me to overcome the social anxiety I spent my entire childhood battling (Would you believe that I was an anti-social, rarely-speaking nerd all the way up until I graduated high school?)
So it’s funny to me when people say that I’m “trying to escape real life.” In my eyes, I’m not escaping anything, I’m just growing.
I mean, what is “real life” anyways? Is it a mundane 9-5 job, settling down in an uninteresting relationship, and going to the same clubs every weekend? If so, then FUCK YES, maybe I am trying to escape that life. While other people can be content doing that day in and day out, I’ve always felt that there’s so much more the world has to offer.
2. Oh, you’re like Julia Roberts in “Eat, Pray, Love”!
Ever see the movie “Eat, Pray, Love”? I haven’t, but this is apparently the plotline: Julia Roberts seemingly has all her shit together but then suddenly realizes her shit is actually all over the fucking place. So, in an effort to figure out the meaning of life, she embarks on this super cliché quest for self-discovery.
Cute story. And inspiring to those that feel lost in life (which everyone more or less feels at some point). Don’t get me wrong—I’ve had my fair share of soul-searching trips, but not every single of them is an “Eat, Pray, Love” moment.
Just because I’m embarking on a whole new (possibly life-changing) adventure, It doesn’t mean that I’m lost or confused or that I don’t know who I am.
In fact, I’ve never felt more confident and sure of who I am and what I want out of life. I’m taking this move as an opportunity to grow and build upon the solid base that I’ve spent nearly 30 years constructing, deconstructing, and reconstructing. It’s NOT to pick up and piece together broken pieces, as some people have automatically assumed.
3. All this moving and traveling probably means you have no stability. Don’t you want stability?
The most surprising thing about moving is how much stability it actually brings to your life. Hold up right there! WTF are you talking about? Hear me out: When you live in one place forever, you basically live a bubble. Everything seems stable, but once that bubble pops, your life is basically fucked.
Moving has taught me to adapt to my surroundings, thrive in new places, and hold on tighter to the things that really matter. With time, it’s allowed me to build a wall against the aforementioned, unexpected life fucking. Trials & tribulations? Bring it on, bitch. I’m ready for you.