I remember exactly what I was doing on this day in 2014, because I had just arrived in Seattle after having driven all the way across the country from Florida. I was in a weird place mentally. I was excited about my future. I was shocked that I had actually pulled this relocation off. And I was also scared shitless.
I knew nothing about Seattle. I knew no one. I was about to start a new job and move into a place that I had rented sight unseen. Were the butterflies in my stomach a sign that I was anxiously anticipating a brighter future, or were they fighting to get out because I had just pulled the biggest bonehead move in a life that has been, to be painfully honest, chock full of bonehead moves? It could go either way.
At one point during that day I was lying on the grass in a park with my dogs. I remember feeling kind of weird because for the first time in about a week I wasn’t zooming down a highway. I had come to a complete stop. I was tired. But I felt safe. I could breathe. I liked where I was. I now pass that park every day on the way to work. I sort of wave at the memory of myself when I do.
At the same time, though, I felt a little removed from all the people around me. A stranger in a strange land. The climate, the terrain, the vibe… it all felt like I was in a foreign country. As much as I love to travel, I’m usually longing for home at a certain point. Would that happen this time? It was a moot point, because there was no turning back. That’s a rather terrifying concept.
In truth, it took me a long, long time to stop feeling strange. Some days I coped with that better than others. But I’ve begun to make friends. Romance has eluded me, but I’m starting not to really care, most of the time.
Fast forward a year. While running a bunch of errands, I suddenly realized that I hadn’t even bothered to turn on my GPS. When did that happen? And I was getting tired, and looking forward to going home. Home. Where I live now. I’m home.
So maybe it wasn’t such a bonehead move after all. Would I do it over again? I wish I had done it 30 years sooner!
There’s no place like home.