From The Windy City to The Pacific O!
I believe that in life, we go through several periods of transition in which we shift from the end of one journey to the beginning of another. Transitions can come with what is known as growing pains as it is human nature to grasp to what we hold familiar. Change can be uncomfortable and resistance of the unfamiliar can create even more difficulty as one is transitioning. This can be the case for changing jobs, a change in relationship status, losing or changing possession of a physical belonging, and many alternatives. Encountering and undergoing change is different for each individual and the most daunting part of transitioning through a change can sometimes be the fear of not knowing what’s on the other side of the door.
As for myself, the year 2018 has brought about quite a bit of change which began with the end of a three year romantic relationship. This meant moving out of my home, and turning my entire world upside down. Shortly after, I decided that it was time for a change of pace and environment. After months of thought and research, I’d decided to leave Chicago behind and to move to Southern California (SoCal). This was a big decision which was not an easy one to make, however I felt that I’d hit a plateau in the growth I would undergo in Chicago. It was time to move forward and tackle a new beginning. From the outside, I appeared fearless to my friends and family, however this was one of the most terrifying decisions in which I’d made for myself. While I was sure a fresh start was what I needed, this change proved to be both formidable and difficult to plan. Nonetheless, I found a roommate who was in a similar place in life, we found an apartment, I packed my car with as many of my possessions as I could, and I took to the road for roughly thirty-three (33) hours.
Flashing forward to the Holiday season, I’d begun to feel a bit lonely and homesick, being in an area which is still unfamiliar; where I have a limited support system and few friends. Working in the travel industry, I am no stranger to not being with loved ones during the Holiday Season, however this time felt different. I have a hand full of friends here in SoCal, however they were all away with family and I found myself home alone on Thanksgiving day. I was initially supposed to be with a friend but those plans canceled and my immediate response was to rush to the grocery store and prepare myself a meal. I texted my roomate, who was away with family, and told her the news about my canceled Holiday plans and she told me that her friend (who I’d met twice) was also home alone. My roommate linked the two of us together which resulted in she and I preparing a non-traditional thanksgiving supper while talking and laughing the night away.
While this was not how I’d planned on spending the Holiday, I quickly realized that this change was a good change. Not only had I challenged myself to be okay with the idea of being alone (and away from family and friends), but I‘d made an unlikely friend in the process.
This year has shown me many changes and while I’ve met the multitude of change and new beginnings with some fear, this experience has reminded me that change is not a bag thing. Change challenges us to grow and to release the ideas and romantizations we may have created in regards to what we hold familiar. I am not sure what else this transition may bring my way, however I am open to the lack familiar grounds and I embrace what this transition is creating within my life. To conclude, I will quote author and inspirational speaker / content creator Dreana Johnson; “Trust the journey, embrace the growth” (Dreana Johnson, 2018). This quote has not only helped me to embrace all that is coming my way, it has reminded me that we are all ever-changing souls doing the best we can through our transitions.