Monday, September 23, 2013

Still getting schooled

When you’re 18 all you want is to get the hell out of where you’re from. Or at least that was all I wanted. So I did just that. I went to college in the most distinctly different place I could think of. I wanted to live somewhere sunny all the time. I wanted to go to a city where NO ONE knew me. I wanted to wipe the slate clean and start my “adult life” without the ties to my past...and I landed in Arizona the summer of 2002.

It’s now the beginning of fall of 2013 and I’ve just loaded up my car to make the drive back to Seattle; that place I said, as fiery 18-year old that I would NEVER go back to. And here we are. 11 years. A lot happens in 11 years.

I graduated from that program I went to school for. I started down the path of my career and worked in arguable the best firms in the state. I fell in love. I bought a condo. I travelled to Europe and Asia and Latin America multiple times. I started hiking. I started camping. I fell in love with the snow and started snowboarding. I discovered yoga…and in that my passion. I started to teach. I made friends. I lost friends to time, to distance, to the peculiarities of life. The economy tanked. I lost my house. I quit my job. I packed my bags and went on an epic journey of self-discovery. I came back to the desert with the intention of getting married, building a family, starting the next big chapter in life. Life had another plan and I was pushed out of love. It hurt like hell. I wondered why I was still here. It felt like there was nothing here for me anymore. No school, no job, no home, no love…and after months of trying to piece together a life that resembled fulfilling, I started to explore some other alternatives.

So 11 years later, my best chance to start over isn’t somewhere new. It’s oddly enough, back to my roots. It’s a different city now than the one I left behind. I’ve done more visiting in the last few months than I had in years, and to my surprise I liked it. The culture has morphed, the population has grown and the skyline even has evolved. But it still smells like the Sound, and its cloaked in green, and I navigate the streets as if nothing ever changed.  I have a handful of friends excited about my return and family tucked in the wings if I need help. The prospect of direction, the sense of “home” I’ve missed for so long, the energy of hitting reset is promising.

As a fiery 29 year old, I’m wanting to go to a city were a few people know me. Where I get to wipe the slate cleanish and start my “adult life” maybe for real this time, with only good ties to my past. I’m optimistic about starting a new job that leaves me fulfilled. I’m excited deepening my love of the hobbies and passions I found in the desert and re-learning them in this place. I’m hopeful about finding new love, real love, and this time building a home and building a family with a partner who loves without reservations. I’m happy to invest in friends that have stayed connected with me during my long boomerang of a journey.

And just like that a chapter closes. And just like that the next one opens. I honestly can’t wait to see what’s in store. Luckily I won’t have to wait long…that much I’ve learned. But whatever it is, I’m as ready as ever.

So long Phoenix. It's been real.

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