Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Who says you can't go home?


That's about the only way to describe heading back home & leaving behind 4 months of friends, memories, and an invaluable experience on Hilton Head Island.  I was proud of myself for not crying when I left work on Friday or even when I said goodbye to the girls.  I don't like goodbyes (I feel as if that's so cliche -- does anybody like goodbyes?) and it's no secret that I am not an outwardly emotional person, so I tried to keep things as light as possible.  Unfortunately, the second I hit I-95, I turned into a great big baby and more or less cried the entire way home.  When it's just you, the road, and the radio, you're more or less stuck with your thoughts & forced to face your feelings.  I think I felt just about every emotion possible in that 4 hour drive back to the upstate.

Sad and scared to leave my bubble.
Excited to see my family.
Terrified of what's to come.
Anxious over the uncertainty.
Grateful for the experience.

It was a very contemplative and melancholy drive, thinking about how drastically different my life is now compared to what it was the first time I made that 4 hour drive.  It's amazing how much can change in such a short period of time when you're open to the idea of change and willing to accept that you're not in control.  I returned home a different person, and for everyone who had a hand in that over the past few months, I am eternally grateful.

To be honest, going back home was the last thing I wanted to do.  I was bitter about it & not looking forward to it at all.  I have essentially burned every bridge here and feel as if I've completely outgrown the small town life.  The hardest part is coming home to something so familiar after everything has changed.  Home isn't the same as when I left it, but then again, neither am I.  Surprisingly, it's been a blessing in disguise.  I'm already more relaxed and less stressed.  Life is slower here.  I have time to catch up on things that got away from me.  Time to enjoy being with my family and watch my nephews play ball.  Time to enjoy the beauty of the foothills.  Yesterday, Roxy and I hiked some nature trails and enjoyed a nice ride around the lake and our farm.  It was so amazing.  I definitely took for granted how beautiful it is up here and how nice it is to just slow down and enjoy every minute of every day.  Roxy definitely enjoys the great outdoors -- take a look for yourself and tell me she doesn't look like she'd make a great farm dog!

Reunited! So glad my little lady remembered me.
Just another beautiful day on the farm.  I forgot how truly amazing life is here.
Roxy exploring the barn.
She definitely has a future in farm work.
Driving away from the island made me realize more than ever how truly happy I am at this point in my life, despite the overwhelming uncertainty of my next step.  I don't know where I'm going or what's coming my way, but I'm ready for whatever it is.  Now is my time.  I've been hearing a lot of "I hope you find whatever it is you're looking for."  What people don't understand is that I'm looking for me and I'm having a blast doing it so far.  What better time to continue to discover myself than at this pivotal point in my life?  Stay tuned -- when I find her, you'll know.

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