Sometimes I lie to myself and spin wishful falsehoods about how adventurous I am. I say, Given the chance, I would love to move to Europe or Asia and live for a few years outside the country. I lived in Belgium for a few years as a child since my dad was in the Army, and it completely opened my world.
But for the most part, I am a scared little rabbit. Moving frequently in my childhood birthed a hatred for impermanence. I made friends slowly. And lost them quickly, it seemed, when either their family or mine was reassigned elsewhere across the world. I hated the change of weather, of schools, of people, of myself.
I clutch people and places closely to me because I have never quite shaken the feeling that it’s just a matter of time before I lose them forever. I love the idea of having roots and watching a city grow older with you.
However, I am beginning to wonder if this penchant for treasuring what I love is hindering me from reaching beyond to experience new things. My husband graduates from his PhD program next year and we have been talking seriously about what our future will look like. We are excited; most of our marriage has seen him in grad school and it will be a welcome change.
Oh, change. I find myself grappling with the idea of us moving. I am alternately terrified and intrigued. I moved to Atlanta the day after my own graduation in 2007. It was my decision to move here and my then-boyfriend joined me. The city hasn’t disappointed me yet. My Instagram feed will demonstrate that I love living here for the diversity, the friendly weather, and because Atlanta always has something new discover.
As a child, I moved because I had no choice: you go where the parents do. This time, I am the parent, the wife, the woman wondering how her life will transform if she packs it up and starts anew.
We’re considering California, Tennessee, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas, Florida, Georgia or anywhere he lands a promising position. In my heart, I wonder if I will ever find another city to enchant me like the A. But I also wonder if I am draping my love for location over myself like a security blanket and suffocating the opportunity to be adventurous.
One thing is for sure. There may be little harm in my dislike for the tedium of moving. But I will be vigilant to ensure it does not turn into a dangerous fear of moving on when it’s time to go.
What state are you from or have you moved to? How do you feel about moving to new cities? I welcome any words of wisdom!