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  • Kristie Stephens

5 things I learned from moving away from my hometown

Hey super cool pals!

Recently I'd been reflecting on things I wish I had known before I moved from Michigan to Tennessee a year ago! Super crazy to think a year ago I was like yeah lets move! Its been less than easy but I would do it again in a heartbeat I've learned so much and met so many amazing people here.

One: out of sight out of mind

If any lesson I'm going to write about today was the hardest it was 100 percent this one! Before I write this and anyone thinks its a negative thing it completely isn't, I learned I had friends that I had referenced as best friends and in all honesty they were very good friends, but once I wasn't physically there anymore, life changed. Not in a bad way but they didn't reach out and these are people I saw daily when I lived in Michigan. It took a while to realize I had done nothing wrong and either had they, but our friendship was great ( I still talk to them and have them in my life as well.) but it wasn't a best friend type of friendship once I wasn't around anymore our friendship wasn't as strong as I had thought it was and it just became apparent to me some friendships are based on how frequently someone can see you, while others are based on the actual content of a friendship.

Two: You can fly for miles and people won't move an inch

I'd take three days off work, get up super early uber to the airport get on a plane uber to my parents house, and I'd let friends know I was in town and friends would come pick me up and others would make it sound like the end of the world they had to drive 5 minutes to see me after work. Then there are others that have work later and will come out to breakfast early before work, so everyone is different but over time you will defiantly see a pattern.

Three: You'll miss big events and small ones that you don't realize are so important as well

In December I happened to be home and I got to see my younger sister's dance recital it was such a fun time! We went out to eat after and it was so heartwarming to see her so happy. Some events line up that I come home for, and others just don't. I missed Mother's Day this year, it was hard going to work and hearing all my co-workers family dinner plans or customers asking my plans and just smiling and expressing we'd catch up later on. Being here chasing my dream is so rewarding but its also just as deflating sometimes. I miss dance recitals and have to try twice as hard to keep my relationships alive and flourishing, When I was home I took a lot for granted going to the grocery store, getting gas with my parents and going to a dinner event they had. I wasn't always thrilled to do those things, but now man if my Dad asked me to go to the store with him I now everytime I'm home jump at the chance.

Four: People will question and try to make you regret leaving

For the most part people in my life are overly supportive and of course why wouldn't they be? I guess the better question is why would you have people close to you that didn't support you. So when I'm in a conversation with friends or family and there are people I've met once or twice that express how much easier my life would be if I stayed home and pursued nursing. Better yet, people that explain how amazing Michigan and my family is and why I left they can't understand how someone can love their family so much but not want to be close to them. People who question you will happen in your life and its best to validate their fears and worries and stay in your lane doing what makes you happy

Five: You will grow into a stronger person

You know when you were a kid and there was a tornado warning and you could go under the basement steps and cuddle up with your mom? Somehow she made everything seem perfect. Now your 25 and there are multiple tornado warnings a week and you have to reassure yourself and your cat everything will be okay. You become your own voice of reason a lot, which to me was a scary thought at took a long time to come to terms with you don't always have to seek validation from anyone else. It's plenty okay to just be okay with your own thoughts and not want others opinions. I still call my parents nightly and ask them how much water to use for certain rciepies and talk budgets with my dad, and life with my mom I feel lucky they let me rant about whatever is on my mind that day. The fact still stands that you are pretty alone in this new city, You have to go shopping alone and do things alone and thats okay and you'll feel torn between trying to grow your roots at home and trying to plant seeds in your current town. You'll have hard days where you feel alone and no one is around to get an iced coffee with, or you have no one to watch Sweet Home Alabama for the millionth time with.

In time you will, you will become your own best friend and that is such an undervalued trait that when you do find friends or hobbies knowing who you are in this world is such a powerful tool.