2009 was a crazy year for me. My life changed dramatically. My parents divorced after 32 years, the economy fell apart (In Michigan it was effected extremely at the time), and I had no plans of what I was going to do after I finished LISC- AmeriCorps (Happy 20th Anniversary today by the way). The whole year was pretty painful for me. I didn't which side was up or down. I knew I had to find a job outside the state so i decided on Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. I applied for a bunch of jobs. I had two different jobs call me for interviews. The first one that called, I booked a flight and went down. I didn't know what I was doing, where I was going, or where I really was. I flew to Raleigh and drove this endless drive to Hertford (Which I thought was the end of the world). I got hired and had to start in September.
My last month in Michigan was difficult. I was living in my parents house while they were trying to sell it. The Realtor was a complete Bitch and both my parents were fighting over why the house wouldn't sell (It was clearly the economy). I was blamed for a dirty house and would get calls from both my parents since they couldn't communicate CLEARLY. If you ever want to be in the worst position you could for your family, go live with your parents while they are divorcing. It only made me stronger though. I also knew that September would be rolling around and I would have to leave my childhood home forever, my friends, my hometown and all the great memories I had. I also realized i was going to be moving 14 hours away from everything I knew. I also was letting go of the last good memories I had of my family complete (I always thought it was so hard to leave, especially leaving my big brother since he had a young daughter without any of his family around). It's probably one of the weirdest things to ever do being the last person to say good bye to your house. It was really eerie walking the rooms remembering when we first looked at the house when I was 13 and picking the bedroom in the basement. That house I had a lot of firsts. More then I can even share publicly. But most of all I grew up in that house. I had my graduation parties (HS to Grad School), prom, homecoming, first GF, everything).
Another tough part in life is knowing when things change and seeing who is there to help. I learned real quick who were my real friends and family were. Nobody in my family helped me move. It was pretty disappointing since I was always there for my family to help them. But at least I had some really good friends who helped me pack dishes, the u-haul, my car, everything. I literally packed everything I had which included snow skis, shit my parents left behind and all kinds of things. I also had some really good friends to enjoy my last week of life in Michigan. I got to go to one more Tigers game, enjoyed my last night out with friends, and I spent some time with my brother and niece.
Nobody can ever understand what it is really like to drop everything you know for something completely foreign without any assistance or support. I remember the morning I left and it was really terrible. I remember one of my close friends, +Nicole Klepadlo made me a CD full of Ryan Adams. I loved the CD but it was terribly depressing for my drive out of the D. LOL. It was so sad leaving my hometown, pulling out of my subdivision, driving past my high school, the D, and crossing the border to Ohio. Nobody can really tell you how that is and I don't know if I am even verbalizing how had it was. But it was. But I had nothing left in Michigan. I only had a clean slate for my future. I had a job that I wanted really bad (Best thing you can have) and I had nothing to stop me from starting a new life.
Now, I can probably spend about twenty hours typing up the whole story from that day until now but it is really pointless. I had a lot of down days, wanting to just pack up and go back home but thee was a day where my life completely changed. When I began to make friends, enjoy where I lived, adventuring the region, and beginning a new life. If I could recommend anything to any young adult, it is to move far away from your original surroundings. You can come back but the emotional and mental strength you get that from that makes you unbeatable. It's funny because the first 2 years of my life down here felt like an eternity but when something great happens life moves so fast.
So today, this post is really about thanking all the great people you have. Thank you!