One year ago today, Bryan and I drove into Seattle via I-90. Him in the moving truck, me in the car with dogs in tow. I will never forget that feeling of seeing Seattle's skyline after I crossed the beautiful Lake Washington and crossed under the "Seattle - Portal to the Pacific" tunnel.
It felt... incredible. I suddenly forgot about how long I had been driving, how tired I was, the fact that there was still a moving truck to unload, and just felt completely content (a rare feeling for me). I felt like I had this new beginning (because in a way I did) and I was overflowing with excitement at the thought of getting to explore a whole new place. While I love Salt Lake City very much, I was ready for a change.
We drove into the Queen Anne neighborhood that would be our new home and I remember my excitement in being able to see the needle from the hill. Something about the Space Needle fills me with comfort. I guess it was kind of a symbol, a symbol of a city that I had always admired from afar. It felt official. I, being me, made sure to snap a photo from the hill while walking the dogs, as some guy scoffed at me and said "yep, it's still there" as he walked by. Jerk.
Once I was all settled in, I walked. Seriously, I walked a LOT. I was determined to explore every Seattle neighborhood on foot. Granted, at the time I didn't realize there are over 100 neighborhoods in Seattle, and to this day, I have yet to see them all, but I did get to know the city pretty well with this method. I would just throw on a podcast and head out aimlessly, soaking in the new scenery.
I fell in love pretty quickly, as anyone who follows me on social media can attest to. I even found some new motivation to do things that I've been avoiding for years, like going back to school. Now this can also probably be attributed towards growing up but I think changing my home also kicked my butt into gear and made me feel like doing more than binge watching Netflix shows in the evenings.
I still watch more T.V. than I probably should and finding motivation to do homework some days feels downright impossible but that's okay. I feel that I'm headed in the right direction. It's cheesy but they say taking that first step towards a dream is the hardest and it truly is in my case. But now that the first step has been taken, I know I will reach my dreams, even if it takes decades.
But I would be lying if I said moving to Seattle erased all of my problems. If you were a depressive and anxious person before a move, you'll probably remain those things afterwards. You're only changing the view, not your inner baggage. Truthfully, this last year has been simultaneously one of the best and worst years of my life. While I've experienced and seen so many delightful, new things, I've also felt some of the most intense loneliness I've ever felt.
Feeling lonely is not a new feeling for me, as I'm someone who tends to be on the outside, looking in. I've been told that I'm quiet (no shit) more times than I can count and I often opt to stay home alone where I don't feel societal pressure to fit in but moving to a new city only strengthened those feelings. I suddenly felt like I had no one (with the exception of my wonderful family) and have had more meltdowns than I care to admit.
I've also learned that I'm not really good at making friends. I mean, I guess I kind of, sorta knew this already. But I've always managed to make a few friendships here and there, usually with other quiet, quirky people whom I feel I can relate to. But here.... it just isn't happening, man. Yeah, I've met some really awesome people. I just haven't been able to fully connect to them. And you know what? It's a huge bummer. It makes me feel like something is inherently wrong with me or that I'm "broken."
But then I realized, that in itself is the problem. How the hell am I supposed to make friends when I'm beating myself up all the time for being "unfriendable?" Self-love comes first, right? So here I am, being all mature and stuff, realizing that I need to work on one very important relationship above all others - my relationship with myself. I want to truly believe that I'm awesome before I try to convince others that I am.
So this next year, I want to:
- Truly, I mean, deeply love myself
- Kill it at work and school
- Get to know mountains in the PNW
- Take up at least one water sport
- Learn to move on
Thanks for listening, folks. <3