Since we recently uprooted ourselves and moved to an entirely new town, I’ve been pondering memories of the only other time I made such a BIG move in my life. It was the week I left for college.
Until then I lived in the same town and went to the same schools since Kindergarten. Just a few months after I turned 18, we packed all my stuff in my parent’s two vehicles and made our way up one of the busiest interstates in the U.S. to take me to college in Denton, Texas, north of the Dallas area.
Of course I was excited because I was starting college and a new chapter in my life, but that morning I said a tearful goodbye to my then boyfriend, who I left behind to finish his senior year at our high school. And since I was still a teenager, that was like a huge deal people. (we made it through that year but I went back to his Senior prom with him and I’m pretty sure I met the girl he’d been cheating on me with. It ended soon after that…)
I had met a really cool chick named Carrie at Freshman orientation but we were in different dorms and my roommate was a stranger, assigned to me by the system. She was less than ideal. But more on her later.
My parents helped me get settled while the pit in my stomach grew larger and larger. As my mother hung my clothes in the tiniest closet on the planet, I remember thinking to myself… Why didn’t I just stay in Austin and go to UT? Why did I come to this place where I basically know no one and have to start over, making new friends? I felt very alone and unsure of basically everything. I hadn’t even declared my major.
But the answer was actually pretty simple. I was ready for this and my future was here. There are SO very many spectacular things that happened in my life because I took that chance and left my comfort zone, including meeting the love of my life.
Of course those things weren’t clear at first. The waters were quite muddy actually. I left my first roommate after only a week and moved in with a girl I went to high school with. Although we were not friends per se, and she turned out to be a hypochondriac weirdo (and I am NOT exaggerating AT. ALL.), it was better than the first girl who snuck strange, very large men into our room almost every night and NEVER spoke to me.
I moved all of my stuff, by myself, down one flight of stairs (the elevator was farther and I was on a roll) in a matter of a few hours.
When my parents left me there that first week I could feel my heart splitting in two as the elevator door closed. It was the first time my father really said “I love you.” And it would most certainly not be the last. My brother later told me that my mother cried for three days once she and my dad returned home. I’m sure part of it was due to her new “empty nester” status, oh and possibly the fact that her baby daughter had just gone on to start her adulthood somewhere else.
I remember talking to her on the phone one night, a couple of months into the semester and telling her that I didn’t know if I could stay. That I should probably just come home and go to school back at home. But she said the opposite. She told me to give it some more time and to pray that things would start to come together for me. I did and they did. It wasn’t long after that that I got involved in some organizations and began to meet more people.
My second semester proved to be monumental since I decided on my major, met my future roommate, Corrie, and joined a co-ed fraternity dedicated to service and unofficially, friendship. And those connections eventually led me to Tim.
The rest as they say, is pretty much history, and a good one at that.
I type all this to remind myself that things will soon get better here. I’ve planned a lunch date tomorrow with some of the ladies I’ve been emailing with from the local mom’s club. I pray that we find a church community soon that suits us well (yesterday’s was a good prospect). The B Man starts school in a couple of weeks and well, I’m bound to meet some other moms there, right? And, we’ve joined a local health club that has a wonderful pool area for the boys and I plan to make some connections there as well. I know it just takes time and opportunity and I also know from experience that if I want things to happen, I have to MAKE them happen. Well and a little prayer can’t hurt either…