Time passes with the certainty of water over a waterfall -inevitably moving forward and rolling on through the years. Sometimes it’s important to take a step back. and recap.
Seven years ago today, I moved out of my parents house in Houston, Texas, and flew for the first time. Fifteen hundred miles later, I was in Southern California, a stone’s throw from LA, living at my now fiancee’s house with her and her parents. As of right the moment this is posted, I have lived in this house for seven years.
It’s been a long seven years. I’ve learned more about myself than I thought it was possible for there to be about one person. I’ve attended college, all but gotten my AA in Anthropology, fallen in love, had falling outs, welcomed new family members, and said goodbye forever to family members from both families. I’ve lost people I loved to death for the first time since I was too young to really remember it. I’ve lost the first cat I raised, and raised another one. I’ve learned how to interact socially in ways I didn’t know I was missing before.
I’ve progressed in my professional life as well – I’ve gone from a wanna be author who put more money out to try and get herself out there than money ever came back in, (actually, that was my mom’s money, and I still thank her for that – it was a valuable part of my life), to a person who’s being paid for her writing on a weekly basis, as well as still having the time to work on other writing projects – such as this personal blog, my rewrite of Tigerwolf, my first NaNoWriMo winner – To The Third Power, and my non-fiction book about the pets in my life – Beyond the Rainbow Bridge. I’m a respected and paid artist as well, with many commissions under my belt this year alone.
I’ve progressed spiritually – I feel more whole and complete now than I ever did. I only wish I had more time to devote to this aspect of my life these days. I’ve read countless books, I’ve cried countless tears, and I’ve laughed countless times. I’ve gone from a person who was dazzled by a little flip cellphone to someone who knows about tech enough to blog about it and get paid for it. I have an awesome computer that I bought with my own money, I have a fantastic phone, I have one of the best eReaders out there (thanks, Nyxie!), and best of all, I have an incredible extended family.
Moving out of my parents house was hard on me, and hard on them. But now, seven years later, I like to think we’re all happier. They’re proud of me and the things I’ve accomplished, and I love going to visit them as regularly as I can, but I don’t think there’s any doubt that my life is out here, now. Lona and I have plans, and we’re actively working toward them. Our future is bright and exciting, and I can’t wait to see where we go next. Though hopefully, our next big move will be together to Seattle, in the hopefully near future.
Seven years are hard to sum up in a few words and a few pictures. Seven years ago I was excited and terrified. I didn’t know what each day would bring, and I was constantly surprised and – yes – overwhelmed by life out here. I still remember stepping out of the airport and into the parking garage and asking incredulously if the parking garage was air conditioned. Being acclimated to Houston’s heat and humidity, the cool, clear Southern California evening air knocked me for a loop. I remember coming home and realizing that for the first time in my life that I could remember, I was living in a house – not an apartment. Now, admittedly, this house has it’s issues – but I will always love it for that. Even now, as Lona and I look into apartment living, I know I’m going to look back on the years in this house fondly. Because despite all the bad things that have happened, they are far, FAR outweighed by all the good.
Mommy, Daddy? I love you both so very, very much. And I miss you every single day. We wish we could come see you more often – or even better, that you could move out here! A day doesn’t pass when I don’t think of you, and I wish I had more time to talk to you. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me, and everything you’re continuing to do for us. You have no idea how much it means to us.
And to my California family, mom, thanks for bringing me in and making me feel welcomed and loved. You and dad both did that, and I love you both for it. I wish dad was here today for me to tell him how much I love him and how grateful I am for all he did for me. Lona? Babe, you know I love you desperately. Thank you for putting up with me, and thank you for all the wonderful years to come we both have to look forward to. Nyxie? You are and will always be my very very best friend and my big sister. I love hanging out with you and watching movies and TV shows and even just chatting about the old Disney Afternoon of our childhood. Kata? You’ve shown me what it means to have a brother, and to feel protected and supported by him. You’re very important to me, and I love you a lot, even though I know sometimes I get under your skin. But what’s a little sister to do? Grandma and Grandpa? It means so much to me that you’re here and that you’ve brought me into your family and into your arms. I didn’t get to grow up with grandparents, but you’ve shown me what it might’ve been like, and I am eternally grateful. I love you both.
Here’s to another seven years, everyone.