10 Things No One Tells you About Moving Away From Home
This is something I've been wanting to talk about for a while. But it's too long for an Instagram post. Heck, as I'm writing it, I'm realizing it's probably too long as a blog post. But it's something people don't talk about much. And if you've been considering moving away from home, it's something you need to hear.
Let me give you a brief history. I was born and raised right outside of New Orleans. Pretty much all of my immediate family lived (and still lives) within an hour of us, most people being around 20-30 minutes away. I went to college about an hour away in Baton Rouge, making trips home fairly frequent and easy.
Once I graduated from college, I took a job in Houston to be closer to my boyfriend (we had been long distance pretty much the whole time we had been dating), and lived there for about 2 years. The big changed happened last spring when we decided to pack up all of our stuff and move to Denver, CO, where my boyfriend is originally from.
So, through these years of living away, I've noticed some themes that arise. This is not a bashing of my family and friends, it's just something I see that naturally tends to happen, and things you should know about if you're considering moving away from the town/city/state you grew up in. There are pros and cons to both sides of the coin, so just be sure to choose what aligns with your goals.
1. People won't visit as often as they say they will.
This is the big thing I tell anyone looking to move away. Sure, people say all the time how much they want to come do this or that in the place you're moving to. But guess what? It's easy to say "one day." And it's nothing against them or you. It's just how life works. We're creatures of habit. So getting outside of that, making the plans, and actually implementing them is tougher than you think.
My advice: Pick something specific for people to come in for. A concert, race, festival, etc. Just something with set dates so it doesn't turn into "some day."
2. Put aside 1/2 to 2/3 of your vacation days to travel back home.
Things will come up. Holidays, funerals, weddings, weekend traditions that you're letting die if you don't come in town. Plus, it's not just the holiday itself. If you're looking to fly on a budget, it's typically cheaper to get flights a few days before/after the actual holiday, meaning more time away from work.
3. It's a BFD when you come home.
If you're like me, and are the only person who's not around anymore, prepare for every time you come home to be a big event. Your favorite foods, events, and of course, trying to see everyone that you want to see.
4. You have to decide who is priority.
You only have so much time when you're home. So you need to decide, who are you going to spend your time with? It may be harsh not to find the time to catch up with some people you aren't close to anymore, but you need to decide who are people of priority and who you're fine catching up with on Facebook later
5. You need to make the effort to keep in touch.
You're the one who moved away, remember? So everyone else is just continuing on with their life, business as usual. While some things may be different, it's still up to you to continue to build on the relationship, let them know when you're in town, and plan accordingly if you want to see them.
6. Smaller holidays are pretty quiet.
Lucky for us, my boyfriend's family lives in and around the Denver areas, so now we're able to spend some time with them during those smaller holidays where you don't get as much vacation time. However, if you don't, things like Memorial Day, Easter, Labor Day can be quiet if you don't plan ahead and either travel or plan something with friends. (I will say, we actually had some great small holidays in Houston, but that was thanks to friends who love to host parties and good planning!)
7. No one ever has any idea what time it is where you live.
I've moved to Mountain Time before for a past internship, and moving to Denver this time was no different. Seriously, it's just one time zone away, but people always get a little confused by it. For the first 5 months I was here, my mom could have sworn I was 2 hours different from them.
8. Your life seems very glamorous.
You're in a new place. You're experiencing things a lot of your friends/family have only heard about, or seen on TV. So while heading up to the mountains on the weekend or driving in snow might just be a normal activity here in Denver, to my southern roots family, it's such a different world.
9. Small tasks may be a lot harder.
Oil changes. Finding a new dentist. Car troubles. Things that you'd typically pick up the phone and call a family member to ask about is now on you to take care of.
10. You become a lot more independent.
Playing off of #9, because you have to do so many small tasks, and because you're alone a lot more often, your sense of independence grows soooo much. You start to think more about what it is you like to do, not just think about what you've done in the past.
Honestly, this list could go on and on. About how you need to learn to make new friends. Or about how you will always have new stories, but I think you get the gist.
Basically, there are some really amazing and incredible things that come out of you exploring somewhere new, finding out more about yourself, and following your life wherever it takes you. But, there are some times where it can really suck.
Have you moved away from home? Or thought about it? I'd love to hear if your experiences were similar! Comment below!