Oh god do I love that man up there in the photo. It's been a few days since we last saw each other, not by choice of course but because we're in a season of transition. Moving north and such. We've been trying to find our new home relentlessly for weeks now without much success, so E headed back down to Tampa for a brief stint while I stayed behind in PA to keep scoping out potential homes up here. Currently, we're waiting to write up an offer on an adorable 1940's Cape Cod style home in the heart of historic downtown Charles Town.
Yes. You heard that right. Charles Town, as is in, West Virginia. Oh goodness I couldn't believe it either. I don't think I ever imagined we'd be finding our home in West Virginia. Drop the West, and that was the dream; or so we thought, until after searching through every single listing (and you can bet your bottom dollar I mean every) on Zillow, we realized despite the longer commute, Jefferson County was just too good to be true. You can really get the best bang for your buck out there, and it doesn't hurt that it's right near Harper's Ferry. If you've never been, it's one of the most beautiful little areas with tons of history and amazing views. But I digress. West Virginia.
So right now feels like limbo. A waiting game, really. And I can feel the growing pains--in the brief separation from E, the awful adjustment to the cold, the lack of a social life or of just being rooted somewhere. These are the little pains that come along with a new chapter of growing.
Moving was hard. Although Tampa was not my favorite place by any means, I'd become accustomed to it, found solace in the familiarity--just starting to get the hang of those crazy city streets and find my bearings. I left behind my routine. I left behind that beautiful winter weather. And I left behind some very sincere and lovely friends.
But it was time, I think. It all happened for a reason. E and I could both sense it, that restlessness that comes with the feelings of stagnation, when you're in a place that just isn't the right one for you. Despite our disdain for the cold, we are Northerners at heart. We pine over the changing seasons, shifting hilly landscapes, the brilliant dark sky in which every star can be seen on any given night. We grew up in it, planted our dreams in it long ago. I don't think either of us ever believed we'd return to a place so close to home. Sure, we thought, maybe North Carolina. But nothing more north. Somewhere mild.
Yet here we are, finding ourselves nearly full circle. I guess we all need our chance to experience the city in some form or another. It works for some, but for others like us, we need the quietude. The open countryside and sky. The slower pace of life. We are what many might call boring; at least by today's standards. Our ideal days are those spent at home--comfortable, together, content, authentic. After living two blocks from one of the most popular social scenes in South Tampa, we came to the conclusion: no matter how close we live to the hustle and bustle, we are happiest at home.
So here I am, back at the beginning--my childhood house in PA--where I'll be until E and I secure our first real, permanent home together. But I have goals for this season of my life. This is a season for finding balance. Last year was a season for taking chances, starting a business; it meant all-nighters filling orders and over-extending myself in the excitement of trying to collaborate with every amazing person I met and spending long weekends hunched over my tiny desk, attempting to keep up. I focused on nothing else, and it was stressful and great and tiring and wonderful.
But this season, I'm taking a step back. Well, maybe just a different step. There will be more cooking (I just signed up for Huckle & Goose), more reading, more health and exercise, more devotion. These few weeks without E are a brief moment to pause and reevaluate my priorities. No more excuses--this is a season for finding purpose, the motivation to be the woman I want to be; one that takes care of herself both mentally and physically, who records moments of gratitude and puts effort into helping others and appreciates the simple pleasures of a slow, small-town life.
I'm excited to see what this year brings. I'm excited to cultivate a better lifestyle for me and my tiny family of two, whether it be the vegetable garden we'll plant in our future backyard or the daily walks I'll take to stay healthy and meet the neighbors. Yes, I'd say I'm eager to create our homestead, our place of refuge, love and laughter.