Maybe you already knew this, but I wasn't the most excited to move to Tampa.
After spending the spring and summer here last year, I was skeptical. I had the hardest time meeting people, finding a job, feeling at home. Don't get me wrong, it was wonderful to be with E, but otherwise, I felt out of place. Like I didn't belong. I stayed holed up in the apartment for days on end, frustrated with the summer heat, the snobbery, the water, the community that alluded me.
Since being back this year, my view on Tampa has completely changed. Perhaps it's because I know I don't have to leave again, that I can truly settle in. Perhaps it's simply because I have my car down here now. Or that I found some great jobs. And recently met some great friends.
But I'm optimistic. Everyone dreams about their ideal place, that city or town or home that they can really call their own. The grass always looks greener on the other side. I left my small town in Pennsylvania, eager to find a place where I could be myself. But I didn't really embrace what I found. I complained, I whined, I worried. Until now.
I read a quote the other day that struck a cord with me.
"We all want to be somewhere else than where we live but that's not reality, it's just a point of view."
I'm not sure who said that, but thank you. I feel like I've always been chasing some ideal, that perfect place in life--both physically and mentally--but I come up short time and again. We always want what we don't have, and then when we have it, we still aren't satisfied. It's such a curse, and something that leaves us constantly longing for more.
But the author of that quote is right. It's all about perspective. As Victoria said on her blog today, bloom where you're planted. It's possible. We can grow where we are if we allow ourselves to. It's a choice, really--happiness, satisfaction. Finding contentment is something we can choose if we want. We just have to change our perspective.
Maybe Tampa isn't what I expected. Maybe none of this was part of the plan. But I'm ready to plant my roots here. To bloom and grow and see what life in Tampa brings. It's not so bad after all, this little city. This week has opened my heart and mind to the possibilities here. And I finally feel like I'm home.