"Parents can only give good advice and put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person's character lies in their own hands." - Anne Frank
It's been a little over a year since I moved from Tampa to Philly. It meant living on my own... to moving in with my parents. I knew I needed a change in my life. It was time for a new career, heading to grad school.... but living with mom and dad for the first time in ten years. The idea was questionable at best.
I have never cared much about what other people thought about me, but I did wonder now that, now that I am in my 30s and back in the same bed that I slept in High School.
Dad flew down to Tampa. My friends and I packed up the moving truck we rented and we drove up to PA in the Fall of 08. I cried the entire drive out of Florida. I knew I was making the right decision for my life, but the pain was palpable. I was leaving such a nice life behind. My close circle of friends remain there. The area is beautiful. So many memories.
While I have had to make a lot of adjustments, emotionally and physical, after coming back, my parents have been wonderful.
I havent lived here in ten years. I got lost in my own town. I struggled to find work in the worst economy in decades. I was constantly cold 6 months out of the year - a spoiled sun brat as a result of 4 years in Florida. I had to get an acct with a tanning salon to keep my sanity. I had no sweaters. I had no closed-toed shoes aside from my sneakers.
Most of my belongings remain in storage. I am a full-grad school students with two part-time jobs, commuting an hour back and forth to school three days a week. I long for a full-time job in the industry I am studying. I want so badly to move closer to the city, on my own, making new friends. Developing a circle of friends is difficult when you are in the burbs and all your "old friends" are married with children now. I am not out painting the town red, so to speak, but maintaining those friendships - different now - we're both in different paths in our lives. I am getting so homesick for Florida lately. I have never felt this way before.
My parents have been encouraging, supportive, generous. They welcomed me back home. We have a kind, close relationship and being here has only made our bonds stronger. For that I am eternally thankful. I don't know how I will ever re-pay them. They insist I have nothing to feel guilty about - that this is what parents do. Besides - mom does my laundry and makes me dinner. Dad, a retired owner of auto-mechanic and transmission rebuilding business, looks after my car. I live here for free. In a world of uncertainty, two-part time jobs and school, this part ain't so bad.
The desire to move out is about independence, not a horrible experience living here. My dad and I had one fight over our cats. Yes, it was that trivial. My mom yelled at me once when I was eating cereal. I was half asleep and apparently answered her in a tone that was received as disrespectful. She went off the wall. My dad and I sat there puzzled. We both know she was in a bad mood, although we didnt know why, and it really wasn't that I did something wrong LOL.
Considering I have been here for 15 months and only encountered two arguements. I think thats a good track record.
I am very busy and they give me privacy. The only thing they ask is, that they know if I am coming home at night, to give them some peace of mind. I haven't really dated, so having a guy come over hasn't been an issue ha ha...
I feel like my life is in limbo. "Everyone" tells me to have "patience" - what I want will come in time. But let's be real - thats an easy thing to say to someone when you are living on your own, have a full-time job in your industry, have a tight circle of friends, and possibly a solid relationship with a significant other.
So I keep pushing forward, I keep waiting, I keep working and going to school. I will be honest, I want to go back to Florida. Maybe my path will lead me back after grad school next year.
In the mean time, being "home" again is like living in a comfort bubble. It will always be there. I know I am always welcome at home.