It's hard to believe that exactly one year ago today, my husband and I finished unpacking the moving van, carrying the last of our possessions into our new home in an entirely new state. My husband and I took a big leap of faith last year when we left our families in Kentucky and moved north to Wisconsin so I could take a new job. We were both a little frightened, particularly since neither of us are what you'd call big fans of snow.
We didn't know what we were quite in for with the move. Oh, I'd moved before... several times in fact, all around the Northern Kentucky area. And with all that moving, I was always within 30 minutes of my family. Now, I am about 9 hours away and it's a little unnerving to feel as if I am suddenly working without a net.
But it's been a good experience. It certainly hasn't been all sunshine and roses. Our first winter in Wisconsin brought my first blizzard as well as snow that didn't melt until mid-April. Winter tried very hard to break me. The unending cold and constant snow-covered ground was daunting. The lesson learned there is that my husband and I need to schedule a vacation south sometime between February and April to get us to spring with our sanity intact.
My husband and I had been married for only a year when we moved and the drastic change was a trial for us, but I think we've come out stronger for it. We stuck together, supported each other when we felt we were going to falter.
Professionally, 2013 wasn't a great year for me, but it carried with it some valuable lessons. Unexpected changes have forced me to stop and question the road I'm on. This was an important as it helped me to realign my goals and figure out what I needed to be happy. Looking forward, I think the remainder of 2013 and 2014 will be rebuilding years.
I've heard that term used frequently with sports teams. A team will get a new coach or they'll lose most of their starting line-up, resulting in a bunch of fresh faces joining the roster. I used to think that people used the phrase "It's a rebuilding year" as an excuse for their team losing frequently. But I understand the truth behind it. Rebuilding years are times to learn your strength and weaknesses; a time to learn where you need to improve and grow. Professionally, this is a rebuilding year for me. I'm working on laying a new, stronger foundation for many things in my life so that I can go forward and do more impressive things that I accomplished before.
In the past year, I've learned:
1. The snow will melt eventually. It just takes a little longer than it ever did in Kentucky.
2. The Farmers' Market on the Square is great place to pick up homemade jam and pickles.
3. Max (the puppy) LOVES snow. The deeper the better.
4. Worrying about things that you can't change does not fix anything.
5. Sometimes, you just need to vent.
6. A kind word can help to improve a person's day.
7. Skyping family on Christmas is awesome but can also be painful.
8. Regular texts and calls to family help to keep homesickness at bay.
9. The words can wait while you fix your life.
10. Your characters will forgive you if you have to walk away for a while.