On the last half hour or so of the trip, when signs counting down the miles to Ithaca started to appear, I remember a panic setting in.
"Never mind guys", I said, half joking and half not. "Let's just go back and forget about this going off to college thing."
The number of new things I would have to get used to doing independently seemed overwhelming. There was no one but myself to keep me accountable. Laundry, feeding myself, going to bed, going to class, figuring out what to do with my time generally. I wouldn't be close to anyone I knew in case things went wrong, and would have to rely on either strangers or my own resourcefulness.
But soon that anxiety gave way to a new wave of excitement. We moved me in, walked around, enjoyed the delicious dining hall food, and I met up with some friends I'd met online prior to arriving. Everything felt fresh, new, and full of promise. Here I was surrounded by bright, motivated peers and world class facilities and resources for learning in what seemed like an endless array of subjects. Goodbyes with my family went smoother (on my end) than expected, and I was ready to start my new life.
Leaving IthacaThree weeks ago, Kelsey and I packed up all of our things en route to our new home in Boston. We were able to secure a place after many days of nonstop search, and now we're taking a due break to visit our families. It's been a good opportunity to take stock and think about where I've been and where I may want to go next. It's the first time in seven years that I find myself relocating my "home base" to an entirely new place.
I'm not the same person I was back then. I had a lot of momentum coming out of high school. I was fresh off an exciting new foray into gymnastics. I had been involved in theater, debate, and had made many great friends. I had experienced so much growth in my teenage years, and in my mind not even the sky was a limit.
Though that momentum continued for the first year or so of college, and I met many amazing people and learned about so many fascinating subjects, the subsequent years proved to be quite a bit more than I could handle at the time.
I'm a lot better off than I was a few years back, but, frankly, my morale has been shaken. My ambition for what life could be has mellowed dramatically, and I have preferred to take things one day at a time, often merely getting by. Maybe my perspective and outlook on life has become more "realistic", or maybe the pendulum has swung too much in the other direction. I can't be sure.
I'm cautiously optimistic. I know there's still a lot for me to discover, explore, and rediscover. This move is an opportunity to put myself in a completely new environment and discover new aspects of myself. I also intend to more seriously explore aspects of myself that I've ignored or not taken very seriously for a long time. It will also be a great opportunity to reconnect with family and the friends I made growing up in New England.
Boston is a promising place to become a part of a movement community more in line how I hope to develop my practice. There are a few fellow students of Ido Portal I hope to connect with more regularly. I can finally pursue natural movement as part of a community and under experienced teachers with Parkour Generations. The nearby climbing gym, Brooklyn Boulders, could prove to be a great place to be, train, and connect with others. There's also a circus community around that I'll definitely be checking out. And that's just what I know of so far.
I'm also looking to explore drawing and animation, two things that as a kid I naturally played around with and never gave serious consideration to after around the age of ten. I've always appreciated the beautiful, stylish, and vivid animations and stories found in the video games and cartoons I've watched since childhood, but was never really encouraged to explore it seriously as a craft.
As for work, I'm looking for either opportunities that allow me to grow and serve according to my individuality and experiences (counseling type work has proven to be an aptitude of mine), or something where I can make ends meet while still having the time and energy left over to pursue these other things. It'll be a sort of puzzle to find the right combination of both of those elements. Luckily, there's no shortage of opportunity for jobs in a city as populous as Boston, and there may even be opportunities to work from home online in some capacity.
The path is fairly open now, and it's largely up to me to decide how I decide to put the pieces together. I hope that sharing my thoughts on here more regularly can might be of interest to fellow seekers.