Finding A Home In People

When I was in college, my parents sold and moved out of my childhood home. At this point, I had been living at school most of the time, over every break. I came home one weekend and packed my stuff and said goodbye.

My childhood home hadn’t been my home for a long time. My room had been repainted and the whole place just held a lot of memories from my youth that I didn’t particularly enjoy especially after my high school boyfriend and I had just broken up. I was fine with leaving it all behind and I had found a new home at college.

And when my grandparents passed away, their house was torn down. I did one last walk through – but I wasn’t sad about saying goodbye to it. My grandparents weren’t there anymore and the last years they were there were painful and nothing at all like the memories I had created as a kid.

I walk into my other grandparent’s home and I still feel my home. I take deep breaths and try to hold on to the feeling there. But after they’re gone, I don’t think it will feel like anything at all.

Because I’ve always made homes out of people. My family grew out of our childhood home, we were located hours and plane rides away from each other and it wasn’t the home that kept us all together anymore. I feel at home with them, no matter where I am. And even at college, I tried to live in my house after everyone had left for summer and graduated – but the people were my home, not that house.

When I move out of a place (and I have moved out of quite  a few places for a 25 year old), I stare at the empty rooms and I feel sad. But as soon as I am together with my people in my next new adventure, I don’t really feel a nostalgia or need to be back in that old place.

I have no attachment to where I am because no matter where I go I can visit one of those important people and feel at home again.

apartment cabinet chair contemporary
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Making Time For Your Friends In Your 20’s

When I graduated college, my friends and I all cried over the fact that life would be so different without us living just a hallway away from each other. But I don’t think I realized how different it would really be.

We all have jobs and relationships. Some people have houses and dogs. Some of us have demanding schedules. It’s really really hard to stay in touch with your friends and it can be easy to let it just fall to the side when you know they’ll always be there for you when you need them.

But needing them doesn’t always mean you’re having an actual crisis. You need your friends a lot more than you think you do, even when you have a support system at home. It’s not the same as the comfort your friends can give you.

They’re probably going through what you’re going through and you probably haven’t taken the time to properly talk about your life with someone who isn’t with you all the tine. Your friends can help you, it doesn’t need to be a time of despair. It might just be a time where you feel like you need a little more fresh air.

It takes work – a lot more work than some people are willing to put in to keep friendships around. But it’s important work. It’s the same as the effort you need to continuously put into your relationship. You can’t just expect to put people down and pick them back up when you need them.

Send the text, make the call, put together some plans. Be the person who is always reaching out with dates to see if anyone can get together. It’s exhausting and can be frustrating – but your good friends are worth it.

backlit dawn foggy friendship
Photo by Helena Lopes on Pexels.com

Our Adopt Don’t Shop Story

I was supposed to go to Rhode Island this past weekend for a quick getaway, but plans changed fast.

My boyfriend and I moved in together a couple months ago. But before we even had the conversation about moving in, we were talking about getting a dog. I’m a huge animal lover and have wanted a dog since I graduated college. I had a couple of set backs on my journey to adoption.

One reason being that I didn’t have enough space, money, or time for a while and I knew it was unfair at that point in my life to get a dog. Another setback being, I’ve been bitten in the face twice by two separate dogs on two separate occasions that required a significant amount of stitches – really, that was just bad luck. And lastly, the dog I grew up with passed away not too long ago and it really hit me hard.

But still, we talked about getting a dog for a while and the longer we lived together the more and more we started looking at adoption sites. I had volunteered at a shelter when I first graduated and on Wednesday of last week the most perfect dog became available for adoption. We initially thought we would adopt her and come back to get her after the trip, but that wasn’t really realistic as we would have a hard time leaving her alone after falling in love with her.

I was a little panicky the first couple days, as seems to be the trend with big decisions. We are going to be responsible for this little pup for the rest of her life, I just was nervous we were taking a step a little too early. But we are finally beginning to get settled with her, even though we are facing typical puppy challenges that I will write about later on.

World, meet Kaya. She’s a little over 1 year old, the shelter thinks she is a chow/terrier mix, and she had puppies only a few months ago. She is a great dog and is already pretty well trained! We love her so much already! 🙂 Did you adopt your pet? I’d love to hear about your adoption experience in the comments!

Friendships in Your 20’s

One thing no one prepared me for was how different friendships become after you leave college. In college, you live with your best friends. You eat with them, go everywhere with them, you rely on them like family. Then *poof* graduation comes and you all have to separate.

It’s hard to get on the same schedule after that. It’s hard to see each other, make commitments to each other, and stay in touch. It’s hard to keep that family type of feeling alive because you’re relying on other people now.

It kind of feels like things start to fall apart because you were so used to knowing everything about someone and now you only get to see them once a month. Friend dynamics change. You make new ones, old ones fall off the map, and some friendships start to take priority over others.

Effort is required on both ends to keep a friendship going and it’s frustrating when you don’t live near each other and more effort is being put in on one side and none on the other. I think friendships in your 20’s means sometimes we just have friends who are there for a good time, not the hard times. And we can’t put all our care into those friendships anymore.

It’s fine to keep those people around for the good times, but we can’t get upset when they don’t reciprocate the care we show. Then there truly are friends who are in it for the long haul. Friends who you only see once every 3 months, only text once a month, who you can still turn to at the end of a long day even though it feels like you’ve been strangers for a while.

Friendships in your 20’s is all about putting yourself and those who care first and leaving the rest as a secondary thought. We’re growing up, we can’t put all our time and energy into people who don’t do the same for us. It’s sad, but it’s time to move on.

Capture
Photo by: https://www.flickr.com/photos/emilio_k/

A Recap Of The Places I’ve Lived In My Twenties

I think I am the exception to most people my age, but since graduating college I will have lived in 5 different places. I graduated at 22 and am now 24 to put things in context for you. That’s 5 places in 2 and a half years and you can bet they were all life lessons.

When I graduated from college, I convinced my parents to let me stay at the house I’d been living in the past two years of college because I got an internship sort of nearby. College campuses in the summer are a whole new type of weird I can’t even explain and they are also very empty. I spent a lot of time living between different houses and traveling a long ways to work. When the internship ended, I moved home and got a job there.

Living at home is definitely something I know a lot of people can relate to. It’s like you automatically revert back  to your 16 year old self when living with your parents. My parents had moved out of my childhood home when I was in college, so this was pretty strange for me. I didn’t really have my own room that was truly mine with any space for my stuff. I saved a lot of money, but my job was very basic and my parents were driving me nuts. So 6 months after I moved in, I got a new job and moved out.

I was in a rush and on a deadline, so I moved into a house with 3 other roommates. They were all strangers and they continued to be strangers the 10 months I lived there. I’m not very outgoing and everyone was on different schedules and were different ages. I spent most of the time in my room or tip toeing to the bathroom and kitchen. I really thought it was going to be super temporary, but I stayed there for almost a year until it became just too weird for me.

So, I moved out again. This time into a single apartment with a small kitchenette attached to the living room. I was paying for everything myself so I didn’t buy cable/wifi and I also didn’t have a freezer or oven. I’m coming up on a year at this apartment and it’s kind of amazing that I lived without things that a lot of people consider necessities. While I loved the apartment, it was time to take a next step and move in with my boyfriend.

In a few weeks we’ll be moving into a two bedroom, two bathroom apartment with a loft that I’m obsessed with. After this, I really hope to stay put for a while because anyone who has moved a lot knows that moving in and out is not fun. At all.

hc
Photo by: https://www.flickr.com/photos/hmoong/

My Millennial Work Ethic

The stereotypical millennial is lazy, entitled, ruining relationships, and most of the things that were built for us. This stereotype mostly comes from the fact that we do things differently than our parents.

I went to college, got an internship when I graduated, got a job then got a better job. Not exactly what I call lazy. I started paying off my stereotypical millennial student loans and immersed myself into the 9-5 culture.

And it’s not easy for me. It’s not easy to work 5 out of the 7 days a week, to work for most of your life, to make your job your (basically) number one priority. It’s not easy for me to wake up early in the morning then work nonstop until it’s time to go. You don’t go at your own pace, there is a schedule and rules and you are supposed to follow them.

So in some ways, I’m the stereotypical millennial who wants to make their own schedule and work from my bed. Is it realistic? No, but a girl can dream!

Just because we dream, doesn’t mean we’re lazy. And it doesn’t mean all of us have the same dream. I know many people who thrive in a pressured 9-5 environment, but I’m just a stereotypical millennial when it comes to this!

hc
photo by: https://www.flickr.com/photos/149902454@N08/

Why Be Anything But Nice?

I will be the first to admit that most of my life was spent not  being a nice person. I think I tried to be a good person when I was young, but was quickly walked all over in middle school and high school. So I tried being bitchy and it seemed to work better for me.

It kept people out of my life and at arm’s length, it kept me safe and protected, but it was a lot of effort. It was hard to consistently be meanish to people, not because I was denying my nature to be nice, but because you have to be tough all the time and keep up this image that shows people that you don’t want to be bothered. It was like a game, you can’t catch me because I’m dark and edgy and I don’t like you.

Right after I graduated college, I just realized it’s easier to be nice to everyone. You can still keep them at arm’s length, but in a way that you could reach out if you needed to. Back when I wasn’t nice at first glance, people were always disappointed when the can’t catch me girl was caught and wasn’t as dangerous as they thought. I felt like I was never living up to anything and was just over the trend of people not liking me. Who wants to be disliked? Why was I ever that way?

I watched this video on Facebook the other day about a woman who was fat shamed at a Dairy Queen. It absolutely killed me.

I have been working very hard to help build up the people in this world who have been torn down by media, society, and just the pressures of being human. Because I feel all of those things too and I need someone to build me up too.  Everyone is fabulous in their own way. I used to get jealous and spiteful when a girl looked better than me, now I’m like damnnnn girl, rock it! If you look hot, I’m going to tell you that you look hot even if I don’t know you.

Because why not? Being mean wasn’t easy, it bogged me down. I think we need to stop striving to be this elusive boss ass bitch and just be nice. You can still be powerful and kind.

hc
Photo by: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ivanatm/