October 24, 2012

the change in scenery.

Yesterday I found myself talking to Sam about place and character and where the two intersect. We talked about change and moving and how a new city can shift your sense of self — how a new place can give rise to a whole sweep of newness and an overwhelming, invigorating sense of possibility.

And, of course, along with possibility comes a whole myriad of expectations.
Change, doubt, dreams, expectations — they all seem to go hand in hand, don't they?

I've moved a handful of times throughout my life: to San Diego for college, to Oxford for my study-abroad program, back to Chicago for grad school, and to San Francisco just last year. Whenever I've relocated, the physical shift has manifested itself in other ways, too. It's as if the change in scenery triggers a new chapter and I suddenly feel the need to reevaluate and refine absolutely everything

In San Diego I became more calm, more centered, more fun-loving, more blonde. In Oxford I managed to be both reserved and wildly outgoing, both insecure and more sure than ever before. There, I also learned to let go. To move forward. And back in Chicago, I found clarity — clarity and drive.

I'm still discovering the San Francisco version of myself, still wondering what pieces of me will shift shape or grow or fade away. In all fairness, maybe this isn't about the cities at all. Maybe it's just life.

And yet, I look at the beach, at the bay, at the sun on the horizon...
I look out and I look up and I think: Of course it's this. It's all of this. How could it not be?

(Photo: Stinson Beach | My Instagram)


Rachael {all things beautiful} said... [Reply to comment]

You are such a beautiful and insightful writer. I always look forward to your posts.

Niken said... [Reply to comment]

i've moved several times through my life too. and there were (and are) lots of weeks or months i spend living in different places for work. i just didn't realize this before. you've given me something to think about :)

Anisha Pradahn said... [Reply to comment]

This is such a beautiful post. It makes me want to find out about myself too just like the way you did. It surprises me how I failed to see that part of life where I am influenced by the city I am in. It's true, it just went unnoticed. Thanks for evoking that sense in me and keep writing more posts as this and continue inspiring me :)

+Not Just My Allegories+

Magdalena said... [Reply to comment]

Nicely written! I am both, excited and scared about moving away from home some day.