Pulling off the Band-Aid

I’ve never broken any bones, but when I was a kid, my body was host to a myriad of slivers and scrapes and bruises. While I’d always let my mom or dad patch me up with band-aids, my sister refused. She always hated having to remove the damn thing. Meanwhile I’d stand in the bathroom, my scrape all gross and scabbed over, and give myself a pep talk to rip off the band-aid.

Me (left) and my sister (right) as little youths

Me (left) and my sister (right) as little youths

On Monday, I ripped off the worst band-aid ever. Monday afternoon, I gave my job my two weeks notice. In January, I celebrated my six month anniversary of working at this nonprofit, only I didn’t actually feel like celebrating. Instead of throwing confetti, I wanted to throw back shots and forget that I’d ever made this decision.

In six months, I’d given this job a chance but just hadn’t found my place. In all that time, I hadn’t made local friends, and I hated spending my day chained to a cubicle doing work I wasn’t passionate about. So for the last month, I’ve been losing sleep and letting my anxiety get to me all over how much I hated my job and where I lived.

Finally, after a lot of thinking, I made a plan and put it into motion.

As of this writing, I do not have a job lined up. I have to be out of my current apartment by March 1st, and in two weeks, I will be unemployed.

I feel like I’ve been relieved of a burden. I know my dad isn’t super pleased with this decision (sorry, Dad!) and some of my friends think that, though bold, this decision is a little crazy (lookin’ at you, Larry and Rachel), but I’m doing it.

My location has hindered me on a job search, being an hour from the nearest metropolitan area makes a 15 minute interview a pain, and I feel guilty for faking a doctor’s appointment for an interview.

Today, I will be questing into the Twin Cities where I’ll be interviewing for a brand spanking new job and looking at not one, not two, but three apartments.

For as scared as I am, I’m also ridiculously excited. I’ve always worked well with deadlines, and this is one of the biggest ones of them all. I have less than a month to find a new apartment, and a week and a half to try to get myself a new job (finger’s crossed!).

But for six months I’ve been stagnant, and it’s been terrible. I’ve been living in a city with no friends, just me and my dog kickin’ it. I’ve gone into the same office every morning at 8, and left at 5, and in-between done the exact same thing. I’ve spent my weekends rewatching episodes of Grey’s Anatomy or Bob’s Burgers, found solace in new books, and drank my weight in wine. In six months, I’ve learned a lot. I’ve watched the sun set over the Crow River during a rainstorm, bathing the city in an orange light refracting off of raindrops. I’ve laughed as I chased my dog around my tiny apartment, and cried when I realized how alone I was.

There is no shame in calling it quits. If you have tried your damndest to make something work, only to be met with failure over and over again, it’s ok to hand in your letter of resignation and move somewhere new.

I’ve spent years living rurally, and now it’s time to try out a city. I am terrified, but oh am I excited. Yes, there is a chance I will fail, but there’s a chance I will succeed, too. And I'm ridiculously thankful to have friends who, even though they think I'm crazy, are willing to believe in me--because, sometimes, that's the boost you need.

I am 22 years old, and I am the only one responsible for my happiness. In the last month, I’ve talked to plenty of people who’ve said that what I’m doing is downright stupid. And maybe they’re right. What I do know is that I can’t keep letting my life slip away in a town where I have nothing and no one. If that means uprooting my nonexistent life to move to the Twin Cities or Washington, DC, and risk winding up broke as hell, I’ll do it.

I’m not letting someone else live my life.

I’m not settling for a life of mediocrity.

And I’m definitely not afraid of a little risk and a little adventure.

With a little risk + adventure comes a lotta wine...

With a little risk + adventure comes a lotta wine...