Nearing the end of my undergraduate career, I can't help but reflect on the multitude of personas I have taken on during these short four years. Sorority woman, Jimmy Johns delivery driver, Berliner, roommate, housekeeper, girlfriend, intern, cat owner . . the list goes on and on. I pride myself on my malleability and my constant search for self-reinvention, which is what inspired me to move 400 miles from home when I was 18. These traits of mine have led to a predictably unpredictable life; I spent the summer of 2015 living in a Berlin apartment studying architecture, and in four months I will be moving across the country to Oregon to experience yet another personal and professional renaissance.
Although there have been moments (years) of uncertainty, I have never lost sight of what led me to these new places. I wanted an education, and a chance for a life outside of my hometown. I wanted to try my hand in an architecture studio for a summer. I want to pursue a future with the man I love. This mindset is crucial in order to experience growth and, ultimately, happiness.
"Wherever you go, there you are." This quote is for anyone overwhelmed by a new environment. You're not going anywhere any time soon, so you might as well make the best of it. Take the time to explore the city you wound up in. There's no use in loathing a place you can't escape quite yet, so immerse yourself in positivity and exploration. Discover the hidden wonders of your space. Become that unapologetic local who knows the best place to grab brunch or watch the sun set.
Remember those new relationship jitters? Every moment spent together is monumental; around every corner comes a new experience. Let your city do that for you. Date your city! Fall in love! Look back on those years stuck in that small town with fondness. Thank your younger self for creating a life so worthwhile. Nostalgia has a way of washing even the most mundane memories with a sense of longing and loss. Make this place something fun to look back on.
"You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment."
– Henry David Thoreau