I wrote this a few weeks back as I tried to sock some posts away. Today seemed like the perfect day to settle into some gratitude and remember that sometimes, time is the only thing that truly gets you to where you want to be.
Three and half years ago, I moved home to beloved Buffalo, NY. I was anxiously awaiting the results of some job interviewing that would place me at the center of a reemerging city. It was everything I wanted to do, and I believed it would define me somehow. I was a Buffalo ex-pat returning triumphantly to a city on the rise. When I left, Buffalo was in rust belt ruins. In some ways, I was too. I yearned to explore other places (and ahem, my own sense of self.) Now, here we were- together, and ready to move forward. I didn't get the job.
I did get another job. It was one I deemed as a means to an end. It was second shift. It was a way to get back on my feet in my hometown. I cried after hanging up the phone with the woman who offered it to me. This was not at all what I had envisioned when I finally returned home. I waited so long for this moment and it was NOT what I envisioned.
This week a song appeared on my iPod. (I STILL HAVE AN IPOD, OKAY?) It was from a playlist I crafted three and half years ago. I flashed back to those moments on the phone with that woman who offered me a paycheck. I looked out my office window, overlooking the city of Buffalo, photos of my family perched before it, a bouquet of flowers I bought from a local organization I support. This is what I wanted. I didn't have the full picture back then, or know what I'd have to go through to get here. Even then, I was young and silly enough to think I could click my heels and be there.
I try to share this lesson with people I know who are struggling with the reality of their own current time and place. My journey was winding, sometimes dangerous and eye-opening, sometimes lovely and miraculous. But I love it. Looking back, I have to love it because it brought me here.
My life is not perfect and I will want more and mess up more and be impatient, too. At least now I know that it pays to be patient, be open, know this too shall pass. It will get better. It will get amazing. And then the cycle begins all over again.