I am so excited/nervous/anxious to write this post. To be honest, it’s been sitting in my personal diary for quite some time waiting to make it’s online appearance.
This might be my longest post ever, but I promise I’ll try to stay on track. Things around here have been a little scattered because well, I’ve been scattered. Please bear with me.
If you’ve been following along on this journey of mine, you will know that I moved to Edmonton in August 2012 to be with Greg & to find a job that fit my lifestyle. Things didn’t work out as planned with the job hunt due to visa regulations so in November after I was offered an awesome opportunity with Spitfiregirl I jumped on it. As with everything in my life, it happened really quick. Within a week, I was on a plane to San Francisco to live temporarily while I worked for the ever so awesome, Heidi Yarger.
November went really well. I was too busy to think about the future. In December, I spent the month working/traveling/visiting family so again, I wasn’t thinking too much about the decisions that were needed to be made in January. I somehow managed to snag a ticket to Alt Summit on December 30th. I’m telling you, it was fate. Alt really was the clicker for me.
I didn’t really prepare for Alt as I didn’t have any specific goals as to why I was attending. I just knew I needed a little bit of direction on becoming a better blogger. See, before Alt I had a little problem with my blog. I had a billion things I wanted to talk about, but I was afraid (yes. you heard me right. i was afraid of what you’d think) Let me elaborate a little more.
For the past 6 years, I have lived in Rovaniemi, Finland; Florence, Italy; Berlin, Germany; Chicago, Illinois; West Lafayette, Indiana; Vancouver, BC; Edmonton, AB; and finally San Francisco, CA so there’s this notion from friends, family and acquaintances that I live this luxurious, confused, and uncommitted lifestyle.
I was ready to settle down, but every time I confronted anyone about the issue they kind of laughed it off as if the idea of Angela settling in one city for more than 3 months was nearly impossible. This really took a toll on me. Why did I care so much that no one believed that I could commit to a city? Everything else in my life I’ve been committed to. I was just never ready to settle. Apparently that didn’t make sense to most people.
I wanted to so badly address this issue on the blog, but because it is public I was nervous it would hinder my job hunt. No company wants to hire a girl who jumps from city to city, right? (Wrong) I also didn’t want to complain online about something that seemed so petty to some.
It was in my favourite track from Alt “blogging with authenticity & intention” with Jess Lively & Ez Pudewa that I realized the value of sharing these struggles & stories with one another. After discussing “things i’m afraid to tell you” with the group I knew that was the exact reason why I was meant to be at Alt. I was able to breathe again. I was ready to get real about some of the issues I was facing.
As soon as I arrived back in San Francisco everything became clear to me. I decided I would find a job in a city that I’d like to settle in for a while. I wanted to live somewhere where I would be able to make friends & stay long enough to really get to know them. ( note: I still love all of you that i met briefly over the random, short trips and absolutely cherish our relationships) I also wanted an address that I could remember and actually give out to family & friends without worrying whether or not I’ll be there to receive their treats (still working on that one…heh ) I was ready to focus on my top priorities – my blog & brand, my relationship, my well-being and the dreadful student loans that I’m currently paying off.
Shortly thereafter, I was offered a job in Vancouver which brings me to where I am today. I’m not writing this post to you to explain why I did what I did or to prove that I am serious about settling in Vancouver for a while, but I hope to inspire you to create your own path. To not take what others say about you in a negative way. Sure some may think I am uncommitted for all the hopping around I did, but that’s not the case. It never was. And those who really know me, know that I wasn’t ready to settle. I ask you this, though – Why does the idea of being uncommitted to a city have to be a negative quality? It doesn’t.
I was hungry to discover everything this beautiful world has to offer. And while that may not be the path for some, it was mine. The journeys I have had & the people I have met would have never been possible without wandering from place to place. I still don’t know whether or not I’ll be here in two years, but I do know that I’m excited to make this city mine.
I challenge you to take all of the “negative” traits people associate you with and make them positive! They make you, you. And that’s quite special. Don’t you think?
* My hard drive with my photo collection is back in Edmonton with Greg so facebook to the rescue with a few photos from the past 6 years of living abroad.