“If there’s happiness tucked away in my tragedies, I’ll find it no matter what. If the blind can find joy in music, and the deaf can discover it with colors, I will do my best to always find the sun in the darkness because my life isn’t one sad ending – it’s a series of endless happy beginnings.”
It took me four years to return to Harrisburg. I left in 2015 after the challenges of my life choices. I’d been living uptown since 2012 when I moved up to share a house with my sister and her friends. Then she married and moved out, and the other girls found their path took a different route and left as well. It became clear after a short while, that I wasn’t meant to stay in that space. Without a clear path, or plan, I went home.
I had to move to my hometown and owned the discomfort of what it’s like to be 36 and living at home, with a 40-minute commute each way to my sales job that I accepted one month after I had left the city.
It took me months to reframe how to love the space I created. The two rooms I filled with my things that came from one apartment to the next, over the past two decades of my life. It was over the past two years that I discovered minimalism and how it had a profound effect on my life. I learned gratitude for the journey and recognized that I needed to learn how to manage money better, and after the past three years, I’m now debt free.
The biggest thing I learned while living at home was to be grateful for every experience. I learned that I was lucky to have a home with central air in the summertime. I was thankful for a nature park a mile from my house. I enjoyed discovering the small shops along the main street in Annville and talked to joggers along the way.
Now I have my own apartment, just a few short blocks from where I had lived just a few years ago, but it seems so much different. I’m different. I sat along the river the first weekend here, catching a break with the thunderstorms. I started to cry, and cry, and cry. I recalled all the things that brought me to that moment. The decisions I made that lead me to become debt free, the choices about who I would choose to give my time and energy to going forward. I feel like I earned this place. I’d done the work, I deserved it.
New space, new goals
I found a charming apartment that is one block from the Susquehanna River and a 4-minute commute to work. It had just about everything I was looking for in an apartment, a porch with a backyard, near the river, hardwood floors, and lots of light. The price was within my budget and I was lucky to sign a lease for this space to call my new home.
Going forward, I’ll use the extra time to continue to build on my new travel writing business, which I’m working to grow and add clients to my experience. Currently, I’m writing for Travel Pulse, but I’m looking to add more clients and focus on highlighting destinations of calm.
I plan to work with a friend to hire her for interior decorating to find furniture and pieces that accent the space. I’m also planning to host a tea party or clothing swap in the fall once I’ve got some seating. If you are in the Harrisburg area, and we are friends, reach out and stop by for a visit.