After all, the extent of which I hated Williamsburg is well known.
That hasn't changed. The college is still filled with lots of entitled rich kids while the town itself is falling down, there are no good stores in sight, no bus system, and no way of entertaining myself when nearly everyone goes home for the weekend.
I used to think anywhere south of Ohio and east of the central time zone line would be the same.
Then I went on this trip to Nashville. Maybe Nashville was just another city, but I fell in love with it. Being there just felt...right. Then I had to come back down to reality.
Living near Fargo (which is more of a 'big town' than a city) is expensive enough. There's no way I could find an apartment in Nashville at a price I can afford. If money was no issue, I'd probably be living in Chicago right now. I've felt drawn to that city even before I saw it for the first time.
Thinking logically, I clicked around on webpages for other nearby towns,
and I found one that looks right, only an hour away from Nashville. A friend that I met at the convention told me about the town she lives in. Rent is cheaper than I could have imagined for a town of its size, there is a good bus system and enough stores of all kinds to satisfy me.
The school there is one of the best public colleges in Tennessee.
I'm done filling out my application. I'll probably get in, but even if I don't, I'll probably still move there and take distance classes from home.
The thing that got me interested in TN Tech is their financial aid requirements.
I could qualify as an independent student if I could prove I had no financial support from my parent, which is easy enough to do. I pay everything...rent, bills, food, clothes, every thing I own these days, I've bought for myself somehow, and I could get in-state tuition if I can promise I will live there year-round and not go home for the summer.
What home? No family member of mine opens their house to me for 3 months of the year rent-free.
Even if one did, I LIKE apartment life. I don't want to go back to having just one room to myself. I've also fallen in love with the cute little 2 bedroom townhouses Mike & I could be living in for less than I'm paying now for this one bedroom in a sketchy part of town...
(Come on! My bike got stolen from our parking lot!) If he's working and I have money coming in, we could possibly even rent a house for ourselves. Either way, the kitties will have a yard to run around in.
Food is also cheaper in southern grocery stores, so even if I don't qualify for food stamps anymore, I can eat good, healthy meals more regularly. I will be happy because I can go outside at all months of the year, and not be afraid of freezing to death.
My anxiety will decrease because I won't have to constantly worry about snow making the buses late every day from November to March.
The friends I met (and reunited with in KY too) totally made the trip...
I can't imagine never visiting them more than once a year.
Old friends from college seem to genuinely want me to visit more than that. We had fun together.
The people here who think they can control my life will no longer be able to...
On this trip, I've learned that I'm a lot more independent than I thought I was.
This town doesn't need me, and I doubt my "family" would miss me much.
Why stay where I'm not needed?
I'm ready to find another new chapter of life on my own.
(and of course Mike will help.)