It’s incredible how much you can learn in one year. It’s like every single birthday I like to think about the past year and both the great and not so great things that happened to lead me to where I am at this very moment. Such a yogi-thought of mine (too much studio time lately…but is there such a thing?), but one year in Chicago later, I definitely did some growing up.
Last year I made the move here and honestly, it was a pretty intimidating situation. I grew up and went to college in South Carolina, so the farthest drive ever from home tops off at four hours. Charleston was a huge comfort to me and I hesitated many times to think if moving so far was the right decision. Ultimately, the decision has already been made because my dietetic internship is based out of Chicago, so it was a non-negotiable, but if someone had a choice, who would ever choose to leave someplace that absolutely loved?
However, I’m a big believer that the moment you feel the most uncomfortable is the moment (good) change happens. (just like, nutrition happens. I know you’re rolling your eyes…but it doesn’t get old for me)
My old Barre instructor used to ALWAYS say in class, “Change is the only thing that is constant in life.” In my head, I’m just like a) Wow, cheesy enough for a 8:30am barre class b) but hot damn, she’s so right. (Edna, if you’re reading this…you’re always so right!)
Because if you were exactly the same person you were since day one, would you be any closer to your goals? Clearly, we’re all changed in some way since we were younger, but change is more difficult for some than others. Put me in the latter.
It took a literal thousand mile move to push me to embrace change. Putting myself out there, introducing myself to a brand new community and making myself a little uncomfortable….well, it’s exactly what I needed to grow – as an almost Registered Dietitian, an entrepreneur, a friend, and well, myself. Incredible things happen when you throw away fears and self-doubt and stop thinking about the what-if’s. One move to and a year later in Chicago taught me to stop undervaluing myself and all the energy I could offer to those around me. I’m all about a good hustle and damn, Chicago lit that fire under me.
I wanted to reflect back on year one before moving forward to my second and final year of my dietetic internship (I’m so close to being an RD!!) + MBA. Change..it’s here already. For those of you who are like me a little and take comfort in a good old routine, I’d like to challenge you to just embrace the uncomfortable a little this week. Maybe it’s pushing yourself and making it a little more uncomfortable during your workout, or embracing awkward elevator talk in your apartment building or, don’t hate me for this one – not looking down on your phone every 45 seconds (guilty, but I mean, we’re all a work in progress and that’s okay!)
So, Chicago – thank you for taking me in. Thank you for the beautiful summer days that make hibernating in the winter worthwhile, thank you for the beautiful sunrises that made marathon training last season suck less, your beach that is not really a beach but still beach-y enough to remind me of home. And the people. Oh, the people – thank you, thank you! I couldn’t think of landing in any other city better than Chicago. Bring on year two!