It’s 2002, and I’m moving out of my apartment and into my first condo. I was going to be a homeowner for the first time, paying an unthinkable sum (at the time) if $601,000. I had never owned property before, and the stress and emotions that come with that huge life step were all crashing down on me.
After all, I was comfortable in my apartment – and in my life. But I also felt it was the right time. So many people I knew were also taking the leap of faith into “adulting,” so it just seemed like the right thing to do.
However, little did I know that some of the most challenging – but also the best – times in my life would soon follow, both personally, professionally, and financially.
That change was painful, but here I am, stronger, wiser (I hope!), and with the confidence that I can fight the next battle when it comes.
I’ve been reflecting on this lately, as one of my neighbors, and also closest friends of 11 years, is selling his house and moving back to Chicago.
We’ve seen each other almost daily for these 11 years. We’ve been there for each other during the births of our children, deaths in the family, personal pain and sacrifice. We’ve been pillars of strength and understanding for each other through countless good days, great days, and the inevitable tough days.
But we always endured the ups and downs together, and always had each other’s backs without fail.
So, as my neighbor and friend is packing and preparing for his next chapter, I can’t help but thinking, wat makes us change the situation we are in? And why do we often seek out changes that fundamentally shift who we are to that point?
What is it about extreme situations that brings out the best or worst of us?
All of those feelings and questions came flooding back as my neighbor moved, reliving when I moved from apartment to condo, and then, sold that condo after years and bought my first house.
I had similar feelings. The loss of what was so comfortable, the consistency and perception of safety from the familiar; the known.
As I mourned this loss of my great friend and neighbor (and it really was a loss), I also reflect upon how I could have done better when it comes to embracing change.
We all have choices in life, and also are forced to cope when life’s slings and arrows of outrageous fortunes happen to us. I guess what makes us all stronger is how we fight through those tough times, and how we come out as better human beings on the other end.
I realize that it’s okay to feel the anxiety sadness at the end of an era or a good friendship, as we are really mourning a loss. But we also should keep our chin up and our eyes on the horizon, as we also can expect the glow of a great new beginning.