Dreams and Detours

Happy Friday! I hope your week has been less stressful than mine, but if it hasn’t, then I hope you have a furry friend who can cheer you up just like mine can. Or a Netflix subscription and a couple free hours this weekend to squeeze in some quality binge-watching.

As for me, I’m going to be spending this weekend applying for jobs. In Louisville.

Yep, you read that right. For months now, I’ve been talking about how I’m going to move to Chicago and chase my dreams in the big city. I’ve started trying to network there, looked for apartments, and applied to jobs like crazy. I had my heart set on this move.

So, why am I changing plans now?

To put it simply, I’m broke.

It doesn’t matter how much I work, I will not have enough money saved up in the near future to afford moving to a place with such a high cost of living, especially if I want to live somewhere that I feel safe walking home alone. Not to mention the cost of flying my belongings, my cat, and myself up there (driving up just isn’t an option, for multiple reasons).

Then there’s the whole, “What if I don’t get a job right away?”, “What if I do get a job but they want me to start immediately and I don’t have an apartment yet?”, or my personal favorite, “What if I seriously underestimate my cost of living, especially with student loans, and end up living paycheck to paycheck?”

None of those scenarios are very appealing.

My sister and I talked it over last week and she reminded me of all the good reasons to stay in Louisville. These include, but are not limited to: it’s relatively cheap; I can still live at home while I start a new job and look for a new apartment; my friends are all here; and it’ll be easier on my cat, especially since he’s not used to being an only child and will probably want to come over for play dates with the dogs frequently. And worst case scenario, my baby boy can move back in with my sister if he really hates apartment living that much.

If you know anything about me, it’s that I’m a planner. I’m also a bit goal-obsessed and once I envision a specific way that I want something to go, I tend to hold on tight, no matter the cost. That’s why it’s been so hard for me to admit that maybe, just maybe, the way that I want the future to go isn’t the only way. Or the best way.

I guess the whole point of this article is this: it’s okay if you have to make some detours on the road trip to your dreams, as long as you don’t lose sight of your destination. Everything will work out eventually, even if it doesn’t all happen the way that you wanted it to.

So, keep on chasing those dreams. I know that I will; I’m applying for jobs across the country, including Chicago, as you read this. I’m even looking into jobs in Europe (Irish citizenship for the win!).

I’m just not ruling Louisville out quite yet.

I’m learning that it’s not the location that determines whether or not my dreams will work out. It’s my heart and my drive that will make the difference.

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