During the second six weeks of my sophomore year of high school, my family moved. We had moved multiple times before, but this time was different. This was BIG. We were moving to the big city and I was a (gulp) teenager!
I remember being full of teenage girl sadness on the ride to our new home city. I’m pretty sure I played my sad Chicago songs over and over on my Walkman (is that what that thing was called?). And I remember writing torturous, heart wrenching letters and poems to the friends I was leaving behind.
So we get to our (soon to find out rat infested) rent house and since I had yet to get all enrolled into the local high school, my parents were okay with me plopping myself on the sofa in front of the TV for our entire first full day. I’m sure they were glad to have the sulking teenager out of the way so they could tend to all the moving tendings. Well, we didn’t have cable (and we were never gonna get it either), but if I put the TV antenna a certain way, I was able to make out some fuzzy music videos. You know, think of MTV (remember when MTV actually played music videos?) but with snowy screen (and no cool VJs). I think the sound sort of came in and out as well. So yeah, lousy reception for this whatever channel it was. But I guess me being my teenage self and all, I didn’t mind the scratchy videos and actually felt a little comforted by the familiar 80’s tunes. Maybe I felt some needed familiarity.
I recall that, just for a split second or two, I had this thought about staying in this state forever. What if I didn’t have to start a whole new school the next day? That wouldn’t be so bad. I could eat snacks and watch this crummy channel, and, as a bonus, I could get all caught up on Days of Our Lives and The Young and the Restless! School? Who needs school? I already knew everything anyway, I had just turned 16 after all. Okay, so I admit, there was no well thought out plan here. What do you expect? I had just turned 16 after all.
As another hour wore on, I realized my thoughts of sequestration weren’t very practical. I mean, I’d eventually learn to have fun in this new environment, right? I’m sure I could make at least one, maybe two, decent friends. I couldn’t actually stay in this house forever. (And I really didn’t want to after we discovered the rat infestation. We moved out of there asap. Ewww….)
Anyway, practicality did prevail. It wasn’t easy, but I did adjust to my new surroundings. I made friends and I was able to (shock!) still find things to smile and laugh about. Gerald likes to point out that if my family had never made this move, the two of us may have never met. Hmm… Oh, I mean, true! So true! And I never would have had the same opportunities (education, employment) if we had never made a change to big city life. It’s amazing when you stop to think about how all the big, and even little, twists and turns and decisions you make in your life can totally impact your whole future. (I still hate moving though.)