This past weekend I packed up my car and drove across the state, bound for the city that I called home for three years: Pittsburgh. Driving has always been a time of reflection for me, a time to let my mind wander and focus on the road that snakes ahead in infinite yellow and black. I’ve always loved driving, observing the landscape transform before my eyes as my thoughts bounce from place to place, on this particular journey, as the distance widened between me and my new home, I couldn’t stop thinking about the passage of time and how quickly life seems to transport us. It feels impossible that I’ve already lived in Philadelphia for over four months, but what truly makes my head spin is when I dive a little deeper in my memory and think back to what my younger self expected of the future.
When we’re young, the time that lies ahead is full of expectations, many of them grandiose, shiny and smooth. It’s only as time progresses that we must learn to navigate a road that isn’t freshly paved, but full of bumps and fog and detours. A road that is far more interesting, and far scarier than the one crafted in our heads. Had you asked me five years ago where I expected to be living in the future, I would have answered “Boston” without skipping a beat. That’s where I was, I was comfortable and cozy, but dreaming of escape, a hearty dose of fear holding me back. Sometimes it takes drastic measures, grand gestures, a leap of faith, to launch yourself headfirst into your reality.
Ending up in a city you’d least expect, moving across the county… I can bet that it’s all so much more interesting than the crisp little life you once dreamed up for yourself. It might be a little scary at times, but the best roller coasters always are.
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