Have you ever thought about becoming a minimalist? As in, selling/giving away/throwing away all of your possessions and living out of a backpack? I have, but I think moving tends to do that to people.

Moving in and out of our home and my office at OSU.

Moving in and out of our home and my office at OSU.

On January 9, 2016, I moved to Stillwater, Oklahoma to start a master’s program at OSU. On June 29, 2017, we loaded our belongings into a storage unit and the back of our cars, in preparation for an unknown future.

Pulling away from our Stillwater home, June 29, around 7 p.m.

Pulling away from our Stillwater home, June 29, around 7 p.m.

In the short time (five years) since I started college, I’ve moved six times, and every time you move, you learn you’ve accumulated new baggage, whether physical or emotional. This time was a mix of both. With two rooms, and piles of books around, we knew we had some extra things, but this was the first move where it was hard to reflect back. The girl in that top picture, moving into the house, was uncomfortable, and scared scared scared. Back then, I had no idea how I could even move into the next day, let alone have a future.

Move in January 2016.

Move in January 2016.

In the year since I moved here, I’ve been diagnosed with anxiety and PTSD, had three different counselors, gained 20 pounds (give or take), lost four people I love, and struggled through navigating graduate studies, mental health, and physical health. I’ve had so many highs, too, like publishing my first two books, visiting with friends and family, and getting my master’s degree.

My mom, brothers, and me after I defended my master's thesis, June 26, 2017.

My mom, brothers, and me after I defended my master's thesis, June 26, 2017.

Some chapters are more difficult than others to read, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad story. Still, I’m happy this one is closing, and I’m opening the next.

Right now, we’re staying with Ty’s grandparents who have been so amazing and helped us move and opened their home to us until we can both find a career and a location that suits us. I’ve interviewed several places so far, even in Wisconsin and Ohio, and have applied all over. This stage is both exciting and scary. Exciting because anything is possible. Scary for the same reason.

Ty's grandparents who helped us move, and spoil us and our dogs equally. I'm so so lucky to have them in my life!

Ty's grandparents who helped us move, and spoil us and our dogs equally. I'm so so lucky to have them in my life!

So, this is my life update and check in. Until then, you can find me in front of my laptop, typing out my thoughts, searching the job boards, and overall, basking in the transition, because real growth happens outside of our comfort zone.

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