“What are you going to do with the mountains in your way? Because you have to decide. Because you’ve always got a choice. And because there will always be mountains.
Are you gonna let them tower over you and let the shadows in the valley scare you? Are you going to sit around at the base of the mountain and say ‘some day I’ll see the top’? Are you going to try to avoid the inevitable & go around them? Or are you going to — dare I say — accept the challenge? Will you climb it – and then jump and shout and scream and be oh, so excited when you get to the top because you absolutely crushed it?
You’ve always got a choice – what are you going to do with the mountains in your way?”
I decided to climb it. I didn’t just dream about it any more. I slammed the door in fear’s face and decided to go beyond the shadows. I didn’t just toy with the idea any longer. I decided that mountain will not define where my feet can go. I am going to climb it. And it won’t be easy. I had a moving day. That means the bags got packed and my feet hit the ground running towards a new destination.
“You’ve always got a choice, todays the day to decide. Work towards your goals and when you get there – it’ll all just be the beginning of something far greater than you ever could have imagined”
I am no expert on moving, transitioning, or travelling but I like to think I am. I have become accustomed to moving around lots, taking big trips, and having extended time periods of just “enjoying being where my feet are”.
Although it hasn’t been that long since I moved outta my parent’s house — I’ve been learning a whole bunch of new things and I know that now is the best time to give you some hints about what to take and what to leave behind. But more importantly, I’m going to do my best to show you how to do that while saying goodbye to the life you’re leaving behind. All while preparing for the life you’re about to have.
Today, you’re getting a list. If you think something will work for you, keep it in your back pocket and hopefully it comes in handy when you go to grab your passport next time.
My moving advice:
I — when I recently moved, it was not forever but I had to fit everything into 3 suitcases. Out of all the things I had to leave behind, I brought my favourite blanket and its still the best choice I could have made. That is a piece of home for me. Carry a piece of home with you when you move. (Other ideas: a mug, or some pictures from home.)
II — a mug is also a good idea (and I wish I had of brought one with me, but I didn’t. My friend always does this when she travels, and she’ll pass her mug to the flight attendants when offered tea. Home wherever she goes!)
III — I always send my old friends my new address right away and THIS MATTERS because my friends are gems and they always write me. Having their hand writing in my fingers makes my life feel like its all in one place, even though they’re all over the world.
IV — you find you’re in a new culture? It is IMPORTANT that you respect that with all your capabilities. It doesn’t matter if you understand it or not. You’re allowed to ask questions, but never never never criticize. NEVER. If you think it might be offensive, it probably is. I can’t believe I need to say this in 2018, but it appears that some people still have yet to get the memo.
Whatever is culturally appropriate, YOU are the foreigner — YOU need to adapt. It sucks. Do it anyway. Learn the new language and stop calling trousers ‘pants’.
V — I obviously brought all my favourite pictures of my people, too. I also rearranged the room I was given. Between my pictures and my new layout, I felt like my room was actually my space.
VI — when you’re on a trip, send your friends pictures of all the pretty things you see. Don’t flood your Facebook with 20+ pictures everyday. You also don’t need a 34 picture Insta-story. No one cares about your life that much. But your friends will feel more apart of your new life this way, and you will get to have real conversations about what you’ve done and experienced. It’s a win-win for everyone. I understand sharing the adventure on social media is so fun, but please just stop sharing Facebook albums with 482930 different angles of a cool statue you saw in the middle of Europe.
Not to say DON’T create a Facebook album. Because you should be excited to share this — just be mindful of how much you’re posting. Because social media is to connect you with your friends — but you want to use your space to add important things to each others’ life.
VII — If you’re starting a new job, get to know your coworkers. Be a blessing in their life; someone they can look forward to seeing. If your coworker drives you absolutely nuts.. pray for her and love her anyway.
VIII — moving away from good friendships are hard work. It means you’ve both need to put in more effort. And sometimes it will feel like a one-sided effort, but really, it’s good.
IX — Moving into new friendships, you feel like you can’t let the new people in your life down EVER. You still need to make a great impression, right? W r o n g. If you start a friendship with this mentality, that person will begin to expect it and you’ll never know when to just stop and be yourself. You’re still new, you’re allowed to let people down because you’re not holding them up. Just be yourself. This is all a process, usually it’s more messy than we’d like to post on Instagram, but it’s worth it 1000x for golden, authentic friendships.
X — just because you’re living on your own doesn’t mean you can leave the dirty dishes in the sink forever. You’ve got a sink — do the damn dishes.
XI — just because you’re living on your own doesn’t mean you can leave the clean dishes in the dish-rack forever, either. You’ve got shelves and cupboards — use them.
XII — just because you’re living on your own doesn’t mean doing laundry is optional. Actually FOLD YOUR CLOTHES. AND actually PUT THEM AWAY. Those close have a home, and it’s not on your floor.
XIII — candles are always great.
VIV — so is tea.
XV — go to dinner (or just desert and tea) alone once or twice if you’ve never done it before. No one here knows you, and it 1. just saved you from cooking and 2. switched up the scenery a little bit. Also bonus: 3. It’s really healthy to know how to appreciate your own company every once in a while.
XVI — Go for a walk instead of watching Netflix next time. It’s way more rewarding.
XVII — speaking of walking, while on a road trip, get out of the car and walk around. Walk down some train tracks in the middle of nowhere, or walk to a cool land mark. My mom made us do this all the time on our recent road trip. I hated it because I just wanted to get the miles over with, but those road-side rest-stops on the trans Canada hold some good memories.
XVIII — speaking of road trip memories, my mom and I also had slushy adventures. We hit up ALL the 7/11’s across the country and back. But really, we tried to find as many fun slushy flavours as possible (it was summer). It kept us sane by giving us something to get excited about every once in a while. Even if you don’t go on a cross-country slushy hunt, you can look for good coffee or spruce trees or whatever you’re into while on a roady, it’ll be worth it, hands down.
XIX — When you move, you will probably forget your keys once or twice. You might loose your bus pass and you’ll get lose. Oh and it won’t be pretty. It will take mistakes like these to mold your character into the beautiful person God created you to be. It’s part of staying in the same place, too — you finally have time to make dumb mistakes like that. It’s an important part of life.
So you’re one step closer to being ready to go. You decided to pack your tooth brush? That’s probably a bad idea — just pack a new one. Bringing old tooth brushes is honestly a pain because you need to use a ziplock bag or whatever. Then a little water goes into the bag then you feel uncomfortable and ugh just throw a new one in your carry-on.
Have fun, safe travels, and adventure with your whole heart — where ever the planes may take you.