For a while now, I've been dreaming about what city we'd move to for graduate school. Initially, I was thinking about some exciting new city like Chicago, Denver, or St Louis. Then I realized that I'm married now & have a financially responsibility to not rack up a bunch more debt and move to a whole new (expensive) city. So, I started seriously considering moving back to Knoxville for UT's social work program. It sounded so fun... Knoxville is my hometown, and I love the idea of eating at The Tomato Head (all-time favorite restaurant), biking everywhere, paying super cheap rent, and having nothing to do because Knoxville is tiny and boring. It was really fun to dream about, and even though I never actually decided to go there, I needed time to dream about it and hold onto the idea.
But then I thought about the fact that we have an amazing thing going on here. I couldn't imagine leaving my friends, my job, my community, just for a practical degree that I'm getting to basically get a job like the one I already have. Not only do I love my home in Nashville, but I have put in so much time and energy in activism work here, and I can't imagine being anywhere else for internships or fieldwork in my areas of interest. All of the things I've gotten involved with in Nashville are vitally important to me, and I can't imagine studying social work apart from those things because they are what made me realize my passion for social work. Plus, I'm learning that community work is all about connections. A big part of the reason I got my job is because I knew someone who worked there and had a lot of previous service-model work on my resume of experiences.
So, drumroll please..... We're officially staying in Nashville for at least 3-4 more years! We've started hunting for a pet-friendly house/duplex with a yard. We have a lead on one... Fingers crossed!!!
Life is incredibly challenging right now, what with being so new in the career world, and married life, and the so-called "real world". But I signed up for a retirement plan last week, so I'm officially an adult. Bring it on, world.
The next week or so will be filled with visiting duplexes and dreaming about what kind of puppy I want.
And, I can't imagine doing all of this hard stuff without my amazing husband standing alongside me every step of the way. As much as I love the thought of the future, I love my husband even more!
Oh, PS- I got accepted into the Big Brothers Big Sisters program! I'm a Big Sis!!! I can't wait to get paired with my Little Sis. I can't WAIT!!! And I love knowing that I'll get to have a long-term relationship with her, much past my minimum 1-year commitment.
Home sweet home