Moving can be daunting y’all, especially when you have NO CLUE as to what you may be getting into! If you know me, then you know that I currently live in the Washington, DC area after attending college and living in Raleigh, North Carolina for four years. I most definitely called Raleigh home for these past four years, and it always will be. However, I knew that I needed a change in my life in terms of where I lived. So, when the right job opportunity for me popped up in the Washington, DC area, I took a leap of faith and decided to make the big move to the nation’s capital. Once I got here, my preconceived notions were drastically different and that is OKAY. I know that my assumptions about my move were not what they turned out to be and that it is the same for many. That being said, today, I will be breaking down what the moving to a brand-new city transition ACTUALLY entails!
- You WILL NOT know people and that is OKAY – Whether you come from a big city or a small town or something of sorts in between, moving to someplace brand-new means that *yes* you are in the newbie in town. I know some people who move to a brand-new place and know only a handful of people or even next to none. On the other hand, I know some folks who have moved to a new city to have their family and some friends there (case in point: myself) or make the move with a significant other and/or their children. Whoever or wherever you are moving to, you will not know everyone in your new area. Even if you are moving to a place that you lived years prior, you probably still won’t know everyone like you did when you left. Cities, towns, and places in general do change over the years – people for the most part are moving in and out of places. So, that being said, there will be lots of new people around and that can be a great thing as it sets the stage for plenty of opportunities to mingle within your own backyard like you may never have before!
- Establishment within your community – Going off of the idea of not knowing everyone or enough people to make yourself feel as if you’re apart of your new community, others that are in your community have probably placed down their roots already, even if it’s only been recently. Case in point: when I moved to the Washington, DC area, my family and friends in the area had already established their roots here. That, however, did not mean that they didn’t make time for me. It simply just meant that they already have a footing that is long than my own in this area, which is NORMAL. It WILL take time for you to develop your own footing within your new hometown and that is OKAY. I think of it this way: when I went off to college, it took me and my friends a few months-a year or even more to fully adjust to life there and get a grip on it all. This SAME concept of adjusting to college life goes to life in your new city – it is only normal. Above all else, remember that you WILL thrive in your new city, yet it just may take some time for you to just that!
- Things will change in your former city and so may your friend circle – Ah, the dreaded things will change sentiment. *I know, I know*, it may be a challenge to hear this as it is a hard pill to swallow. BUT, as we all know, change is inevitable. It is for all of us. Friend groups change as we move cities, graduate from high school, college, and even switch jobs. Change is bound to happen, and, although we may not enjoy it, it is meant to happen and we must take it with a grain of salt. At times, it can be tough to see your friends and family in your previous hometown simply going about their lives there on the daily, but it is not the end of the world. Your friends and family will have those adjustment periods in their lives, too. In fact, they are 9 times out of 10 adjusting to the fact that you’re not living near them anymore, too. It goes both ways. Above all else, be sure to keep in touch with your friends and family in your own hometown and make time for them, whether it be sending them a letter in the mail, a text message, calling them, or planning a visit to see them. On the same token, you can also use your move as an opportunity to invite your friends and family to come and stay with you, as they will: 1 – have a free place to stay and 2 – be able to check out your new digs!
- Lots of alone time – Alone time can be dreadful for some, but it can also be a time of self growth and courage. Being alone was one of my biggest fears in my high school and early college years. However, when I lived by myself my Senior year of college during the COVID-19 pandemic, that fear went away over time and I began to embrace it and actually grow from it all. Depending on where you are moving to and who you are moving with if anyone, you are bound to have some more alone time as you set foot in your new city. It’s the name of the game y’all! For some, this may be a challenge as you may have never actually had to spend time alone and that is OKAY. Finding hobbies, new activities to try, and checking out trails and restaurants near your new home are a great way to actually enjoy being alone. In fact, one of my college professors once said that everyone must do something alone such as travel, go see a movie, or shop. Indeed, she was right!
- Getting lost A LOT – Going to a new city in general will involve getting lost a bit along the way. I am most definitely someone who WILL get lost and I’m not afraid to admit it! Getting lost or not knowing your way, whether it be learning a new transit system, navigating a new job, or making your way down the streets of your new town, can be scary. But, DO NOT be afraid to ask for help! In fact, not knowing your way at first will pave the way for you learning the way. It’s all about the process.
- Homesickness – Whether or not you felt at home in your previous home base, you will probably feel homesick and miss it once you move. Even if you were ready to leave, there will still be many aspects of your old hometown that you will miss once you’re not there. You know that one thing that was annoying at the time? Well, you may miss that, too! Sometimes, things about your old hometown that you thought you would not miss you’ll actually miss. The same concept can go for the things that you knew you would miss, as well. It is OKAY to miss things from back at your old home. The best part, though, is that when you go back to visit, they will probably be there waiting for your arrival!
- You will LOVE your new town! – The best part of it all?! You will fall in LOVE with your new town and you will thrive!!! Moving can be difficult and has its hardships, but at the end of the day, you will fall in love again and again with your new city and make it your own while at it. Although it may take some time to get to that point, you will and it will be great, too!
Moving can be daunting and very difficult at times, but I have seen that the rewards most definitely outweigh the risks. There is so much to be said for getting out of your comfort zone and taking a leap of faith, especially if it means moving to a brand-new city. In the end, it will ALL be worth it – just wait!
XOXO – Katie <3