Saturday, July 25, 2009

A Long Time Coming...

I knew in 2002 that I needed to go to grad school. I was 22 then and full of idealism and adventure. In addition, I was still finishing up my undergraduate years and the idea of more school didn’t sound so awesome at that point, so I put the idea in the back of my head for a while and lived my life.

It’s been a good run, and I find myself finally ready to go back to the world of academia or some semblance of it.

Tomorrow will mark my first full week in Chicago, the new city to add in the destinations of my life. I just quit my job (which I really liked), said goodbye to my family and friends and moved half way across the country (hey, at least it’s not a whole different country entirely).

Really, this has been a tough move…and it was a difficult decision to leave Connecticut. It might sound a bit strange in comparison so some of the other places I have galavanted, but I built a life in CT….and it was a good one. However, I think that I am following the right path…something that has been a long time coming.

Thankfully, once I made my decision to move to Chicago, everything clicked. I snagged a sweet internship with the Ministry office at Loyola (my school), found a really great place to live in a community called Open Hands (think Jesuit Volunteer Corps with folks who have been out of undergrad for a few years) and I will be studying Pastoral Counseling (enough said).

So far, what I have to report is this…

1. Great decision #1… take the Prius upgrade over the Kia…$50 in gas from CT to Chicago can also ROCK your world.

2. Lake Michigan is pretty darn big and people say, “it’s like the ocean…,” and I can respect that with the exception to that fact that it doesn’t smell or taste just right. But that’s fine, because this giant lake is just down the street from my house and that is sweet!

3. Public transportation is really great…I live on the Red Line, which goes pretty much everywhere you would want to go and next to the chaos of San Salvador, Chicago’s CTA schedules are really easy. I’m sold…

4. I already found my new favorite taco place, Thai place, coffee shop and book stores.

5. I live next to a sweet church. (no explanation needed)

6. I am within walking distance of at least two gay bars and a short bus ride away from the lesbian Mecca of Chicago.

7. I met a lot of new folks who will probably be my friends (no payment needed)!

8. Surprisingly there are a lot of free things to do in the city including concerts, lectures and the Zoo!

Leaving friends and family behind is tough. It always has been. There were some tears but, within time I will settle in like I always do and Chicago will feel like hope to. So stay tuned to more adventures.