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Friday, July 21, 2017

The Big Move

Written by  Brian George Hose

This week I’m writing to you from the edge of sanity and reason. You see, I’m moving and now understand that moving is one of the most stressful life events that a person can face. Everything about moving is stressful – finding the appropriate number of boxes, figuring out what will go into said boxes, and then actually moving those boxes from your old life to your new life. The things that don’t make the cut, the stuff that won’t be joining you in your new life, still need to be moved and dealt with. Factor in the July heat and humidity and you have a recipe for an experience that will make you hate everything.

Moving isn’t the only big task on my plate, though. As I shared a few weeks ago, I was accepted into a really good graduate program and have been waiting for all the necessary details to fall into place. It was a “hurry up and wait” situation, meaning I had done my part and just had to trust that things would come together. So I gave my landlord notice and made arrangements to move in with family for ten days before I left for school.

So, I started packing up my old life. It took longer than expected because I’m easily distracted and occasionally overwhelmed. When that happened I reminded myself that this was necessary for me to get to the next step, to be closer to the person I want to be, and to just keep packing. Everything I packed had a story and I was surprised by how clearly these memories came flooding back to me. The tie I wore to that really important interview, the souvenirs and mementos from countless events, the books my friends insisted I just had to read, they all took me back to a time and place in my life when everything was different.

Then I got the news from the school. I hadn’t been selected to receive a housing allocation, a big problem for an out-of-stater less than three weeks before the start of classes. Housing was the cornerstone of my academic house of cards, and soon the whole thing began to crumble. The dream that was so close to becoming reality seemed to die in front of me. I’m still reeling from the news.

But I had given notice to my landlord and had to keep working. Everyone wanted to know what I was going to do about school and I couldn’t provide an answer because my brain had turned into tapioca. Then, as I dug through layers of the archeology that was my life in this apartment, I realized something: Going to a fancy school isn’t going to make me the person I want to be. Sure, it’ll help, but ultimately it’s up to me and the decisions I make that determine what and who I’ll become. The evidence was all around me. Over the years I’ve been a roller derby referee, a church pianist, and a hundred other things that don’t seem to be related but are all part of who I am today.

It seems appropriate that all this is happening during Pride season, and not just because I’m cleaning out my closets. I think it’s always good to stroll down Memory Lane and remember the things that made us happy and proud in the past because sometimes those things help us realize what will make us happy and proud in the future. And, if you stumble across something that isn’t serving you anymore, just get rid of it and make room for something better in your future.

As for me, I don’t know where I’ll be in a month but I’m proud that I know I’ll find a way to be okay because I get to decide what my next big move will be.

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