I had always wanted to live in the city. It's exotic and exciting, and let's be honest: The city goers are the ones who "have it all."
There's always somewhere to go, people to socialize with and there's no denying it's just the "in" place to be.
I had no doubt in my mind moving to London would be the new beginning I had been craving. My life was finally about to start.
I could say goodbye to my mundane little town where everyone still thought of me as a sweet, young girl; I would make the most of the chance to be whomever I wanted to be.
Or so I thought.
The city goers are the ones who 'have it all.'
At first, everything was new and exhilarating — I loved it. I couldn't stop telling everyone how amazing my new life was.
I was desperate for people to feel jealous of how well I was doing for myself. I was being offered opportunities I could only have imagined when I lived back home.
My job was exciting, my flat was located in the heart of the city and my social calendar was more packed than it had ever been before.
Everything was how I envisioned it to be. I had absolutely no reason to be unhappy. Yet, for some reason, I wasn't.
I had absolutely no reason to be unhappy. Yet, for some reason, I wasn't.
The novelty of the city wore off fairly quickly, and it soon became clear I had taken my previous life for granted.
Sure, London had thousands of people to socialize with, but I missed the closeness of the people I knew back home.
Naturally, there was always a new and exciting event to attend, but often, I felt as though they just weren't "me" at all. I never expected a city with so much excitement could be a place in which I felt lonely.
I started to miss home comforts, and I didn't want to socialize with new people. I was tired of trying to make my life "different."
I never expected a city with so much excitement could be a place in which I felt lonely.
I wanted to eat at places that were familiar, walk in parks that weren't packed full of people and spend time with friends I didn't have to basically schedule an appointment for.
I knew I wasn't happy, but what could I do?
I had made such a point of making it obvious that I was the happiest I had ever been. I was brave to take such a huge risk by moving away, and I received plenty of comments telling me so.
But how could I tell people that I had made a mistake? How could I admit I was wrong and that I missed the life I had spent so long complaining about?
Essentially, I felt like I couldn't. I was trapped.
I desperately wanted to try and embrace the experience, but I just found myself trying to survive it, instead.
I stopped going home because it made me miss it too much. I started making sure my weeks were as full as possible, just so I wasn't alone, and I visited friends who lived elsewhere as often as I could in an attempt to give myself a break from it all.
I desperately wanted to try and embrace the experience, but I just found myself trying to survive it.
I never wanted to give in to defeat. I thought if I stuck it out long enough, the feelings would go away. I desperately tried to make the life for me, but I realized I was fighting a losing battle.
A year after my move, I left the city in hopes of finding relief. But what surprised me more than anything was the desolation I felt when I departed. I had spent so long in a rut that only allowed me to see the negatives.
As soon as I moved back home, though, it became clear I had benefited from the year in ways I didn't even realize.
Learning to survive on your own makes you prepared for what life will throw at you.
Being ashamed to share my feelings taught me how to survive on my own, and being too proud to leave made me persevere and take part in some unforgettable experiences. Facing the unexpected made me learn to appreciate the comfort in the things I have.
If I could go back, I would swallow my pride and reach out.
But if there's one thing I learned, it's that, sometimes, learning to survive on your own makes you prepared for what life will throw at you... well, at least a little more prepared than you were before.