There are some memories that will always swirl around my move to Atlanta. Some memories I know will remain special no matter how far away I get from the date 07/22/2022—the day I officially moved into my no-longer-a-college-student apartment.
I will remember the trip to Chicago's China Town that my Kung Fu studio went on. Every time I look at my rice bowls, fan, and lion dance bobble head, I will remember the good food and four-hundred questions we went through on the way back.
I'll remember the last two days. How Angela, a woman who had been at Chan's Kung Fu school for twenty years, got me a going away present. She told me, "This is a tiger charm because it is the year of the tiger. This is so you remember the year of all your accomplishments. It's also good luck."
While sleeping under my new comforter, I'll remember the trip to Home Goods with my sister where we lost our minds over the Ray Dunn pottery littered throughout the store. We were reduced to tears as we wandered through the aisles finding more and more aggressively large mugs, taco truck stands, and toxically positive snow globes.
The move itself will remind me of energy drinks, Buba's eyes peering through a big crate, and Frank Ocean's Blond. I'll remember the meal with my cousins in Louisville where we stayed the night to split the trip in half. I stayed up until midnight talking knowing I'd be tired the next day.
As I sit on my new couch, or dining table, or reading chair, I'll think of the frantic search on Facebook marketplace. How I accidently asked about an end table in Sarasota, Florida that was listed in Atlanta. When we learned of the mistake, the person informed me that he'd be in Atlanta in a week and would sell it to me if I still wanted it.
I knew I would move away since I was young, but now that I'm here, 780 miles away, I can't believe that this is what it is. It's not as romantic as I imagined. I get caught in traffic. I have rent to pay, meaning my bank account wouldn't like me to become a local at a coffee shop. I'm not the it girl who never runs across the street when she j-walks. I don't j-walk because it's too hot to be outside. This new life is normal. I wake up, go to work, write my book, watch my shows.
But there are still moments that catch me off guard. That remind me of how wonderful my life has become. When I swipe my badge at work, finish a book in my living room late at night, take a shower in the dark, I smile knowing that this I made this happen. My growth, my courage have lead me to this pool where I float, looking at the pink clouds as the drift in the evening slowly growing colder.