The process of relocating back to the South was a bold move in faith and hope. A way to push myself out of my comfort zone-a way to free float off the cliff instead of being constantly afraid of falling off the cliff. A paradigm shift, if you will, a model for risk-taking, an effort to learn how to nurture. An effort to find true happiness personally and professionally. It was an Oprah moment.
The process of starting over (which is now what I realize this move to be) was debilitating. The emotional/psychological/intellectual insecurity that came with the job search and rebuilding relationships was more overwhelming than anything I have experienced thus far in my 44 1/2 years of life and I am a STRONG BLACK woman with an amazing resume and deep, lasting friendships.
The process of moving was much, much, much more difficult than I can even articulate. With these experiences, I fell into the role of victim and lost a bit of my internal fire each day. It is really difficult to remain hopeful and to even project hopefulness when nothing is seemingly going your way.
My old dispositions of strength, vitality and warmth turned into seemingly new dispositions of despair, fear and insecurity. Back up against the wall, body sprawled out on the floor, weeping, I decided to pay attention to the church ladies and cry out in my car; give thanks, ask for help to move myself out-of-the-way. “Let it go”, I kept screaming. “Get rid of it! You are better than this!”
I networked, drove all over multiple cities chasing leads, Skyped with my professional coach (she needed to do some pro-bono work:), exercised with a running club, planted a garden and decided to keep pushing forward. I garnered two part-time jobs which I love (one school-based, one university-based), started a consulting company, ran a 10K and deepened my most important relationships. Whew.
There are still days when I cry and wonder what’s next (but I haven’t cried right before an interview in a while ;). However, there are so many more days where I say, “it is what it is and that is/is not for me ” and I move on feeling strong, confident and hopeful. I just pray that I never forget the lessons learned from having this incredible and difficult experience. I feel as though I’m going to be even better than before. Amen and thank you to my wonderful support system and to me – for continuing to get back up with God’s help).