In one week, seven days from today, my little blue Sonata will be filled with all my earthly possessions packed in Crown Royal boxes I got for free at the local liquor store, I’ll straighten the lucky peach seed that’s tied tightly on my steering wheel, and my GPS will be set to Denver, Colorado.
I’ve lived in Georgia all my life. I was born in Atlanta. I lived in various places in West Georgia from the time I was two to eighteen. I moved to North Georgia to attend my university. Besides occasional vacations and visits to my relatives in Alabama and Florida, Georgia and all of its humid glory is all I have every known as “home.”
Now, I’m twenty-one. I graduated 29 days ago with a Bachelor of Arts in English with Teaching Certification, 6-12. I am a contracted teacher at a Denver public charter school for 11th grade ELA. I am sitting on the couch in my parent’s house, sipping ginger peach tea, avoiding the catastrophe of a packing mountain I have awaiting me in my room downstairs.
Many people have been asking me lately what I plan to do now that I have graduated, and when I tell them, I can always expect the questions, “So why are you leaving Georgia? And why Colorado?” I’ve given many versions of the same answer to these questions: I love traveling. I want to see different things. I want to experience life out of the south.
I’ve always known I wanted to work with people and move to a different place. One of the main reasons I chose to be a teacher is because it would allow me to do both. I had wanted to teach abroad for the longest time, but after realizing I needed to have access to reliable medical care and to be able to call my grandmother whenever I wanted, I decided I should probably stay in the States for now. Knowing that, I chose to move to my most favorite state I had traveled to: Colorado.
Of course I’m horrified. I’m nervous. I’m stressed. I’m overwhelmed. But I’m also abundantly thrilled, inspired, and content, and I’m pretty that is what’s most important.