While growing up, most people may experience moving to a new town once in their lives. Not 12. Growing up, my family bounced from state to state along with my father's job. Was it fun at the time? Nope. Was it easy? Definitely not. Was it worth it? Most definitely yes. The older I get, the more grateful I become that I was not born and bred anywhere. Here's why:
1. I Learned That Not Everyone Is The Same
You would be surprised how cultures can ebb and curve around boundaries. Not everyone in the state of Georgia shows up at the local First Baptist on Sunday Morning. Good luck finding the hurricane route in teeny tiny Blythewood, South Carolina. Hard to miss in Myrtle Beach, though.
2. I Found My Independence
Moving around from place to place taught me more than how to pack a wardrobe box. When it came time to pack up and relocate, I knew better than to pitch a fit and get all sentimental on my parents. By the time I was 14, I knew how to pack up my whole room in one day. My Dad had a career to follow, and we stuck together as a family.
3. I Got To Meet New People
Let me tell you, this one came especially handy when I got to college. When you are constantly picking up your life and dropping it someplace new, you get used to several strategies that help break the ice with your neighbors and classmates. So, making new friends is something that comes easy to me because, well, I was forced to do so. It's a dog eat dog world!
4. I Know The Ins and Outs of Every Real Estate Pitch
I guarantee you I've seen every structural flaw, roof leak, appliance malfunction, and poor paint job that is known to man. Shout out to the 10+ homes I've lived in for holding me up.
5. I Got To See Outside My Backyard
Sure, I never left the South, but I still saw some pretty cool scenery. You can't tell me that coastal South Carolina looks the same as the Smoky Mountains. I will be forever grateful for all the snow I saw, flat lands I drove on, and salty air I breathed in.
6. I Don't Expect People To Stay Forever
Over the years, many people (some friends included) cannot comprehend how or why we don't stay put. My best explanation? That's too boring. ;) And that is completely fine with me. I hope some do though!
7. Family Trumps Everyone Else
Over the years, my family has grown immensely tight-knit. Coincidence? I think not. Though we may not have grown up knowing the town's founding fathers and everyone in the neighborhood, we sure can rally around each other.
8. The Look of Disgust Becomes Kind Of Funny
People just don't get it, which was frustrating when I was younger. But I have come to quite enjoy the looks I get when revealing I've moved in about 10 different cities. It is a mix between "you poor thing" and "what is wrong with you?", usually given out by someone who has never left the county line. lol.
9. I Had A Pretty Good Education
Despite the circumstances, my parents would not settle somewhere unless the schools were good. When we lived in Myrtle Beach, my Dad had a 1 hour commute one way so we could be in the top district of the state. That's dedication.
10. New Opportunities
Everyone deserves a new start occasionally, and it just so happens that I got about 45.94825 trillion of those. I will be forever grateful for those, because the decisions I got to pave over then made me who I am today!
11. Cleanliness Is Next To Godliness
Do you think my parents ever let us pack up clutter to put on the moving van and pay to ship? If so, ha you're funny. I have since learned the art of de-cluttering and cleaning. Probably annoying at times, but that's just how I was brought up. You'll thank me when you need to fit your whole room into 3 medium packing boxes.
12. I Got A Good Dose Of The Real World
One of the best things my parents ever gave me did not come from the store. They allowed me to grow up in a world that was admittedly imperfect. Sometimes we all need a dose of imperfection to cure a case of inferiority. My parents let me see how we had to jump when the world threw obstacles our way. So I guess the whole reason for this article is to send a shout out to my parents. They might mess up, but I look back on all of this, and really, I was the privileged one all along.