Growing Up Moving Around The Country

Dear Mom And Dad, Thank You For Moving Me As Many Times As You Did

A letter from a girl who has lived in 12 houses over the course of her lifetime.

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Dear Mom and Dad,

Thank you for moving me from house to house over the course of my lifetime, 12 houses to be exact. Seven in Oklahoma, two in Washington D.C., one in Virginia, and two in Arizona. It seems like a lot, especially for those who grew up with one single place they can call their family home. Moving while not always easy, turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

With a new house, and sometimes even a new state, along came a new school district, which meant new friends. Having new friends every few years made the attribute of being adaptable, easy. I have found out now being older that adaptability is a key quality trait to have in life.

Moving to new places sparked the curiosity inside me to travel and see other places in the county, even throughout the world. With moving and not constantly staying stationary, I came to realize how vast and beautiful this world really can be. Thank you for that.

Arriving then leaving to a place to place, time and time again caused my heart to love more but not get too attached... knowing that things can leave or be taken away really easy from me. Probably one of the most important life lessons I could've been taught, guard your heart but love harder.

Nothing is without both pros and cons, as that seems to be a rule of life. But mom and dad, you both always strived to show my sister and I only the pros while masking the cons... even when we felt sad in the moment. Now that I am wiser and older than I was, I realize all of the extra miles you went to make the changes less and less scary. Small things that you might not remember or might not seem significant to you, but really made an impact on me and my ability to adjust.

With each place I moved to, I got to add a chapter to the book that I call life.

Whether the move was 10 miles down the road, or from Oklahoma to Virginia... I understand it wasn't always easy on you either. I understand that just how it hurt us to be away from our friends and family, it hurt you too. But I really hope it didn't hurt you too much. I really hope that knowing I have peace from all of this helps you be at peace with the feeling you might ever so get called guilt because of the moves. I hold no grudges and I actually thank you.

Thank you, Mom and Dad, for teaching me these life lessons without actually having to teach me any life lessons. You taught me the most important life lesson of all, home is wherever my family is. I am home when I am in your presence and surrounded by your love.

Best,

Your daughter, GracIe

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To The Dad Who Didn't Want Me, It's Mutual Now

Thank you for leaving me because I am happy.
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Thank you, for leaving me.

Thank you, for leaving me when I was little.

Thank you, for not putting me through the pain of watching you leave.

Thank you, for leaving me with the best mother a daughter could ask for.

I no longer resent you. I no longer feel anger towards you. I wondered for so long who I was. I thought that because I didn't know half of my blood that I was somehow missing something. I thought that who you were defined me. I was wrong. I am my own person. I am strong and capable and you have nothing to do with that. So thank you for leaving me.

In my most vulnerable of times, I struggled with the fact that you didn't want me. You could have watched me grow into the person that I have become, but you didn't. You had a choice to be in my life. I thought that the fact that my own father didn't want me spoke to my own worth. I was wrong. I am so worthy. I am deserving, and you have nothing to do with that. So thank you for leaving me.

You have missed so much. From my first dance to my first day of college, and you'll continue to miss everything. You won't see me graduate, you won't walk me down the aisle, and you won't get to see me follow my dreams. You'll never get that back, but I don't care anymore. What I have been through, and the struggles that I have faced have brought me to where I am today, and I can't complain. I go to a beautiful school, I have the best of friends, I have an amazing family, and that's all I really need.

Whoever you are, I hope you read this. I hope you understand that you have missed out on one of the best opportunities in your life. I could've been your daughter. I could have been your little girl. Now I am neither, nor will I ever be.

So thank you for leaving me because I am happy. I understand my self-worth, and I understand that you don't define me. You have made me stronger. You have helped make me who I am without even knowing it.

So, thank you for leaving me.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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6 Reasons Traveling Is Good For Your Mind, Body, And Soul

Wherever you go, go with all your heart.

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Have you ever traveled to a new destination and felt your mood instantly improve? Are you like me and feel happiest when you're on vacation? This is because traveling is a way for you to renew your soul and step out of your comfort zone. It keeps you happy and allows you to experience new things.

Visiting new destinations can open your mind to experiences you didn't even know were possible. You can meet new people, fall in love, try new foods, and see remarkable sites all while traveling. There are no limits to the places you can visit, and the things you can see. Currently, I am on a mini weekend trip to Arizona, and being here has opened my eyes and made me realize how impactful traveling really is on your mind, body, and soul. Traveling should be something you do as often as possible and whenever you get the chance. Here's why:

1. Traveling makes your heart happy 

Traveling is something that most people enjoy. It keeps the heart young and childlike. Traveling brings people joy because they get to experience new things that they love with the people they love.

2. It teaches you to embrace every moment 

Traveling can be unpredictable, especially because you are experiencing new things. Although it can be challenging, we learn best from these unpredictable moments. When we travel we learn to embrace every situation that is thrown at us.

3. Traveling relieves stress and improves mental health 

Traveling reduces stress and allows you to relax. More often than not, you take off work when you go on vacation and you focus on renewing your self. You get away from all the crazy things going on in your life, and you can just relax and focus on your own happiness.

4. It broadens your horizons 

Traveling lets you branch out and experience different cultures. You can try new foods, new activities, and meet all different types of people. You learn diversity, and you learn respect for other people and their culture's. Traveling helps you learn other perspectives around the world and lets your mind think in ways it never has before.

5. It keeps you healthy 

Traveling actually plays a big part in your physical health as well. During vacations, you often walk a lot to destinations and participate in calorie burning activities like hiking and swimming. Activities like these are often why you still are able to get your workout in while on vacation.

6. Traveling reminds you what is important 

Most importantly, traveling reminds you of the important things in life. We live day by day forgetting that every moment is remarkable. Sometimes, we get stuck in the same old boring routine and take for granted the life we have been given. Traveling reminds us that memories are valuable and that our lives should be cherished.

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