Back in April, I wrote a piece about how I've always felt more at home in Los Angeles than in New York, where I lived my whole life. Well, on Oct. 6, I did it! I moved out to Los Angeles, and it is honestly the best thing I have ever done.
New places, people and experiences surround me everywhere. I studied journalism in college, but out here, I feel like there are plenty of other fields I can explore instead — or as well.
I'm not exactly sure why I feel so happy living in Los Angeles. Perhaps it is the sense of independence that I didn't quite have back in New York, living with my parents. Maybe my small town stifled me. Maybe it was noticing on social media that half of my high school class had either stayed there since graduating or only moved around 10 miles away.
I just didn't want that for myself. My mind and imagination were always looking elsewhere, and my mouth was watering for an adventure.
Moving is expensive in general, especially moving 2,000+ miles away. I am lucky enough that I have family here to stay with until I get on my feet, so having to move furniture was unnecessary. I also did not need to worry about finding an apartment and paying rent yet.
I ended up flying instead of driving. While I have always wanted to go on a road trip, I did not want to make that drive all by myself, and everyone I could have asked to come with me wouldn't have been available. But still, I really only had to pay for a plane ticket and to ship one box.
I was able to get a part-time job pretty quickly here, so at least I have some cash flow while I work on getting settled in and starting a career. I have been in this new city for two weeks, and I already feel so at home — and I haven't even seen the entire city and all it has to offer yet. My next step is making friends and extending my network here.
Approximately 16 million Americans moved to different counties in the US between 2007 and 2011, according to the Census Bureau. The reasons for doing this vary, from getting a new job to having a new child to just pure whim. There are many people who have moved more than once.
"After my mom died, I needed something different," said Shelbi from Philadelphia. "I went out to Spokane because that's where she lived, but I haven't been there since and I'd like to go back." Shelbi had moved to Philly from Montana over a year ago, and she is hoping to move out to Seattle within the next year or so.
Want to stay in your hometown or state? No problem. You do you! But if you do want to move further away? Trust me, you will get there someday. I was afraid too, but I took that leap and am glad I did.
I am finally in a place where I feel truly happy, and I can't wait to really explore my life.