Today has been a tough day to say the least…and it’s probably going to get worse before it gets better, but I’m having a hard time today.
This weekend I’m going to visit my family in the St. Louis area and I’m finally going to visit my mom’s grave, by myself, on Saturday after doing a work meeting or two in St. Louis. I haven’t brought myself to stop by the grave site yet, but it needs to happen on this trip.
I’m also trying to figure out if it’s best for me to relocate back to the St. Louis area to be closer to my family there. My dad is retiring at the end of the year and I want to be able to spend quality time with him while he is still able to. Part of the trip will be going to a soccer match with my sister in Kansas City, but the bulk of this trip will be me spending time with my family…asking my dad how he’s doing, hopefully seeing my great-nephew at some point…chatting with folks…but also reflecting on whether or not it’s time to move back.
For me, there has always been a pull to move back to St. Louis. I miss being able to go to Cardinals games on a moments notice…I miss spending time with my friends down there…I miss spending time with my family…
Two of my favorite places in the world are located in St. Louis…Forest Park and the Missouri Botanical Garden. I miss being able to chill out and go to the best zoo in the country (sorry, but it’s true!) or walk around the Art Museum or sit on Art Hill and go to the History Museum. I miss seeing the sights and hearing the sounds around the Botanical Garden. Those two places are the most peaceful places for me.
One thing that St. Louis has that it didn’t before I moved is a thriving board game community. Working in board games, that is a huge draw to move back. I would argue that there may be only 2 or 3 communities in the US that are bigger than the one in St. Louis.
The thing that St. Louis does not have are my friends that have loved and cared for me for 8+ years, longer for some, and have helped me through the roughest year of my life.
Champaign/Urbana is only 3 hours from the St. Louis area, but it is a centrally-located town that is 2 hours south of Chicago, 1 1/2 hours from Indianapolis and 4 hours from Columbus, OH. The University of Illinois is located here (which means we get to host decent Big Ten sports teams), my church is here and my business is based here.
So there are a lot of things for me to process through before my lease is up in June 2019 for my apartment. As of right now, I don’t know which way I would be leaning. I see the pros and cons for being in each area and we have a huge unknown that I should have more information about by the end of next month.
All of this to say that the true process starts for me Friday evening when I start the drive to St. Louis. I know, no matter what decision I make, I’ll always want to be in both places…but I already feel that way now.
Wish me luck…I’m gonna need it!