“Two Feet In”
Six times. I’ve moved six times in the past year. Move might not be the right word, but rather I’ve schlepped a bunch of clothes, makeup, and dry shampoo amongst other things across state lines and occasionally across the Atlantic Ocean.
My most constant companion was my pink Contigo water bottle, talk about being through a lot. RIP Pink Contingo, you have been replaced by a fellow Contingo, a slightly bluer look alike. Gone but never forgotten, but seriously you are in a plethora of photos from my travels.
In the past year, the longest I’ve lived anywhere is right around three and a half months. Late August to mid-December was spent in Madrid while sporadically skipping around Europe. Mid-January to early May spent in Philadelphia where I tried to understand how nothing and yet everything had changed. There were a few brief stints back in Upstate amidst the comings and goings. And lastly, a solid eight hot, sweaty, beautiful, fulfilling, messy weeks this summer in the city that never sleeps, New York.
I’ve seen more cities and tasted more foods and heard more languages in the past 12 months than my 21 years combined. I’ve met a wealth a people that have taught me so much about friendship. I grew a greater understanding of what it means to truly immerse yourself in a new place.
That is all incredible.
I am thankful. I am so blessed.
But it’s also overwhelming.
This last haul down to Philly a few days ago to take on senior year was especially a rough one. I literally unpacked from New York and then immediately put those same things into different bags and plastic tubs to be dragged to school. I felt like I was running in a circle. Chasing my tail. Some analogy in which I’m trying to catch up to where I think I should be. I feel like I’m one step behind. Am I? What is the correct step to be at, at 21 almost 22?
Holy cow, 22.
Living in one place used to be normal. Now it feels weird that I’m settling into a house for a full 9 months. Let alone the last 9 months of my undergraduate collegiate career.
There is a package of unopened thank you notes that I should have already written to the people from my internship yet they sit on my bedroom shelf. I still haven’t gone through my photos from abroad. Have I been putting enough work into the relationships that I built and developed through these new experiences over the past? I currently have 2,762 unread emails.
Are you still reading this?
Reflect. Be present. Be forward thinking.
Come on, focus. Focus. Just pack the damn jeans in the bag. Oh, I love this bag. This bag is from Madrid, it fits everything and yet when there is nothing in it it just folds up into a ball. How nice. Compartmentalization.
The day before moving back to school I talked to my friend, Cat. She graduated from my university a little over a year ago and as I confessed my frustrations and anxieties she simply said:
“Two feet in.
Two feet in, not one foot back in last school year or one foot out the door.
You’re there. Be there. Two feet in.”
Since our chat, two feet in has been my internal memo that’s been on a loop.
Two feet in, plays every time that little voice starts to tell me I’d be a better person if I had less unread emails, had an educated, thought provoking understanding and opinion on current events, or went for a run today, yesterday and tomorrow.
I had two feet in, in Spain. I had two feet in, in New York. Why shouldn’t there be two feet in, in Philly?
One foot. Two foot.