The last two weeks in the United States were a whirlwind. I spent as much time as possible with everyone important to me. Unfortunately, I was unable to squeeze in everyone. Before going home to Cleveland for ten days, I sold my car, an Acura ILX named Khalessi. It was a weird feeling being both car-less and unemployed. But in my mind, I kept thinking on to bigger and better things. The next day, I was on my way home for my last visit before the big move. While I was home, I spent time with my family and friends, looked for flats in Madrid with my two future roommates, worked on my resume, hit up the gym, and knocked out a handful of other items on my to do list. The time flew by. Leaving my parents was not easy but I know that they are supportive and just want me to be happy.
On January 1st, I traveled back to DC for the last three days. I unpacked and began the difficult task of packing for a year into two suitcases and a bookbag. The second to last night, a friend of mine took me into the city one more time to hit up some of my favorite spots, including this little French café with amazing crepes and Georgetown Waterfront. We even grabbed drinks at a Spanish tapas restaurant to get me ready for the big move. It was a perfect way to spend my last night in the city.
The next and final day, I put all my belongings that didn’t make the cut into storage, including my beloved bike. Thankfully, I was able to get one final ride in on the 3rd floor of the Cube Smart. Afterwards, my friend drove me to my sister’s place. On the way over, I was telling him a story of when I went to New York City with a friend several years ago. As she was from the area, she left to go see friends and family and there I was alone in a big city for a few hours before heading back to DC. I remember feeling lost and even scared. I was thankful that I had another friend in the city that came to the restaurant I was at and walked with me to where the bus was picking me up. Who would ever think that same girl afraid to walk alone in NYC three years earlier would be flying solo to a big city in a foreign county to start a new life.
The next morning, I was on my way to the airport. I was very grateful that my sister and nephew came with me and even waited to see me through security. Needless to say, there have been many tears shed over the final two weeks, even as I write now on the plane.
I can definitely say that I have grown over the 5 years I lived in DC. Every single person I met has helped shape me into the person I am today. I am very sad to leave but I am beyond excited for the adventures ahead.
From here on out, no more tears, only smiles.