So I moved to Barcelona
Step one in everyone's journey and personal awakening is waking up.
I decided I needed a life change one cold and particularly grey day in the suburbia wasteland of Chicago. The gist of my existence until that moment ran as such: wake up before the sun, eat a bowl of cereal (the same brand that I had been eating since the discovery of my teeth), shovel car out of the driveway, scrape the ice off the windsheild, 5 minutes trying to rub life back into my fingers and toes with the heat in the car blasting, the long trek through fog and snow to the office, the grey cubicle...pretend to work...take a nap pretending to work...eat meal in grey cafeteria...back to desk...check my facebook...walk around...more pretending to work...the drive home listening to Kiss FM and singing at the top of my lungs...open a bottle of pinot noir and a French movie...sleep and repeat.
One day, while I was pretending to work and vaguely staring at a picture of the Sagrada Familia that I had posted on the wall of my cubicle to fight off the grey disease, I realized that little by little I was slowly dying inside. That every day that I said yes to this existence, I was leaving the fire in my being to turn off and to go on autopilot. It was as if I was living in a comfortable cloud where I really did not have to think or even feel. It was like being in some sort of comfortable space between waking and dreaming where the bed is nice and comfortable but you know that you can't stay like this forever.
So I took time from that moment on to think. My long term boyfriend lived in Barcelona already and had been hinting at us living together for a while but could I really leave my country, my family, my friends my career that was just starting out...my life in America? The home of the brave and the land of the FREE?
It wasn't until I spent a bit of time thinking in a jungle gym by my house (this is all in the course of a week from the "waking up moment"). Laying there and staring at the clouds on top of the monkey bars, I realized that I must leave. Suddenly, with fear and excitement, I made the arrangements to jump in the sky and land where the wind took me. Two leaps in one: one for love and one for life.
Detaching oneself from a life is nothing easy. Don't let people fool you. It is a painful and aggravating process. You must both endure the trials and pain of your own fears and doubts but not only that, all the negative energy of people around you that love you, will miss you and really do not want you to leave for their own selfish reasons. My family was NOT happy with my desicion to leave. They thought it foolish and that some how I would be throwing away a perfectly good and reasonable life here "at home." My friends were also not very helpful although they were a bit more supportive. How will you live? What will you do? Oh my god, you will have to learn SPANISH! That is so cool. Aren't you worried? Of course I was worried. I could not answer any of these pertinent questions but it didn't matter.
Tip: once you decided that you need to leave, you have to leave. The worst thing that we can do to sabbatoge our lives is let fear and uncertainty control us.
I bought a ticket to Spain and waited. In the airport was when the last rope that tied me to my old life broke free. I brought 2 suitcases packed with my life and had to take some stuff out because it still weighed too much. I kissed my mother, hugged my sister and bid farewell to my father. I would not see them again in a long time. I cried on the plane and kissed Chicago, the city of my childhood, the space that shared my joys and sorrows, with the fingertips of my hand to the cold window. Tomorrow...I will be SPANISH...or so I thought.