It’s the little things, a whole lot of love – & fried clams.

So, about a month or so ago I was the most home sick I have been since moving to San Diego. I hadn’t seen my dad, some of my best friends and just been in the holy land of the Bean since Christmas of 2016 (aka 8 months). I know, DRAMATIC. However, it was such a weird feeling having not been home for that amount of time. So, let’s talk about it!

Since moving here i’ve had so many self discoveries, discovered passions and things about myself I never knew existed – hiking, yoga, blogging, walking aim-lessly through new neighborhoods, alone-time. I have fallen in love with the beaches, the land, the people, the smells – the atmosphere, EVERYTHING about San Diego. I’ve become independent, self-aware and present. I’ve learned what’s heathy for me vs what’s not, boundaries with work-life balance and even friends and family. I’ve learned how to let things go and am currently working on not being so hard on myself. I am so grateful for the experience San Diego has given me and continues to give me. I have grown so much as an individual and I look forward to continue growing and challenging myself.

Last year at this time I was 9 months into living here and I told myself “I am never moving home!” I was on this high of feeling like everyday I live on vacation. I mean yeah, I live on the beach and don’t wear shoes about 85% of the time however, this “vacation lifestyle” is no longer new now. Now, I sit here going on two years living in San Diego and think maybe this lifestyle will not be my forever life. I am not saying changes are going to happen right now but they could in 6 months, a year, two, maybe three – who knows. Maybe it won’t be that I up and move straight back to Massachusetts but San Diego just might not be my forever home.

When self reflecting on what it is I want in this lifetime of mine i’ve realized that it’s love – to give and receive love. I’ve found love with family, friends, places, moments, the sunshine and although it has taken me nearly two years to discover this about myself I am so freaking happy I did. I am not talking about a love story like the notebook although that would be nice and hopefully someday. I am talking about what makes my heart full, makes my soul smile. Whether that’s the place I am living, the activities and hobbies I am involved in, who I surround myself with. I know that for me to live a happy life, I need to one: love myself, release all self-worry, guilt and pity. Not hold onto unnecessary negativity myself or others included… and two: be able to give love. When living back in Massachusetts I had so many outlets and places to channel love I was just not aware of them.

For example, there was a love for my parents, my siblings, friends and the children I babysat. I was able to feel their love for me and give my love to them. When living across the country nearly isolated from those love outlets it’s hard to experience the mutual exchange of love. In hopes of gaining this back I found myself looking for it in the wrong places. I was on such a hunt for love that I forgot to love myself. I’m not entirely sure what brought this into perspective but I soon realized what I was lacking was an outlet for love.

I watched a friends dog for a while and it sparked an interest in getting my own. After a solid month or two of browsing pups online at local shelters, craigslist, puppy stores (which I didn’t think existed anymore) I found the one. This one happens to be a blue merle australian shepard. He’s a gem and obsessed is an understatement.

Meet Ziggy.

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Now, let’s circle back to the love thing.

In realizing this about myself I’ve discovered that San Diego brings me all of those things but so can Massachusetts. It’s the little things in Massachusetts that I miss and that bring me so much happiness and love. Getting a last minute dinner with my dad, running to cvs for contact solution with my mom, driving by my sister on Route 1, calling my best friends and making a plan to see them on a Wednesday night, pumpkin beer, the fall and… fried clams.

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I’ve realized that the people, family and friends are what makes Massachusetts so special. Don’t get me wrong. San Diego is absolutely phenomenal. It’s just that what I love about San Diego isn’t the people it’s the place. I love the lifestyle San Diego has to offer I just miss the people Massachusetts holds. It’s that going home once or twice a year is an “event”, a “vacation”, a freaking production. As happy as I am living in San Diego I’ve realized I’m lonely & THAT’S OKAY! However, I’ve been thinking about it and I would really like to be actively involved in the people’s lives that I care so much for. I don’t want it to be a celebration every time I see them but rather just a normal routine – that’s what I miss most about Massachusetts.

With that being said, visiting back home in Mass last month was so great. It felt different than any other time i’ve been home since the move. I appreciated so many things I always overlooked. When driving through Boston I was taking photos of buildings, places and things i’ve seen before but through a different lens. When in Cape Cod I was so at ease, the beach, the ocean everything just made me feel full. I didn’t feel as though I wanted to be somewhere different, that there was more or something I was missing. I didn’t feel the way I did before I left – like I wanted to run, escape the area because it just wasn’t for me. It was so refreshing – almost as if the small towns and city had changed, however, the only thing that’s changed is me. I’ve gotten to really know myself through this whole San Diego experience. I’ve grown up some, gained patience and learned to not fret about things I cannot change and to instead send love to areas of pain. I’ve recently been discovering more about my personality, my spiritual side and why some things used to bother me that now don’t and maybe that’s why being home felt right this time.

It felt good to be able to finally picture myself living back in Massachusetts where as before that vision was never there. I am not entirely sure where I will end up but it most certainly feels good to know that I can see Massachusetts as a potential place to settle down.

In the midst of all of these lovely realizations (puny, I know – i’m hilarious), i’ve been trying to release all my worries and concerns related to trying to figure out what my next move/step in life. Trying my best to stay present in the moment and pay attention to the signs that surround me. Sometimes if you just quiet the mind and chill the f* out the answers are all there! It’s not easy but a work in progress, in which I am still working on. We shall see where my next endeavor takes me. Not saying it’s Massachusetts but I will say I am confident that another life transition is upon me and I am absolutely terrified but excited to see what’s to come! Til’ then peace, love and good vibes my friends – oh, & don’t forget to love yo self, to give & receive love from others.

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