I am leaving a lot back home: my parents, the friends that I’ve gathered over the years, the city where I grew up. Anna is leaving her family behind as well. For both of us, parting with our families has been the most difficult part of leaving.
At the same time, it is difficult to ignore your dreams. As much as I have to be thankful for, I would be lying if I said that I was content with my life in Mobile. They say that you are either running toward something or away from something. Me, I think that I might just be running to feel the ground under my feet, and I’ll only find out where I am going when I get there. When I graduated in 2009, I made a choice to stay in Mobile for another two years so that I could be with my mother and Anna. Two years from that point, I have finished the coursework for an MPA, Anna and I are about to start our jobs in Zhengzhou, and I was able to spend a lot of really crucial time with my mother. I haven’t experienced a lot of growth over the past couple years, but that was a conscious decision on my part and, if I could go back and make a different choice, I wouldn’t.