"I believe in reincarnation only as we may experience it through our children; I hope my parents recognize themselves in me...and I hope that our old radio show lives on in the homes of a few people who recognized the people in the stories. We had to stop short of the destination we dreamed of and we have to to look to others to cross those mountains that stopped us and make the home that we tried so hard to reach."
This is an excerpt from a letter written by Garrison Keillor, storyteller, singer, and midwesterner (you can tell why he's one of my favorites). I wanted to post it because I think it's applicable to a choice that every person must face in their lives, especially as they're making the transition from lowly college student to the "real world."
One of the most common concerns that plague one's decision to remain at home or to move on to bigger and better things is the desire for success, to trod off the beaten path and make a name for yourself in the world, and the desire for community, to keep yourself surrounded by those you love and those you're closest to.
As my friends have gradually trickled out of the educational system and into the real world, it seems that there is roughly an even split between which the two choose to go with. Half choose to stay, half choose to leave.
I, for one, have chosen the latter route, and am leaving the city within the next few weeks, but that doesn't mean that my decisions are easy or my pathway is clear. I had a fantastic dinner with a close friend of mine the other day, and we talked a little bit about community and the incredibly important role that it plays in our society and our personal lives.
For her, the choice was easy: without community, we allow the social anxieties and pressures of life to weigh us down. We fail to reach our true potential because we lack the support to deal with many unrelated things that our friends and family usually help us out with. To leave this city would be to leave her community.
I'm not sure how I feel about her decision or my decision. Either way, I've made a choice and I need to stick to that choice. Right now, leaving home, saying goodbyes, and getting out the things that need to be said weigh heavily on my mind. Once I can dispel those anxieties, I'll be able to focus on the future.