dear, oregon

Dear Oregon,

It’s so hard for me to put into words why it didn’t work out, all I know is that it didn’t – simple as that. No ifs, ands or buts about it.

I admit, I may have jumped the gun on this one. When looking at schools how can you not be drawn to UO? It looks as if it sits in a charming forest of breathtaking fall colors and beautiful old brick buildings. Not to mention all the D1 sports the school offers. With D1 sports comes an INSANE amount of school spirit. I was all eyes and all ears. Everyone I talked to had such captivating things to say about Oregon but without fail, there was always a but.. Being the stubborn person that I am, I truly thought those buts wouldn’t matter – turns out they did. As I, myself, experienced many of the buts.

“So tell me, where shall I go? To the left, where nothings right? Or to the right, where nothings left?” – Unknown

By June, I had made the decision, I was moving to Oregon. The plan was to get an apartment, find a job and gain Oregon residency for tuition purposes. Sounds like a no brainer, right? Nope.

It sure all fell into place like a no brainer. I thought because of how smoothly the way things were going meant that it was all meant to be. Life has a funny way of teaching you lessons, of reminding you that it’s ok to be pushed in a certain direction. That it’s even more ok to be wrong, to be slightly fooled by your own judgement.

“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open.”  – C. JoyBell. C

I was sitting in Great Basin when I got the call. It was sometime in early June, on a Thursday morning that I got approved on an apartment, approved on the apartment I truly wanted. Like I said, it was all falling into place in a way I could have only hoped for. However, this complex didn’t except E-signatures on their leases which meant I had to physically be there to sign my lease and I had only about 48 hours to do so. Quickly, I got ahold of my bosses, desperately needing to get my shifts covered for the next few days so I could get myself to Oregon. Once that was settled I called a hotel, booked a room near downtown Eugene, packed my bags and drove eleven hours by myself all the way to Oregon to sign a lease on an apartment I had yet to even see in person. Not even that, but to sign a lease in a city, in a state, that I had never even been to before. Call me crazy but I was determined.

“To know yourself as the Being underneath the thinker, the stillness underneath the mental noise, the love and joy underneath the pain, is freedom, salvation, enlightenment.”  – Eckhart Tolle

Fast-forward some few months – Being and living in Eugene was not at all what I expected. You’re probably asking or wondering why that is? To be honest, I really can’t even answer that question myself. I’ve tried, believe me. I’ve tried to make sense of it. I’ve tried to understand how something that felt so true in my heart to be right, turn out to be so wrong. Oregon is beautiful, don’t get me wrong, it is. The summer and the fall months in Eugene looked like they were coming straight out of a magazine. But it was the people, the mind sets, the feeling that no matter what I did, I would never be on the same page as 90% of the people there. Maybe it was all the homeless people sitting and sleeping on the streets when I was only trying to go get a cup of tea, (yes, those Oregonians ALMOST converted me to tea, almost) begging me for money when I, myself, was sitting on a bank account in roughly the two digits. None of it felt right, all of it felt so backwards. Many people think it was the rain, when in fact that was the absolute last of it. Sure, it rains a lot but the rain wasn’t what bothered me. I actually didn’t mind it. I didn’t even think about how I hadn’t seen the sun for a full day in, who knows, almost two-three months. So, no, it had nothing to do with the rain.

Do I regret moving to Oregon? Not a shot. It was the first time I had ever moved somewhere completely on my own, without roommates, the first time I wasn’t able to rely on others to make friends, the first full-time job I ever had. I had to learn how to deal with being 630 some miles away from home with no one but myself. At the end of the day, I’m proud of myself. Although Oregon didn’t work out it was still a milestone in my book. It taught me numerous lessons that I quite possibly might not have learned had I not moved there. I don’t regret it for a second because it re-shifted my focus, put me back on track with what I want most in life, things I hope to accomplish. It reminded me what it feels like to not live by the one place I love most – the beach. So, no, I don’t regret any of it. In fact, I’d do all of it over again. The thing is, I made the decision to leave Oregon simply because I wasn’t entirely sold on it, I wasn’t my happiest. That doesn’t mean that I’m not grateful for every day that I was there, because I am. At the end of the day, I’m happy with the way things went and I’m confident in my decision to leave. I also don’t feel I owe it to anyone to explain these feelings but there you go, there it is.

“Sometimes a decision you might consider a regret or failure in the present can turn out to be the catalyst for something extraordinary in the end. Some of life’s wildest journeys begin with a wrong turn.”  – Beau Taplin

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