Anyone who has read one entry of this little blog could discern that it’s been an interesting past year and a half for me. I’ve encountered some personal and professional challenges and, at the end of the day, I’ve been left to figure out what to do with myself. I’m in the middle of a “come to Jesus” moment. The past few months have been filled with a large amount of soul searching. My brain has been an exhausting and tiring place to hang out. After much consideration, I’ve decided to move back to Chicago. I put in my 30 day notice at my apartment and will be reserving my movers in the next few days. It’s official. I’m out. I’m leaving.
I have no place to stay. I have no job. But I’ve decided to pull the plug on the Washington, D.C. chapter of my life. This is not how I saw this chapter of my life playing out but, candidly, I’m not upset. I’m 32 years old. I’m a lawyer with seven years of experience under her belt. I went to good schools. This period of my life has reminded me that I have a whole team of people across this country that love me, support me and think I’m an amazing person. At times, I’ve felt like the encouragement of all of their voices has kept me upright and breathing over the past few months. I have no doubt that I will eventually find full time (and fulfilling) employment. But, for now, I still have an uncertain road ahead of me.
I’ve lamented all the bad times (and bad dudes) in D.C. I figured it was only fair to exalt the city for the good and memorable things that I’ll take with me. So, here it goes:
- I’ve lived in almost all of the American cities I’ve wanted to live in. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. College in Los Angeles. A stint in Indiana. Followed by a few years in Chicago. And now a stop in D.C. [The only remaining stop of my “American city bucket list” is New York City. The fantasy of New York City is completely embarrassing. Since I’ve made a habit of over sharing and embarrassing myself on this blog, there is no need to stop now. In college, I spent a couple summers temping as a secretary at Robert Mondavi winery. During my down time I’d write long essays about how I wanted my adult life to look. The dream consisted of me living in New York City, driving a Range Rover being married to an investment banker. (Yes, I would tame him. Trust me!) We’d live in the West Village. I’d be a lawyer turned writer and party planner. I’d do yoga at Chelsea Piers. We’d have dinners at Babbo. (Clearly, I had this fantasy before everyone decided they were allergic to gluten). I’d decorate our apartment complete with fresh flowers weekly].
- I’ve met some amazing people. Washington, D.C. has a reputation for insufferable, pretentious people. (I’m just the messenger). Despite it’s reputation, in my short time in the District of Columbia, I’ve met caring, engaging and interesting people who kept my calendar full of fun and memorable stories.
- Obviously, seeing historic monuments never gets old. It’s always fun to see the Capitol building while running an errand or on your way to meet friends at a bar.
- I had some very interesting dating experiences but each one of the guys was smart, accomplished and had an interesting background. There was the Dutch World Bank guy. The lobbyist guy. The union guy. The political commentator guy. Just to name a few. At the very least, this city provides unparalleled dating experiences.
- I had my first crush since high school. This by far is the dumbest thing to admit but ask any of my friends and they’d fill you in on my embarrassing and pointless diatribes about this guy I barely knew. I hadn’t had a crush on a guy since I was a teenager. I had reach my early 30s and truly believed I was completely incapable of being giddy over a stranger. But I got a nice surprise. And DC provided an innocuous and cute object of affection that will live on in my heart and on social media forever.
- Barcelona Wine Bar. (I need to hit that place up a few more times in the next three weeks)
- Bao Bao.
- There was something very cool about watching House of Cards while actually living in Washington, D.C.
- I was on a flag football team. I contributed absolutely nothing to the team; however, we did win a championship. I’d like to reiterate that contributed absolutely nothing to the team. I do, however, own cleats and super cute pink gloves.
I left Chicago in a blaze of madness and life upheaval. Instead of discovering what the city had to offer, I decided to chase a dream of moving to Washington, D.C. that I created in my teenage brain. Was it smart? Not really. Was it well thought out? Nope. Was it rational? Absolutely not. Do I regret it? Not anymore. If I hadn’t moved I wouldn’t have had the crap knocked out of me professionally and personally. I wouldn’t have been forced to figure out why exactly I had been running so much in the first place. I wouldn’t have been able to step back and realize what I really wanted out of my professional and personal life. And now I’m headed back to Chicago just in time for summer. There are definitely some things I look forward to:
- Lollapalooza (I don’t have a steady income but I can’t live in the city and let a Lolla pass me by.)
- Summertime in Chicago means its festival time. May Fest, Old Town Art Fair, Andersonville Summerfest, Market Days, Taste of Randolph Street (Last year Lord Huron played the festival. This year, they’ve got Kaiser Chiefs. This is not your mom’s street festival)
- The Publican (Well, basically all of the West Loop, including Maude’s Liquor Bar, RM Champagne, Nellcote, Au Cheval, Girl and the Goat and the Aviary)
- Wine Riot (May 2-3 – Good wine times to be had by all)
- Junior League of Chicago’s Summer Soirée (last time I attended I ended up in the Chicago Tribune. That means I’m famous, right?)
- The skyline.
- The Viagra triangle. I never thought I’d miss the Hangge Uppe but I do.
- The Magnificent Mile
- The Purple Pig
- Really being annoyed by all the North Face clad yuppies in Lincoln Park. – Complaining about these people is like a national pastime. I miss it. I can’t wait to scowl at all of them at the Lincoln Park Trader Joe’s.
- Speaking of Lincoln Park: the Massive Lincoln Park Whole Foods with a bar. The only tolerable Whole Foods experience includes alcohol. Let’s be honest.
- Jay Cutler (I’m not kidding)
Who needs RG3 when you have the biggest Dude Bro of them all at QB?
If anyone had told me at the end of 2012, my next year and a half would look like this I never would have believed it. I’m still in the middle of a huge life transition. I don’t know what my professional or personal future holds. The only thing I do know is that I’ll be figuring all of it out in the Windy City. And, right now, that sounds pretty fantastic to me.