January 23, 2019

I guess this is growing up


It’s hard to believe in just over a month I will have been living in Dallas for two years. Where did the time go?
When I first set out on this big adventure, I put it in my mind that I would only be here for two years and then it would be time to move on. I wasn’t going to make any friends, like my job or do anything. I was going to eat, sleep and stay in my room.
Well, for those of you who know me, you know that didn’t happen. In previous columns I would write about how I get attached to things easily. And boy, do I get attached. I cry when my favorite show goes off the air because I felt “connected” to all of those characters for seven seasons.
Anyway, back to the matter at hand. I wasn’t going to let myself like it here. Well, I failed.
And when I say I failed, I failed miserably.
That first year was tough. Although I wasn’t crying on the outside, I wanted to be back in Michigan working at the paper and back to my comfortable life. It’s too hard to make new friends when you’re my age.
But as time continued on, I slowly let myself get more comfortable in the place where I was. I know, I make it sound miserable — trust me, it was.
The funny thing is that just as I was loving where I was at, everything changed. The facility I am a coordinator at shut down for renovation and my “family” was dispersed throughout the city. Farmed out to other centers. Split apart. My world had just been rocked. Again.
So here I was at a whole new facility, learning about all these new people.
I could tell you it was hard, but it wasn’t. As soon as I started at the new center it was like I had been working there and with these new co-workers for years.
And for the first time in a long time, I wasn’t worried about the next step. I was going to enjoy where I was put because in all honesty, I didn’t have a choice.
Which brings me to today, a year and 11 months later. I have grown quite attached to not only the people I work and attend Bible study with, but to this city. (It pains me to say that still.)
I now have a routine of work, kickboxing and Bible study. And I have even made it a point to have a social life. (I know, I know, hard to believe. Right?)
What really stinks is that I have even grown attached to the place I kickbox at. Although they kick my butt, six out of the seven days a week, I am so thankful for the bonds I have made with each one of the instructors. I mean, it’s even to the point that we could maybe be friends. And that is a big maybe; they would just have to take it easier on me first.
Although, now that I think about it, the pushing by one instructor in particular is nice because I know when I come back home, I’ll be ready to take on my brother. Right, Tim?
I’m not going to tell you it has been all sunshine and roses here, because it isn’t. It’s still hard to be so far away from family and friends. There are still many, many, many meltdowns, especially when they hand you Texas license plates for your car (I wasn’t prepared for that one). But I know I can always count on not only my Michigan family, but my Texas one to help me get through them.
Sherry Barnum is a former staff writer for the (Oscoda County Herald/Ogemaw County Herald/Arenac County Independent).


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