A year ago yesterday, March 10th, 2016, Jake got behind the wheel of a ridiculously large van and drove me the 16 hours from Southie to Myrtle Beach (I wasn’t allowed to drive thanks to a recent hospital stay). After staying with my Mum & Dad in Loris, we went and spent the next day at the beach. I have spent countless hours on that beach in the last year – lazy hot days in the summer, blustery mornings in the fall, and even a few nights at beach bars, bare feet and all – and I can’t seem to imagine my life without it now.
A lot has changed in the last year; I’ve started over completely, with a new career, a new home. Some things remain – my family, my international cadre of incredible friends, my passion for all things nerd. I’ve spent a lot of this year alone, a lot of it with Mum & Dad, so so much with my incredible coworkers, and my roomie (bestie Kat, who I still can’t believe was crazy enough to join me on this harebrained adventure).
I’m really lucky. Just in general. I’m really lucky to have had so many friends from New England come down and enjoy the Carolina coast with me, I’m lucky to have found Suck Bang Blow (and my staff – because #TeamRetail is where it’s at) and to have been accepted so fully into this community (despite being their resident liberal dork), I’m lucky to have my parents and to be so close with them, I’m lucky to have a 7-nights-a-week karaoke bar ten minutes from my apartment. I’m able to live with my Bipolar Disorder medication free for the first time since I was a kid. I am healthy (well, by Tina standards, anyway).
I’ve started writing again – really writing, taking it seriously. I’ve been singing, all the time, all year. I have grown in my job; and in my heart and soul. There’s so much more to come, too, and I see that.
I miss Boston. There are people that I can’t help but think about every single day. I wonder sometimes what my life would be like right now if I hadn’t left, or if I had chosen somewhere other than MB, or if I hadn’t met the crew of SBB. There are places that I still ache to visit back North, and getting texts from my family at Catalyst Restaurant still make my day. I would give a limb for Moonshine 152’s watermelon margarita recipe and I can’t believe I’m going to miss the Mayoral race. I sometimes even miss winter (very rarely, but there are moments).
This is all a very long way of saying that it’s been a helluva year, and I’m feeling grateful and nostalgic and thoughtful and content and a little melancholy and a little curious and a little homesick and a lot more than all that.