There are very few things I'm hesitant to share on the internet...I'm not worried about sharing my full name, lots of photos, travel schedules, really embarrassing stories and most identifying details. But one of the few things I've kept mum are outside photos of my home. As a girl who lives alone in a smaller town...posting an easily recognizable home photo felt like too much to share with strangers...or weird exes who still read this blog. (It happens. Seriously. It's one of the few things that makes blogging creepy for me.)
Speaking of exes, a few years ago my at-the-time boyfriend lived next door to my dream home. I'd drive past and ogle this big, beautiful white house on the corner of Lake St. and 3rd Avenue...just trying to get a peek inside. Most of the windows were blocked by trees or curtains. One little side window on the second floor allowed a teeny glimpse: cream walls, white moulding and twinkly lights lining the rooms year round.
Someday I'll live in a house like that, I thought.
And then I did, in that very same twinkly light apartment I once drooled over...until this morning when I somewhat tearfully returned my keys.
It's positively insane that 365 days ago I sprawled on these empty floors...new key in hand...scheming about what the next year would bring. Just a few days after moving in, I left for Paris. I came home with a fiance and a ring on my finger. Several months later, I flew to California to celebrate New Years...and returned to this apartment wearing a wedding ring and with a husband by my side.
From girlfriend to fiance to wife of five months. All within a year's lease.
Four days from now, I fly to the Middle East to start a new life with my husband. No more rings in my future (although I do have a birthday coming up + would welcome another sparkler) and no more major relationship changes or curveballs. Just changes of geography, culture and perspective.
Living in this home was literally a dream come true, and my 22 year-old self would be jazzed that 25 year-old-me actually lived here. While it's hard to say goodbye to this big, white dream home that deeply ingrained itself in my heart...there are new dreams to chase. Dreams that 22-year-old me never thought possible.
Dreams that are bigger than twinkly lights and white baseboards.
Keep on keepin' on, beautiful 100-year-old house. May many more stories be written within your walls.