Ten years ago, my life changed tremendously, when I left home to pursue my Master’s degree in Creative Writing. The year before moving out-of-state to attend the program, I knew that my life needed to change – for the sake of my own sanity.
I was stuck in a horrific cycle of monotony, isolation, and abuse – for years. I was working as a freelance journalist for little to no pay during the 2008 recession and I knew that there had to be more to life than this stagnant existence.
Then I got a brochure in the mail for a graduate program at my alma mater. My brain flickered awake and I knew it was just the ticket -but it was too close to home. Thus began my research of writing programs from Texas, to Florida, to New York. But those were too far.
Then I found it, the place where I spent three years knee deep in novels and touching pen to paper. I applied and then prayed every single night to be admitted – right until the day I held the acceptance letter in my hands in January of 2010.
That was when the truth of what was happening really hit me – to everyone else, I was continuing my education, but for me? I was being granted another chance at life.
Before I knew it, I was loading my belongings into a U-Haul for the one and a half hour drive to my new apartment. It was the scariest and most exciting moment I’ve ever had. And now, ten years later, I marvel at the memories of that time and all the new adventures that were waiting for me, untouched.
I had to use most of what I had saved up while freelancing for two years on my rental deposit and did not have a new job lined up. I knew nobody except my two housemates that I met on one or two occasions. Once the semester started, I juggled two jobs with a full-time graduate course load, which landed me in the hospital before Thanksgiving.
When you take a leap of faith to better yourself and your circumstances, there are no guarantees. And it can be pretty rough. But you only get one life and it truly is what you make it.
To anyone reading this who feels like there is no escape, resolution, or solution – there is always a way and it all starts when you make the decision to change your own life.
All it takes is one decision, one step, one action, to achieve your fullest potential. And I am beyond grateful to say that I am living proof of that.