Saturday, April 17, 2010

#2: Moving to Nashville

The biggest, scariest item on my 31 Things is moving to Nashville.  Even though I've been thinking and praying about moving for more than a year, I knew that adding it to the list was akin to planting my flag in the ground.  If I tell everyone I'm doing it, then I can't back down unless something catastrophic happens.  Luckily, nothing catastrophic has happened thus far.  In the past week, I had a screening interview for my dream job, found a duplex to rent in Nashville, announced my decision to friends and family, turned in my letter of resignation at work, announced my final day (May 19!) to staff, and started telling patients that I'm leaving.  Whew!  Makes me tired just writing all that.  God has seriously been lining things up for me. 

In January I realized that the job search might not line up the way I wanted to and that there was a possibility I'd be moving sans job.  I was raised that one doesn't quit their job unless one has a new job lined up.  However, the past few years I've been saving for a house so I also have a nest egg accumulated.  If worse came to worse and no job emerged and I couldn't find any nanny or bookstore positions (both of which I would seriously consider and possibly even relish), I would be OK for some time.  So I decided that this would be another step of faith.  I told my roommate I was definitely moving once our lease ended in May so she could figure out what she wanted to do.  When our lease renewal arrived in March, we filled out paperwork to vacate.  I would be officially homeless May 24 and it terrified me even though I was 100% sure I was heading in the right direction. 

After last week's events, I do feel that God blessed this step of faith.  If I had renewed my lease for another year, I would have missed out on a huge opportunity!  I had been planning to go down to Nashville last weekend for some time, hoping to find a place to live and do some networking.  Two days before I left, I was contacted regarding a pediatric social work position.  HR had interviewed me about 5 or 6 weeks before and I'd heard nothing since so I figured I was out of the running.  The timing was insane- something only God could dream up.  Since I was going to be in town anyway, I was able to meet with the social work manager and learn more about the position, meet potential coworkers, and so much more.  I have a phone interview lined up next week.  I am hopeful.  Even if I am not offered the position, I am confident that something else will come up.

It's been interesting hearing everyone's feedback.  Everyone is so encouraging and many do not seem surprised by this decision.  My parents, who have been in on this from the beginning, are excited for me.  They never expected me to stay here after grad school but my attempts to move out of state fizzled.  God literally slammed the door shut 6 years ago.  And now He seems to be leaving the door wide open.  It is so cool to see His timing in this!  My coworkers and patients are sad that I'm leaving but also excited for me.  As everyone keeps saying, I'm young and I don't have any attachments here so why not?  My heart does break for the patients and families that depend on me heavily.  Even though I know who I would like to take over my position, the odds of this person starting before I leave are slim.  Still, at least there's a possibility that she will be hired!  I went to see a young bereavement client the other day for the first time since her dad died.  She had asked her mom to set up a visit with me- this never happens!  She really wanted me to do all her follow up this next year and in any other circumstance, I'd be all over it.  But I can't not move just because some people depend on me.  All I can do is try to make sure they have another source of support.  The good moments do not outweigh my conviction that hospice social work is no longer the right fit for me.  I'd love to see if pediatric social work remains my dream job once I actually start doing it- I think it'll be even better than I think! 

Right now I'm figuring out how to get all my belongings down to my new home, comparing moving companies vs. Uhaul, and packing, packing, packing.  Be sure to stay tuned in the coming months as I chronicle my transition from Yankee northerner to Southern transplant.  Maybe you can start taking bets on how quickly I'll develop an accent.  I'm holding firm to this though: I will never like country music!

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