Four years ago, I got an email from my landlord:
"I'm selling the house, and I'll need you and Eric out in 60 days," she wrote. Perhaps a bit more cordial, but that was the gist. 60 days. 60 days to find a place. Or to change my life.
I was at work when I got her email. I sat at my desk and stared at the screen and knew what I had to do. Was it going to be easy? No. Was everyone in my life going to like it? Certainly not. Did I have a choice in the matter, now that I'd made up my mind? Hell no.
So, I went home that night and told my boyfriend that our landlord was making us move out. We'd been in the house for almost two years and were certainly comfortable there. Comfortable, but not happy. I told him that since we had 60 days, we didn't have to make a decision right away.
The days passed, and moving out time got closer. About three weeks after we had gotten the initial email, Eric started asking me about new places for us, neighborhoods he thought we should consider. And that's when I told him:
Um, yeah. That was a tough one. Really tough. But, as I said before, I knew I had no choice. I was in a relationship, living with a man with whom I could see no future. None. In fact, he would regularly tell me that he would never marry me. That I deserved better. That he wasn't good enough for me.
And he was right.
So I moved out. I moved to a city where I had no solid friends, where I had no job. And I lived by myself. And it was hard, and difficult, and the best thing that I've ever done for myself.
I moved out of that apartment on Saturday. I said goodbye to a wonderful neighborhood, to my neighbors and my friends.
And, I know that this time, I'm moving on to wonderful things. Things that I can move on to because I struggled through moving out of a relationship, of living by myself, of facing those fears head-on. That experience has helped shape the person I am today.
I would never take that experience back. It was hard, and I fought it, fought myself. I cried. I didn't know who I was. But I worked through it, and rediscovered myself, and I'm better for it.
It was through moving into the city and living by myself that I learned not to make decisions based on fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of what *may* happen. If I had stayed with Eric, if we had just chosen another place to live, I would have been giving into my fear of being alone, the fear that says -- maybe you'll never find anyone else to love you.
Somewhere inside of myself, I heard a voice. It was small, but it was shouting with all it's might , saying "NO! You deserve better. Even if you're alone, and you find it with yourself, you deserve better. Alone is better than what you have." I heard that voice, reassuring me, and I hardly believed it. But somehow, I listened. And I believed. And I have been amazed at the life I have built for myself.
It is better than any life I could have ever imagined.