Lots of mixed emotions with that. Yeah I've been living "on my own" since I was 18, but only about 90 miles away from home. And I've got nothing on DH, moving halfway across the globe and completely on his own when he moved here. At least I've got somebody to be with, but this is going to be one of the biggest changes in my life. Some days I'm feeling really excited about it. Other days it gets me down in the dumps.
I decided to make a list of my expectations of our new home, the pros and cons. (Some things obviously will be more about our housing situation than the general culture/atmosphere of the area). Then after we get settled in, I'll see what I was right about, what I miss, and what I never expected. So here we go:
WHAT I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO:
- The beautiful weather out there. And walking on the beach. No more tornados, hailstorms, or bipolar Oklahoma weather.
- That feeling of "starting fresh" when you move into a new apartment. Getting rid of old/unneeded furniture/decor and getting to redecorate (little by little, as finances will allow, of course).
- FOOD: fresh produce, fresh fish, more culturally diverse groceries and restaurants, etc. (We can't wait to eat at The Stinking Rose again. Mmmmmmm)
- Much more interesting variety of "where to go," "things to do," and "places to see" when we're bored.
- Meeting new people. Getting acquainted with a new culture in general.
- Getting to see how DH's career develops in an awesome location.
WHAT I'M NOT LOOKING FORWARD TO:
- DRIVING! I have NO IDEA how to drive on the highways out there. Hopefully I can find a job close enough that I can just take the city streets because I'm so scared I'm gonna wreck the car on my very first attempt to merge and/or change lanes on the freeway. The driving *rules* are so different out there, but I'll have to learn.
- The extremely expensive cost of living.
- I suppose I'll be trading Oklahoma tornados for California earthquakes. And you can't prepare for earthquakes. But maybe it won't be so bad.
- The crammed/congested feeling of the city. I guess I am somewhat of a country girl at heart, wanting *wide open spaces.* Even as I search for apartments I'm wondering what the heck we're going to do with 2 cars, as all the places only allow for 1 parking space (if even that).
- Having to use the *apartment laundromat.* I've come to grips with the fact that I won't be able to do laundry whenever I want in the comfort of my own home, but I don't like it. I've had bad experiences in the past. Hopefully the apt we get will have the laundromat in a convenient location and not where we have to walk far far away to get there.
- I have this feeling that I'm really gonna stick out like a sore thumb wherever I go. I don't usually care so much about "fitting in" and I couldn't care less about all the Hollywood glam. I just hate being somewhere new and feeling clueless about everything. There are probably some cultural/lifestyle differences between Okies & Californians that I don't even know exist that will throw me off.
- Feeling alone. Of course DH is right there with me, but I'm really gonna miss my family, especially my bro, SIL, & nephew. Starting over with making new friends, I don't even know where to begin. Plus DH's school schedule for the 1st semester is apparently really hectic, so I'll probably be crying myself to sleep for a while.
Ok there's my *list.* I'll revisit this in a few months and see how my feelings and expectations of the new home have changed.