Change Changes: Welcome to Florida

Many people have asked me, ‘What’s a mountain girl like you, doing in in the flat lands of Florida?’

They are just as surprised as I am about my sudden relocation. If you were to ask me three months ago where I plan to be this Winter, Florida would have been so far from even an after thought. But yet, here I am, writing this piece at 6:30 a.m. on the porch. Palm trees and fluorescent greens surround me while the snow falls and temperatures plummet in my home state. I can say I’m quite content. 

So, how did this unexpected turn in events come to be? Due to a recent life change my plans for the Winter suddenly became open and filled with possibility. My grandparents were headed to Florida for the Winter and needed help driving. So I had a free trip. My Aunt lives in Boca Raton with a spare room that she would gladly let me occupy. This could be my chance to train on a regular basis and become better acquainted with the ocean. At that point, why wouldn’t I go to Florida? I packed up my apartment, put everything into storage, and said goodbye to the only place I’ve ever called home.

Florida is a different world. The 80 degree weather in November is confusing to me. I absentmindedly keep referring to the current season as Summer. When I see my friends in Colorado decorated in hoodies, scarfs, and beanies I’m reminded the chill of Winter is kissing the Northern half of the country. 

Colorado’s placid lifestyle is one of it’s most esteemed qualities and why it took me so long to leave. It’s required some mental adjustments to get use to Boca Raton’s fast paced and money oriented mind-set. Not to mention the serious lack of local coffee houses, a truly devastating realization and, in my opinion, Boca’s greatest drawback. I’ve been cut-off by aggravated businessmen while crossing the street. I’ve witnessed women putting on make-up before going to the gym. Had it out with declared conservatives on why gay marriage should be legal. I stick out like a sore thumb but I kind of like it.

Change is something I’ve always been good at and use to. My unrest never lets me stay in one place for more than six months. It’s opened up many doors and brought so many beautiful people into my life; some I’ve created long lasting friendships with and others that are like a stamp in my passport. It’s through change that I experience substantial growth. My bubble gets a little bit bigger and my heart opens even wider. Living in Florida is not going to be easy, but I choose to dance through the discomfort and thrive in the chaos.