Friday, January 11, 2013

On Goodbyes, and Dreams, and Such

I need to write.
I can feel it in my bones.
I ache for my thoughts to become words and for my fingers to tap this keyboard, and for this blank page to fill up.

But, I haven't.
I don't want to.

Because it's hard.
Because it hurts, kind of.

We're moving on Tuesday.

There are boxes piled 7 feet high in our apartment.
There are checklists, and bubble wrap, and e-mails to insurance agents, and goodbye lunches, and parties, and today there will be cupcakes in my office. My mother-in-law has been packing, and cleaning, and taking care of my husband, and sleeping on a futon that is in like a bunker of boxes, near a drafty window.
There is one K-cup in my drawer, a mouse pad, a can of hairspray, and a coffee mug in the space at work where I have lived for the last three years.

It all feels so final.

And like most things in life, you don't realize how great they are, how much you love them, how much you will miss them, until you face that finality head-on.

Like selling a house.
You put in all the work you never did right before you sell it.
And you realize, this is a great house - and you're jealous of the person who buys it, because there is a big part of you that secretly wants to stay.

There is still so much to do.
I need to make copies of keys, and write big checks, and say tearful, mascara lining my face goodbyes. I need to pick up my step-dad from the airport so that he can drive my SUV down to our new home.

But I want to hang on.
I want to drink all of this love that we're being sent of with in, slowly. I want to sip each and every sweet mouthful, taste it, and say grace.

There is plenty about DC that I will not miss - like traffic, and the metro, and parking garages, and people who don't speak English. I won't miss living in an apartment. I won't miss the gate that surrounds our neighborhood that feels like a cage. I won't miss having to walk around with four different magnetic IDs hanging around my neck, feeling like I have to prove who I am anytime I come to work, go to a press event, come home, or get on the train. Like a tagged cow or something.

But, wow is there a lot I will miss, like the sun rising over the Capitol when I'm driving into town. Like my awesome co-workers, who I have traveled the country with so much that I don't think I'll ever forget their middle names or birthdays. Like the hugs of good friends who I know I'm not really saying goodbye to, but I kind of am. Like the thrill of hearing Hail to the Chief, and watching the President of the United States, in person. Like going to White House briefings, and feeling like I'm in a real life version of The West Wing.

Working in DC was my dream when I was a 19 year old college student, interviewing for my first internship in TV news. The main anchor who ran the intern program asked me what I wanted to do, and I told him I wanted to cover the White House.

I am so blessed.
I have lived my dreams.

There is literally only ONE thing that I didn't check off my professional bucket list. Riding on Air Force One. And you know what? I'm not giving up. It could still happen, one day.

In many ways, I'm leaving this dream job to go back.
Back to my hometown, to be surrounded by my family.
Back to local news, where I started this long road of journalistic dreams coming true.
Back to the TV station I watched when I was a little girl, and I first fell in love with news.

I worked there before.
When I was a news baby.
I'll start at WAVY TV 10 almost exactly 10 years to the day of the first time I started there, in February 2003. I was 23 years old. And at that time, I was on a dream track already. Getting that job at WAVY then was my dream. The first step on my list.

Wow, have I been checking things off, since then.

But dreams, you know, they change.
I don't think they die.
But I do think they grow, as we do.

And now, my dreams are different. This opportunity to move to Virginia Beach, to work at WAVY, to be close to family, friends and the people who shaped me into who I am today, is just too good to pass up. I feel like God is smiling down on me, as He leads me down this road.

I feel my heart shifting from a posture of "God - I want this!!!" to, "God, let's do this..." and, I think that's a good thing.


Robby, Tonja, Caitlin and Marissa said...

Beautiful post, Dana. I wish you and Michael all the best in this next journey of your lives. I hope to go see my friend, Jamie, in Chesapeake this summer. If it works out, then I will definitely be seeing you guys too. Love you. Tonja

Becky said...

I think you are incredibly accomplished and I'm so impressed with all you've done and your attitude towards life. And as far as the AF1 ride goes, the best part is the M&Ms, which I will give to you. Plus, you're right, you still have a long time to make that goal!! We'll miss you but we promise to come visit!

Jenn said...

What an amazing journey you have been on and it sounds like a great one is in your future!

Kristen Maddux said...

It is SUCH a good thing, sweet girl. Good-byes are the worst. But if you feel God is smiling on your got this! It's going to be good.

Cheri said...

Great post Dana, you are so young to have accomplished so much. God has truly blessed you. Here's to the next chapter. Much love, Cheri

Mallory said...

Wow! Just found your blog from SITSSharefest and I can't wait to read more!!

The Dose of Reality said...

Congratulations on your next life adventure! :) I have no doubt it will be a fabulous step, and it sounds like you will have wonderful memories to look back on from D.C. Stopping by from SITS Sharefest.

Unknown said...

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