This lifestyle has been so eye-opening to the way we, as humans, are wired. I wasn’t set out to learn about myself in this process: really, I wanted to live more in the moment and bring more fun into my life, but I honestly didn’t think much about it being a “learning lesson.”
It took me until the 5th move (about 3 months in) to realize this: no matter the house and neighborhood, within about 2 hours, it started feeling similar to “home.” It didn’t have my furniture I adore; it didn’t have my framed photos I meticulously arranged on every wall; it didn’t even have my precious kitty whom I love, love, love. But it had us.
But during this particular move, I realized it wasn’t just that we had each other. It was that we were adapting to each situation together. Where we hung our jackets, put our keys, and drove home, quickly became habit.
This realization of adaption hit me hard in one funny moment of us moving into this house. I had been craving a closet to hang up my clothes – all of these homes had closets, but we weren’t staying long enough to unpack everything to only repack a week later. So, we get to our new MONTH rental home (the longest in this crazy living experience) and we each have our OWN closet. Excitedly, I began unpacking right away. After about 5 minutes, I noticed I was apprehensive about something…even a little sad. There was this pull to stop unpacking and keep everything right where it was. For almost four months, it had a place after all.
I soon realized I didn’t want to unpack because I had to change! How could I uproot this process I’ve created?! After us having a good laugh about the situation, I decided on a combination of keeping some clothes in the suitcase and hanging some.
Such a silly, small example, but it really opened my eyes to how quickly change can become habit.
I am now getting a different desire to try more things a little out of my comfort zone and see how quickly it becomes familiar. Even small stuff: driving a different way to the office a few times a week or saying “yes” to a party invite where you will not know anyone. Sometimes these uncomfortable situations allow us to experience something quite comfortable … Once we just try it.
I even tried jogging Town Lake! I’ve always felt like runners were in a secret club – you know, a club where they actually like to run,and that I must be doing it wrong because I look like a complete dork. Because we are living across the road from the lake, I decided I should try out this new revelation of getting out of my comfort zone in the running department: I jogged and walked from Deep Eddy pool around to the Lamar Pedestrian Bridge, past my old High School and back to Deep Eddy again. I actually…. (Insert gasp) …enjoyed it. I am totally in the club now.
I’d like to think that I’m unique and “boldly going” with our living experience, but I am pretty convinced at this point I’m simply rolling with tide. If I can share anything about this adventure so far, which might be useful to others, is that we humans are pretty damn adaptable.
Getting out of a comfort zone isn’t nearly as terrifying as it seems.