What Moving Has Taught Me About Independence

Throughout college and since graduating, I have been proud of my independent spirit. In college I figured out ways to intern, convinced professors to let me into the classes I wanted to take, and kept up my GPA all on my own. After graduation I found my first apartment, landed a full time job, managed my own health insurance, will soon be buying a new car, and most recently found a new apartment and completed the subleasing process.

Especially since graduation, I've wanted to provide as much for myself as possible without relying on others. It's been working so far (and as so many of you out there know, it's not easy), but moving into this new apartment has really thrown me for a loop. It's made being independent feel sort of of lonely.

I definitely understand why the majority of the closest people in my life couldn't be there to help me move last weekend. My parents live five hours away, my boyfriend was interning 9 hours away, many of my close friends are scattered across the country, and my Rochester friends have busy lives as well. But the stress from this move has left me feeling like there is this child inside of me just waiting to escape.

I almost burst in tears when my desk chair broke three times while carrying it into the building, fell down an entire flight of stairs, and almost smashed into a poor girl carrying her laundry. I held it together. I wanted to kick the smug looking 20 something guy in the shins who watched me carrying my heavy desk up the steps and then let the door close and lock behind him instead of holding it open. I resisted.

I'm so thankful for my friend that did take time out of his Saturday to help me move my heaviest items into the apartment. Feeling like I could lean on someone a little bit really did help to quiet the increasingly cranky child inside of me. I don't know what I would have done if I literally had to move every piece of furniture alone...

Actually, yes I do. I would have hired movers or rented a small van. I would have dragged the mattress down the street myself if need be. I would have figured something out because I had to. I am completely capable of being independent, and I know I would've made it work on my own. But I've realized something, although I am proud of my independence and how far I've come in the past year, it still doesn't mean that I don't appreciate help.

A lot of girls my age (including myself, obviously) have this independence complex. We think we that we don't need a significant other around to be happy, we'll be fine if we don't see our parents for months, we're completely okay living our lives alone and our own terms. I definitely agree with this! I don't need these things. But it doesn't mean I have to feel weak if I decide I want them or wish I had them.

From this day forward I want to allow myself to swallow my independent pride just a little bit. I still want to provide for myself as much as possible, but maybe I'll stop turning down some of the help I'm offered. Just as it seems to be with every other aspect of post grad life, finding independence seems to be another balancing act.

How about you readers? Have you struggled with the amount of independence you have at this point in your life?


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