I’m a Southern Belle. Living in Iowa. I’m not sure I ever imagined living so far from “home”, aka South Carolina. Here’s our story.
The Huzz and I met in college in South Carolina, fell in love, got married and moved to Georgia. We were just a few hours from my hometown and life was good… until the Huzz was transferred to Ohio. Ohio?!?! However, I supported my Huzz and was willing to make the move “up north”. We ended up in the Huzz’s hometown and lived happily in Ohio for a few years… until the Huzz took a new job in Iowa. Iowa?!?! Where was that? All I knew is that Iowa was somewhere west of South Carolina and seemingly VERY FAR AWAY from “home”.
So, once again, we packed up and moved to another state. There’s always sadness when leaving friends and family and saying what seems like such final goodbyes. But then there’s always a sense of adventure and fun when moving to a new state. I liked telling people, “I just moved here from Ohio/Georgia/South Carolina”.
We’re very happy here in Iowa. We have a great group of friends. That’s important in anyone’s life, but it’s especially important when you don’t have family close by. I grew up in a huge Puerto Rican family (picture in your mind the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding). Family is everything and we were always together. So, with that in mind, you can see how these moves can be so hard on me. However, as much as I love my family, my number one priority is the Huzz and SG. Where the Huzz goes I will go. Happily.
“For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.” Ruth 1:16
So, based on my own experiences, here are my tips for settling into a new area:
- Find a good church and get connected. We met most of our friends through small group and bible studies at Harvest Bible Chapel.
- Put yourself out there, even if it’s uncomfortable. (It is for me!) Look for events that involve other mommies. Most libraries have story times. That’s a great way to connect with other moms.
- Talk to your neighbors. Get to know them and you might find someone you have a lot in common with. (We miss you Gary and Cindy!!!) And, isn’t nice to be able to borrow some sugar when you run out?
- Find a trustworthy babysitter. ASAP. We found an awesome sitter through sittercity.com. We did have to pay for the service but it was totally worth it. Since we don’t have family to watch SG, our sitter has been a lifeline to us!
- Once you meet someone you think might turn into a friend, invite them to meet you at a restaurant for lunch. I usually feel kind of nervous the first time I ask someone if they want to meet me for lunch (What if they say no? I don’t like rejection!). But it’s all a part of finding and making friends.
- Join something! A gym, Stroller Strides – anything! Whatever you choose, you’ll most likely find someone with something in common with you.
What about you, my friend? Have you experienced any moves? Or are you living in your hometown? While I dearly miss my sweet South, it’s no longer “home”. I can now honestly call Iowa my home. No quotation marks needed.