I have never been so depressed in my life. I had been back on U.S. soil all of one day and I already wanted so desperately to return to the Italian countryside. I missed my friends, the food, and the culture, not to mention the view. Weeks passed by, and after seeing all of my friends and family, I was proactive in my search for employment. For 6 months I struggled like all of my friends, trying to find a decent job within my field that would help me pay off my ridiculously expensive student loans. I applied for everything that came across my path that I deemed interesting. I made it to the final round of Teach for America, didn’t make it. Something about them needing more women of color…
So yea I thought my life was hard and I would never amount to anything. I invested so much time and money in my education and I had nothing to show for it. I was scared. Nervous and worried about the bills that would soon arrive at my doorstep. Instead, opportunity came knocking and I received an offer for a position that I love and will help me further my aspirations towards a PHD. But that was just the beginning. I had to make the bold decision to move to D.C.
In case anyone was wondering D.C. is expensive. I thought I made it with my awesome new job and my cute new apartment. But in all that excitement, I forgot you have to furnish the apartment, turn on amenities, decide between luxuries and really just change your insurance, registration and checks to D.C. addresses or else you will always be wrong and pay a fine.
All this change since my return to the states, most of you would call it growing up. And that’s fair, but no one said it would be full of positive and negative emotions. My experience hasn’t been the easiest and I am soooooo thankful for my family, and my roommate for being so supportive, encouraging, and honest. Their patience has allowed me to learn what needed to get done to truly live on my own. I was able to embrace the change taking place around me and had it guide my next steps. I am now excited to see what the future will bring because the steps to get here were so difficult. Honestly, if this process was easy I wouldn’t have learned as much, but next time can you include an instruction manual?! I don’t think that’s too much to ask!
Love Always, Ja’el
31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge
January is Self-Love month, and it marks the 4th year that we’ve hosted the 31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge. You can participate by submitting your self-love writing to be published on this blog. You can submit your writing here. You can also participate by writing your self-love posts on your own blog and linking back to the 31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge, 2014 blog post and Facebook event. If you don’t start on January 1st, that’s fine! You can jump into the challenge whenever you want.
Win a Copy of Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works
Each blog post you write is one entry into our random drawing to win an autographed copy of my book, Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works. You’ll also be entered into our drawing to win our upcoming Self-Love e-products that we’ll be announcing soon.
If you don’t feel comfortable sharing your self-love writing, you can write in a journal or write yourself self-love emails. If writing isn’t for you, simply reading others’ self-love writing can be powerful and beneficial to you on your self-love journey.