I recently moved to Tennessee in the hopes of finding a job and “life experience” in a new location. Before moving, I had lived in Kentucky for 22 years. Kentucky is a wonderful place full of cultural and historical merits (despite what some may think), and it is home to most of my friends from the first phase of my life. If I had stayed in Lexington (where I attended college at good ol’ UK), I would still have a couple jobs (as a barista at Starbucks and a front ensemble technician at a local high school marching band), I would be surrounded by friends that were interested in music, poetry, and movies, and I would keep doing the same things that I had done for the past four years of my life. All in all, I probably wouldn’t have grown that much.
You see, the choice to move away from my
old Kentucky home was made for two reasons:
1) Living in Tennessee puts me about two hours closer to my family. Living in Lexington was a wonderful experience, but it also meant coming home once a month (if I was lucky) once classes, marching band competitions, and weekend shifts at work started up. Being here means I’m closer to the people who raised me, and I’m very happy about that. As I’ve recently discovered, I don’t know as much about my family as I’d like. The people who nurtured me for years have secrets like any other family, and I am interested in talking to them about their lesser-known selves for my own sanity and the sake of some writing projects I want to tackle.
2) I needed to push myself out of my comfort zone. I need to get out and do different things. If I had stayed in Kentucky I would have fallen into the same routine I’ve always followed. I wouldn’t have tried new foods, wouldn’t have seen new hiking trails, wouldn’t have had to try very hard to engage with others. Tennessee is relatively foreign ground to me; I want to live and learn this land as much as I did in Kentucky.
After living here for a month, I feel like I made a good choice. I have a job teaching a marching band in a nearby city, I have an awesome roommate, and I’m surrounded by people I met throughout my marching music career. I haven’t felt like an impoverished post-grad English major yet, so I guess I’m doing alright.
I’m searching for a job that I can apply my BA in English towards, which has proven a tougher task than I previously expected. I am currently looking at improving my knowledge of a few different skill areas in order to make myself more marketable, including becoming more familiar with HTML/CSS production, Adobe Creative Suite products, and Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I’m hoping I can find a Copywriting or Technical Writing job by adding these skill-sets to my resume.
That, in a nutshell, is how life in Tennessee has been for me so far. Let’s see if I can get a job and keep myself busy with writing.