The Past Year…

The Transition Continues

Another year ends, yet another begins. We all experience change throughout the 12 months that make up our traverse around our local star. Some trips turn out better than others. Successful years are attributed to any number of factors: opportunity, ambition, favor, luck. The converse is true for years deemed “failures.”

I think it’s all about perspective. And mind you, mine is never exactly correct.

The year 2021 saw a continuation of what our family commonly refers to as “The Transition.” It began in the fall of 2019 as I left a 23-year job with the Christian Broadcasting Network in Virginia Beach, VA. That two-decade stint involved many milestones for me: my first career, international travel to exotic world destinations (but not too exotic), meeting interesting public figures and celebrities, and learning what it meant to truly be a “professional.”

But these were just career milestones. The pillars of my personal life were also set up: I bought my first house, got married, became a father twice, moved to a new city (still with the same job), moved back to my old city, learned that the world isn’t about me, experienced betrayal and true heartache, and chose to end my role with the only job I’d known my whole adult life.

My goal throughout this time, when the moment came to move on, was to “go home,” back to the Pacific Northwest where there was family, mountain air, and space. I’d always wanted to raise my family there, to find a home with property and build a new life. We left Virginia and moved west, knowing no one but one relative on my side. Otherwise, we were strangers in a strange land.

It simply wasn’t to be. Things change. Times change. People change. What once was no longer is. It is amazing the fantasies we sometimes lodge in our brains. But we put our backs into it and TRIED.

Then Covid-19 hit.

Eighteen months later, April 1, 2021, we packed up and headed back east, this time back to where we came from … almost. Greenville, South Carolina, beckoned with its rolling hills, moderate climate, and houses a family can actually afford. We have found it inviting, accommodating, and frankly, refreshing. The West was not for us. The East is where I grew up, where I met and married my wife. Where my sons were born. And … where I recently found out my biological father’s family was from (but that’s a post for another day). In short, the East is where we belong. It’s amazing to now see what “settling” does for a family.

So what was 2021? The final chapter of a colossal failure? Perhaps. I definitely made mistakes. But I also took risks and did things others told me they were envious of. Some of them are still sitting back where they were two years ago. And they are right to do so. It’s not easy stepping out of the boat, because no one walks on water and not everyone can swim. I got that part right, but the shore of the promised land still isn’t in sight, and my arms are getting tired.

But thank God He doesn’t leave us. Or forsake us, even if we make stupid decisions. Was mine? Sometimes I struggle with it. But I’m glad I did it, and 2021 was the new reset, I believe.

I’m looking forward in 2022 to getting out and seeing this Greenville more, experiencing its many sights, sounds, and tastes; its several surrounding communities; and of course, its people. I think we will like it. And I hope Greenville likes us, at least a little.

Happy New Year. Get out of the boat. Just make sure you can swim……

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