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Luke and I have been in Jacksonville, Florida for a little over 3 years now. That is exactly 1,136 miles from our hometown Tulsa, Oklahoma (which is a rough 17 hour drive). We had no idea what to expect when we made the decision to move to the beach. We knew we wanted to experience something new and we have been pleasantly surprised with how much we love living in Jacksonville, but it hasn’t always been easy.
The hardest part about moving away from our hometown is not seeing our family as often as we’d like to. Flights aren’t cheap and the drive is… not fun, so getting back to see our loved ones can be tough. We have been very lucky that our family has come up a couple times a year and we make it back for the holidays usually, but it is no secret that I get a little bummed when I am not in Tulsa when everyone gets together or when the people we love are going through tough times.
I think it has made Luke and I appreciate the time we do have with family a lot more than we used to. We take advantage of the time we get to see everyone and we are still able to create amazing memories with our family.
Moving to Jacksonville we didn’t really know anyone. Something I was nervous about was knowing whether we’d form friendships with people (especially with me working from home) but we have been incredibly blessed with the people we have met here in Jacksonville. Both Luke and I have met some amazing people through our jobs that have turned into lifelong friends. It is important if you are moving somewhere that you don’t know a lot of people, that you make an effort to connect with people – we think having solid friendships can make any town feel like home!
It is a challenge to move somewhere new, without knowing anyone, for me, I didn’t have a job when we moved and we didn’t know what the future would hold. I think it made Luke and I rely on each other more and made our relationship grow stronger and slowly we started to find our place in Jacksonville. I started my wedding planning business, Luke grew in his career and landed at a company that he enjoys, we took advantage of the beach and after 3 years we find ourselves loving where we live.
We have so many memories here – like our first home, our first puppy, our first NFL game experience, lots of eventful game nights, starting a biz, exploring a new town, lots of beach time and we are really excited about the memories we will make in the future. I honestly think that if we hadn’t taken this leap of faith, we would have missed out on a lot of opportunities.
I would actually encourage anyone who has been interested in moving to a new state or city, to take the leap of faith. It can be really scary and I am not going to lie, I still cry a little bit every time we jump on a plane after a family visit, but you learn a lot about yourself. It challenges you to step outside of your comfort zone and if it doesn’t work out for you, you can always move back – it doesn’t have to be permanent. But, hopefully, it ends up being a wonderful and life changing experience.
If you are thinking about moving and would like to talk to someone in more detail about their experience, I would love to chat with you!