Going Forward by Going Backwards

Today I landed in Washington DC, my official hometown according to my drivers license. On my quest this year to discover what home looks like for me, I’ve decided to start somewhere familiar- in the past.

This doesn’t mean that I’m moving to DC, I’ve just come here to start the unraveling.

On the agenda this week is sorting through what remains of my DC past and presence- a city full of memories, a bunch of great friends and a storage unit full of things that I probably should have gotten rid of a long time ago.

When I moved to DC in 2006, I was in a similar state of mind to where I am today: starting over, anticipating my next steps and living in the questions.

In my favorite café today I have a moment of panic.  How can I be sitting in the same place I sat seven years ago and still be trying to figure out the same things?

Then it hit me, I’m not. Circumstances may look similar, but I’m a different person than the girl that used to walk these streets.

Sometimes we need to return to the static places we’ve been in order to recognize just how much we are the ones who’ve changed. Returning can be a physical way to find your reflection.

When I recognize how far I’ve come and what I’ve overcome, I regain my confidence that all will be well.There is beauty in the backward. Standing in the past allows me to believe in the way forward.

From my vantage point on a corner near the capitol today I’m reminded…

The best is yet to be.

3 responses to “Going Forward by Going Backwards”

  1. I adore that shot with the red shoes, and the sentiment as well. It’s true sometimes that it’s hard to see the growth when we are living it, to know that this year we are different than even last year–but when you’re able to take that more macro perspective from your previous home, it’s always intriguing to take stock of the changes in attitude, goals, emotions and what-not to see that yes, growth is constant and pushing us forward even when it doesn’t feel like it inside the moment. Glad you made it out of SP for now! 🙂

  2. I took a long, lonely walk today, and I found myself on the street where I rented for a short time 12 years ago. I realized that I was retracing the steps of a long lonely walk I took over a decade ago. It was sobering.

    Yes, I’m still trying to figure things out, but yes, I am also a different (and hopefully better) person. It’s all a journey.

  3. Love this post! I recently visited Southern California, my home for 3 decades, and had a similar moment of panic. I am a different person, too. “Living into the questions”- great mantra!

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