Monday, February 6, 2012

10 Things I've Learned About Myself in the Past 6 Months

Me. photo by Brett Beery. Taken this morning, feeding cows. 

Many of you know that in September of last year my family and I moved from Seattle (where for a moment I thought I might live forever) to rural Illinois, where my husband was born and raised. I remember the first time It occurred to me that there was something else in the world for me, beyond Seattle. Up until that point I had always just assumed that I had all the opportunity and happiness that I needed and never really considered the possibility of moving across the country, or across town for that matter. The day I realized that I may not be satisfied living in the Pacific North West for the rest of my life sort of shook my world. I was driving home, on 85th, just off 15th in Ballard. I had been living in the area for about 3.5 years... and it hit me, this isn't it. 

At the time I was actually thinking that I wanted to experience the east coast, somewhere in New York, Maine, or Massachusetts. I never really thought to myself that moving to the rural midwest was the next step in my life. 

Just after Judith was born, Brett and I visited IL, it was my first visit ever. We talked about what it would be like to move and help Brett's parents with their farm. It was something that, at the time, sounded romantic but unreasonable. We continued living in Seattle, making amazing progress in our careers and lives until 2011 when we visited Brett's home again. Only for the second time ever (for me). I can't really tell you what made me feel like, after a collective 12 days spent in this part of the country, this is where we belong. It must have been something really big to make me drop my career, photography business, and friend base that I had worked tirelessly the past 5 years on growing.  

During our second trip Brett and I explored towns that neighbored the Beery farm, but couldn't find anything that seemed to fit us. I told Brett at that point that if it was meant to be, then something would happen. He was frustrated, I was ready to go home. Our last day on vacation I was in Shelbyville with Brett's mom, she showed me around the town that Brett had neglected to (because it was the town he had rivaled in high school, obviously evil). I immediately felt at home, and on our way out of town we drove by a house with a for sale sign in the yard. When we got back to the farm I looked up the house on the real estate website and called for an appointment to view it. Yes, 5pm the night before we left town Brett and I viewed the house on the corner that we now call home. 

We took a really big leap moving here. Call it what you like, but I believe the universe wanted us here, and I feel strangely at home, like I've lived here for years. In the past 6 months my life has changed dramatically. I left Seattle where I was successful, had a large network of friends and family, and had started a business from scratch, to come to Illinois where in many aspects I've had to start fresh. Here's what I've learned about myself in the past 6 months:

1. There are many things that I want to do with my life, I feel an overwhelming urge to accomplish as many of them as possible. 

2. Im actually terrified of getting older and running out of time or energy.

3. I will probably never paint my nails again. I hate painted nails. 

4. Will power and Self Control are two different things ... I have little self control but very strong will power.  

5. I like working with my hands more than I like working behind a desk. 

6. I don't hide my emotions from my family. Im open with my kids and husband about my feelings

7. I hate highlighted hair. 

8. I love watching the sun set on the flat lands. 

9. My stress manifests in impatience, exhaustion, and frustration. I didn't know how much my life would change once I took out the stress.   

10. I do what I believe in, regardless of the support I get

That's all for now ... however I have decided to make an addition to the categories of my blog, I'll call it country living, and it will contain my confessions, dear diaries, and all things that I decide to randomly yammer about concerning the country.  


  1. When I read this post last night I got all teary eyed, I thought maybe I was just being overly sensitive so I decided to hold off on any comments. But I read it again just now and I still got a little teary eyed but I realized it's because I'm so proud of you for being aware and open enough to allow the universe to speak to you and to just be open to change. People always say change is good and there are times when I don't believe this and then there are times when I can't help but believe it's true. Even though I know how much you love Seattle, I'm sure you love it even more than I do and I definitely love it a lot, when you told me about your move I was so excited and so happy for you and it seemed like it was the right thing. Like it didn't sound really all that far fetched that you would be going to the midwest I just felt like I could totally see you there. And then when I got to see pictures of your house I was blown away at how well it fit you. It takes a lot of courage to pick up your entire family and leave behind a life you spent years building and I am proud of you for doing it and I'm inspired. I'm constantly inspired by your courage and strength and your will and of course by your photog, diy, and baking skills as well. :)

    Just so you know, I'm also terrified of getting older and running out of time. Hello I'm going to be 30 soon and I'm freaking out. I stopped painting my nails years ago.... and then sometime last year I started up again. Sometimes I worry if I'm too old for it and other times I just don't care. lol

    Anyway...I think I'm going to like this country living part of the blog!

    1. Thanks Liz! I was feeling really insecure after I posted this, and I had to convince myself not to take the post down, thinking that it might be a little too personal. Somewhere along the way I've become less revealing about my personal life to the world. Im glad that you commented because it's made me feel a lot more comfortable with the post.

      I actually just never really thought I would be freaked out about 30, but it's weird embarking upon a new decade! It makes you realize how quickly time passes, I guess that's the scariest thing.

      Painted nails, for me, chip immediately, I usually can't stay inside the "lines" and then i smudge them because im too impatient to let them dry completely. lt's a horrific process and I usually end up with nail polish on my face somewhere, or in my hair. I've finally come to terms with the fact that painting nails just isn't for me.

      thanks for the comment :)

  2. Beautiful story. Congratulations on finding your peace. Enjoy every second!

  3. Chelsea, I love the Little Red Chair blog & pull it up everyday. If there is nothing new posted I just go back & revisit an old post, as I love them all and have actually learned a few tips (even at my old age, haha). This one was really pulling at my heartstrings and had my emotions going in all directions. Of course my selfish sorrow because we miss you all sooo much, happiness for all of you because your happiness shines through and finally pride, feeling that maybe, just maybe, Mom & I had something to do with the absolutely amazing daughter, mother, wife & person you are. Now that you are a mother you truly know the kind of unconditional Love we have for you. Okay, I'm starting to well up, need to grab a tissue. Keep up the great job here, Love & Kisses to all.