Depending on the situation, the reasoning and the location, moving can be both the best and most exciting step in your life, and also the biggest pain in the a** anyone will ever experience.

Sorting through your stuff with a life or death judgment about whether you should keep that 5th tie dye tee shirt or just get rid of it is a tedious, upsetting process to downsize your boxes and limit the trips to that fourth floor walkup you just signed a lease for.

But it is a necessary ordeal to endure to have an efficient move to a new apartment, home or dormitory.

Especially when that move is cross country.

Growing up I lived in the same room, in the same house on the same street in the same town until I moved away to college. I had never known a life of moving my belongings anywhere, or saying goodbye to a location and friends and starting anew.

Once I did move away I haven’t stopped. I developed a nomadic gypsy lifestyle that I know all too well. Accumulating stuff along the way, shoving clothing into luggage whilst sitting on it to force its submission into zipping. I have gotten pretty good at downsizing enough to make as few trips as possible. I have lived on a college campus, apartments, houses and hotel rooms. I have lived in parts of California, blocks away from each other, Arizona, Western Europe hopping from hotel to cruise ship to hostel while studying abroad and back to California, until I finally landed in New York for yet another academic adventure.

After 18 years in the same room in that same house I moved a total of 12 times in the last 4 years.

8 countries, 3 states, 3 apartments, 2 homes, 2 resident halls and a partridge in a friggen pear tree.

Home, Palm Desert, CA

School, Thousand Oaks, CA

Home, Palm Desert, CA School, Thousand Oaks, CA

Rented room, Mesa, AZ

Travel, Western Europe

Home, Palm Desert, CA

School, Thousand Oaks, CA

Apt, Thousand Oaks, CA

School, Thousand Oaks, CA

Apt, Thousand Oaks, CA

Home, Palm Desert, CA

Apt, Brooklyn, NY

Some of these moves were for as long as 18 years and some for as short as a week for a simple transition from one place to another. At a certain point you get used to shoving your life into the confines of your car or cardboard box, seeing everything you own and adore packed away to be introduced somewhere new to create a new home for yourself.

That sock monkey your mom hid in your luggage for Europe, or that special wine glass your best friend got you for graduation, even that fuzzy blanket that is a pain to ship but your parents do it anyway because you wouldn’t feel home without it.

These small mementoes and items that have stayed with you through all the treks in your life that led you to this next adventure. Settling in once again, but in a new state, in a big city, in another apartment in a different room 3000 miles away from what you once knew.

You create a different home for yourself and no matter distance or difference or challenges or fears you lug your suitcases through airports and up 8 flights of stairs to find your corner of the world.

Yes moving is a pain. My shoulders hurt, I am still living from my suitcase and my mattress in laid directly on the floor until further notice but I am creating a new home, with my two girls at my side in an incredible city. This nomad signed a one year lease and she is going to stick around for a while. (At least 2 years for my master’s program) but alas I am here.

Brooklyn is going to be called home and So Cal matriculation in my past until further notice