To Nashville, With Love

Oh Nashville, this isn’t how I wanted it to end. But as with any breakup, there’s never just one clear reason and it’s never really a “clean break”, is it? Everyone says it isn’t truly over, but we are definitely on a break right now… and I am cheating on you with Montana! It sucks. Even though I didn’t always like you, you gave me what I needed. I joke! But it does feel like a bad breakup!

As I drove away, the urge to cry felt overwhelming. I wept as I hugged my knees in the passenger seat and my poor dad just passed me a handkerchief. I expected that reaction. I thought I would cry because of sadness but, really, I was simply so thankful.

I came to you four years ago broken and lost. The wounds of my grief from losing Mom 8 months before were fresh and raw, and I thought I had no worth… or direction… or even a desire to figure it out. Honest, I arrived with no goals, as well as seemingly no skills, little work experience, a battered heart, and a tired mind.

I literally thought I couldn’t do anything. Nothing. My college major felt like a failure. I had lost my voice. Literally… your physical body can be connected to your emotions, and my grief had squeezed my throat shut. My dad was desperate to get me unstuck and unparalyzed. He practically dragged me out of Montana and back to Nashville just to get me moving again.

But then I stuck it out. And you delivered.

The highs matched the lows, and that kept me going.

I wandered, I explored, I tried 8 different jobs, I worked both before dawn and late into the night, I made friends, I moved three times, I spent hours walking alone in the park (sometimes while openly crying), I made mistakes, and it was all worth something.

I made these tiny steps forward and, without noticing, somehow after a while I could look back and see I had come a long way. It took me by surprise… because a lot of it sucked! Real bad! As I drive away, I realize I am a whole different person than when I first arrived. In fact, I am… a WHOLE person now. You helped put me back together.

I believe in myself again. I have proven myself as a vocal coach, a photographer, a songwriter, a demo singer, a blog author, a secretary, a consultant, and a barback. Ha. I even did a little bit of dancing on stage again!

Who knows what the future may hold. All I know is that I feel ready to face it, this time.

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