Earlier this week I was directed towards this Article in The Atlantic, all about ambition and how it effects relationships. Now, I'm not just talking about romantic relationships, but family, friends, community. It was one of the articles that really hit home with a lot of what is going on in my mind and I have been struggling with lately.
As I have now here and there detailed, earlier this spring, very much on a whim, I packed up and moved out of Alaska, where I had been living for the last 4 years (with a 7 month stint in Minneapolis snuggled in there briefly). This move was made for a myriad of reasons, but one of the key reasons had to deal with ambition. I had a good paying job, working as a waitress and bartender at a restaurant where I enjoyed (most) the people I worked with...but I was getting antsy. I wasn't 'fulfilled'. I had statements of 'not wanting to be a bartender' the rest of my life buzzing around my head. In this same vain, I thought the town had grown stale. Fairbanks, always has, and always will be a town that is made so amazing by the people who live there. These people I love and admire are all still there, but my mind was getting overwhelmed by the merging families, babies, home buying, etc that was happening. Once again, I wasn't 'there' yet, so it all seemed like one big sign to get the hell out while I could.
Now, the tone may seem like I have already (so quickly!) changed my mind on all these statements, that I have regret. I do not have regret, but they do talk about distance making the heart grow fonder. As I embark on my summer of living back at home with my parents for the first time in 10 years, working as a server and maybe a bartender at a few local restaurants (oh what a change Katie! look at you stirring it up!) I realize that though ambition is a WONDERFUL thing, and something I am full of, that a sense of community is also something that is wonderful, but I am learning, even harder to come by.
Moving home is a shift for me, and one that will ideally last 3-4 months. After this, the ball is up in the air. The ambition in me wants all the great things...a career I love! Money to let me travel! Family! A home! But there is the softer side of me (who I am hoping settles in and makes herself more known this summer) that looks at that list and sees: A Career I love! Money to let me travel! FAMILY! A HOME! and that emphasis makes a heck of a lot of difference.
I think the hardest part of letting myself transition is knowing that whereas I can work hard at getting the career I want, and I can save money (both of these things are acts I can accomplish) finding the person who I want to start a family and settle into a home with are things (at least initially) I cannot control. And Oh man, this ambition girl LOVES her control.