Boxes, Baggage, and New Beginnings

Life comes full circle after your heart breaks. In May, I proudly packed up all my remaining belongings at my parents’ house and shipped them to the east coast, only to come back for the holidays to find those same boxes now once again in my childhood bedroom. I forgot why they were there. Oh, that’s right, I got my heart broken and was living on a boat at the time, so of course they got sent back to my folks’.

But I take it as a good sign that I had forgotten about those boxes. My life has moved on. And seeing those boxes again is an oddly conspicuous reminder of how surprisingly nicely life has turned out this year.

I can’t believe it’s been six months since my plans changed and four months since I’ve moved to Florida. There was a period when I figured I’d never get settled here; I’d never build a good circle of friends. But when you rid yourself of excess junk, you leave room for good things to settle.

And that’s what has happened. Sometimes you have to cut off your own arm because ridding your life of toxic baggage is more important. And, metaphorically speaking, we can grow new arms.

Things have been going really well in Florida these last couple of weeks thanks to a mixture of four things:

1)   Saying “no” to boy time — to leave me open and available to harbor new friendships with ladies;

2) — through which I’ve met other new Floridians who aren’t here for school;

3)   Going to parties by myself — turns out it forces you to talk to people. Who knew?;

4)   Getting back into theater — because community theater is just that, a community.

It all comes down to focusing on what is important. Creating valuable friendships became my topmost priority. That meant that I had to leave room for “girl time,” and, also, that I had to throw aside any insecurity about going places alone (or auditioning for the first time in years). This didn’t happen all at once, and I definitely have to pep talk myself regularly, but it’s absolutely worth it!

How invigorating it is to go to a party solo, to meet great people, to not be the girl in the corner sitting quietly, and to walk home having exchanged numbers with ladies you would actually like to hang out with!

These last two weeks have offered a sneak peak to the greatness of the coming year—friendships, getting back into an art that inspires me, and being part of something powerful.

Now, about these boxes…

Samantha Marangell
Blogger As a former Peace Corps Volunteer (Moldova ‘07-’09) Samantha appreciates seeing a new country through the host community and, when traveling, she looks forward to learning key phrases in the respective languages. She has just moved to the Australia after a year in the Czech Republic. She will reflect on making friends abroad and figuring out whether she'll finally stay in one place.

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    1. Great attitude and I have a feeling you’ll look back on this time as one of the most transformational in your life. We don’t always ask for our circumstances to change, but it sounds like you are doing a great job of rebuilding and getting back in touch with the core “you.” I can totally relate and it’s great to see such a positive example and reminder of how a good attitude and a bit of risk taking always pays off. Kudos!

    2. “But when you rid yourself of excess junk, you leave room for good things to settle.” — YES.

      You are a master of turning lemons into lemonade and it is truly inspiring.

    3. Thank you! There is definitely something powerful about times of transition.

    4. Great blog, really got me thinking.

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