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  • Writer's pictureTaylor Waits

Manifest Destiny

Updated: Apr 25, 2020

I recently moved from Texas to Pennsylvania to get my PhD. I find that the most frequently asked question I get about my move was, "Aren't you scared?"

Bro, can yall chill?

Why are yall scared of change still? And why are you projecting that on to me? I am moving across the country to chase my dreams and you asking me this? I always retort with, "If I wasn't scared, I'd be nervous." Then an awkward laugh ensues and we move on. But literally being here for about two weeks now and literally getting that question from almost everyone I come across says something to me. Yall ain't scared of nothing? Really?

Doing anything uncomfortable is scary because you have never done it before. There was a point in time where I was afraid to brush my teeth simply because I had never done it before. Once I got over having yuck mouth 24/7, I learned to get over that fear and face it head on. Literally every day is scary to me. I haven't gone through it yet, I don't know what's going to happen. I can't predict the future and that's annoying truly. There have been so many relationships with people that I wish I could do over or change and situations I wish I didn't put myself in. Times that I lied to people I loved and even lied to myself and moments where I literally think I am a worthless piece of shit. But that shit is so old and tiring I was exhausted being so angry at myself and at other people. To be honest, Beyonce still knows nothing of my existence and until I can reach that point I'm going to keep trucking through. Simply put, every day is scary. Stop fighting it.

Knowing this made the move from Texas to Pennsylvania and the long ass drive seem like a retreat. I had spent the whole summer building myself up to this point. Literally the minute I accepted to go to school I started selling my furniture I was serious about this. And it's weird I've never really been so serious about something before. Applying to graduate school was a traumatic experience that literally changed my mindset on so many things. Flying to so many places, with so little time, and so many possibilities and opportunities to choose it's overwhelming. Throw on a full-time student schedule and you're already swamped. I needed to mentally take a walk which turned into a long ass drive lol. Being here and quite literally feeling like everything is falling into place is a familiar and also alien feeling. I know how it feels to feel good but after too long I go back to doubting that I could really be ok for this long. The lingering voices in the deepest parts of subconscious become louder and I curl back up into a ball. But thank god a bitch has friends aka therapists.

I moved up here with literally the best woman ever. She moved up here also when I told her about needing a roommate in Pittsburgh and she immediately took the offer. We set our sights on Pittsburgh at the beginning of May and never looked back ever since. Every morning we wake up we just marvel at the fact that we really picked up at left. We chased a dream we both had - together. A story I can share with practically all of my close friends and family members. Moments where we made a stand, or comforted each other, or created an opportunity, or is just always a nice person. They are my support through moments like this. Every "what if" was rebottled with a "shut up" or a "you'll be fine". Everyone had their cute ways of saying good byes or see ya laters and it was so cute. Feeling loved is great and it feels the best with people you love to see happy. And they were all right everything is going amazing. I already booked a few gigs, making headway with networking and getting some experience in academia, and have an already packed schedule before orientation starts, I'm LIT!

I can't believe I really manifested this dream into reality and that I am going to see it through. I can feel my grandmothers in my body it's like I can hear them. And I've never met one, and only saw the other when I was a baby. Yet, I feel like I know who they were and what they want for me. I keep meeting such amazing and supportive people who empower me and y creativity and my ideas and just accept me for who I am and I know they sent them. I see how my lifetime friends have always and continue to empower me on my path and how we help each other to be better people. I already see the scope of my lifetime in myself and I can't wait for who I am becoming. I am so thankful to feel that way everyday I just want other people to feel just like me. I envision these next five to six years to be full of lessons, experiences, and relative stormy times. I'm up for the ride, the good and the bad because what's life without struggle? (PRIVILEGE but that's a post for another day.) But, I'm not scared, tho haha.

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