When Andrew decided to join the Coast Guard, I ultimately started to prepare myself to handle any location thrown at us. For those of you who understand the military lifestyle, you know that tours(assignments) only last a few years, and then you are assigned to a new location… and it could be anywhere.
A little over a year ago, Andrew commissioned as an Officer in the Coast Guard. When we received our orders, Andrew was opening a white envelope on stage in front of his classmates. The ceremony was actually streaming live for family and spouses to watch. I remember sitting on the bathroom floor during my pottery class just starring at my phone, waiting for Andrew to appear on stage. My heart was racing when I saw him at the microphone with a white card. I was praying for the West Coast… but then Andrew said “Sector Houston”! I can’t even explain the feeling that took over my body. I kept saying and repeating, “Houston, Houston, Texas… Houston”.
My phone began to ring and it was my best friend, Melissa. She was watching the live ceremony at our apartment. Once I answered the phone, we both began to cry. It was honestly so comforting just to cry with someone even though I was sitting on the bathroom floor at my local community college during a pottery class. We both started to laugh, then cry again. It was so overwhelming.
As soon as I got off the phone, I called my momma. By now, I was shaking, crying, and in shock. “I’M MOVING TO HOUSTON!” I cried/shouted to my mom. Her response was, “Is Andrew happy? Is that what he wanted?” We talked for about 10 minutes… and she was able to help calm my nerves. She was happy because it was closer to home than it could have been. We got off the phone pretty quick because she wanted to tell the rest of the family. I got myself together and went back into my pottery class.
My mind began to race in all directions… Where are we going to live? What am I going to do for a living? How are we going to move our stuff? Why Houston? When can I quit my job? Who do I need to see before I leave?
I began to research and reach out to people who I knew lived in Houston. I read sooo many blogs that were based out of Houston. But nothing could really prepare me for the transition of moving half way across the county until I experienced it first-hand.
The drive from Elizabeth City to Houston was about 23 hours. We split the drive up to explore different locations which helped the drive not seem so bad.
Once we got to Houston, I was so overwhelmed. I moved from a small town on the East Coast of North Carolina to one of the largest cities in America. I felt like a little fish in a big ocean. I went from a town where I could name everyone at the only local bakery to only knowing my husband in a city full of bakeries.
Well… surprise, surprise! After a few good cries, being late to a couple job interviews, and learning the Texas slang, I think I have adjusted pretty well. I have made some new amazing friendships, started a career in the Petrochemical Industry, and most importantly, I'm watching my husband live his dream!
Houston is full of great food and entertainment. Although Houston is one of the largest cities in the United States, it can sometimes feel smaller than you think. Houston traffic is a nightmare; always leave early, like really early. Everyone speeds and drives like they are going to be late so GET OUT OF THE WAY! No matter how many times you slam on brakes, cut someone off, or just act a fool while driving, nobody will honk at you. If you do honk… you might die… no but seriously, never honk!
Besides the crazy drivers and ridiculously hot summers, Houston is a city full of art and unique traditions. If you want to be surrounded by people who are accomplishing things and are motivated, Houston is a great place to live. Although I have only been in Texas for a little over a year now, I can honestly say that I like living in Houston.
Stay tuned for my Houston bucket list!