17. Have you ever had a moment where you knew the rest of your life was going to be completely different, where something vital changed for you? Talk about it.
I didn’t realize it then, but in hindsight, there is a particular moment that forever changed my life. I moved to Raleigh, NC from New Jersey when I was fifteen. I still think of Jersey as my home state, but t’s getting to the point where I’ve been in North Carolina so long that I feel like an ass when I claim I’m from NJ. I don’t want to be one of those people who say shit like, “Oh, I’m from New York but we moved when I was three.” Sorry, but no. If you don’t remember living there or you’ve lived in your current state longer than your “where I’m from” state, you shouldn’t be saying that you’re from there anymore. Never been a big fan of living in the South, and I can’t say I’m proud to proclaim North Carolina as my home (politically, religiously, ideologically, or nutritionally…).
Looking back on it now, I assumed I would go back North eventually, for college possibly. I see how my old friends live now, and I have a pretty good idea of how things would have turned out. Let’s just say I know a lot of people who could have made the cut on Jersey Shore. It’s not unfathomable that I would have gone down the same path. Taking me out of that environment, away from the delicious bagels and pizza, completely altered the person I became. Had I stayed in Jersey, my accent would be thicker, I’d have learned to drive there (oh dear!), and I don’t think I would have such strongly held negative opinions on religion and everything religion affects (at least in the South). Hell, I definitely wouldn’t have attended East Carolina University. I wouldn’t have met my best friend. I probably wouldn’t have found film studies. I wouldn’t be applying to graduate school for it. I wouldn’t have adopted my dog from the local SPCA!
Making the big move was the most life-altering change I’ve ever encountered. Or maybe it was the day I found Tumblr. That was pretty big for me too.