How is it that I have been here for over 10 years now?!!? I feel old saying this, but seriously, where has the time gone?! I still remember telling my parents, in December 2006, that I had decided to move to Denver. My plan was to pack up my little Chevy Cavalier and head out west! My dad looked at me like I was nuts! Haha.. just movin’ on out there- no job-not even a job prospect, no money and now, no car (he put the big kabash on driving my Cavalier out there). Somehow I convinced him, and on December 28, 2006 I took a one way flight to my new home in Denver, CO!!! Of course.. it all worked out (right Dad!?) and here I am, 10+ years later, about to board another one way flight to Tanzania and start over in a new home.
Ok.. now the tears are starting.. oh boy, this could be a hard one to get through….
Colorado, you have added so much to my life.. so much beauty, adventure, love, friendships, joy and passion. It was here that I discovered myself- discovered my passion for nursing, my desire for adventure and travel, my love for having new experiences and pushing myself to embrace new challenges, and in all of that, establishing true, lifelong friendships. 10 years ago, 23 year old me had no idea what was in store for me here…I never could have imagined I’d be a charge nurse on a pediatric oncology floor, teach at my old nursing school, learn how to ski black diamonds (and attempt to snowboard, ha!), hike a CO 14er, and a Tanzanian 19er (not sure that’s a thing…haha, but you know what I mean!), skydive over the Rockies, go white water rafting, travel to Alaska, Canada, Cabo, and San Francisco with friends. I never imagined I’d attend so many Red Rocks concerts, move 8 times in 10 years, establish an annual ski trip to the mountains, meet Jimmy Fallon on my 30th birthday, and overall, just fall in love with Colorado.
Colorado, you’ve raised me. You’ve watched me grow up and blossom into a strong, confident woman. When I moved here I was a 23 year old baby who was naive about life and unsure of herself. I was beyond excited to move to CO with some college friends, and live life to the fullest!! My 20’s were filled with countless nights in downtown Denver at Lodo’s Bar and Grille, the Cowboy Lounge and the Grizzly Rose. I saw endless Rockies games, and country concerts. I danced at every Denver bar, and (some) became the queens of karaoke, haha! I experienced all forms of dating- blind dates, speed dating, online dating, and random men at the bar dates. I fell in love, and got my heart broken. I got new jobs, changed careers, and discovered my passions. I grew up here. I gained confidence, strength and courage to deal with life’s disappointments and heartaches. I learned how to love others, and more importantly, love myself. I learned that I can only plan so much of my own life and that at some point I need to let go, and let God.
33 year old me doesn’t have it all figured out, but I know I’ve come a long way in these last ten years, and I am beyond grateful for every life experience I’ve had, both good and bad. God has used each of those experiences to shape me and teach me important lessons about life and myself. All I can do now is take what I’ve learned here, continue to trust God with my future, and be ME wherever I am… and bring a little CO flair to TZ, of course!
So, thank you Colorado, for everything. You have been beyond good to me. This isn’t goodbye, only see you later!!
Of the hundreds of pictures I have, here is “Ten Years of CO living”.. in a nutshell!
Here’s to you, Colorado!