During the summer of 2004, after my first year of college, I moved to Chicago. I was with a group of people doing summer sales, but I got to work in the office with a few really awesome girls. Most people don't know that it was also a hard time in my life. I had been through some big changes that year and suddenly found myself struggling to figure out who I was exactly. I felt surrounded by strangers who didn't understand me at all, and sometimes that meant I was really lonely. In short, I cried a lot.
Looking back on what proved to be one of the best periods of growth in my life so far, I mostly remember the good things. How my friend Melanie and I shared a room and all of our secrets, the days I got to spend wandering the city, letters I'd get in the mail from Clint who was on a mission in Pittsburgh, the shopping and the food, rain and thunderstorms like I'd never experienced before, and how I would always feel better after a nice jog listening to my music.
I also remember a small and sort of ridiculous detail about my first day there. When I was introduced to the group and asked my favorite color, I responded with grey*. Several people called me weird, which made me uncomfortable, and that was that.
These days I take weird as a compliment. I'm grateful to be who I am, to have my own identity, and to love what it is. And of course, my love for the color grey is still evidenced everywhere from the walls in my house to the polish on my toes.
*that's how i like to spell it; also, now my favorite color changes pretty much every week...