For the most part, yes. But I must admit that I grossly miscalculated how lonely and sad I would feel upon moving away from my home, my family, and my friends. I saw myself as an adventurer, someone who had always wanted to move far away, to a bustling city, but just had never seemed to find the time to do it. However, when I got here, every thought of missing something back home slowly crept in until I was a blubbering mess.
This is in no way saying I didn't really dig it initially. No, Chicago is by far one of the most beautiful cities I've ever seen. Architecturally speaking, I'm not sure another city in the US even comes close to rivaling it. Sorry, NYC, I just think Chicago is 100% prettier. It's so massive I know I'll never see it all. There are so many adventures awaiting us that it seems impossible I might actually be missing Atlanta. And hard.
But I do.
I thought about it for quite sometime and resolved to make changes in my life to embrace my new home and make these years some of the best. I've decided to share these habits and tips to keep readers from being overwhelmed by homesickness, or stuck inside with no social life, in case one of you gets an itch to relocate or finds a job in a new and exciting city. So... here goes; hope it helps!
Communication is your friend.
If you have an iPhone, hooray! FaceTime is going to be that thing you couldn't imagine when you were younger, but couldn't imagine living without now. Plus, with recent improvements to the iPhone you don't even have to have a wifi connection to FaceTime if you own a five, so win-win!
My family is everything to me. I had a REALLY hard time saying goodbye, when I lived so close and could visit anytime, so it's not an exaggeration when I say I'm on FaceTime more than once a week.
Whenever my parents get together with with my siblings, they always make a point to use FaceTime so I can be there too. Plus, two of my three brothers have children and I definitely can't miss that! My brother Adam welcomed a little man right after I moved, and another brother, Tommy, welcomed twins just a few weeks ago. I didn't get to join the family in the waiting room and kiss those babies' cheeks, but at least I got to see those precious bundles just moments after they entered the world. I really can't imagine my life without it.
Cut time out to video chat with your family and friends. Seriously. Grab a calendar and work with everyone to make sure you can get some one-on-one time. People are busy, but that shouldn't stop you from catching up.
Skype is also a great option for those who have computers and a reliable internet connection.
Letters and Postcards
My grandfather is not a man who enjoys talking on the phone (although we did FaceTime with the help of my aunt for almost 30 minutes one night), so it's much easier to keep in touch with him through letters and postcards. Like many of his generation (and location), he's a man with little regard for loving exchanges and mushy talk, so I usually send him a postcard when I visit a new little town, or am doing some touristy stuff in Chicago. He collects these notes and displays them proudly on the refrigerator. While I may not be able to talk to him frequently, I can still show him my affection with these little acts of thoughtfulness. Plus, they're generally pretty inexpensive so it's great for those who can't dish out the money for the iPhone and the monthly bill it requires.
I'm a sucker for Google chat (remember AOL IM?! high school memories right there). Many of my closest friends are on Gchat during the workday, and while I'm not suggesting you chat the day away instead of working, I am suggesting that you reach out occasionally, or, you know, check it out during one of those lunch breaks when you don't leave the desk. Generally, it's a tool to share funny stories or quick jokes throughout the day, and it makes a huge difference if I'm having a rough one!
Sometimes I even send small gifts as surprises to my loved ones to let them know I'm thinking about them. There are so many ways you can communicate -- from email, to telephone, to video chatting on a computer, it's easier than ever to stay in touch!
How do you cope with missing the ones you love?