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Coming Full Circle (So Long, Chicago)

The past year of my life has been insane. Good insane. But insane.

Through it all, I’ve learned so much about myself, what I’m capable of, my flaws and my strengths. Chicago has embraced me with open arms and I have made incredible friendships and connections that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

I am extremely grateful I’ve ended up where I am. To say that I never thought I would be where I am right now – at 24 years old – is an understatement. I remember sitting in my cubicle a little more than a year ago, writing for Life Without Pants, wondering if I could ever actually enjoy work, wondering what I was going to do with my life…

If you know me well, you know I’m the type of person who always has to have a ‘project’. That project can be personal or professional – but one of my greatest fears is not having that ‘something’ on the horizon, that BHAG in the distance to accomplish, an obstacle to overcome. Complacency isn’t in my DNA, sitting stagnant isn’t something I’ve ever done.

So here I am, married, running my own business…wondering what’s next…

To ‘cut to the chase’, I’m packing my things, pursuing a new business endeavor, and moving BACK to where it all began, back to where I spent the first 23 years of my life. Nashville, here I come. September 1st, to be exact…

This was not an easy decision by any means. A lot of thought went into this over the past several months, but for my wife and I, we’re moving to a place that feels more like home – more “us”. We’re moving to a place where I see a lot of opportunity for myself, and most importantly, we’re moving to a place where my better half can purse HER passions.

Chicago…what can I say? There are so (so) many great people here that I have had the extreme pleasure of meeting, working with, and calling friends. To all of you who have sat down and listened to me ramble and rant over coffee or a drink, to those who meet with me regularly on my Tuesday’s in the city, I can’t tell you how much I’ll miss that and how important this past year has been to me.

For me, for my wife and I…this is the next chapter. It’s bittersweet and extremely exciting all at the same time…we’re leaving a lot behind and coming face to face with a ton of new opportunity and potential.

And…that’s that. Turning the page to chapter 2, or whatever chapter we’re on at this point. If you’re in Chicago, let’s please get together for a cup of coffee or a beer before I ship out of town in a couple weeks. If you’re in Nashville, keep the seat warm for me…I’ll be there soon…

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  1. I can, to some extent, relate to what you are feeling. 4 years ago me, husband & son moved from the UK to Ireland. It comes with so many mixed emotions but driven by a sense of wanting to being somewhere that feels like “us” (to coin your phrase). Enjoy this exciting time and wishing you and your wife every success and happiness.

  2. Thank you Elizabeth! My wife is going through what I went through a year ago – putting in her two week notice without anything lined up (yet) in Nashville. It's a nerve-wracking and extremely exciting time all at once. Can't believe we'll be driving a moving van down to Nashville two weeks from today. Things sure do happen fast…

  3. Thanks, Ryan. You're gearing up for a move to Kansas City, right? Or did that already happen and I missed it. I'm pretty sure with all the non-stop transitions, I have “Life ADD” (or so my wife calls it).

  4. Thanks Ali – We figure that this is the time in our lives where we have some room to 'figure things out' – no mortgage, no kids, a lot more 'freedom' so to speak. So we want to make sure we spend a little more time 'figuring things out' so to speak, before we settle down. Thank you for the well-wishes!

  5. We're really going to miss you here in Chitown, Matt! But it sounds like an exciting new chapter is beginning, and we'll always be here when you want to stop in for a little Chicago magic!

  6. Best of luck to you! After moving for the second time this summer (finally back in Virginia!), I know what it's like to want to go back to a place you consider home. I think that sometimes, the adventure isn't in a new location, but new careers, passions, and dreams. Best of luck!!

  7. Isn’t this just an incredible testament to the fact that you never, ever know where life will bring you? Or where it will bring you back to, in this case. ;) Good luck in Nashville, Matt!

  8. It’s interesting….after college we tell ourselves that we’ve gotta’ get away from home but more often than not, we end up coming full circle. Nashville isn’t permanent by any means (then again what is these days?) but I’m excited for it to be the next chapter. Thanks as always for the support, Emily.

  9. Did you? Well, as quick as I am moving back to Nashville, I could just as quickly pick up and move somewhere else or end up back in Chicago. Who knows…but the ‘not knowing what’s next’ is what keeps things interesting… :)

  10. Very, very true. You never know where life will take you (and that’s an understatement). I hope all is well with you, Susan. Have you moved into the casa yet? We’ll have to talk soon!

  11. Thanks, Lauren! I’m actually coming out your way again in October (well, Palo Alto – that’s SORT OF close, right?) Maybe we can manage to get together when I’m back out west?!

  12. My friend, I’m sad to see you leave our fair city, and that’s coming from a dude who left eight months ago.

    Life’s not something to ignore, that’s for sure, and one of its delights is certainly putting yourself in new cities and carrying your new challenges there with you. I hope the move is great for business, love, and life.

    You’re a rockstar.

  13. life is dynamic, uncertainty is it’s very nature…glad to hear you embraced that and had a great year…in a life that is uncertain we need to get in tune with our hearts…the mind only knows the old and known…but if you know how to listen the heart takes you into the new and unknown…good luck in following your heart back home to nashville….

  14. Good luck on your journey! Remember If you are not willing to pursue your dream, then you might as well be the rest of the world living in their sad little cubicles.
    Thanks