six months in


Friday marked six months since I moved to Tennessee. Six months. I have lived here for half a year. Somehow I am still living... and not *completely* failing.

First and foremost, I love Tennessee. It is still surreal to me that I live here. I frequently find myself driving into Nashville totally elated and in disbelief that I can just visit my favorite place after a day's work when I used to plan trips months and months in advance. Even running errands in this small town I sometimes catch myself thinking, "wait... I'm in Tennessee."

Did I mention I live in Tennessee?

I talk about it all the time. I know. But if you only knew what I was going through before I got here, you'd understand how much this means to me. That being said, I don't want to screw anything up... and I'm afraid I'm headed down that road. Honestly? I hate where I'm living, I hate my job, I'm awful at budgeting (I'm poor and in denial), I don't keep up with house work (who has time for dishes?), I never work out/eat healthily (although currently I'm eating a spinach omelet with a side of avocado *high fives self*), I've been chronically dehydrated since I moved here (equal parts coffee and alcohol), and I'm having difficulties pursuing my creative endeavors (ugh). I'm sure most of you are thinking "Welcome to the Real World" in which I would reply, "Where's the next exit?"

I really thought I was going to blog more while I was down here to keep friends and family updated on all of my adventures, but this hasn't been the case. There has been a lot of confusion, doubts, and fear of the unknown. These feelings have been overwhelming and keeping me from setting out to do what I think I need to be doing down here. Not knowing where to start has also been hindering my motivation. I was very vocal about similar struggles in one of my posts on instagram.

Regardless of all of this, a few months ago Ethan and I were walking through a neighborhood after attending a writer's round in Nashville. We walked through the same neighborhood that I had walked through a year prior, crying on the phone with my best friend, not knowing what I was doing and scared that I was making a mistake. Fast forward a year plus a couple months, I walked the same street as a completely different person who still doesn't have a clue, but is here nonetheless. That was a profound moment for me in these past few months. I realized that I had gotten myself here, and everything else will come with time. And I'm thankful for everything and everyone that has lead me to where I am right now.

So, six months later, where am I? Still clueless, but with no regrets.

why nashville // jamie fleming


Jamie Fleming / 22 / Chicago native / Hairdresser / Netflix addict

Moved to Nashville in January of 2015 because she fell in love with the city. Although she still loves Chicago, she loves the "southern hospitality" feel Tennessee has and the fact that there's live music everywhere. She plans on living here for the next few years, but sees herself eventually moving back to Chicago, and someday settling in Colorado. She loves the freedom, power, and independence that comes with living on her own, but she's not a fan of grocery shopping or bills. The first week after moving was the roughest because she didn't know anyone and it was hard to adjust without friends or family. Regardless, she has no regrets about moving.

"I wouldn't do anything different. I feel like we did the best we could without knowing what exactly we were doing. Because I was able to make this happen, anything's possible."

Jamie likes that Nashville is close enough to drive to, but not exactly in the city. Being a bit further south, it's a kind of a culture shock; everyone's friendly except when they "point out [her] Chicago accent."

"My favorite parts about living here so far has been back-roading, driving through the mountains, seeing Love Circle, and all the characters I've met."

If she could live her dream, she'd be a country singer living in Nashville with a second home in the country.

Grateful to be this one's roomie.



Ever since I decided to move to Tennessee, I've gotten nonstop questions asking "why?"

"Why Nashville?"
"Are you a musician?"
"You're not a musician? You don't sing? You don't play ANYTHING?"
"Wait... you're a psychology major?"
"What are you going to do down there?"
"How long are you going to live there?"
"Won't you miss your friends and family?"


I'll tell you why. Upon my first visit in June of 2013, I fell in love. I didn't fully realize it until months later when I was planning my next trip down. Nashville made me feel welcome; I was surrounded by the kindest people, live music on every corner, and an abundance of creativity. I always left Nashville feeling inspired and wanting more.

In February of 2014, I was talking to a friend about how I felt lost and alone. I felt like a stranger in my own hometown; completely uninspired, uncreative, and burned out. I woke up every day with the feeling in the pit of my stomach that I didn't belong. On the inside, I was completely dead; it was as though my world was gray and I was just floating by. I had played around with idea of moving back in September of 2013, but I was given the courage to move forward with them on February 23rd.

"NASH PLANS 2-23-14"

This is the cork from the night I sat my parents down and shared my plans (I actually found this while packing for the move and I'm so glad I saved it). This is the night moving became real. I specifically remember texting my friend saying "I might be living in Nashville this time next year."

One year later, here I am.

So, why Nashville? Because at this point in my life, I know this is where I need to be. Do I plan on staying here forever? Possibly. I have no intention on moving back to Chicago, but also can't say this is my forever-home. I also dream of living in Colorado someday. Am I a musician? Not by any means. I song-write for fun and play around on my keyboard, but it's not anything I'm pursuing. I'm a psych major planning on becoming a counselor. Everyone knows Nashville as the "Music City," but it's also known as the nation's health care center. Health care is actually one of Nashville's largest industries, bringing in billions of dollars each year. So, I think I'll be alright. Everyone talks about how the key to happiness involves the people you surround yourself with and living in a place that you love, but few practice what they preach. I decided to make it happen. Of course I miss my friends and family, but sometimes you have to sacrifice the good things in your life to move forward. Moving away doesn't mean goodbye: it's see you later. I have big plans for my life, and moving here was the first step in order to achieve them. My friends and family get that. I have an amazing support system, and couldn't be more thankful to love so hard and be loved in return.

Since June 2013, I've also made trips in October 2013, December 2013, June 2014, July 2014, November 2014, and December 2014. It's now January of 2015, and nothing's changed. I'm so incredibly happy to be right where I am.

This is also a new segment I'm starting on my blog. Chances are if I know you and you live in Nashville or somewhere in Tennessee, you will be approached to answer the same questions. I'm also going to ask strangers on the street or in a coffee shop to do the same. There's a reason behind it... to be continued.
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