I have some kind of really big news to share with you today, dear readers…
Hubs and I are moving. To Nashville, Tennessee. In July.
Many of our close friends and family already know this, but at long last we’re finally ready to make it public. We’ve had this goal in mind for a long time, but the plans are finally starting to fall into place. Matt has found a job, I’ve found some freelance writing work. I’m currently looking for a part-time job to fill in the gaps in our income as we make this transition. We think we’ve found a place to live, and hopefully we’ll sign a lease when we go back to visit the second weekend in June. Our tentative moving date is July 3.
Here’s the long and short of it of why we’re moving :
We need to thrive as creative people.
I have lived in Chicago for close to ten years (!), and Matt grew up here. We have loved this place. And though we’ve always lived in the suburbs, it is the city of Chicago that has anchored me in this stage of life as I’ve grown into my adult self. Its culture – the art! the music! the food! the sports! – has enriched my life in a thousand ways. Its sweeping skyline and glimmering lakeshore have welcomed me home as a pair of open arms. Chicago is as much a part of my identity as the rural Michigan farm town where I was raised.
But as much as we’ve loved living here, we’ve slowly recognized that we’re not really thriving. Chicago’s cost of living is one of the highest in the country, and this is a harsh economic environment for artists to succeed in. We’ve found ourselves pouring all of our energy and resources into surviving, with little left to put toward our creative endeavors. We’re finding, at this stage of life, that we need to live in an area that fosters creative community, mostly through a lower cost of living.
We have several friends that have moved to Nashville for these same reasons, and once we visited we fell in love with it too. It’s a beautiful, affordable city with a thriving creative community. (And the warm weather doesn’t hurt either.)
In the coming months I’ll share more posts with you about this move, but for now, I just want to say thank you to everyone that’s supported us through this process.
We have not made this decision lightly. It has been difficult to come to terms with, difficult to explain to our loved ones. Not everyone shares our priorities and dreams, and we respect that, but this decision is the right one for us right now.
Keep us in your thoughts and prayers, friends. We’ll need them as we plant new roots.
Bethany & Matthew.