I just got back from spending the weekend in Charlotte, and I was once again reminded how happy being there makes me. I grew up and learned more about myself during the four years that I lived there than I ever have before.
When I first moved to Charlotte I knew no one. I had a blank slate, and was able to create a life based on my passions, on what I loved. I formed friendships stronger than any I've ever had, and chased my dreams wholeheartedly. The city became a place where I flourished, I became independent, and for the first time in my life felt like I was doing what was best for me, not what others thought I should be doing.
While there I discovered the things that I love and have become a firm believer in holding on dearly to those "things". These loves define us, they become our passion, or driving force, our happiness. Once you find these loves, don't let go, but embrace them, use them to flourish, to continue growing into who you are, and who you're supposed to be.
Charlotte will always be dear to me, because of these things I discovered I love. Things life four distinct seasons, including red and yellow leaves in the fall and dogwood trees in the spring. The small town charm where people still say darlin' and drink Cheerwine, intertwined within a growing metropolitan city. The tree lined highways that can take you to both the beach and the mountains without ever having to leave the state. The people who make you feel like family, because they too are from somewhere else, but have found their new home in the Carolinas.
I love the city, and am so thankful for the opportunity to have discovered myself while I lived there. Discovered the things that make me truly happy.