Last month I made the move from Denver, back home to St. Louis. While I was both heartbroken and beyond excited for the move, I couldn't shake the cloud of shame that followed me every time I told someone I was moving home. Honestly, I felt like a failure. WHY? Why did I feel this way?
I wasn't being forced to move home for financial reasons, so why did I carry around this shame? Well the most obvious reason is because the devil was playing a game in my head while I was taking steps forward into obedience to God. But the other reason is because growing up in our society I heard terms like FREELOADER, and someone ignorantly referring to a person living at home as a self interested young adult, playing video games in their parent's basement while eating Cheetos and Oreos that they can't afford because they don't have a job, or when the phrase "but she/he lives with her/his parents" is put in the negative column in every RomCom/ teenage drama/ dating TV show EVER.
Why do we, as a society, do that? (myself included before I experienced it). Until I moved home, I didn't realize this was ever an issue, or that people would feel ashamed to move back to their home town or back in with their parents. So, I am NOT going to reinforce this stigma. Instead, I am going to try my hardest to explain why moving home shouldn't be shameful.
In my personal scenerio, I moved off to college in Denver, about 800ish miles away from everyone I knew. Then, after college, I stayed for a while. In total, I lived in Colorado for almost 5 years. In that time, I made a life that was completely my own. I made friends that turned into family. Went to a random church that became my home and resting place. Entered the most fulfilling relationship ever - with God. I lived in an amazing house with an awesome roommate, in a booming part of town (10 minutes from downtown Denver and 15 minutes from the foothills). I became who I really am and embraced my silly, slightly nerdy, single, Jesus lovin' self. So why move home, you ask?
Well, I don't know how many of you have wrestled with God, but normally He wins and He certainly did this time but BOY did I put up a fight. Moving home honestly felt like the scariest thing I could do. This is where the devil enters with shame. I start taking steps to be obedient to christ: I tell my friends the call that God put on my heart (the devil reminds me that I only have one friend that isn't my relative back home, he gets me thinking that I'm going to be a loaner in Missouri), I put my two weeks in at my stable job (the devil puts the word "FREELOADER" in my head), I notify my landlords that I will be moving out (the devil plays scenes of "EW, SHE LIVES WITH HER PARENTS" on repeat), I start packing up my house room by room and all the more, the devil continues to tell me I should be ashamed. He tells me that IF I move home, I am quitting on life before I'm even 23, that I don't care about my career, he goes on and on.
You know what I noticed? The more steps I took toward obeying Christ and moving home, the more the devil yelled at me and trembled. Can I just say - if the devil ins't trying to destroy you, that might be because he doesn't have anything to destroy.
I move home. Suddenly I am learning things I didn't know before. I am learning that it takes a whole lot more effort and patience to live with your loved ones than to live on your own (in the best way possible). I am learning that living at home does not mean giving up on your dreams, just this week I started my dream job. I am learning that it is a lot harder to shut yourself down because of anxiety when your nieces know who you are and light up when they see you. I am learning that I am accountable to all of my words and actions. I have learned so much in the past month of living at home. With each thing I've learned I am able to shrug off that storm cloud of shame that followed me around.
I would not trade the last (almost) five years in Denver for anything in the world. I grew. I became an independent, self reliable adult. I made my best friends and my life is for ever changed because of my life in Denver. I am 23, I live with my parents and I AM NOT ASHAMED. Life is good, y'all. So, don't let the enemy tell you otherwise.
by Kait, with love.
(P.S. not paying rent is a huge bonus for living with my parents. I do NOT miss Denver's housing market ;))