By Cristobal Segura
Living on your own. As a kid, most people have at one time, in the throes of a temper tantrum, professed, “I’m running away and never coming back,” to their parents. But these tantrums usually subside, and these kids often opt to wait until they’re 18. Others wait until they’re ready and some never leave Mom and Dad. The point is, everyone is at varying stages when it comes to moving out, and I was no different. I moved out of my mom’s at the age of 17, and I didn’t just move across town. I moved across the country to an entirely different state—from California to Georgia.
Leaving wasn’t that hard, even though I was still in school. I just simply transferred my credentials from Tustin High to Riverwood International Charter High School. At first, people were like, “You’re crazy, Cris,” and “That’s dumb,” but I didn’t care because they were part of the reason why I wanted to leave in the first place—but not the only ones.
The main reason why I chose to make this drastic life-change I was because I had issues that I didn’t want to deal with anymore. So one day I just did it—I bought myself a one-way ticket to Georgia and didn’t look back. Best decision ever, or so I thought. I grew up in Georgia, so I had family and childhood friends living there. I moved in my old childhood home with a married couple with a 9-year-old daughter and little baby that I consider my second family.
Just to make matters even better, next door was my childhood best friend Miguel Estrada. He’s been living there since I was in seventh grade, so just seeing him felt like middle school again, except with one minor change—he’s already graduated. He was working in a morning café called Egg Harbor Cafe, and since I needed money, he helped me get a job there. It was the best job experience since I was a host, so I did the bare minimum by just walking people to a table.
When I wasn’t working or at school, I would be at the gym. Every day for the next four months, Miguel and I would go lift or go to a local park, Hammond Park, to go play soccer with a few coworkers. All that seemed great until at the end of the day, I came home to an empty room. That’s when I felt really alone.
I was finally living on my own, and as time passed I had realized something—this isn’t what I want. Sure, living on my own was great because I had no rules, but after a while, I simply wasn’t happy. It was the equivalent of finally getting the toy you wanted and getting over it after a week. I called my mom and told her I wanted to come back to California, and within the week after I made the call, I was back at home.
So, my lesson in all of this is, living on your own might seem like a great idea at first, but soon you’ll get over it and want everything back as things were. Be careful what you wish for, because once you get it, you may not want it after all.