Sunday, May 26, 2013

How You Know It's Time to Start an Adventure

Today marks the one year anniversary of the day Daniel and I ended an epic road trip and stepped into our cat-filled sublet in Brooklyn, New York. This year has been one of starting jobs, ending jobs, watching some guy clip his toenails on the subway, counting our pennies, finding friends in likely and unlikely places, making decisions, delaying decisions, and eating lots and lots of indian food. It's maybe been the best year of my life. I'll get back to you on that.

In celebration of this monumental occasion, I've decided to shut up for once, and let my husband get some words in. This is the man who has led me through all of my hysterical meltdowns this year with his strange mix of wisdom, humor, sex appeal, and compromise. He's writing to you today about adventure, which is exactly the thing I needed to remind me why we left our fancy apartment in Texas to live somewhere with a view like this:

Without further husband, Daniel O'Shoney.

Or, There and Back Again Maybe Eventually: How The Hobbit Almost Ruined Me
by: Daniel O'Shoney

There are few things I love more in this world than a really good adventure story. I am a huge fan of the entire sci-fi/fantasy/graphic novel genre for this reason. Those books take me to a place or time that will never exist (except maybe for zombies) and I just get to be somewhere new for a while. I get palpably excited when I sit down with a new book. Not that this should be a surprise to any of you. Christy has already outed me as a nerd.
In case you needed further proof.
Here's the thing though. While I always have and always will enjoy things like this, and this, and this (all highly recommended), I have learned something really exciting in my 8 years of relationship with Mrs. Christy O'Shoney. It is 100% possible to have adventure and excitement just like this in my real life! Being married and living my life with my best friend is that exciting on a regular basis. 

There's a trick to this excitement though. It doesn't happen all on it's own. This is where nerds like myself sometimes go astray. As much as I may want it to happen, I am not going to wake up tomorrow in a world where friendly monsters hide in tall grass waiting for me to seek them out, capture them, and then carry them around in my pocket using them to earn respect from my peers and forming lifelong friendships with them. For those of you I lost, that was a Pokemon reference.

Gotta Catch 'Em All. In my dreams. 
Dated references aside, the point here is that I had skewed expectations of adventure for most of my life. I had been trained by books, games and movies to expect to just have that kind of adventure handed to me. It was an unrealistic expectation and it continued for far too long. 

Then, just when it seemed like I was destined to a life of not finding out I was a wizard, or a mutant, or a jedi, I met my wife. Only I didn't know she was my wife yet. She was a girl with a smart mouth and sensitive feelings who made me re-evaluate the effort I put in to life. Christiana O'Shoney (then Lammert) made me want to do exciting things rather than wait for them to happen to me. This transition was not always easy, but it has been well worth it. 


Just under a year ago, Christy and I made the choice to move to New York City. We made this choice after getting married and living in Austin for about six months. While we loved it, living in Austin felt a little like this:

Those shoes are pretty spiffy, and they would probably look great on the right human. That guy is just trying to wear those shoes at the wrong time in his life. That's what Austin was like for us. It's a great city, it just stopped being the right fit after a while. And people, if you're like me and Christy, if your shoes don't fit, it's time to start an adventure.

I started looking for work in New York City because it's a place we've both felt called to over the years. We learned in April that I had been offered a job, and we would have to be in New York by the end of May. It was a really crazy month for us, and to anyone who knew us, I think we looked like this:

And by the time we had packed our entire life to drive it across the country our car looked like this:

Those are coconuts. 

But even in the midst of that Christy and I were like:

And rightfully so. Our time in New York has been nothing but new and exciting things.  Christy and I have tried new foods, met new friends and started new jobs. It has been unlike anything that we have ever done, and I don't see it slowing down anytime soon. Here are smaller adventures we've taken in the midst of this larger adventure:

A Christmas-Light-Indian-Food-Bollywood-Dancing Adventure!
A Coney Island adventure with friends!
New home adventure!

We've even added a family member!

Kitty friend adventure!

It has been spectacular to do all of this with Christy, who has been the most incredible partner. Not that I thought there was anything that could break this up. 

But for all of this to happen, Christy and I had to say yes to adventure. We could easily have not. We could have stayed in our beautiful Austin apartment WITH A GEE DEE WRAP AROUND PATIO, rather than doubling our rent and braving the bed bugs here in NYC. We could have stayed with our friends and our family, being showered by their love on an almost daily basis. But we didn't. We came here instead, and it has been hard, but it has been a blessing. We are learning and growing in ways that we never could have in Austin, and our friends and family have continued to shower us with love, regardless of the distance.

I would like for us all to now reflect on The Hobbit. Maybe you read it as a kid, like me, or maybe you just recently watched the first third of it in mediocre movie form. Either way I have a bone to pick with it.

Adventure does not just storm into your life like a herd of dwarves and steal all your food so that you have to leave your house. That's not real. You have to chase adventure down, tackle it, and wrestle it to the ground. Luckily for me I have Christy to help me chase and wrestle. Packing up and moving to New York was big and hard and sometimes frightening, but it has also been good. I have learned more about myself and about my amazing wife than I ever would have if we had just stayed put.

Your life, and your marriage if you have one, can and should be an incredible journey. If you're feeling a little restless in life right now, there's probably a reason for this. Maybe your underwear is just a little too tight. Look into that, but if you're still restless, maybe, just maybe it's time for an adventure. Don't be afraid to go for it. You'll be happy that you did.

What are some of your life's biggest adventures (either past, present, or future)? Let us know!


  1. Absolutely loved this! I'm in the midst of searching out and tackling adventure myself. Big adventure can be scary but you're right, it is sooo exciting! Great post!

    1. Thank you so much! Writing this blog post was honestly just as much of an adventure. Good luck on yours! It can definitely be tough, but it's well worth it.

  2. Awesome post! I especially liked the "fitting of the shoes" analogy. I think it sums up that adventure-seeking feeling pretty well.

    1. Right?! This guy is kind of a genius. Thanks for reading!

  3. I actually think the view from your window looks quite inspiring!

  4. Once upon a time after I graduated college, I jumped on a plane to Australia with my friend Sarah. We worked as church interns for a year. Yep, it was hard. Yep, we did some "what the heck are we doing"-ing. But we grewwwwww and learned and tried new things and came out the other side closer to God, each other, and strangely enough, our own, dear little USA. You don't always have to get on a plane to go on an adventure. Sometimes walking out the door in the morning is the start of something crazy.

    1. Wow! Your Australian journey seems incredible because it seemed like a time where you followed God's calling even when it was a little scary. And so true...adventure exists everywhere! Thanks for sharing!

  5. For several months, I have been meaning to go to the lakefront, watch the sunrise, take photos, and eat a toaster pastry. You have convinced me that NOW is the time to have my adventure. Thank you!

  6. ...your name is Christiana? My name is Christianna (note the extra 'n'.) Do people mispronounce your name and call you Christina too?
    I think I could manage a small adventure. Maybe...start waking up way early to talk my dog. I'll start small. And Mississippi mornings are likely similar to Texas in that you will burn and die by nine at this time of year.


Popular Posts