The Lesson Galveston Taught Me

Four years ago, my family packed up from our home in Galveston and moved to Tulsa. Dave had trained in medical school for four years and was to train in Tulsa for his residency for the next five years. We’d had our ups and downs. By that point, after Hurricane Ike had torn Galveston apart, after scraping by on pennies through medical school, I was anxious to leave.

I remember before we moved I went to Kroger’s. I sat in the parking lot. My kids weren’t with me, which never happened, and was probably why I was able to enjoy a quiet moment. In my rearview mirror, I watched the sun set over the beach. It was one of those sunsets you don’t forget. Bright pink tinged with gray. At that point, after living in Galveston for four years, I felt ready to leave, mostly because I was done with the tiny apartment, done with hurricanes, and done with being broke. I was ready for the next adventure, and thought anywhere we went would be better than Galveston.

And now we’re going back…

Oddly enough, I want to. It’s not a perfect place to live, but is anywhere? I thought Tulsa would be the promised land. In some ways it was, but in actuality, they’ve got tornadoes here. We’re still scraping by. I’ve learned that anywhere you go you still have problems. You’ll never find paradise, not on this earth anyway. I’m not trying to be Debbie Downer, but I want to point out a lesson I’ve learned, and I’m still trying to learn.

On the final episode of The Office, Andy Bernard offered this advice. “At what point do the good old days become the good old days?”

I remeber that sunset, and I remember thinking, Will I ever see a sunset like that again?

I’ve come to learn that we have to enjoy what we have right now. Sure, life may get better, or it may get worse, but the point is–ejnoy your time right now, because someday you may look back and realize how beautiful that sunset really was.

Surely I’m not the only person in the world to realize this. Please comment and let me know if you’ve ever experienced the same thing!


  1. Sure have! We lived next door to my Grandma for a little over a year. Things were pretty good in a lot of ways. As I was driving to work one day, I realized that this time was pretty special, and I'd miss it one day, so I better soak it up while I had the chance. So glad I had that insight before it was over!

  2. I went through the same stuff moving from Reno, NV to here. I'm glad we have no plans to return, though. 🙂

  3. I understand, completely. I see my kiddo growing up so fast and I'm trying to absorb as much of these moments as possible so I can pull their memory back out later when he's all grown up. For me, life is just so amazing right now. I don't want it to change.

  4. You're so right. I miss the Midwest now that I'm in the Northeast. But I can't wait to visit you in Galveston. I love that city.

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