Steady goes


There have been a lot of times in the past several years when I have needed courage.  Between the ending of relationships, and a solo cross-country move, and feeling so alone I could barely breathe, and being relatively destitute, and getting roommates, and starting to share my music for the first time, and introducing myself to hundreds of new people, and continually putting myself out there… I have been through a lot of big, dramatic, grandiose transition.  Change is scary.

But for me, change is not the scariest thing.

In recent months, a lot of things have fallen into place for me.  I’m on stable ground.  I have a home, and a Tennessee family, and a great job, and a feeling of belonging.  I know my way around the city, and I’m involved in my church and various other groups, and I feel very much a part of the fabric of my Nashville community.  Things are steady.

Then why is my first instinct to run?

I’m finding that staying put requires a lot more courage than leaving.



  1. Laura on May 4, 2009 at 8:38 AM

    Sweetheart, you are SO brave. Hold tight to those memories of all you’ve done and it will help you to have courage in the present.

    I’ve found that I never feel all that brave at the time… but I look back and see that I’ve made it through some crazy changes. It helps to remember where you’ve been.

  2. Jamie on May 4, 2009 at 8:56 AM

    Hi Annie –

    I discovered your blog through Annie Downs. I just had to comment on this, because the whole time I was reading I was shaking my head, yes, yes, yes! I also am in the midst of wrestling with the courage it takes to stay put…sometimes it’s just nice to know I’m not alone.

    Love your blog!

  3. Joey on May 4, 2009 at 8:58 AM

    This reminds me of the time when you rejected Johnny Depp and his gypsy boat friends and were taking your daughter to a new city because of the wind.

    Oh, Annie!

  4. EmClare on May 4, 2009 at 9:37 AM

    “And all this time tryin’ find a way to get away…
    When the only way to get somewhere is to stay.”

    -Mike Notter, “Plain Sweet Kind of Sadness”


    SO proud of you, Annie. You’ve inspired me for years.

  5. Dani on May 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

    This is so familiar. We really are web-soulmates. :)

    When I moved to California, I was lonely and needed courage, of course. But when I really needed it was when I realized that I had a church and friends and a boyfriend who was scarily sweet to me and I didn’t quite know what to do with my feelings, other than GET THE HELL OUT. But, against all my instincts, I stayed. And I’m so glad I did.

  6. Kate on May 4, 2009 at 11:35 AM

    word. i feel the same way about 2700 miles away.

  7. Sarah on May 4, 2009 at 11:42 AM

    Annie, what I love about your blog is that your relate to so many people that are close to the same age as you. I, too, have a great job, but for the last 6 months, I have been fighting the urge to just BOLT. Like, upheaval is normal. Strangeness is comfortable. Saying good-bye to poeple is what I want. It’s not – I want roots. Part of me still isn’t sure that this is where I want to put them down, though.

  8. FW on May 4, 2009 at 12:04 PM

    Staying put is making a commitment…

  9. Ginger Morby on May 4, 2009 at 12:17 PM

    I could not identify more! Remember: Adventure does not always = change. And while being in the center of God’s will is the most dangerous place to be, it doesn’t always mean that difficult = God’s will. There are moments to be had and risks to be taken right where you are. (I’m speaking to myself at the same time.) The blessing of being his child is summed up by Augustine: “Love God and do what you want.”

  10. tara petty on May 5, 2009 at 7:16 AM

    i love your honesty.

    we just relocated to Buffalo from MI and already I am wondering where and when we’ll move again, not quite feeling ready to fully commit to this place, but at the same time desperately wanting to form roots and establish community.

    i’m so used to change and transition that i am starting to expect some major life change every year, or sooner.

    i’m hoping that won’t always be the case.

  11. Christy on May 5, 2009 at 1:23 PM

    mmmmm…hhmmmmmm… I can relate.

    A quote that I just wrote on a 3×5 card and carry around…

    Stillness is what creates Love
    Movement is what creates Life
    To be still
    Yet still moving –
    That is everything.

    Do Hyun Choe

  12. Anniebelle (Annie Cho) on May 7, 2009 at 10:38 PM

    Girl, I’m still suffering through Stage 1 of this new life. Still trying to find courage and needing help to stand sometimes. It SUCKS! I used to be pretty content by myself and now I’ve become this needy pile of pudding. Crying for hours. Huddled in corners. Lonely.

    Luckily they come and go in waves. I’m just hoping the worst is behind me and that it’s smooth sailing from here on out.

    On to Stage 2… Please, GOD!

  13. megan on May 7, 2009 at 10:40 PM

    i am like everyone else who commented.

    can totally relate!

    i just found your blog, and now i am officially “following” you, mainly because of this blog. it has ME all over it.

  14. hootenannie » Blog Archive » Stay on June 8, 2009 at 9:32 AM

    […] And so I stay. […]

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