And like that, 14 years have come and gone.

I turned in my keys to my Chicago apartment just an hour ago, a place I had called home in East Lakeview. (Note: I will still be teaching Reiki and maybe yoga classes in Chicago – check my schedule for upcoming dates!)

I am ready to move on to the next phase of my life, but there’s an edge of nostalgia – my mom helped me pick out that place in 2003. I had just finished my year with AmeriCorps and had lost my hearing 8 months earlier. I was about to sign the lease for a shoebox where the kitchen was a wall and the bed would be right next to it and not much room for anything else and my mom, who was looking at apartments with me, was like “you can’t live in something this tiny!” and the building engineer said that there was a bigger place, but still a studio just around the corner. It was beautiful, only 400 square feet, but it boasted 2 large walk-in closets, bay windows and a separate dining room.

This was the apartment that I first brought Diana my cat to once she was mine 11 years ago. It has seen 2 cancer diagnoses and treatments of my mom, first for colon cancer in 2004 and later lung cancer in 2017. I was living here when my dad passed. While I moved in when I was completely deaf, it has seen me through 2 cochlear implant surgeries. It was the apartment that I lived in when I was a grad student at Erikson Institue for my master’s in Child Development. I lived there when I made the leap from a nanny to yoga teacher training, eventually becoming a teacher and then later Reiki. Each thing even bigger and brighter than the previous.

Those walls contained so much for me for so long. And it’s over in what feels like a blink of an eye.

In yoga, the breath is often examined not just on the inhale and exhale, but the natural pauses in between.

I’m not sure what and where I’ll end up in the long run but short run is living close by in Indiana with my sister and maintain my Chicago business presence. But I have no doubt that this time is the percolating, incubator time. And a time to take a moment.

As I complete the cycle of the last 14 years, I pause.