Day 18 :: Moving to Nashville.

on October 18, 2011 in 31 Days of Courage, Nash-livin' with 19 comments by

So many of you reader-bloggy friends have jumped on board in the last few years. Which, I’ll have to say, is just awesome. Welcome.

Most of you only know me as Annie in Nashville. [Or, I guess, Annie in Edinburgh.] I’ve been in Nashville since August of 2008, but before that, I was a hometown girl- Marietta, Georgia. I lived ten minutes from my parents, two minutes from my best friends, I owned a home and taught elementary school and I was totally content to stay there forever.

But that was not God’s plan.

And to date, moving to Nashville was the most difficult thing I have ever done. Bar none. Significantly harder than moving to Edinburgh.

It took more courage than I ever knew possible.

So I thought today I’d tell you the story of when I moved to Nashville.

. . . . .

In October of 2007, I started feeling this weird unsettled feeling. Not like something bad was going to happen, more like God was talking but I wasn’t listening. I sat down one night with my journal and began to write. Suddenly, on my page, at the bottom of a list of questions, it said this:

“Am I supposed to move to Nashville?”

And I was stunned. Why in the WORLD would I even write that? I loved my house, my job, my friends, my family- everything about Marietta. Why would I leave? In fact, I have NEVER been to Nashville and had approximately zero friends there.Β 

So I tossed the idea, though I felt an unearthly peace when I read that in my journal, and I told the Lord, “Ok, if this is YOU, bring it back. But if it’s me, let’s just forget the whole thing happened.”

[I think I even shook my hands out after this. You know, from dramatic “let’s forget this” effect.]

I told no one. I just prayed. And it wouldn’t go away, though secretly, I really wanted it to…. more than anything, I wanted that gnawing call to courage to go away.

At Thanksgiving of that year, I emailed my friends Kevin and Mandy [folks I knew from UGA] to see if I could stay with them over MLK weekend in Nashville. Very nonchalant. Very “of course I’m not MOVING there, just visiting… of course.” [Now, we laugh. Because they knew.]Β I thought if January came and I still couldn’t shake this idea, I should probably visit Nashville. Since I had never been there before, and all.

I told my family at Christmas of that year. They all loved it, I don’t know why. Probably because of Jesus speaking to their hearts, too. But I still DID NOT love it and was pretty certain I had lost my marbles or was in some sort of phase. Why didn’t anyone else agree?

I then told my two best friends and it was horrible. [Good. I wanted it to be.] I wanted someone to say that this was a terrible idea and brainstorm for hours other ways to accomplish the same goal. Or set a timeline. Or cancel the plans all together. So we did, to no avail. They knew. I knew. I was moving.

I never doubted that God was doing this, I just wished He wouldn’t.

I visited Nashville in January, let my school know I was leaving after that year in February, sold my house in March, moved out in April, came on a mission trip to Scotland in July, and moved in August.

My heart broke for those months. Over and over again. From that day in October until the day I drove away from Marietta, my life was filled with moments of courage, moments when I knew I could change my mind, but I didn’t. I just kept taking the next step.

August 2008 arrived before I knew it. And I moved to Nashville.

Here’s the video I made on my first day alone in Nashville. I acted like an idiot because I had no friends and was bored and was mainly putting on a show for myself. You’re welcome.

. . . . .

Part 2 :: how courage… and Nashville… saved me.


  1. posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 8:34 AM  |  reply

    you sound SO southern in that video! Cute!!

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:41 AM  |  reply

      I was acting ridiculous. And when I get nervous, I get really southern. πŸ™‚

  2. Lisa
    posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 9:21 AM  |  reply

    I SO know that feeling of God wanting you to go somewhere and you not wanting to go! I did NOT want to go to Georgia College initially because my mom and grandmothers had gone there and I wanted to blaze my own trail. But long story short, I couldn’t deny that was where I was supposed to be and in the end, I didn’t even APPLY anywhere else!

    And then, at orientation, I was sitting in the College of Ed filling out my forms for elementary ed and suddenly, my hand raised and I asked what I should put in a particular blank if I wanted to focus on teaching music. I had never even CONSIDERED teaching music and was immediately rushed to the music dept and handed a bunch of forms. When they left me alone for a minute, I remember thinking – OK God, I don’t know what just happened but I think you’re in this so I’m gonna roll with it.

    And now, I can’t imagine doing anything else or having gone anywhere else! Thanks for sharing your story!

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:41 AM  |  reply

      God is amazing at weaving our lives.

      (PS- I’m glad He’s woven ours together.)

  3. posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 9:34 AM  |  reply

    Re-watched the video. Two observations: (1) there’s that video lisp; and (2) who is the nervous, high-pitched narrator on that video? That is not you. The shot of you driving away and your stuff in the back was priceless. Blubbering mess that you were. Great reminder of a courageous time for you.

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:42 AM  |  reply

      (1) old camera. dumb thing.

      (2) She used to live in your town. πŸ™‚

      As much as I actually don’t like that video (because of my ridiculous voice/behavior), it is an amazing reminder of that week.

  4. posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 10:22 AM  |  reply

    I’m so glad you’re sharing your story about moving to Nashville. I didn’t know it and can’t wait for part 2. And yes, that video was sad…but I’m glad that I already know you were happy in time.

  5. merideth
    posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 11:13 AM  |  reply

    I often wondered how you decided on Nashville. If it was God telling you to go to Nashville, or he just wantedt you to move and you picked Nashville for some reason. Thanks for sharing.

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:43 AM  |  reply

      You’re welcome. πŸ™‚

  6. posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 12:51 PM  |  reply

    Given my most recent blog announcement, I’m all on board with this post πŸ™‚ In the very beginning of this process for me, God had to have about 40 million people quote stories about Abraham and his faith and obedience to me (without them knowing why it was significant) to get my head in the right spot πŸ™‚

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:44 AM  |  reply

      That’s right, girl. Hang onto those quotes.

      Give Nashville time. She starts out a little shy and off-putting, but she’s a real gem.

  7. posted on Oct 18, 2011 at 7:52 PM  |  reply

    Earlier this year when God asked me to quit my job and prepare for a move to Nashville I quickly said no and moved on. He kept bringing it back and after much prayer (and prayer among three dear friends) I knew I had to do it. One of the hardest things about this is not knowing why. I just know He is asking me to take one step at a time (my job ends in December) and to trust. Which is so scary to me. Yet He has affirmed the decision over and over and it has become my own adventure. One I need…and deserve. So I am doing it scared. Be Brave my friends remind me often and I am.

    Thank you for sharing your story it helps me feel a little less alone (and erhm crazy!)

    It is hard to answer the question of why when people ask…so I just keep saying He told me too πŸ™‚

    Looking forward to reading more tomorrow.

    (And umm can I just tell you something…Thank you for being YOU! It is delightful to know you through this bloggy of yours)

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:45 AM  |  reply

      Thanks for your kind words, Christy!

      Just like I told Amanda, you’re gonna love Nashville. πŸ™‚

  8. posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 12:08 AM  |  reply

    That video was so funny especially when you showed the leopard print key! I fell out laughing! I hate prints! I think the only place prints belong is on the animal from which they came! Oh, I am so sorry you felt that way moving from home but you have to admit, Nashville is pretty nice. I drove up in a packed car just as you did, but I was comforted by the fact that I could always drive home to visit. God bless!

    • Annie
      posted on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:45 AM  |  reply

      I almost died when they gave me that key. And yes, one of the hardest parts about being in Edinburgh is that I can’t drive home. (obviously) πŸ™‚ But I love that about Nash.

  9. Emerson
    posted on Aug 14, 2012 at 2:57 PM  |  reply

    I came across this in search of an answer. In my heart I’ve been feeling that Nashville is calling my name. I’ve never been there. I have no friends there. I just want to be there. The only apprehension is that I know I’m going to miss so much back home, Oregon. It’s a HUGE move and I’m scared but I see a prosperous future there within nursing, music as well as the quality of life. But like I said the apprehension is leaving ALL of my family back in Oregon. I guess it’s not a new thing. . . been in the Army for almost 5 years, and I’m about to get out. But I’ve always referred to Oregon as home, regardless of which state or country I reside. Any words of comfort?

  10. posted on Aug 31, 2015 at 7:52 PM  |  reply

    So, I’m finding this blog post years late BUT I’ve been going through so much similar to what you are saying. I, too, am from Georgia (actually Marietta and now Woodstock/Roswell) and I’m just feeling this desire & indescribable feeling that I NEED to make this move. While I know next to no one- save for a few people- and I don’t know WHAT I’m doing I just think it’s the right move. It’s a big move and I’m feeling so anxious but excited about it. I can’t wait to follow along for your next few blog posts and read about your transition to Nashville. I’m excited to read you story!!

  11. Crystal
    posted on Jan 21, 2016 at 12:24 PM  |  reply

    i plan to move out there also in September 2016.,,all alone…just need some advice

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