To the place that has kicked my ass for two years straight,
I love you and the person you have helped me become. Two years ago, the world as I knew it definitely changed. Life got a little harder but also became a lot more interesting.
To the place that continuously knocks you down and forces you to stand back up, thank you for teaching me that sometimes tough love is the best thing.
To the city that has taken every penny, ounce of energy, damaged far too many pairs of shoes and given me laundry lists of anxieties… thank you. You have given me far more than you have taken away and quite frankly I’d rather be stressed in New York than anywhere else.
Yes, some days I dread going out into the world because I am tired, exhausted even. Sometimes I don’t want to leave my apartment. Sometimes I don’t want to walk, take the subway or exert any extra energy because both my mind and body are far past their limits.
Some days I want to escape and take a break. Some days I wish I had an “unsee” button. Some days my heart breaks for those around me who have lost and to see those who are struggling. Every face has a different story. Sometimes I stress about rent, subway delays and expenses. Some days work wears on you. Sometimes life gets in the way and you just need a moment but the city around you refuses to pause. Some days, I have my moments and dream of suburban life for a second. (Cars, houses, clean air, peace and quiet… tempting, I know.)
Sometimes when I leave, I take a deep breath upon my return, knowing the chaos is about to resurface in just a few short hours. But without fail… every time I see the sparkly skyline pop back up onto the horizon, I forget about the noise, the rats, the roaches, the crowds and I am almost relieved to see this place that was once only imaginary to me. The place that was once deemed “impossible” to live in is now my home. (For two whole years!) New York, I am both glad and surprised we have made it this far.
Sometimes I have to remind myself that this little island is only 13.4 miles long. Its the kind of place that makes you realize how big and small the world is all at the same time, which gives you a whole new outlook on life.
If the characters I met here have taught me one thing it is: “Those who stay here work for it.” Those who dreamed about living here took a leap of faith to create the life they desired. Those who have made this place their home have come from all walks of life in order to pursue something bigger than themselves. We are a proud melting pot.
All frustrations and complaints aside, I can’t say I’d choose to live anywhere else. This teeny tiny glowing dot on the map has housed some of the most iconic moments in history. We are lucky to live in the city that makes dreams come true and is fueled by people who never stop moving forward.
Through the good times and the bad… New York, you have rewarded me more than I can say. (My favorite love-hate relationship of all time!)
Happy Anniversary, New York.
(My 7-year-old self is very happy about writing this right now.)