Friday, November 1, 2013

It's Not You, It's Me

One month ago, I arrived in New York; and ever since that first moment when my feet hit the long stretch of concrete, my mind has been a complete mess of muddled mush.

Imagine the fastest, highest, wildest roller coaster ride you've ever been on in your life.  The world around you flashes by in an instant.  Strands of hair whip you across your face, whether it's your own hair or the person sitting next to you.  You have no idea what has possessed you to stand in line for what feels like an eternity, only to get whipped in the face, jerked from side to side and nearly losing your lunch.  

You step off the roller coaster and have absolutely no recollection of what you saw as you were being hurled through the air along the winding track, but you are fairly certain it was amazing because it felt amazing.  My friends, that is the only way I know how to describe the past four weeks of my life in New York City. 

Each day has been a surprise, an exercise, a conflict, a challenge, an enlightenment.  

I have felt happy, intimidated, courageous, lonely, afflicted, creative, tired, observant and every now and then: defeated.  

Every moment has demanded some measure of concentration: even if only to close my eyes and try to let go of the events of the given day.  In this city, while working full time at a new job and still living out of two suitcases, even the seemingly simple and natural act of sleeping requires a concentrated effort.  

My writing had been set aside these past few weeks, as I opted to take in what I saw, rather than share it with the world as I had been this past summer.  

The lack of stability and familiarity has burdened my thoughts and mind in such a way that is difficult to articulate.  And as I sat on the shore of the East River along Brooklyn's busy borough, I wondered; Am I happy?

And much like the meager attempt to enjoy the view from a speeding roller coaster, I began to see happiness in a similarly blurred and mysterious way.  I had ventured out of Manhattan in an effort to see the sunset; something that is very difficult to do in an otherwise completely vertical city. And as I sat there gazing across the river, I began to laugh a little as the sun sank behind the entire island of Manhattan, still blocked by the skyscrapers that line the entire radius of the city.

It was funny, because in that moment, I realized how much effort it is going to take to survive here.

Am I happy here?  Was I really ever happy anywhere?

For short stints of time, yes, I felt happy.  Skipping around from place to place trying to outrun, outsmart, outmaneuver myself.  But time and time again, the void followed.

And now, as I sit at my computer and finally bring myself back to my writing, I realize that the void is not where I reside, but rather what has always been residing within me.

It is terrifying to finally understand that I need to face my fears, and hopefully believe in myself enough to follow my dreams.

New York City is only the backdrop of this story I have decided to share with you.  And I will tell you this much; it is a character all its own.


Peach Bellini

Fresh Peach puree
Glass of Prosecco

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