Hello Old Friend

What a year it has been. Whew. And it’s not over yet! So…I’m back in the South. I left New York and moved back to Asheville, NC, to live with my boyfriend again and I haven’t been this content in a really long time.

It’s funny that this time last year I was in the same place, but not the same place at all. I wasn’t settled. I needed to get away. So, I went- to New York EFFING city. All alone. And I did it for six months. Without a doubt, it was the biggest half-year of personal growth I’ve experienced in my life.

Before moving away I depended on my relationship for my happiness. And my sadness. My successes, my failures. My relationship was everything. And while I’m always going to be the co-dependent type in relationships (ahem, I’m a cancer after all), I’m more confident and independent than I’ve ever been. And I will always owe that to New York City.

People didn’t think I could do it. Hell, I didn’t really think I could do it. But I took a deep breath, jumped, AND I DID IT. There were tears. There were laughs. Late nights. Early mornings. Drunk rides on the subway. New friends. Old friends. I learned so much about myself…about life.

Coming back doesn’t mean I failed, or that New York “beat me” as New Yorkers love to say when people move on. Simply, I missed my people. So rather than staying and being miserable to prove some invisible point to myself or others…I left.

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I’ll look back on my months in New York City with a smile for the rest of my life. It was a moment in time that I had dreamed about for so long, and now it’s on my list of “did that” rather than “do that.” And I’m so damn proud.

I’m excited to be writing again in this city surrounded by so much love and inspiration (…I have a rekindled love of the color green #concretejungle). It might be the end of yet another chapter for me…but this is really just a new beginning. Look out.

Love,

E

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Whatever Floats Your Boat

Hey y’all!

First of all, I’m so SORRY the blog hasn’t been as regular as it was before I moved to New York. Sometimes life gets in the way! Along that line, ~life~ has been on my mind lately…and how different it is for all of us. Specifically, mid-twentysomethings.

Being from the South, people are generally married pretty young. And having babies young. That’s what I always wanted. I dreamed of the white picket fence and the dog and the older son and younger daughter by the time I was 30. It’s all I knew.

But, things have changed…completely. I have a couple weddings I’m going home for this summer to watch people under 30 tie the knot in the “traditional” way. Which is amazing and beautiful and I wish them all the best. However…the idea of that in my own life right now honestly makes me want to run away and not come back. And I’m entitled to those feelings as much as they’re entitled to their wedding rings.

I had pretty strong views about the world before moving here, but they’ve certainly been heightened, and sometimes challenged, by the people I live with, the people I work with…the culture I’m completely surrounded by. Plenty of 30-year-olds in New York City are single and focused on themselves, maybe contemplating a marriage before 40. Maybe.

That is not to say those humans are “right” or that the humans at home are “right” and New Yorkers are wrong! We’re all allowed to live how we want to. That’s what’s so beautiful about being alive, right? You get to decide.

It’s OK to be 23 and questioning your sexuality. It’s OK to be 20 and a mother with a husband. It’s OK to be 40 and not want kids or a traditional marriage at all! It’s when people start to get judge-y or preachy about how their life is best and your life isn’t, that I have a problem.

We’re young. We don’t have it all figured out (despite those that project that as a facade). AND THAT’S OK. I’m embracing that uncertainty in my own life as best I can (it’s not easy) and I hope you can try, too. Don’t beat yourself up. And don’t think you have to try and be anything that you’re not.

Cheers to letting go of judgements and embracing your now. Wherever that is, it’s more than OK.

-E

NYC Dreamin’

NYC has been running my brain waves lately! I had a dream a couple nights ago that I was living with Karli Kloss in New York, and we were total besties. TSwift even made an appearance coming over to hang out with us one day…haha! Needless to say, it was one DREAM of a dream. I didn’t have to totally imagine the city though, I visited The Big Apple for the first time in real life this past February with one of my very (real) best friends, Gina.

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That is a face of pure joy after we walked approximately one million blocks from where our MegaBus dropped us off, to the trendy Brooklyn brownstone where we were staying for the week with our sweet friend’s family. Our hosts insisted that our first meal in the city be bagels and lox, a staple to many New Yorkers (and now one of my very favorite indulgences).

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Did I mention it was February? The high temperature was never out of the 20’s the ENTIRE TIME. This is me clutching my coffee like the liquid life that it was. It hurt to even smile too big in the wind. So…apologies for the pained expression, I promise I was having frozen fun! We rode the Subway a lot too but mostly we wanted to be above ground. There was simply too much to see to wimp out because of the weather.

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This sliiiightly blurry photo reflects another amazing happening for me in the city! I finally got to meet my its-a-long-story-but-we’re-basically-cousins Stephanie! We had great drinks and great (tipsy) conversations at Benny’s Burritos in East Village. BTW she’s quite the jet-setter and has the most beautiful blog in the entire world…http://www.betterlatethannever.us/

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They say “Not all who wonder are lost.” Gina is a super dedicated runner and I’m so glad I decided to join on this particular morning. We didn’t really know where we were going…as in, absolutely no idea…but after seeing the Brooklyn Bridge in the distance, we she decided we had to get to the top. So, that’s the direction we ran. 6 miles later, we had arrived! It was absolutely breath-taking (figuratively and literally thanks to all those margaritas)!

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Gina and I just loved this message on the Brooklyn Lululemon sign. “The concept of YOLO isn’t to go smoke and drink and make a FOOL of yourself, it is to go out and do something that matters.”

Have you ever been to NYC, or dreamed of going? What are your favorite spots? I have a sneaky feeling I’ll be going back…

Muah!