Three months ago today, I sat in the back of my parents’ car and drove into New York City.
My stomach was in knots, and I couldn’t get rid of the nagging thought that demanded, What the heck do you think you’re doing? For the first time since mid-2014, when I started planning my applications to grad schools in New York, I was petrified. What if this was a mistake?
We pulled up to my new home and I jumped out of the car, running up the front steps to grab my key. And the picture happened.
The first 24 hours seemed to last forever. But here I am, suddenly, three months later, and I’m not sure where the time went.
Oh, of course, I could think about it and figure it out.
The time passed with dinner cruises with fellow NYU students, with first projects and tears and victories, with visits to Photoville and walks across the Brooklyn Bridge. It passed with constant dreaming and some nightmares.
The time passed with a week-long hospital stay and a weekend in Baltimore. It passed with evenings with classmates and church friends. It passed with making friends and a life for myself.
Time passed with starting a new job tutoring second graders and getting published by Seventeen.
And here I am, three months later, and it wasn’t what I expected. Every day hasn’t been filled with Instagram-worthy moments of city perfection. Of course there have been some — fall in the city is breathtaking, and even way out in residential Queens the red, yellow and orange of the leaves have been glorious. But there have also been a lot of evenings spent at home with Netflix and pizza.
I thought I would be partying every night, in the city with friends and constant excitement. I thought my life would be like “Friends.” “How I Met Your Mother” and “Castle,” full of quirky incidents, opportunities and cute guys.
It hasn’t been like that. It’s been so much more chill. Of course there have been opportunities. I never would have gotten an article published by Seventeen if I hadn’t been at NYU. I wouldn’t have gotten to go to Baltimore to write about community women doing leadership.
All this to say — my dreams came true. I moved to New York, and I’ve been here for three months. It’s not what I expected; it’s better.