Thursday, February 16, 2012

Looking Back

I have been writing this blog for over 6 years. I never thought to celebrate because when I started I didn't even know what a blog was. Now I am writing a second blog and found a whole new love and appreciation for blogging. I started looking back at my family blog and seeing how it has evolved and how my family has changed. It also made me look back at how my life has changed since I moved to NYC. I wish there were blogs around when I first moved here. I had some amazing times that I would have have loved to write about and it would have been great to look back on it all through photos and stories.

I was 24 when I moved here. I was open to try anything and experience all that came my way. I lived in a tiny one bedroom apartment with 2 other 20 something girls. We didn't have much money, none of our dishes matched, and we slept on twin size futons like we were in a dorm. The heater would clang very loudly every time it turned on and wake me up. I remember waking up to that strange sound and smiling because every time it reminded me that I LIVE in NYC. We would have to walk our big bag of laundry down the block every Saturday. We didn't cook much and ate out on the cheap as much as possible. I learned the subways and buses through trial and error. I thought it was the coolest and scariest when I ended up in the Bronx when I meant to be on the Upper East Side. Back then everything was exciting nothing could get be down or out of this city. I was happy to be poor, loved the grim and grittiness because it is what made it special.

Now I am 39 almost 40 and my life is completely different from that 24 year old who moved here with the intention to stay for One Year. I'm married and a mom to two beautiful boys. When I started this blog Coolidge was 1 and now he is 8 and Brody is 5. When I first moved here the only person I had to take care of and worry about was me. This city looks and feels completely different. I upgraded to a 2 bedroom tiny apartment. I moved from grammercy park full of young cool people and restaurants to Harlem full of families and a little bit of restaurants. The heater doesn't clang but my upstairs neighbors make for the loss of that noise. Now my heater just falls apart every time you get to close to it. I no longer take one bag of laundry once a week to the laundry shop down the street. I am now hauling 4 bags of clothes to the basement and complaining all the way there. I know the subways like the back of my hand but most of the time I walk or take the bus with the kids. When I was 24 I thought cars were ridiculous and enjoyed the subway system and its brilliance to get you anywhere in the city. However when you have two small boys you carry so much that I long for a car to carry it for me. I have to push a cart to the the grocery store because I don't have big enough muscles to carry food for a family of four. I could pay to have my groceries delivered but I made the choice after having Brody to stay home with my kids. In order to do that I have to do all that extra work. It is amazing how having kids changes your whole life.

The grittiness and grime is no longer funny and cool. Now I have to tell my kids to watch out for the poop about a dozen times on the way to school. I'm no longer having Brunch with the ladies on Sunday looking for food to soak up all the alcohol from Saturday night. Now I am just happy for my kids to play in there room quietly so I can have a cup of coffee and watch the CBS Sunday morning show. Being cramped in an apartment like it is a dorm no longer is appealing when your kids are bouncing off the walls but can't go outside and play because outside is a busy street with lots of cars. At 39 going on 40, this wife, mother of two boys is starting to long for a house with a basement or family room, 3 bedrooms 2 bathrooms (so one can shower and not be interrupted by someone needing to go to the bathroom), a yard, garage, kitchen with a dishwasher, and laundry room, However, it is hard to leave this city. If you have ever lived here you know what I mean.

This city has Everything. You can walk out your door and literally everything is there for you to enjoy. I appreciate it most when my friends and family come and I show them what I enjoy about NYC. I start to remember why I chose to stay. Then they leave and I start to think of how great it would be to have peace and quiet while I am sleeping, to watch my kids run around their yard, and to have a garage to park the car instead of driving around looking for a spot on the right side of the street. However, it is so foot wants to leave and the other is just stuck, afraid I might regret it. I don't actually know anyone who has ever regretted it. They say they miss the city but no regrets.
I guess there are no guarantees in life and you just have to make the leap. It is funny because I had no second thoughts about the choice to sell all my stuff and move here not knowing a single person here. That is another thing I noticed at 39 my balls are just not as big anymore. I'm sure it has to do with that I am no longer thinking for just myself but the 3 boys I have make these choices with.

Today I am celebrating because it has been great to see how my life has evolved and I am looking forward to experiencing more changes and writng about the next adventures we go through.