The image was captioned, “Love your sass, New York.”
After posting the picture, I took a brief moment to reflect on this poster and how it speaks to why I love New York. I know I haven’t always felt this way; sometimes I’ve despised it here. I chuckle sometimes when people think that living in New York is synonymous with a glamorous lifestyle filled with swanky nights out and rooftop parties, where I casually make nice with diplomats and celebrities alike.
Please know that Instagram is not real life. I generally don’t Instagram the times I feel inadequate, terrified, or discouraged. In fact, here are the real life things that have or do happen that I don’t Instagram:
The only thing that’s altered my life more than moving to New York has been choosing to stay. Careers have started here. Relationships have ended here. I’ve grown out of friendships here. I’ve grown into myself here. The velocity at which things have begun, ended, and come full circle, has caused the involuntary yet beautiful whiplash one needs to figure their lives out. On one hand, I seldom see my family, can’t remember my last good night of sleep, usually work through lunch AND dinner, and cancel personal plans more often than I keep them, because at the end of the day nothing is more exciting to me than watching New Girl on Netflix. Nothing.
That being said – New York is the most electric and creative city there is, with a sick sense of humor to boot, and if you’re willing to work your ass off, sleep on a couch or two, and push through the 5am mental break downs and big insects, it’s so worth it.
So – There I stood in a coffee shop Instagraming this accurate representation of New York to a newsfeed of friends, acquaintances, and blog followers, while reveling in the fact that I’ve adapted to New York’s attitude. Not my attitude about living here, but the attitude of the city itself. New York definitely has it’s own attitude, and for a brief moment, I thought I was a part of it.
Coffee in hand, I placed my purse down on the table. Before sitting down I realized I forgot to ask for cream, so I walked back up to the counter to ask the barista for a splash of half and half. Upon returning to the table, my stomach sank.
My purse was gone.
As in, stolen. Somebody stole my purse in the thirty seconds it took for me to put cream in my coffee. Frantically, I ripped my backpack open, moved chairs out of the way, and searched the area like a bloodhound. But here’s the thing, I didn’t misplace it. In fact, I placed it out in the open, stupidly.
And it sucked, because sometimes people are sucky, and sucky things happen, but you just have to be open to the idea that you can grow from these things. I’m not saying I had a grand epiphany from my purse being stolen. In fact, I was fuming. I left the coffee shop and charged down the street with more stomp in my step than Tyra Banks. What I am saying, is that I allowed myself the 10 minute walk to work to be angry, cancelled my cards, had my keys recut, and carried on business as usual. Sometimes shit happens, and you have to take it, deal with it like an adult, and move on, which is really one of the greatest lessons this city has taught me.
Maybe that person needed the 25 dollars in my purse, my gum, and my impressive collection of business cards more than I did. Maybe they’re just an asshole. And maybe next time I get up to put cream in my coffee, I’ll bring my purse with me.
Noted, New York.
PS – I still love your sass.