I came here in late August 2000, 22 years old and fresh out of college. Despite crying all the way to the airport, I knew in my heart that I was making the right decision -- I had to at least see if I could manage on my own in this great metropolis. To say I was "green behind the ears" was an understatement, although the month's internship I'd had here during my senior year of college did ease the transition a bit, thankfully.
In a way, I needed this change desperately. While I dearly loved my family and friends at home, I must admit I felt a bit out of place - particularly before college. In the small town I grew up in, a heavy dose of "sameness" hung in the air -- almost as thick as the humidity. To me, everyone dressed the same, had the same political and religious affiliations usually and followed similar paths -- a path I could see myself going down if I stayed put. Instead, I craved individuality; I wanted to walk amongst people of differing cultures, speaking languages I didn't understand and following a path that might not have been originally how they set out. There was something very exciting about getting lost in this melting pot, yet still being able to carve out a life for myself at the same time.
And I have. I took a pretty significant leap of faith when I moved to New York City, and fortunately for me, most things have gone according to plan. Eleven years later, I have wonderful friends, including a few I met within my first weeks of living here. I've had experiences and been given opportunities here that would be impossible to replicate anywhere else. I met and married a pretty remarkable man and we have a growing family together... and the best part is that I have done it all in a place I truly love. A place I dreamed about living as a young girl, when it felt completely and utterly out of reach.
As we make our mark on a new neighborhood, still unfamiliar and exciting in that way, there is comfort knowing I'm not alone this time -- my family and I are doing this together. But there is also immense satisfaction when I look back on everything it took to get here on my own.
When I took a chance and opened up.
|Sunset view from our new apt rooftop|
Your mouth is more than just teeth and gums, it's your most important feature when it comes to expressing yourself and engaging with the world. The Crest & Oral-B Life Opens Up Project will highlight individual stories that showcase how a healthy mouth has played a role in opening up to life and to the world. Check out the Life Opens Up Project for more details.
Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Crest & Oral-B via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Crest & Oral-B.