a goodbye letter


i have no idea who the original photographer of this picture is.
but it isn't me. my bad.

dear new york city,

i'm so, so sorry but this just isn't working.

i've avoided this for as long as i can but you're smart so you've probably picked up on the fact that we haven't been on the best of terms for quite some time now. i've really tried my best to make it work. it's been three very long years of deep soul searching about my needs and also what i have to give as a person. i kept giving you the benefit of the doubt, holding onto hope that we would work out and find a compromise. i told myself more times than i can count that once one thing or another changed that i'd finally be happy in this relationship.

but, sadly, it was never enough.

everyone swore to me that i'd love you, that i'd fall so hard for your undeniable charm. you've been around the block about 8.5 million times so there is obviously something incredibly intoxicating about you. there's the amazing food. and the culture. and the cobblestone streets, the giant parks, and the public transit, your bridges and buildings.

and then, of course, there are your people. man, your people really confused me. they sucked me in and made me feel at home. the filled a hole that i was walking around with, still struggling over my last break up. (i know you don't like to talk about charlotte, though, so we'll just move on from that.) i think it was your people that had me hanging on for so long. but when i finally admitted to myself that you can't stay with someone for their friends, i knew that what we had was surely doomed.

maybe it's not you after all. maybe it's me. maybe it's because i have never felt secure in this relationship, never felt like you were mine. you belong to so many already and i struggled to find my place. or maybe it's just your chronic noise. that definitely didn't help your case. i never realized how much you talk but you just. never. stop. if you're not talking, you're whistling. if you're not whistling, you're singing. if you're not singing, your horns are blaring and your trains are screeching. sometimes, i just want to tell you to shut the fuck up! and, i'm not sure if anyone has ever told you this, but you smell. very, very badly. especially in the summer.

that was probably rude and i'm sorry. i don't want to be rude to you because we did make a lot of beautiful memories together. marlo took her first steps in your streets and edie gets to claim you as hers. i've had some of the best food of my life here with some of the best people i've ever had the pleasure of knowing- your people. why can't i just take those people with me? why do you get to keep them? join custody maybe?

and, admittedly, and for better or worse, you've inspired the shit out of me.

so it's not like i'm walking away from this relationship without having learned anything. i've learned so much about myself and my family while i've been here. you forced me the second we met to stand on my own two feet as a mother, as a wife, and as a young woman who is searching to find her place and her passion. you've also taught me the difference between what i want and what i actually need and, as a result, you've confirmed that bigger doesn't always guarantee that it's better. you've shown me that i need very specific things in a relationship and just sitting around, idly waiting for them to find me, isn't fair.

i think what i'm most grateful for is having been given the gift of perspective. i'm sorry to bring her up again, but i miss charlotte deep down in my bones. i miss and crave the feeling of home. i miss her blue clear skies and her bearable winters. i miss her quietness and slower moving pace of life. i miss her warmth and her southern charm. and i wouldn't have known how much i deeply love charlotte and her people, had i not been given the perspective that only being in another relationship can bring.

everyone told me that you and i would fit together perfectly. and who knows, maybe we would have in another time. maybe if i gave you a chance before life became complicated and bogged down with responsibility. i know everyone says this but i do hope that we can remain friends. i'd love to be able to catch up every once in a while and remember what this city feels like. i hope that would be okay with you.

but it's time to move on.

with love, affection, and forever-damaged ears,


Unknown said...

Welcome back! When I'm in town visiting fam, let's try to grab a glass of wine and hang with the kiddos...maybe this spring at cabo or the vivace patio....for old times sake!

Julie Ann said...

Love reading your blog Christine! I have been in California for 6 years and I miss Charlotte also! Maybe one day we will be back! Hope all is well!


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