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Why I Left New York City

Why I Left New York City
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Last August, Tyler and I made an exciting move to Austin, Texas. Below is a post I started writing in May of 2017 - the same day Tyler and I made the decision that we were ready for a change. This post was originally written to be an announcement for our move, but I think it so well speaks as a reflection on 2017.

"I don't think I've been very good at hiding the fact that I've not been 100% happy in New York as of late.  Not that I was trying to actually, because that's the entire point of this space - to be open & honest with you, my readers & friends.

It's crazy how much can change in just 4 years.  When Tyler & I decided to move to NYC it was with so much excitement and purpose. This city was never meant to be a stop on our journey but rather a final destination. I've met so many people here who have already moved away after their 1, 5, 10 years living here.  They would tell me about how they always wanted to live here for a season in life but that it was over and they were moving on to something else.  I honestly couldn't understand it at first because why would you want to move somewhere for just a moment in time.  But as the last few years have gone on, I can finally say I understand. More importantly, Tyler and I both understand.

This decision seems so sudden, yet at the same time, it's been a long time coming. We've toyed with the idea of leaving and moving to a place that was, for lack of a better word, easier. This city sure knows how to be invigorating.  And while that's what brought us here initially, it's also what is sending us on our way. We are constantly exhausted with this place and just want to stretch our legs in a bigger space that allows us to feel a freedom that we gave up when we moved here.  Yes, NYC has nearly everything you could ever want but sometimes that just isn't enough. Sometimes you have to give in and break up when you're not happy anymore.

Oh man, that's exactly what this feels like. It feels like a 4 year relationship with someone you've been so in love with but, after a lot of self-discovery, you've learned that you're not the same person anymore and you want different things in life. I cannot stress enough how thankful I am that Tyler and I mutually feel this way and are ready to leave this city together.  There have been a lot of tears while we've been making this decision - we are so passionate about this city and we think it will always be such a special part of our journey.

The strangest thing is that right now we are the happiest in this city that we've been in the 4 years we've lived here. We have good jobs, great friends, and even restaurants that know our orders -- but it's still time."

From this day on, the year was a whirlwind. After a few job applications & a few interviews, we were suddenly planning to pack up and move across the country. Any move is stressful, and I'm sure if we were packing up more than a tiny studio apartment it would have been much worse, but there were so many important decisions to make in such a short amount of time that I think we too anxious to enjoy those last few weeks to the fullest. Thankfully, we had two of our best friends in town for a week to visit just before we started packing up & it forced us to slow down a bit, relax, and enjoy some of our favorites one final time. 

Cookies at Levain Bakery (Always worth the wait in line. Always!)
A ride on the Wonder Wheel at Coney Island (Choose the moving carts - so much fun!)
Dinner & drinks at Javelina's (Get the Bob Armstrong queso! Delish!)

One of my biggest fears when we decided to move so suddenly was leaving with a lot of regrets. I'd like to say I don't live with those - and I'm working towards that mindset - but, honestly, I do have a few. Like I mentioned before, I thought I would have a lifetime of living in NYC to experience everything but that turned out not be the case. There are so many restaurants I never tried, museums I never visited, and risks I never took. I was so adventurous when I moved to NYC in 2013 but 4 years later I found myself playing everything safe. This was definitely one of the reasons why we decided to shake things up by moving to Austin.

We're now 4 months into life here and to be completely transparent with you, I've continued to play things pretty safe. Y'all, I'm so ready to find my adventurous side again! So ready for it that I could scream! My lists of places to see and things to do here in Austin (& beyond!) keeps growing and I am determined to experience it all - and share it with you!! I crave sharing more both on this platform and on social media but I often completely hold myself back because of my self-doubt and perfectionism. It's a huge struggle that I can't let stand in my way any longer. No more excuses. I'm never going to get what I want in life if I keep making excuses. Anybody feel me on that one?!

So that's where we are on this new journey -- ready to live the life that we literally packed up and moved across the country for. And I'm going to share it with you (duh!) both in long form here and a behind-the-scenes look on Instagram. For those of you who've been so patiently following my journey for years, thank you for sharing your encouragement and grace with me every time I post. You'll never know how much your words & actions (likes, comments, messages, prayers..) mean to me.   

Here's to new adventures in 2018!

>>A huge thank you to my favorite photographer, Ryan Nicholls, for these beautiful photos. Tyler and I will treasure them forever.
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