Just got back from an awesome vacation with one of my best friends to NYC, my absolute favorite place in the entire world. This is my 4th trip to NYC in 18 months.
I cannot describe the feeling I have when I am there. I don't know where it comes from. I have a connection to that city that I can't explain. Maybe it is from growing up watching Sesame Street, maybe it is the perfect environment for my ADD brain, maybe it is just the coolest place in the universe. Not sure.
We planned the trip this weekend on purpose: 2 weeks post divorce, 2 days before my birthday, and right in the middle of the busy season. It was a total mind vacation from all the stress both good and bad from the past few months. I really, really needed it.
We saw three Broadway shows, ate tons of mind-blowing food, navigated the subway and streets like old pros, shopped like crazy, and my favorite: just sat in Central Park on the most perfect of fall days and enjoyed the surroundings.
I accomplished another one of my little "dreams" by spending a morning running the Brooklyn Bridge, like a real New Yorker. It almost killed me (did you know that the first half of the bridge is all uphill??? I forgot) but I did it. Me, little old me, ran from Manhattan to Brooklyn and back again. Pinching myself the whole way:
The last time I was in NYC was last December, 4 months post-separation. The night before I left, my then estranged husband informed me that he was moving out of his mom's and into his own apartment. He seemed so excited and happy to be doing it. I thought I didn't care, but spent my entire trip in NY thinking I had a stomach bug. On the plane on the way back, I realized what I was flying back to--a new world, a new life with just me and the kids, sadness and anger and depression. Any tiny glimmer of hope I had of him magically figuring out how to make it all right and coming home began to melt away. I cried my eyes out looking at my city from the plane, and tried to tell myself that it would all be ok. The weeks following would bring major depression and grief, and the next month would bring the news about my father's brain tumor.
This time though, leaving NYC wasn't so bittersweet, as it has been. I loved my trip, but I also love my life at home. I love being a single mom to these three amazing kids, I love how strong I have become in such a short period of time. I love that when the plane hit major turbulence on takeoff and I was scared to death, I knew I could get through it because I can get through anything. I love that my home is happy and carefree, that my friends are always here for me and make me laugh constantly, that I always have someone to talk to, that I love my job again, and that I MADE THIS HAPPEN. Me, all by myself, like a real grownup. I am so proud of my life.
And then there is Mr. Wonderful, my "icing on the cake" who is becoming so much more than that. The morning of my run across the Brooklyn Bridge, I had an email waiting from him with encouraging words and a weather report. He encourages me every single day to continue on the path that I was on before I met him, just now with him by my side (figuratively for now, but literally soon), cheering me on every step of the way. I met his mother last week, and our amazing conversation ended with her hugging me and telling me that her son and I were obviously meant to be. My happy ending, complete with Love...I got it.
The next time I'll be back in NYC is in December. This trip was an early birthday present from Mr. Wonderful, and it will be our first vacation together. I can't imagine anything more perfect to end this year, it has all come full circle in such an incredible and unexpected way.