To get lost is to learn the way – Ugandan proverb
One’s life and passion may be elsewhere, but New York is where you prove if what you think in theory makes sense in life. Miuccia Prada
I was offered my summer internship position in December and accepted in April. So, I knew that I was coming to NYC for the summer while it was still Ithacating and polar vortexing. Most of the time, when I thought about what my summer would be like, I was excited. But, in the last few days before it was time to leave home and travel to New York, I was so nervous. I asked myself so many questions. How am I going to figure out the subway? Will I have any fun? Will I like or be good at my job? New York is so big won’t I just get swallowed up? It got so bad that at one point I couldn’t really sleep I was just so nervous. But, June 1st came and I boarded my plane.
You see, I have been a lot of places and I have done a lot of things- but coming to NYC just felt like a bigger deal. I’ve been to Europe by myself, at 16 for peets sake, but was freaking out over New York City. (I don’t understand my logic either.) Anyway, I think it was such a big deal because I had all of these ideas about what New York City would be like in my head based upon what I had seen in movies and things my friends who live here told me. New York City is a place that makes or breaks people daily…I was afraid I might end up broken too.
But, I didn’t! I survived. I thrived. I had a great time. I LOVED my job and produced work that will be used by national non-profits and leaders across the country. I helped facilitate a social media campaign. I went to the White House Summit on Working Families and saw both Barack and Michelle Obama speak in the same day. I laughed with friends. I ate Juniors & Magnolia Bakery. I went to the MET on a rainy day all by myself. I spent some days inside all day watching Netflix. I hung out with friends on rooftops. I got lost on the subway, but I eventually found where I was going.
I figured it out. I figured it out. I spent my summer in New York City, one of the world’s largest and greatest cities and I figured it out.
Make your mark in New York and you are a made man. Mark Twain
They say if you can make it in New York City, then you can make it anywhere. So… I guess I can make it anywhere now!
One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years. Tom Wolfe
NYC gave me something this summer, a piece of myself I had lost or didn’t even know that I had. I’m not quite sure. I feel confident. I feel like myself. I know that the life I want to live is possible because I had a taste of it this summer. It’s filling on the one hand and makes me hungry on the other. I’m eager to get back to Cornell and to finish up my degree so that I can be one step closer to being the person I want to. New York City has made me believe in possibility again – anything and everything is possible here, anywhere really.
So, I did it and now it’s time to be off to the next adventure. I have a few more days here before I board a plane to Ghana! But, I don’t think that my story with NYC is over. I think a few more chapters will be written in time.
Thanks for making me a believer again… I was happy here.
Why is it that moving on, or moving forward to so hard? It’s like the second you get happy in your new space you’re reminded of what you lost or left behind?
Anyway. I’ve been obsessing over Sam Smith lately so I thought I’d share one of my favorite songs by him with you all. I hope you enjoy. And, I look forward to the day you ‘make it to me’.
“You deserve a conscious lover. Someone who will not only know your favorite color or flower, but when to offer words in your rage, or the strongest embrace when no words will do.
You deserve a conscious lover. Someone who will not only work with you but for you. Work for your happiness when you’ve forgotten how to create it.. work for your smile when your lips won’t curve.
You, my dear, deserve a conscious lover that couldn’t imagine being anything else.”
A quote my friend shared that I love.
The following article perfectly explains why I left Michigan for college 2 years ago. It explains why I’m rarely home. It explains why I try to leave the USA as often as I can. It explains why I’m interested in making ties to as many places -pieces of land- as possible. It explains why I believe in wandering. And, it explains why home is such a fluid concept for me.
Michigan will in so many ways and for so many reasons always be home to me. I grew up there. My family is there. I fell in love for the first time there. There are so many people who have pieces of my heart in that state…
But I have always wanted more for myself than just my own backyard. I’ve always felt, even as a child, that I was destined for more. I’ve always felt like I had things do for the whole world. And even when I’ve doubted those feelings, I have received confirmation of them time and time again.
Walking in that knowledge and not fighting it is a whole different beast.. but, I’m working on it.
I’m hardly home, but always reppin. I believe in wandering and getting lost. I aspire to touch as many places on the globe as I can before I die. I’m interested in making ties with as many places as possible. My latest goal is to hit two more continents before I graduate because then I will have been to all of them except Antarctica. (Also let’s talk about how excited I’m getting for my Ghana trip in two weeks.. Oh my gosh I’m going to the Motherland.)
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain
Each place I go, each trip teaches me something about myself, the world, and my place in it. Being a wanderer has worked out pretty well for me so far, so I think I’ll keep at it.
The only thing I have to do right now as a 20 something in NYC for the summer or at Cornell as a student is properly pursue my passions and the things that make me happy.
I’ll be ignoring anything that threatens my joy from here on in.
Good things are coming. Wait on it.
Have I mentioned how much I’m enjoying myself this summer? I wouldn’t say that I’ve done anything super amazing or out of the ordinary yet (well I did go to a White House Summit) but I’m just having a wonderful time. New York City is really cool. I haven’t been bored yet and there’s so much to see, do, and explore. I also love my internship so much. I work for a non-profit doing research, administrative support, policy write-ups, and representing my boss at meetings with government officials and community partners. It’s essentially my dream job and exactly what I want to be doing upon graduation from Cornell for a few years.
This is why it’s so flattering that after I mentioned how much I love my internship and how I’d love to do something like this after graduation, my boss was like I’d totally hire you in two years. It’s encouraging to know that she thinks well of me and would not only recommend me for other positions, but would also hire me back to work with her again. It makes me feel like I’m on the right track – like I’m getting to where I want to go.
This summer has just been about focusing on me, and I’ve been so happy doing so. I’m not happy everyday. I’m not happy all the time. But, I’m finding peace and joy in my life. (If you know me, you know that means everything to me.) I’m not yet where I want to be, but I am happy with where I am today. I don’t know exactly how I’ll get to where I want to go, but I’m confident that if I continue to follow my passions, they’ll lead me in the right direction. (I think they already are.)
Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can. (This will get to you where you want to go.)