Long Island is calling my name

Sometimes I feel like I have a restless soul. One that needs to keep trying to find that place that resonates with me. One thing is for certain. The water pulls me near and I feel the most settled when I am near it. It could be a lake, river, pond or the ocean and it is that moment of peace inside of me. It is the moment I can exhale and let worry go and refocus my thoughts and just feel better. I know it is like that for many people. I had the good fortune of growing up near the shores of Lake Erie and I do love Cleveland but living on the West coast and having my own space launched me into adulthood sooner than I may have bargained for. Moving back to Ohio wasn’t a mistake but a necessary step to sort out what I was supposed to do with my life. Honestly, I had no direction when I came home. No career. No personal space. I couldn’t cook my own meals because the kitchen was sacred ground that my yiayia owned and the rest of the house belonged to everyone else. It was nurturing and that’s a good thing but when you live on your own so far from home, coming home is tough.  I knew I wouldn’t stay long but had no idea that a boy from Long Island would be the reason I would leave. We dated for about a year and I would fly to New York every other week, arriving on a Thursday and back on a Sunday. I got to really enjoy everything about the island and I loved the beaches. I made new friends and we were having a blast! I was welcome by everyone. His mom and dad brought me into the folds of the Puerto Rican culture. They had a zest for life! I realized after that year that it was time for me to leave Ohio again. My world was on the East coast. I needed more and I wanted to be with all these people. Not just one man. New York had woven itself around my heart and I said YES. We talked about my moving there and we decided to get a place together. I will be brutally honest here when I say that I fell in love with all of it, not just one person. I recognized that years later. I had love for this person but I don’t think it was a great love. Not something Nicholas Sparks would write about but more of a great friendship where we both said “Let’s do this.”

The day I told my parents I was going to move to New York was not a great day but they understood why I was making this choice. I needed a happiness in my life that I could not find back home. Perhaps I can find it there and there was only one way to know. So we went apartment hunting and signed a lease for our first place in Islip, NY.  Packing up was easy because I didn’t have anything other than my clothes and shoes. Lots of shoes. I don’t think he realized how big of a problem that was for me. Haha. I brought my bedroom set too, but that was all I had. Starting over. Something I have learned to excel at in life. It was a bittersweet morning when I was hitting the road. I walked into my parents bedroom and woke them up to say good bye. I hugged and kissed them and thanked them for allowing me to come home. My mom looked at me and told me they were happy to have me back even if it was only for a year. That was it. No long good bye. I walked down the stairs, got in my car (the same one I drove from California) and left for the East Coast.

This is where my real adult life begins…

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