Well, the bestie and I made it to and from NYC…barely–and by that I just mean that it was a bit of an adventure…
For starters, we missed our train. TWICE. Neither of us went to bed the night before, so it was interesting morning as we drove down early to Poughkeepsie to catch our train into Grand Central Station. We started out earlier than we originally planned, so we shouldn’t have had to worry about missing our train…only we’re us and for some reason, nothing ever quite goes as we plan. Despite the Garmin AND printed out driving directions, we somehow managed to We ending up having to double-back a little ways and so the little delay caused us to miss the train. We caught the next one though so it was all good. It was my first time being on a train, which was exciting. I mean, I’ve been on a few planes before, but never the train. We’ve always just drove the other times we’ve gone down, so the scenic route was a nice change of pace.
We arrived in Grand Central on time though, which was good. It being my first time in Grand Central as well–it was pretty amazing. The place was huge and busy and absolutely beautiful…and far more awesome in person than it is in the movies. It reminded me of the Minneapolis airport from back when I went to Hawaii years ago…so busy and chaotic and almost like a city in and of itself. Once there, we walked around and did a little exploring…a test of sorts for ourselves to see if we could get around okay–sans the whole “tourist” persona. Surprisingly, we didn’t do too bad. We checked out the Upper West Side a little and had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe in Times Square. I’ve, of course, been to the ones in Hawaii and Canada, but it was the bestie’s first time at one so she was excited. It was better than the other ones though. It as huge and incredible and we had our pics taken with some pretty awesome guitars. The food was good and we had the best server waiting on us. We explained how we were they’re looking at places in preparation for the move down there next month and the guy was pretty helpful. He literally talked to us about it for like 20 minutes at one point, giving us pointers about the best neighborhoods to live in and whatnot.
From there, we hopped on the express train over to Astoria, only a ten minute ride or so–which wasn’t bad. From the moment we left the subway platform, we were enchanted. The server that suggested it to us was right on the money when it came to the area. It was so pretty and peaceful and so quiet. It was nothing like Manhattan–which was one of the biggest perks about the place. As much as we loved the idea of living in the Upper West Side or even right in Manhattan–we fell in love with Astoria. Unlike Manhattan, it felt like such a safe place to walk around and live in. It’s more residential so it’s not nearly as crowded or chaotic. Almost immediately we decided that we could easily picture ourselves living there. The population is geared mostly towards our age group and the younger generation, which is perfect for us. The commute is perfect as well–what with the only one train ride right into Times Square and Midtown. Seeing how that’s where both our jobs are going to be…it works out nicely.
From our leisurely stroll through Astoria, we went back to Times Square–before then heading out to Brooklyn to meet up with a friend my friend used to work with that now lives in Brooklyn. The trip got a little interesting at that point in that we got a little screwed up–thanks in part to subway changes and wrong travel directions from transit cops and other subway travelers. After we finally made it Brooklyn, we ended up getting lost and literally walking nearly the entire stretch of Brooklyn. We eventually reached our destination and met up with the person…albeit a couple of hours later than we planned. We hung out at the Tea Lounge for a bit–which turned out to be a little coffee-house/bar/live jazz music joint…which was kind of nice.
Things got a little tricky after that. We left Brooklyn with what would have been enough time to get back to Grand Central…had we not gotten stuck on the subway for almost a half hour with track issues–along with a couple sketchy characters, I might add. This one guy was for some reason convinced that my friend and I were the “chosen ones” is his delusional “end of the world” prophecy. If nothing else, the subway is quite an interesting place to be…that’s for sure. Anyhow, we literally had to run through Grand Central like bats outta hell to catch the train back to Poughkeepsie. Not surprising, we still missed our train by a few minutes. So, we ended up having to take a later train about an hour later which kind of sucked–but again, totally figures.
All in all, it was a pretty good day-trip. We accomplished a lot, which is good. Of the trip, I think the train and car ride home stands out most. The bestie and I had a really great conversation. I think we talked more in those few hours since we have in years–since that horrible 11-month friendship hiatus included. We discussed the recent situation with our guy-friend Ryan, who informed us a couple of weeks ago of his intention to back from Dallas this weekend. We mentioned the move next month and suggested that he came with us. It seemed like a great idea at first and at the time…and now–not so much. Sure, it would be great if he came with us–if for no other reason than to have that “guy presence” to rely on if necessary. But…he has a history of being flaky when it comes to things like this. Over the years, he’s had to have said he was moving back a least a dozen or so different times…and hasn’t. He swears that he’s going to do it this time. That he’s really moving back. I guess we’ll find out if he actually shows up this weekend like he says and go from there. Even if he does, it doesn’t mean much. Now, he says he’s going to go with us…but who knows what he’s going to do. Personally, I don’t think he’s going to do it. I mean, he’s moving back–so he’s probably going to wait some time to settle back in and works things out. So we talked about and considered maybe pushing the move back a couple of weeks. I mean, we could probably do it…but we both agreed that we really didn’t want to wait. Before this Ryan thing, we were doing good and had things planned out. His involvement pretty much puts a wrench in all those plans though. Postponing a couple of weeks wouldn’t really change anything or be hard to do. It’d give the bestie more time with this guy that she’s been seeing recently who things are going really well right now…and give me more time with my family. So yeah, we technically could do it….but we don’t want to.
I just really don’t want to wait, and neither does the bestie. We’re both just so sick and tired of putting our lives on hold for everyone. Now, we just want to do us. It’s time. We had a really good and serious heart to heart about it actually. She asked me what one reason I would have if I were to hold off. It’d probably be my family. I mean, this whole moving away is really hard. It’s going to be tough…the living so far away from them. This will be my first time being away from them as much as I will be, so it’s not going to be easy. I’m pretty sure the first few weeks are going to be hell, not to mention that I’ll probably end up bawling my eyes out the day we leave. Yep.
But I’m going to do it. I have to do it. Like I told her, I need this. I need to get away from here and what’s happened. Away from all the drama and the bad parts. I just want a fresh start, a chance to start over. I want to take back my life, the one that was taken from me 3 years ago. It’s really hard and complicated…which is why I was kind of hesitant when she asked me what it was that was holding back. It’s not just one thing…it’s a lot of little things.
I nearly started crying right there on the train when she asked me. It took everything I had to hold back the tears. It’s not just my family. I wish it was…that it were that simple. But it’s a lot of other things. HE’s part of it. I didn’t want to tell her that…all things considered. Mostly because I hate how pathetic and humiliating it sounds, even to me. I know I should be over it…and that it shouldn’t still be affecting me, but it does. As much as I hate to admit it, I feel like I’m running away again. And in a lot of ways, I am. It sounds so childish, but this is my town. The place that I call home. The place where I used to feel safe. Like so much else, he’s taken that too. I hate him so much for that. I hate that he’s still here…that there’s a good chance that I’ll probably see him around or run into him at some point. It’s harsh, but I don’t want to see him…ever again. I don’t want to be reminded of all that happened or how foolish I was. But more than anything, I don’t want to feel all that anger and resentment and bitterness that I feel for him. I hate him so damn much…and I feel horrible because of it. All the hate and the bitterness…that’s not me. At least, it wasn’t…until he showed up. He made me this way and I hate him for that. So much.
I have this journal that I kept that first year. It’s like 365 letters, one a day…each one addressed to him. In the beginning, I had this crazy notion that I’d send it to him one day…let him know just what it was exactly that he walked away from. At the time, I was convinced that it would be the ultimate revenge–having him learn the truth that way…and the great satisfaction it’d give me in knowing that he couldn’t do a damn thing about it or to me….getting back at him for all the hell he’d caused me. I wanted him to suffer…the way I suffered. I wanted him to hurt…like I was hurting that year. It took me a really long time to realize how wrong it would have been to send it to him, but I eventually did. I finally realized that sending him the journal would have made me no better than him. I refused to stoop that low. As tempted as I was…I just couldn’t go through with it. I don’t know why I’ve even bothered to keep it anymore…after all this time. I should have thrown it out years ago, but for some reason, I just couldn’t. I haven’t touched it since that last entry. I couldn’t bear to…to relive that darkness again. It’s a period in my life that I’m not proud of…even if it did teach me so much. Now it just sits on my bookshelf with all the others…collecting dust. I think once I get to New York, I’ll just burn it…to close that chapter of my life once and for all. But for now, just knowing that I’ve moved on–that I’m not that girl who filled those pages–is enough for me. I didn’t think it would be, but it is.
Maybe I am running from HIM and the past…but I just feel like I have no other choice. I can’t stay here, hiding out and putting my life on hold because of these ridiculous fears of seeing him again. I don’t want to feel ashamed of my actions, or feel guilty for my decisions as to where he’s concerned. I just need to get away from here; to get out. I feel smothered here…like I can’t breathe. I’m not going to lie…this whole moving to NYC scares the hell out of me. I’m not the big-city type. I’m more of a small-town, simple life kind of girl. I’m scared of what will happen when I get there…of how I’ll feel. I’m scared that I’ll miss home and my family too much. I’m scared that I’ll lose who I am. I’m scared of failing…that I won’t make it there. Mostly, I’m scared that I’m making a mistake by leaving…that by the time I realize it, it’ll be too late. Worse–I’m scared that if I do this, then I’ll never stop running. That I’ll spend the rest of my life running from my problems and my past–and that I’ll miss out on all the great parts because of it.
I just want what everyone wants…to be happy. I want my dreams to come true…to know that I made them happen and deserve the success. I want to find someone. To believe in love again. I want to fall so hard that it hurts…and know that it’s real and that it’s worth it. I want to stop blaming and punishing all the men in my life for his sins and for what he did. I want everything. I can’t have that if I’m here because HERE is where it still hurts. Here is where it all happened. I can’t open up here or let anyone in. I’m so screwed up…still…that I walked away from one of the sweetest guys I’ve ever met. A nice, truly incredible guy that cared and never asked me for anything other than for me to let him in…all the way. I think I could have loved him…if only I had let myself. But I couldn’t…not while I was still here.
I feel like this is something I HAVE to do. And that if I don’t do it now, I never will. And maybe I’ll fail. But then, maybe I won’t. It’s just a chance that I have to take, I guess. Even if it doesn’t work out…I’ll at least know that I tried. And that, for me, is enough for right now. It has to be…