A Hope Chest of Light Keeping

This is all so far

I have officially lived in New York City for a whole year.

I’ve cried on the subway, I’ve laughed on the street corners. I’ve hit roadblocks, been seized by gratitude and open to grace. I have met some of the kindest most sincere people and I’ve reconnected with friends that make me feel like a giddy teenager again. I’ve seen fireworks from my rooftop and watched thunderstorms roll over the Natural History Museum. I’ve walked and walked and walked up and down this island. I’ve gotten on the wrong subway and moved OPPOSITE the avenue I meant to go in. I’ve camped out at the equity building, gotten lost in the shelves of the Performing Arts Library and eaten vegan ice cream while strolling through Brooklyn. I’ve danced to live music, jumped through an open fire hydrant to cool off, and sipped tea while gabbing through Central Park. I’ve prayed in churches and left offerings at statues, tossed penny’s into fountains and searched for signs.

I’ve been sick, the sickest I’ve ever been. I’ve watched the city fade to the background while I left it, grateful for a break from the rigor and the noise. I’ve been happy to walk down by block slowly and pet puppies and talk to neighbors. I’ve marveled at the Chelsea Market at Christmas time, I’ve aggressively pushed through a crowd of people in Time Square because tourists walk four people across and I can’t get around them. I’ve followed dogs and been late to work, I’ve helped blind people cross the street. I’ve screamed out the window and peeped at the neighbors across the way while they make dinner. I’ve missed my family more than I ever have and spent a lot of time looking backwards in order to understand the present.

I always dreamed of living here and now I do. In my dreams as a young girl I didn’t realize how difficult it would be to find my footing, find my community, find my space. I never thought about the humidity of July or the freezing rain of February. I never thought about what it would feel like to live here and not be acting. All I thought about was how the sidewalks sparkled at night in the bright, bright always-lit lights.

In four season I have raged, sang, laughed, weeped, grieved, exalted and learned. You know, “Everything Mortal has moments immortal, swift and god-gifted; immeasurably bright.” I’m not sure this is an immortal moment but it is certainly immeasurably bright.

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