Ah, the sweet smell of severance. It’s sort of like the smell of success if you’re ready for it. While many do not have the opportunity to prepare for the moment HR calls your desk and asks you to, stop in for a quick chat, I was one of the lucky ones. Perhaps I should start from the beginning…
I’ve been a professional Copywriter since 2007. My first job was in Morristown, New Jersey, and all I wanted to do was get into New York City. The big time. Bright lights, late nights, Mr. Right. Clearly, I was raised on episodes of Sex and the City.
In 2008, I got my big break. I packed up my belongings and got my first job and first apartment in the Upper West Side. I did what most young, broke kids do and found two roommates on Craigslist. We lived in that small, dirty, three-room apartment for two years.
Jump to 2014. Today, January 10, to be exact. I live alone in the Upper East Side, and while it’s relaxing and awesome to have a one-bedroom all to myself, it’s expensive and the building is far from public transportation. Not to mention the lack of HOT water and a loud, old heating system. My living situation is mediocre at best. And until yesterday, I worked in a failing, mediocre ad agency. Overall, at 29-years-old, my life felt mediocre.
So why am I so happy? In December 2013, right before I left for Christmas in San Diego and New Year’s in Maui, I didn’t renew my lease. I put my costly trip on my Citibank Thank You Card, my last months rent in the mail, and took off. I had made the ultimate, life-changing decision to end my affair with New York City.
I have no idea where my life is going to take me. Right now I have 20 days until I need to vacate my apartment. That’s 20 days to paint over the accent walls, sell or box up my belongings, find another place to live and say goodbye to the 250 square feet I have called home for two years.
So, where to next? Here are my current options:
- Stay in NYC and look for a new job (insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result)
- Move to Maui and live in my cousin’s spare room, working odd jobs and learning to surf. Not to mention possibly meeting up with the beautiful man I shared a New Year’s Eve kiss with
- Move to San Diego and live at my brother’s house, looking for full time work, helping my sister-in-law with my cutie-wootie niece and enjoying the spring-like weather
- Move to Austin, Texas. During a recent trip to Austin, I feel in love with the city. The casual, open community, the laid-back but smart locals, it all just seemed to fit.
- Lastly, I can move back to New Jersey with my parents a-la The Lifeguard and “find myself.” This is NOT an actual option in their minds. Although the in-ground pool in the summer would make for some fantastic lunch breaks
So, here I go. Into the great wide open, as Tom Petty would say. Follow me on my journey, armed only with my wit, guts and the desire to sever my ties to the city. I am looking for a better way to live, and 29 feels like the perfect age to stop being mediocre, doing mediocre and feeling mediocre, and to start living.
Where do you think I should go?