Dating New York — Is it Right or Right Now?

I started seeing NYC two weeks ago. We’re still in the early phases of dating. Assessing how much we like each other. Wondering whether this is a fling, a friendship, or the real deal.

The city is beautiful no doubt. The architecture stops you in your tracks. It catches you unaware and before you know it, you’re staring into it’s eyes and forgetting where you are.

The weather is like that extra weight you hope goes away, but if it doesn’t, you suspect you’ll get used to it.

New York is a very smart city. Always thinking. You can easily find yourself having fantastic conversations with very bright people who do really interesting jobs, and then just as you meet them, you meet their friends, who aren’t smart or very nice and then you’re back to missing the city of your past with it’s “no worries,” and “it’s all good” attitude, longing to be back where you came from.

When dating, it’s good to be firm in who you are, but open to new ideas and ways of doing things. It’s not easy after many years of steady sun and moderate weather. Driving versus walking. Flip-flops versus snow boots. But, change can be good. It’s fun flirting with the sexy bad boy, cold and rainy, then hot and steamy, but maybe it’s best to stay with the one who’s been so reliable.

I brought less baggage to this city than ever and even after arriving I dumped more. My mover asked me, while unloading my boxes and furniture, “Ever seen the move ‘Fight Club’?” I said, “yes.” He said, “Oh, then you’ll remember the line, ‘You don’t own your stuff, your stuff owns you.'” My immediate next thought was, “He’s right. I need to get rid of more shit. So, I’ll have less shit to move when I run like hell from this godforsaken city, back to the West Coast.”

But, there’s so much of this city I have yet to explore. We haven’t gotten intimate yet. It’s too soon for that. Our interactions are limited. Work to home, home to work. A few walks around the block. A couple of restaurants near my apartment. We haven’t even gotten to first base yet — public transit — much less a Knicks game, Broadway show or bike ride through Central Park. I have a lot to offer the city, but its offerings are probably even more than I can imagine. I hope I don’t disappoint it.

It’s too soon at this point  to know if this will turn into a long-term thing, or be a fond dalliance, but I’m excited to get to know NY. I like a lot of things about it so far. But I’m a realist, I know it won’t be easy. A happy relationship takes work. As a couple I wrote about this past week, who celebrated 82 years of marriage said, the secret is: respect, affection and not sweating the small stuff. Sounds like sage advice.

Time will tell.

Bex in the City — Not Really

One year and four months ago I left San Diego and moved to Los Angeles. At the time it seemed like a HUGE transition. Leaving my comfy and bucolic small/big town to work in TV felt almost as huge as moving from Washington D.C. in 1997, with my husband and two year old son, Miles, for a house in La Jolla and a view of the ocean.

I got settled in L.A. I biked to work at Paramount Studios, drifting calmly through beautiful Hancock Park. Found a routine. Adopted a dog. I even started looking to buy a condo or house. I thought I’d be set in L.A. forever. But you know the saying, “Man plans, God laughs.” (Although it should be “Woman plans, God laughs,” as most of the women I know do all the planning.) Anyway, I got laid off from the #1 daytime talkshow — budget cuts — the world as I thought it would be was turned on it’s side.

I started looking for work. I found a few opportunities — none were steady though. And none what I really wanted to do. So, I did what I’ve done in the past when I feel shaky and afraid of my career faltering, I flew to NYC to push and prod my contacts and see if I couldn’t drum up some love and maybe even a story assignment or two. I got more than I’d bargained for — NYC offered me my dream job.

Next month, I will leave the state that has been my home for 18 years, and I will travel to New York to live in midtown Manhattan, with my dog, Mocha, and work for FOX News — my dream job. I’ll be a staff writer/editor covering Lifestyle.

That said, I really didn’t want to go at first. I felt scared (terrified actually) and guilty about leaving my family on the West coast. I’m a person who dreads making wrong decisions. I asked everyone in my inner-circle what I should do.

My ex-husband advised to take the bull by the horns. “Get a good coat,” he said. “You’ll see Miles as much as you do now.”

My therapist told me to tell myself what I’d tell my son. “Don’t let fear and guilt stop you from accepting opportunities that you’ve worked hard for.”

My sister said NY is an adventure. “People would die to have the chance to work in NY in a job they love.”

My best friend Jamie said, “If it’s meant to be, it will be. Like all things. If you don’t like New York, you can always move back.”

My best friend Jenn said, “I think it’s wonderful. You have to take it!”

My son said, “I just want you to be happy Mom. If you’re happy, then I’m happy.”

Finally, after painful debate, I told myself I’d earned this job. I’d worked really hard for it. I really wanted to do it, and if not now, then when.

I gave myself permission to be a little bit selfish. I wasn’t my mother abandoning her daughter at age three, or my dad moving around mindlessly from house to house, thinking he can outrun himself and find real happiness in yet another dwelling. I was me. A woman who is afraid and anxious and not as confident as she should be, but also capable, loving, thoughtful, and deserving of happiness.CWndPx6W4AAacGG

I’m getting a good coat and some warm boots. I’m NOT a real-life Carrie Bradshaw. Money will be tight, but I’ve never been one to spend a lot on clothes.

It may not be forever, but it’s a means to an end — and guaranteed it will be an adventure. I will have a large sofa and an air mattress, and all are welcome. But I sure will miss the weather in California.