Exactly one year ago, I arrived in New York as a walking contradiction. I wanted to be here, but I wasn’t sure how badly I wanted to stay. I didn’t know if I’d make it past the 2-month unemployment rule of my rigid visa. I wasn’t sure if I’d find a good job/internship in the writing field, or if I’d even like the lifestyle here. All the excitement that led up to that day sort of faded the moment I touched down at La Guardia Airport. Because now this was getting real. My journey in New York was about to begin, and the clock was ticking.
Fast forward several months later, I did a few fashion internships and realized that I wanted to branch out into feature writing. So I applied for SHK Magazine and Joon Bug, and they both said yes! Hooray! I also needed a paying job to cover my rent and other expenses, so I signed up to be a receptionist at a hair salon. And then another five months later, I’m here. I’m where I am now, juggling three jobs in the city five days a week.
I think about all the experiences I’ve been through over the past year. I think about how drastically my life has changed since I landed in this city. I think about the people who’ve walked in and out of my life, I think about the lives I’ve walked in and out of. I think about the broken relationships and the welding of new ones. I think about the plans I had for myself and the non-existent ones I have right now. I mean, 2013 just breezed by in a blink of an eye. It still feels like yesterday when I arrived in New York City.
Honestly, I never thought I’d be able to stay this long or even come this far with my internships. I owe all of this to God. He opened the right doors and led me to the right people at the right time. I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for Him. And it was through some of the hardest moments in 2013 that I was reminded of the incredible support system I have — my family, my besties and my friends who’ve never failed to encourage me with their loving words and surprises in the mail. New York has been great because of them.
And for that, I’m eternally grateful.