New York City, I Love You, So Please Don’t Break My Heart

TOM EVERSLEY
TOM EVERSLEY

Here we are again. We had another fight, another upset. Just when I thought things were going well for us, life threw a curveball. Just when I started to feel safe and comfortable with you, I fell flat on my face. It’s not your fault, not really. I expected too much, too fast. I forgot that there were millions of other people trying to get you too. I started off this relationship with the highest of hopes, but now there’s not much left to show for the time we spent together.

As it usually happens in my relationships, I committed to you long before you committed to me.

I packed up and moved my whole life to be with you. All my friends warned me against it, and against you. You have a reputation, you see: you lure people in with your bright lights and attractions. You tell them what they want to hear, show them what they want to see. You always make them fall in love with you. But then, after a few days or weeks, you part ways with them. They go back home, having gotten what they came for, and you may see them again from time to time, but never in a way that means anything serious. You are used to just having fun. No commitments. No strings attached. Despite knowing that, I defended you. I knew right from the beginning you were exactly what I wanted, and there was nothing and no one that could have stopped me from going after you.

I don’t believe in love at first sight anymore, but our first encounter felt like something very similar. Seeing the Manhattan skyline for the first time took my breath away, and I was a goner from the start. From that moment on, my heart was in your hands, free to do with it whatever you wanted. You knew your power, and you took full advantage of it. You dazzled me with fancy dinners, open bars, rooftop parties, and VIP concert tickets. I got to experience a city nightlife like no other, and I felt myself starting to fall hard and fast for you. I didn’t always need the fancy things. I loved dollar slices of pizza and cold-brew coffee just as much, and more than anything I loved looking up and down the avenues and streets and just feeling awe and wonder just being able to be in the city at all.

Things between us weren’t perfect, but I chose to ignore the bad parts. Some days, you were so inviting and felt like home. Others, I felt like an outsider, and I began to question why I ever wanted to come here to begin with. Chalking it up to nerves, I pushed those doubts down. I had no reason to believe you were misleading me. You were elusive, I’ll give you that. There was an air of mystery surrounding you, and it made me curious. Suddenly, I wanted to know everything about you. The never-ending entertainment kept me satiated, but it also distracted me. I never had time to stop and worry about what we were or what we meant to each other.

You gave nothing away when I first asked you what it was that we were doing, and I was fine with it for a while, but now things are different. It might not be what you want to hear, but I fell in love with you. Three months together—that’s all it took. It feels real to me, in a way I haven’t gotten to experience before. Now, every time I ask you what we are, you still don’t have an answer. Or maybe we’re nothing after all, and you’re not ready to tell me yet. All I know is something has to change.

I’m in love with you, New York City, and I can’t undo or forget it, no matter how hard I try.

I’ve been patient, but this patience is getting me nowhere now, so I have to know: what am I to you? We’ve been in this “relationship” for three months now. I know exactly what you are to me: you are home. I’m committed to you, but if I’m not right for you, please tell me now. Please don’t lead me on any longer if you’re not as sure about me as I am of you. Just know that I’m ready to be with you for the rest of my life, and that feeling is not ever going to change or go away.

Please don’t let this be our goodbye. TC mark

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