New York City. It’s bright lights and fancy flair will leave you starry eyed, yet spinning at the same time. “If you can make it here, then you can make it anywhere.” Isn’t that the way the song goes? There’s definitely truth to that. The holiday season in NYC is no different. I’ll admit that I get swept up in it. I love the parties, and the hustle and bustle of this city makes my heart skip a beat. I find it hard to stand still, and so I don’t. I’m constantly on the move, and I love living life that way.
After trekking through the crowded streets after a long day, I step inside our apartment, which to anyone living outside of the city would seem oh-so-small. That’s the thing about living in New York City. Our spaces are tiny, the closets are laughable, and you know you’ve made it in New York, when you’ve got a washer and dryer in your apartment, as well as his/her sinks in your bathroom. I suppose that’s the dream. Despite it all, it’s home, and I love it.
We kicked off the holiday season with a visit from my parents. They stayed with us, comfy and extra cozy, in our one bedroom apartment. We stacked suitcases in the corner, shared a bathroom, and gave them our luxurious air mattress to sleep on. They were as happy as clams. I wanted to take them everywhere, and truly experience the city. I planned to share my favorite places and spaces with them, along with the holiday charm of crowded markets, ice skating rinks, and the fanciest restaurants. But as you can imagine during the holiday season, lines were long, the air was frigid, restaurants were loud, and there were people everywhere. It seemed magical in my head, but didn’t quite go as planned. I lost my voice, and had a hacking cough, so we spent both nights in our tiny apartment together, cooking dinner and sipping wine by candlelight.
I felt discouraged, and they saw it written all over my face. I wanted those precious evenings with them to be so much more. I wanted them to be memorable; truly unforgettable. I expressed my disappointment. “You don’t understand,” they said. “This is it. This is the precious moment. Just being here together, in your home, regardless of it’s size or what you have, is everything.” They were absolutely right.
The smallest, most precious moments are right underneath your nose, if you just stop for a moment, to appreciate them. The fanciest restaurant in New York City can’t give you that. On the last night, we lit the menorah, in celebration of the first night of Chanukkah, and shared stories together. It was everything. Lesson learned.
Over the holiday season, I hope you take time to think about those precious moments. The ones that happen in small, imperfect spaces, but take your breath away. They will shine much brighter than anything you’ll remember in your life. Hold them and cherish them. Cheers to a sweet and festive holiday season.