From France to America: first thoughts on the big move

first picture NYC subway the linguistic yogi

Experience tells me I need to make this shot a favourite. Not because of what it holds, but because of what it means. I snapped this shot as we were climbing up the stairs out from the subway, when I first lifted my gaze up from my feet, looking for the first cues that would indicate I  truly was walking on NYC grounds. 

Experience tells me I’ll adapt quickly - because we do. Humans. We adapt quickly,  no matter how we feel before jumping into something, something new, something big, something... Unpredictable and uncontrollable. 



And we quickly forget.

We forget about so many things we go through and achieve, maybe for self-protection - would we jump into new or challenging projects (whatever they might be) if we remembered how we’d felt before picking the fruits of our work? Think of it. Would we go back to running if we didn't experience the famous post-work-out endorphins? Would a mother have several children if she remembered the pain of giving birth? Would we quit a job if we remembered how stressful it can be to look for a new one? Would we start a new relationship if we knew it could be over down the road? 

We forget about the challenges, the pain;
we forget what we’ve travelled, seen, what was special before and what is not anymore.

We also forget that what seemed odd before has been accepted by our eyes and mind (maybe I’ll find it normal to have a fridge I could fit in?); what seemed typical of a place has been integrated into our habits (maybe I'll order my coffee before getting to Starbucks like they do here in NYC?); what had called our attention before has become part of who we are (maybe small talk will come more naturally to me in a few months?)

I’ll quickly forget that being here is challenging and scary.

That there’s a LOT of unknown and that I’m afraid of what will come. That I'm nervous about finding an apartment, moving in, getting the paperwork done for my work permit, looking for and finding a yoga teacher position, but also about the little things like how to decorate our place and make it homey without it being too expensive because after all we won't be staying here indefinitely so why does it matter really should we not buy anything and just sleep on a mattress on the floor? 


But I’ll quickly forget about all of these feelings and questions because I’ll always end up finding my way. And I know this because it has happened to me so many times before - when I moved to Belgium, to Spain, to Denmark, when I went to New Zealand with my backpack. 

So I’m making this shot a favorite - for what it represents. The first time I laid my eyes on New York City, feeling impatient and scared and excited and disoriented all at the same time. To remember the distance I've walked when I feel disheartened and scared to go after my dreams and to make things happen.

To remember that I'm allowed to feel nervous about finding a bed, but I'm not allowed to listen to the voices and sleep on a mattress on the floor just because it is too scary. 

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What I learned on the first day after my move from France to America