The past several weeks, I've been chomping at the bit to leave New York. Let's be blunt: I'm just plain not cut out for New York, and not in the way I would've expected. The brief version of the story is that my move to New York hasn't been particularly fruitful to date. Sure, I found work and got remarried. We all know how those endeavours worked out. And as I ponder the dating pool (i.e. quantity over quality, with most over-40 men wanting the "Brooklyn experience), my lack of work, and my overall personality, I couldn't see any benefit to staying in New York. And I mean not one.
But then last night I went to a birthday party. It wasn't anything special, just me and about a minyan of other ladies coming together for dinner to celebrate our mutual friend's birthday. And I had a blast. Every last one of those ladies has a story (or several) and is so chilled about their frumkeit that I finally felt like I was in sympathetic company. Now that's not to say that my friends to date haven't been fabulous. They definitely have. The difference lay in the face that save 2 ladies who are from Brooklyn, all of us were from out-of-town and either divorced or on the path to it. So I had people who could really identify with my "out-of-town" mindset, as well as where I happen to be in my life right now. It was quite liberating.
More to the point, I saw how all of these women were walking the line between being frum and living their lives. Unlike many people that I've met in Brooklyn, all of these women were trying to negotiate a life in Yeshivish Brooklyn when they are, in fact, more modern. Quite modern. And I appreciate that as well.
When I returned from the party lat night, I felt better than I had in ages. More to the point, I slept better than I had in months. So when I woke up this morning, I realised a few things.
First, that while I'm so over the prospective dating pool in New York (been there, done that- twice), there is a silver lining to the situation, namely that I can meet a lot of divorced/single women such as myself. Kindred spirits, if you will. Second, that what has been lacking from my life since I moved to New York, for various reasons, is having fun. Forget trying to cram myself into the Yeshivish box. That just not me. I need to go, live my life, have fun, and remain frum while doing so. That's it. Because after all, the only thing my being modern affects at this point is shidduchim, and even there, it's a good thing; I don't want to go get married to another Yeshivish person. That doesn't interest me in the slightest. So, since I don't have children, why limit myself to an existence in a tiny, constrained box for no reason? I mean, I was sitting next to a woman who's shirt keep falling down, and nobody felt the need to point out that we could see her bra. Because we were all fine with it. Say what you will, but my life definitely needs an infusion of that attitude.
I guess what I'm saying is, I may stick around New York for a while and give living my life like I did pre-New York a try. Live my life like I've always lived my life but here in New York. In any event, in the next while, I'm going to have make my decision. And as you all know already, while I'm not necessarily the quickest decision-maker (I like to devote adequate time to weighing all the pros and cons), once I do make a decision, I tend to stick with it. Within reason. :)
Yup, things are finally about to get interesting around here in a good way. Boo-yaaaaaaaaa! ;)