Moving may be a hassle, but it helped my relationship.
By Mona Lisa Macalino
Last updated on Oct 09, 2023
Photo: Sean824, Dean Drobot, Cha_DZ | Canva
A couple of weeks ago, my fiancé and I moved back to California after living in New York City for a mere six months.
Long story short, our lifestyle preferences clashed too much with the Big Apple (read: shoebox living and heavy pollution vs. spacious homes and abundant nature) for us to justify staying and growing roots, leaving our west-coast roots behind.
We wanted room to grow (literally our apartment was so small) and maybe one day add more to our little family, none of which was going to happen when you could see our toilet directly from the kitchen.
Luckily, our relationship has grown because we’ve been supportive of each other through the laughs and the tears (and there were many). We’ve witnessed miraculous transformations and cheered each other on through monumental career shifts.
Not to mention, we conquered a completely new city together!
You haven’t lived until you’ve tried to hail a cab while you still have curlers in or were so hungry that you decided to order Chinese food at 5 AM, not caring if anyone judged you. New York City can really make or break a relationship. And yet, there’s something to be said for living 3,000 miles away from family and friends — it really solidified Team Us.
After all these changes, I was nervous to move back to my parents’ house with my fianceé while we looked for our new apartment.
My family’s dynamic is at best, polite, and I knew there were going to be some big showdowns. Unfortunately, I was proven right. After just one week, I found myself in furious tears too many times to count. I love my family, but I know that I can love them even better from a distance, and not living under their roof.
In the past, I tried to be the “I’m strong and don’t need anyone to save me” type of woman, but I’m slowly realizing I don’t need to be.
In the midst of chaos, my fiancé has mercifully been my knight in shining armor and always provided a tissue to wipe my tear-stained face on. His presence in my life is stronger than ever because for once, I’m letting myself fully trust him with my feelings and vulnerability.
It’s hard, but it’s powerful. Regardless of all the turmoil going on outside, I know I can find my way back to safety with him. I mean, after all, we survived moving over 3,000 miles and an almost complete lifestyle change. And that’s worth everything.
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Mona Lisa Macalino is a freelance writer and editor. She has been featured in Men’s Fitness, Lost Girls World, Afingo, and more.