Edith Piaf (left) and my tattoo (right)

Edith Piaf (left) and my tattoo (right)

Strangers have told me that I could/should model since age sixteen. I take the compliment with a smile, a quick thanks, and wrap it up with a short statement to prove they’re wrong. I’m actually not the “size” of a model. You’ve been tricked. My height has convinced you that I’m a size six (this was before agencies had plus divisions). Now I change the topic.

Modeling would be a waste of time (ignoring those who have used modeling to become activists and affect real change). I have a purpose. A career. My current occupation is inventory planning. I’m responsible for ordering not too much and not too little inventory. Goldie Locks is my muse. Now I realize I’m not doing much of anything. My job doesn’t matter in the scheme of things. So why shouldn’t I model? I had a superiority complex. When it came to my work I was busy-very busy (we convince ourselves that it means important things are getting done). A one-upper. The person who meets your level of misery and raises you a car accident plus a dead dog.

In a few weeks I’ll turn 26-years-old. Not a significant birthday, but it coincides with a recent dose of clarity. I can’t lay it out on the table for you. I poked my head out of the cave and I have no idea what I’m looking at. When I moved to New York four years ago I was just happy/miserable to be here. My apartment was undesirable, job unchallenging and low paying, and I had two friends in the city. Now I make a comfortable salary, live in a sought-after apartment, and can bribe at least ten friends to help celebrate my birthday. I’m grateful that I’m swimming along just fine. Now where am I headed?

I’m returning to my home state on my legal birthday to renew my license. Many New Yorkers renew theirs in the city regardless of their origin. It’s convenient. I have the urge to be a New Yorker-someone who can give subway directions and restaurant recommendations while hailing a cab, but I want to maintain my legal identity as a citizen of Massachusetts.

One day I’ll fly away back to the land of trees, fresh air, and manners. Not yet. I’m not done with you New York. It’s time for round two. Whether that means modeling, pursuing a masters degree, or staying in my current job and shifting my perspective… Je ne sais pas mais non, je ne regrette rien. Merci Edith Piaf. Joyeux anniversaire à moi.

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