Monday Musings

Monday Musings: How Being Attached to Places Impacts our Sense of Self

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I have always felt connected to New York City.

I spent lots of time there during my childhood—visiting family, connecting myself to the beauty of Harlem, and finding myself lost in the sea of skyscrapers. I would dream of leaving my suburban life in Connecticut, and could clearly envision my family moving into a brownstone in Harlem. It got to the point where I had decided that New York was the PLACE for me, I would not be happy anywhere else.

Fast forward to the end of my high school days. I was off to college and going to NYU, my dream school in my dream city. I was excited to be a part of the city that had captivated me for so long. I spent those four years loving New York even more—it was the backdrop to my coming of age tale. I learned so much about the world in that city, and it was where I came into myself. When my college days started to wind down, I found myself wondering if people could develop a sense of dependence on a place, and find their identity wrapped up in a particular location.

I moved to Philly in August, and I find myself actively and inactively longing for New York. Philly is a cool city, but my attachment to New York has made it difficult for me to fully enjoy living here. I realized that New York became a safe space for me, as strange as that may sound. I had attached myself to it, and now I’ve realized that I cannot allow myself to be too comfortable in any one space. This year I’ve been thinking of ways to keep myself in a state of healthy discomfort, which includes moving around, traveling more, and not limiting myself and my identity to only one space. This is important not only for physical spaces, but also mental and emotional ones. It’s important that I keep pushing myself to branch out, and not cling to places or ideas for comfort. StockSnap_22BP3KNNOQ.jpg

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2 thoughts on “Monday Musings: How Being Attached to Places Impacts our Sense of Self”

  1. I read about Philadelphia and New York in Americanah. Its a book by a Nigerian author who lives in the US. She described the two cities differently and I imagined myself walking through the street of Philly someday and I wonder if I will feel intimated by Manhattan and it’s glory. I live in Nigeria and I have not done much travelling like I want to. I do still have hope about walking down these two cities. I think you should travel more you want to and I understand the feeling on growing in to a city that you love so much. I’m sure you’ll figure it out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I read Americanah as well and I thought it was an amazing book. I loved the way that she was able to vividly describe all of the places that Ifemelu traveled to and lived in. I definitely would love to experience more places and I hope that you have the opportunity to do so as well

      Liked by 1 person

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