Everything is always easier said than done. It's easy to give advice to your friends but when it comes to actually taking your own advice it's a challenge. This statement has never resonated with me until about three months ago. Three months ago I was given the opportunity to take a leap of faith and do something out of my comfort zone. I was given the opportunity to find out who I truly am. Some of you are probably thinking, Rae how did you not know who you were before? And to be honest, I don't think its a question of whether I did or didn't know who I was before but more of what my limits were as a human being.
Three months ago, on October 8th to be exact, I wrote about my first week in Los Angeles, California. I talked about how excited and nervous I was to be in a new city where no one knew me and where I knew no one. I fantasized about all of the "LA" things I was going to experience and mostly how lucky I was to have sunshine everyday while my fellow friends in NY were experiencing a freezing winter. I harped on how I needed to be uncomfortable in order to be comfortable. I highlighted how I was finally living my dream and how excited I was to share it with you all. Well the time has come, it's been three months since I've moved to LA and now I'm heading back to NY. To keep it short, I learned a lot about others but mostly learned a lot about myself. I discovered more about who I was as a person and who I wanted to become. I met some of the most incredible people out here and even made some lasting relationships. If you follow me on Instagram, you've probably seen everything I was doing and how much fun I was having. But, as most of you know, everything on social media is not how it always seems.
If you've been following me for a while, you've probably seen me do a bunch of LA things and eat a BUNCH of LA food. What you don't know is, there were days I was homesick and missed New York like no other. There were days that I felt so overwhelmed by all of the newness and unknown that I just had to breakdown and take a moment to cry. There were many moments where even though I had tons of people surrounding me and texting me, I've never felt more alone. For the first month I constantly asked myself "Why did I leave the one place that had everyone who loved and cared about me to go to a place of unknown where I knew no one."
By the end of month one, I got more into the swing of things. I finally knew the path to work without google maps, knew how long it would take to get to/from my trainer, and started to realize no one from East LA ever goes to West LA unless they have to. I started to get myself into a routine where it felt as if LA was starting to become home. To make this easier ( and because I'm so type A and love lists) I've broken out my experience of LA in three top categories: Lifestyle, Dating, and People.
To New Yorkers, LA has always been the "little brother". The city that was almost like New York but not quite. It didn't have the late night eats that were open for 24 hours, bomb corner delis, or even bars that were opened past 2AM. However, one of the most beautiful things that made me fall in love with LA is the culture and lifestyle. Basically, it's always sunny and everyone is always happy. The people of LA have a sense of motivation like no other, to become the best and healthiest version of themselves and let me tell you I AM ABOUT IT. It was mind blowing to me to see how comfortable and in tune people were to not only others but mostly to themselves. LA residents have a certain swagger, where they are confident in who they are from the way they dress, to the way they act, to what they enjoy. Of course there are people everywhere like this, but to me the LA people got this down. They are not afraid to be who they are and they're not afraid to show it.
I was always curious to see how dating would be in LA. I told myself I wasn't going to get into anything serious when I got here because I was using this time to focus on myself and I wanted to put all of my energy into fulfilling certain aspects of my life independently. But on the real, I decided to dabble a little into the LA scene just to see what it was like (I'm a curious gal, sorry!). The best way I can explain my experience with LA dating is you get out what you put in. Meaning, if you're out there trying to maximize and see how many guys you can sleep with then you'll probably be successful in that. However, if you're trying to find bae who hikes, brunches, parties, AND has deep conversations well then you're prob asking for too much...(just kidding). But seriously, LA guys are just different from NY guys and let me tell you it was a breath of fresh air. If you're looking for some first date stories in LA well, you'll just have to keep reading to find out :)
I've always heard people say, it's not the place but the people that make it special. To the beautiful human beings who I've met during my time in LA- thank you. Thank you for being some of the most kind-hearted, genuine, and open people that I have ever met. I don't think there is enough I could say about the people I've met here. All I know is, it takes a special kind of person to make someone feel at home, and comfortable, in a place where they know absolutely no one. It was so refreshing to meet people who had the ability to make me feel like I've known them forever when I've only known then for 3 months. So, if I met you in LA and you're reading this, I'll be back and ya'll better have a spot open for me :)
When I sat down to write this post, I wasn't sure how I was going to conquer it. There was just too much that had been done and not enough time to write it all down. If you're looking for a step by step guide of how I did it you probably won't find it here because that's your story to craft. What I can tell you is, this was one of the best decisions that I made in 2018 and maybe in my life.
I've always heard people say they had to "go away" to find themselves and to be honest I wasn't really sure what that meant until now. Sometimes you have to ignore the signs, comments, and opinions from the outside world and just listen to that little voice in your head that is telling you to take that leap of faith or that journey that you're so afraid of.
New York, I'm coming home. LA you better believe I'll be back.