This summer I relocated to New York City, and at first I was in love. I was constantly eating out with the most enormous variety of foods – from gastropubs to Korean BBQ to ice cream galore. I was constantly walking miles every single day to explore and see as much of the city as I possibly can. I was going out to the best bars in town and creating great friendships. And do not even get me started on all the theater I was seeing!

To say the least, it was amazing. The city wrapped me in her arms and said, "let's hang out." So we did! And it really was great. But then things got tough. Money got tight, and so did my clothes. The Subway cars became more and more crowded, while also being delayed regularly. The temperatures slowly creeped 90 degrees and upwards, causing me to arrive to work dripping in sweat.

All these dilemmas added up to cause for one stressful summer, which drained me financially, physically and emotionally. I was more stressed than I had been in years, and it was such a humbling experience. I forgot how difficult it is to be on my own and be able to prosper.

The city really was challenging me in every way it could have. Did I fail at staying above water? Sometimes, definitely. Other times, I rose to the occasion and was able to swim in the high tide. My point is that this city sometimes is the absolute worst. I mean, it is disgusting to walk past four-foot piles of trash every single day. And it can be excruciatingly painful to have a mariachi band in your subway car on your morning commute.

But all beautiful things have their thorns, I suppose. Because ultimately as much as NYC sucks, it is one of the most amazing places in the world. As much as it sucks the energy and money out of me, it also fills me with so much life. It has this ability to just keep you on the edge of your seat because you never know what is going to happen on any given day.

You might leave work and then head to your roof for a beer. You might end up grabbing dinner with an old friend and talking for hours. You might be seeing a Broadway show, or end up at a drag cabaret. There are just so many endless options of things to do. It is a beautiful thing that will never make you feel more alive.

So just know that even though this city is absolutely the worst some days, it makes up for it in the end. Because this city is unlike any other. This city will give you an experience of a lifetime – all you have to do is buckle up for the ride.