Why I’m Moving To New York City



My new street, St. Mark's Place. East Village, NYC.
My new street, St. Mark’s Place. East Village, NYC.

Have I said, explicitly, what’s happening? Does anyone know what’s going on? Am I just dashing off posts with no regard for my readers, kind, hard-working people who can’t possibly follow where I am in the world at any given time, why I’m there, or when it all might shore up? Would it be wise to debrief you and, in debriefing, might I find much needed answers for myself? 

Is it ever good to lead off with a list of questions like that?


I am moving to New York City.

I own a home in Chicago that is dear to me. Thus, I do not see this move to New York City as being permanent or even long-term, if you’re using my entire (hopefully long) life as the measure. But as you can’t be a little bit pregnant, you can’t slightly have three people that are not you move into your home or kinda move operations halfway across America into an apartment on St. Mark’s that you’re a little bit renting. As I write this, in view are boxes of belongings that will go into storage, go to Goodwill, or come with me to New York. There is no halfway, here, no semi-move, even if I see New York as a kind of interstitial thing. I am faced with a choice and I have chosen to relocate, at least for the next year. And why?

“Why not?” is an acceptable answer, as ever, but there’s more. Look:

1) Why not?
2) Yuri and I fell in love. Four months later, he got his dream job and moved to New York. Not being together is not an option. I’m mobile, he’s not. Look at it this way.
3) The safe choice (try long-distance, stay here, risk nothing) is rarely the most interesting one.
4) New York City, though it’s cool to hate it these days, is still New York $&@#! City and I wanna see.

Yuri came to Chicago day before yesterday to help me and he is helping, though he can’t pack up my fabric stash, exactly. Mostly, it’s moral support I’m getting — moral support and bear hugs so good I’m moving to $&@#! New York City.

We were at the big table yesterday, drinking miso soup from styrofoam cups, eating takeout sushi. There is no time to cook, no sense in making more work with pans or bowls or spoons. There’s so much to do here and so little time before work deadlines crush us both. It’s all happening at the same time. It always does.

“It is insane,” I said. “People will think I’m insane. I can hear it. ‘But she just lived through a renovation! She just did her kitchen and bathroom! That’s crazy!'”

Yuri opened his eyes wide. “Do you really think people will think that?”

I shrugged. “Probably some people will. But I’m not going to say no to love because I like my backsplash.”

And then my eyes opened wider because what had popped out of my mouth was the truth, and the truth gave me the ability to keep packing.


27 Responses

  1. mandy
    | Reply

    I had a year left on my school contract when I visited my soon-to-be best beloved just before Thanksgiving one year. While I moved pretty much as soon as that contract was up, had I been able to go before, I totally would have. Best of luck on your move, and may a multitude of bear hugs be in your future!

  2. Diane Mosher
    | Reply

    …you go, girl!! 🙂

  3. Patti Ann Kubacki
    | Reply

    You are very brave and if you can’t put love above all else then what can you put there. Long distance relationships are tough and as you said your career and job is mobile whereas Yuri’s is not so the logical move it NYC. Which by the way is fabulous and if you can handle the craziness of it all should work out wonderfully for you both. Enjoy yourself and this new adventure, don’t worry what others say, they aren’t the ones living your life, you are!

  4. Cheryl
    | Reply

    You are so awesome.

    I remember moving across the country when I fell in love. I thought “Hey, I’m only 21, I can recover from this if it doesn’t work out.” 18 years later I still don’t need to recover. Thankfully. Embrace it and have fun.

    • Mary Fons
      | Reply

      Cheryl, I would like to sit down and have a glass of wine with you. Come to New York.

  5. Carol morrison
    | Reply

    Thanks for sharing I was wondering why you were moving.. Good luck…met you in downers grove feel like you are a friend…

  6. Andres
    | Reply

    good choice

  7. Edra Moore
    | Reply

    Good for you, always follow your heart. My world just shifted, have no idea where my future lies but I believe in life and following your heart. There will be other homes, hopefully where you and your love have chosen together.
    You are starting a wonderful adventure, embrace it!

  8. Kathi Kraftyzales
    | Reply

    I too thought about the renovations but thought phooey! Yuri is in NYC.
    That’s the place she ought to be…..make the ride, take the plunge, have a blast while you last! Grap that gold ring and don’t let go.

  9. Sharon S
    | Reply

    How exciting. And who knows, you might see Tim Gunn again.

  10. KathyMac
    | Reply

    Thank you for explaining, Mary, but I read each and every one of your posts. You didn’t need to tell me why you were going to New York, but the telling was magical, as usual. I recently read Susan Messiner’s book, The Fall of Marigolds. The main character was a specialist in fabric (a designer and historian) and worked in a fabric shop in Manhattan. I can see you there. Fictional shop? Doesn’t matter. I still see you there.


  11. Susan Davies
    | Reply

    Hi Mary, I just accepted that you were moving and assumed it was work related. NY sure looks like a busy place. Where I live is very quiet. I’m just happy that you’re feeling well enough to do this!

  12. Carrie
    | Reply

    As a former Mew Yorker (born ‘n braised on the streets of Brooklyn) I can envy your mobility to serendipitously follow your heart. NYC is an adventure. That is very true.

    But the expense! The noise! The overcrowding! The rudeness! After living & working there for more than 55 years, I said “Enough!” It’s a great place to visit, to find romance, to be dazzled, but…….

  13. Amy
    | Reply

    I moved from Chicago to New Orleans to be with my boyfriend who was beginning his residency. We just celebrated our 20th anniversary! Congratulations on a very exciting decision!

  14. Mary Paulger MaryP
    | Reply

    Be happy, Mary. Do what it takes.

  15. Ruth
    | Reply

    I’m giving you a BIG attagirl! Keep it simple and enjoy the adventure! xo

  16. Elle Irby
    | Reply

    I think that is fantastic! I left a fabulous apartment that I adored that was a 3 block walk from work in DC to move to the suburbs (Bowie, MD) hoping that it was the right decision. 3 years later I’m happily married with an absolutely beautiful baby boy who is about to turn 1 (gasp!), i’ve quit the job whose commute was so convenient to the old place, and I couldn’t be happier! Risks are good! 🙂
    I’m happy for you! And I hope you run into Tim Gunn again, too. He should be a guest on Quilty, perhaps talking about design! 😉

  17. Judy Tucker
    | Reply

    #&$*% New York and Yuri are soooo lucky to have you. You will be missed but Happy for you and your new Best Wishes my friend.

  18. Chris
    | Reply

    And we are very happy to have you and looking forward to seeing you again at The City Quilter! 😀

  19. Jolene shindler
    | Reply


    I think of how I met my husband, when I read your new post, and friends we were for a long while. He was dating a high school friend from back in the day and when I heard a “she finishes my sentences”, “I’m thinking for selling the condo”, I couldn’t stop thinking of Kelly Clarksons song, Breakaway. The lyrics “Take a chance, Make a change And breakaway” . I told him my heart, that I was the one that finishes his sentences, I knew when he would call before the phone rang and I confessed, with tears, that all this time, he could pick me! 10 wonderful years later, we are still thrilled that I took a huge chance! You’ve fought worse and conquered your tummy troubles. Mary, take the chance, make a change, give it your all! We love you no matter where you live! Beside, backslash can be recreated on any kitchen wall, time cannot be recreated with Yuri!

    • Mary Fons
      | Reply

      I’m listening to that Kelly Clarkson song like, right now. 🙂 love it, Jolene. Thanks.

      • Jolene shindler
        | Reply

        So proud of you!


  20. Barbara
    | Reply

    Gee Mary, I was wondering why you were moving. Go with the tugging of your heartstrings, and be happy. Please keep doing what you are doing, I don’t want to lose you. I’ve learned so much from watching Quilty and reading Quilty, one of my favorite quilt magazines.

  21. Mission: Peeps | Mary Fons
    | Reply

    […] home for a spelland want to get together (in 2015 I was never, ever home for a spell but that’s another story) other people are on vacation, have a commitment, or have a baby. So it’s texts and emails […]

  22. […] too much, still. Because Yuri, who was a big part of my life and always will be. Because it saw most of my 34th year of life. […]

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