Making Peace with Missing It

Someone asked me earlier today if I missed today if I miss working in network news.  And I responded, without hesitation,

“I miss the adrenaline rush and the camaraderie of a newsroom in breaking news…so much so that it hurts sometimes.  But it hurts for a very brief period of time compared to when I then think about the fact that everyone I worked with will be stuck at the office till 2am.  My priorities just aren’t the same…But there is not one part of me that wants to go back to news.  Not one part.  I just miss my friends.”

I left a decade long career in network news just a little over a year ago to manage digital communications for a non-profit from home, and truth be told, there is not a day that goes by that I don’t miss network news.
I loved every bit of the scramble and the rush that came with it, every bit of the responsibility that came with being one of the first people in the world to know certain pieces of information, and then being a part of the team that decided how to present the information in a way that most people would understand.  I miss the countdown…oh…that countdown…”In threeeeeeeee…twwwwwwwoooooo…and we’re up…good show everyone…”
It gives me chills just thinking about it.  I miss the smell of the control room…I miss seeing the horrors and the triumphs of humanity first or second hand and the power of being reminded of the fragility of life…I miss walking away from a day that started out like any other but turned out to be history making…and feeling invigorated by not fully ever knowing what is around the next corner.
I miss the tunnel vision I would get when literally, all hell would be breaking lose, and I would feel a sense of calm like I have yet to be able to replicate….working with the graphics and video teams to make sure we had the elements we needed to convey what was going on. The ability I had to have 6 people in my headset, and hear every one of them, but only focus on the information I needed to hear at the time.  I miss the rhythm that we would get into when we were live…helping each other out (ideally)…communicating in shorthand…an ability to read someone’s mild hand gesture and know that they needed more information…I miss the yelling…the cursing…the intensity…Sure I would have my meltdown moments…but they were all part of it…
And I miss the bonds that all of those experiences formed.
I miss hearing…”Aaaaaand…. we are clear…” and heading back to the office, to decompress in whatever way made sense for that day, with my work family.
That doesn’t mean I regret, for one second, the decisions I have made in my personal and professional life…but with my recent decision to move from New York City to Connecticut – I am starting to fully realize that just because I accept a decision, doesn’t mean I don’t or can’t miss what is on the other side.
And that is okay, because what is on the other side is still awesome…and supportive and loving.
I did not receive the response I anticipated when I started telling people that I would be leaving New York City in order to make a life in the suburbs for Ellie and I…3 miles away from my sister, 4 miles away from my parents…and within about 15 miles of a plethora of extended family.
I really thought everyone would be…disappointed in me…would tell me I was crazy for stepping away from the opportunities that a million people would die to have.  But I made that all up in my head (which makes me wonder what other crazy stuff I have told myself over the years that had no foundation in reality whatsoever).
Instead, in the past 2 weeks I have heard, “I am so proud of you,” more times that I can count.  I joked with my sister that I should have done this years ago just to hear all the nice things people had to say about me.  I can’t quite figure out what exactly everyone is so proud of me for.  I guess all who know me, know how strong the pull of my old lifestyle is for me…and how difficult it has been for me to blend that old Cara, with my desire to be the best Mom that I can be.  Or maybe they are just impressed that I manage to find my keys on most days.  Who knows…really…
But when I went out for beers with all of my NYC friends (who could make it)…I realized that I truly love my life here.  And I will miss it.  A lot.  And most of all, I will miss the people who became my family on the working holidays, and the 48-hour shifts, and the breaking news…the people who showed up when I was having contractions at 26 weeks and who held my hand until my parents were able to get to the hospital…the people who rubbed my back when I was nauseous, who came to doctor’s appointments with me…the people who made sure I had nearly everything I needed when I took Ellie home from the hospital and who become comfortable with our social plans working around my breast feeding schedule.  I will miss being so geographically close to them.
And that is okay.
I have come to accept that all of this growing up nonsense means that any choice will come with turning down something else…something that I also had a strong affinity for.  And that doesn’t mean the decision is not right…it just means that it is time to learn to make peace with missing it.

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