My Mary Tyler Moore Moment

Check out this polaroid from 1985. From the WTF look on my sister’s face, you’d think that she did not like being around me. Well you’re wrong. She always looked like that and the feeling was mutual.

Why so serious?

Why so serious?

Despite the all around shenanigans and antagonism, we became friends  and moved in together in our twenties. Then, all of a sudden, she became a grown-up .  Like a legit (masters-degree wielding  wifey, doggie-parent, soon-to-be homeowner) adult. Okay, so I’m being a bit melodramatic – since this happened over the course of seven years – but in the fall of 2013  I was faced with a choice.

“We’re buying a house. Do you want to live with us?”

While my sister was busy getting her ducks in a row, I spent the last decade pretty aimless. Though I always had ideas, plans, schemes and dreams, they would fall through. So I grew accustomed to plans going sideways and eventually complacent with whatever happened as a result. Continuing to live together had its pros: More space, huge kitchen, no more treks to the laundry room, a driveway, cable, cheaper rent and split utilities.  But if I l moved in, would I ever move out? That was the con.

By this time, I had my shit together – sort-of. After a decade of mixing drinks and pouring beers, I had traded my bottle popper for a nine-to-five corporate job. (Goodbye hospitality. Hel-lo health insurance!) My credit was better. I had money saved up. I always wanted to move to Chicago. Nothing was really tying me down. Now was my chance. I could man-up, move to the city, and have my Mary Tyler Moore Moment.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show was a television breakthrough, with the first never-married, independent career woman as the central character.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show was a television breakthrough, with the first never-married, independent career woman as the central character.

This is how I feel every time I’m on Lake Shore Drive and watch the sun rise over the lake. Or when I’m walking around the Loop and see all the skyscrapers illuminated at night . Even when I’m in gridlock traffic, or the wind leaves my teeth chattering at the bus stop, I’ll have these MTMS moments when I’m giddy with hope and excitement because I finally live here and think I’m “gonna make it after all.”