Debra Swersky
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The People

“It’s the people.” That’s what I’ve always said in response to the question, “What will you miss the most about Boston?” I didn’t have to think too hard about my answer, but I did have to fight pretty hard to hang onto my tears almost every time someone asked me the question. 

We have been in Boston for six years. This is the first place, other than wherever my mom lives, that I can call home. Everywhere else that I have lived in life has been temporary, like undergrad at Binghamton, or a “leaving the nest” situation… but Boston is different. We’re leaving Boston because we decided to leave Boston, not because we received the degrees that we were pursuing (though I did get my MBA). We built a life in Boston. We got married in Boston.

It’s bittersweet. When we arrived six years ago, we didn’t know if we were going to stay forever, but we had high hopes for our experience… however long it might be. We had jobs, dreams, and aspirations - a quick peek of what the future could hold for us. Along the way we learned a lot in pursuit of our goals, were challenged by those around us, and inspired by those we met. As Jim Collins would say, “we got the right people on the bus.” (Phil Collins would have said “You Can’t Hurry Love.”) We made friends and found mentors, learned life lessons from the best in the business, and began to shape our lives through our experiences in a meaningful way. It’s to these people that we are forever grateful. (Thank you.)

With tears in my eyes I arrived at the airport, checked in, and then burst into tears when the officer was checking my ticket at security. (“I’m moving to Dallas,” I squeaked.) But, I promise you. I’m happy about the move. I’ve learned a lot from Boston, there is just so much emotion around leaving the people that I’ve come to love, have grown up with, and with who I am comfortable sharing my life.

It’s a good thing though that we’re moving to Texas… because Dallas has some big shoes to fill.

Whenever I travel home, I always scan the faces of my fellow travelers as I board the plane. Perhaps I’ll be traveling with someone I know. Though still tearful from my outburst at security, the fact that all of the faces were undoubtedly new on my first “official” flight to my new home was both nerve-wracking and exciting. As I took my seat, my seat mate arrived at our row. She was wearing shorts and red cowgirl boots. I asked her, “Is Dallas home for you?” She said, “No. I’m from Vermont. Just visiting family.” I laughed to myself and thought: I’m looking forward to playing the part of a Texan too: cowgirl boots, shorts. Heck, I might even get a hat and start saying y’all.

Here’s the thing: You can take the girl out of the city, but you can’t take the city out of the girl.

Though I’m moving South, to a new city, I have every intention of being exactly who I am and living my life exactly the way that I want to live it. That means that there will be at least one person taking the DART, one person walking around town, and one person who will not own a gun. I intend on taking all of the experience and knowledge that my friends and mentors have bestowed on me and using it to its utmost potential. Boston, and all of the stellar people whose paths I’ve crossed, have given me a lot to work with… so…  

Bring it, Dallas. It’s game day

Debra Swersky