— From Our Readers

My world has already been turned upside down in 2015

A loss can come in many forms. A breakup can feel like death, and a faded friendship can break your heart as much as the last boyfriend. The first week of the new year, after one lost love, I decided to say goodbye to two more.

While signing the 30 days notice for my landlord, my heart was shaking. Almost three years ago, after a year stint in Paris healing my broken heart, I came back to LA excited to start a new chapter of my life. I was nowhere ready to get a place on my own and still only freelancing, when I came across an ad for a small studio right by the beach. Thinking it would only inspire me, I stopped by and met the manager. I left with an application filed and two weeks later I got a call that the tiny living box was mine.

It was one block from the Venice boardwalk. I instantly became friends with my downstairs neighbor and we started to take Venice beach by storm like true partners in crime. We made new friends, explored new places and had sometimes not so safe but nonetheless incredible adventures. As the summer turned to autumn, I took hot baths in my claw-foot tub followed by cozy nights reading and drinking wine surrounded by candles. I smiled each time I came home knowing that I was back in my safe place.

I brought the first man I dated after my divorce back to my apartment with hesitation. I didn’t want to share it with anyone, even for the length of a dinner. After wandering the world like a gypsy for a year, I felt like I finally had my sanctuary. Fortunately, I learned how to share it, and had many friends from various corners of the world visit me throughout my years there, all of whom fell in love with it as much as I did.

The apartment was there for me during hard times, too. When my heart was broken once again it cheered me up with good vibes and warmth. When my niece passed away I spent days and nights in bed sobbing, breathing in ocean air through the window and hearing it comfort me with the waves crashing to the shore.

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