I was having lunch with my friends, Marcietta and David, recently when a man sitting at one of the booths looked at me and pointed. “I know you,” he said as he put his fork down on his plate. “You are from the newspaper. You are the one holding a cup in the photo. Nice to meet you.” And with a smile on my face I marched on, hiding as tears rolled down my face.
I have been a ball of emotions these past few days.
It has been difficult for me to actually tell people that I am leaving Bay City. The words, “I am leaving and my last day is…” comes out of my mouth, and a knot forms in my throat and my eyes begin to tear up.
Why am I so emotional if I am moving back home to be with family and work at my hometown newspaper? I don’t know. I have been asking myself that same question.
It is an amazing opportunity. I will be assistant editor to the newspaper I grew up reading as a kid. As a kid, my parents would pack all of us into the car and head to downtown Mission, and we’d always drive pass the newspaper office of The Progress Times. I would always say to myself, “Someday I am going to work for them.” And now I find myself with that opportunity, and I could just not let it pass by.
Some people have been encouraging. Others have been sad about the news.
I guess I am sad because I have been a part of this community for three years. I have seen its ups and downs. I have been at countless events, both happy and sad.
I came to Bay City as an editor without a care in the world. The Matagorda Advocate has been my boot camp of sorts. I have learned so much on the go. Being an editor and general manager of a weekly is not easy. The long hours, the stress, the headaches, tears, but above all it's worth every minute of it.
And as time passed by, I learned to appreciate the quiet, small-town feeling of this place. Of course, I made my escape every time I could to the big city for my coffee intake at my favorite coffee shop. But now I am seeing this city in a whole new way.
I will miss going to the H-E-B and people stopping me and sharing with me a similar experience with what I had written in a column. I will miss the phone calls from readers about an article I wrote. I will miss it all.
I will miss the small-town feeling created in a place where you never need a media badge to go to any event because everyone knows you.
The interaction I had with the community was precious.
Is it too late to “un-quit?” I ask myself. No, it probably isn’t. But I know that my path is leading me forward and on to the new chapter in my life and I must go.
I remember the first day I arrived in Bay City, with bags packed a few books in the trunk and ready to face the world. My then-boss, Chris Cobler, had shown me the city once when he drove me to meet the staff of the Matagorda Advocate.
And for that, I thank him for the chance he gave me. With no real experience under my belt, only the hunger I had to be in the newspaper business he called me one morning offered me the job and said, “Welcome to the Victoria Advocate family.” He gave me the chance and I took it, and for that I will be eternally grateful. Would I have known it was going to lead to this? I knew this day was coming someday; I just wasn’t prepared for it to be here so quickly. Or so it feels that way.
And although I am moving to an amazing opportunity, the Matagorda Advocate has been my baby. I have seen the making of each issue for the past three years from the ground up. From the creation of ads to the words on paper, I have been a part of it all. I have even been inside the printing press when the ink is about to hit the paper and form what we have all worked so hard for.
Maybe I am just being a romantic, but this surely I will miss.
I always wondered what I would feel as I was driving off for the last time. And now I know for sure it’s going to be the hardest thing for me to do.
Thank you Matagorda County for accepting this "city girl" and allowing her to grow and report the news. I took pride in everything I did for this paper and glad I jumped at the chance when the opportunity was given to me.
I will be around until Sept. 7, don't forget to stop and say goodbye!
What’s the hardest thing you have ever had to do? Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
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