It’s been a year since I moved away from comfort. I decided to jump onto a plane and seclude myself away from everything I was familiar with. It’s been a bumpy, uncomfortable, spectacular journey. I had no idea what I was in for, but I learned quickly. Toronto is tough, I can be relaxed to a fault. I definitely got a little chewed up by this city, but I’d be a liar if I said I didn’t ask for it.
I didn’t leave Vancouver because I don’t love what I have there, I just wasn’t growing anymore. It was too easy. I needed adrenaline. I needed a high that wasn’t chemical. I did it for my career, for the story, for the hell of it.
Life was ready to teach me a lesson or forty, but also to show me how lucky I am.
I got off the plane and moved in with two charming fellas in The Village. It was only fitting. I had a lot of fun. Too much fun. Just enough fun.
I found a long lost sister in Sara, and we decided to live together. We moved everything by foot, by ourselves down 5 city blocks because we were too spent to get a u-haul or to ask for help. We lived without wifi for 2 weeks. Chaos can bring people really close together.
I dated enough to live out my Sex and The City fantasy. And then when I was least expecting it, I found a man that altered my view on love.
I became an undeniable cliche; a struggling writer working as a waitress, a sales girl, a barista. I learned to swallow my pride because being an adult is expensive. Only after that was I commissioned to write a feature script. Funny how that works out.
I lost too many members of my family and a friend. I was put face to face with what death does to the living. I went through a heavy heartbreak.
I learned that nothing worth having comes easily, but you can laugh the whole time if you keep your perspective in check. Sometimes you have to grab a tight hold of it. Sometimes it gets away from you, you can still get it back.
Not everything works out the way you want it to. Not everyone is who you think they are, or who you want them to be. No one has your back more than you do. And that’s all okay.
I discovered that unwavering support from people you love doesn’t fade because of distance. I learned how to live without my mom’s cooking, or getting to hug her all the time. Free therapy from my sister came via text rather than from her couch. I learned to be without my perfect friends and family for the first time in my life. I also figured out that people love an excuse to get out of Vancouver. I was grateful to be that excuse.
No one from back home is replaceable, but they don’t need to be replaced. They hold their own place. People everywhere have soul. There’s love in any corner you look, as long as you’re willing to see it. Sometimes you have to do some weeding, but you’ll find it.
I learned how to be happy when everything seemed to be wrong, strong when I felt my weakest.
I learned that despite all the shit we have to go through on a daily basis, life is so beautiful it hurts.
And now I’m at the airport on my way home for the first time since I left, but I’m ready to do it all again in two weeks.
This was the hardest year of my life, it was for a lot of people around me. But I wouldn’t change a thing. A perfect storm. Even though the world seems like it’s falling apart, even though sometimes people are painfully confusing. Nothing matters except how we go on. You get up and show up.
Here’s to this beautiful, sad, difficult, learning year. To being torn down, beat up, getting up, standing tall, and doing it better. This time stronger, this time more focused, this time with all the lessons we’ve learned.
Enjoy your life. Enjoy being here today. Enjoy being around the people you’re surrounded by. Enjoy being you. This life is a blessing, it’s just that sometimes it comes disguised.
Merry Christmas x
You got the light, count it all joy.