fleeting

Shhh
listen in
for the pin dropping
I’ve been
so long here dwelling,
measuring love in teaspoons,
guzzling empty glasses,
savouring flavours barely
lingering on my tongue.

The thorns are waning,
but I can still feel the bruises
swelling in my chest
your lies like litter 
in
my pulse, rushing through
me like a greyhound on
the track and
I’m always
meaning
to ask,
is this life?

or just the taste of your fleeting heartbeat?

You know you’re lost when…

On one of my first nights in Toronto, when I was feeling particularly overwhelmed and vulnerable, I was wandering aimlessly up and down this busy downtown street near my sublet apartment like a stray cat. I was eyeing everyone and everything with suspicion, walking stupidly in and out of shops/bars and just generally hopping around from place to place like a little bird who just hit its head.

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I was in one of those hopelessly pathetic post-breakup states where you are incapable of focusing on anything other than just how impossibly alone you are.  (It’s not just me, right? I have no idea.) Anyways, the streets were packed with people socializing, loitering on the corners, smoking outside of bars, and just generally enjoying the company of others. Another exciting night in downtown Toronto.

Not for me, though. I was busy clinging desperately to the enormous welling tears which I could feel ready and eager to claw their way out of my eyes and torrent down my face. I didn’t want to go back to my new apartment to cry awkwardly in front of my new roommate. Actually I didn’t want to cry, full stop. But it was inevitable and I knew it. I felt confused; empty. I had no one to talk to and had no where to go that I felt comfortable, so when I stumbled upon a sign that read “PSYCHIC READING, $20”, I thought okay.. what the hell? I will try anything right now to feel better.

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She lived above some bar on the main stretch and I had to make my way through a group of rather curious and rather drunk patrons to ring her doorbell. I waited at the bottom of the stairwell, surrounded by this group of men asking me why I needed a psychic, telling me what a scam I was in for, etc. Of course I know, of course I do, I’m not stupid. I’m well aware that I’m about to waste my money. I don’t care. 

She could probably read the desperation on my face from a mile away. We locked eyes through the door for a moment before she buzzed me in. I turned the knob and made my way up her ominous stairwell with a good dose of trepidation… no turning back now. I sat down cautiously and observed her room. It was exactly what you’d expect from such a place: dim lighting, tarot cards and signs, granite palm figures on the desk, incense burning, curtains dangling around us, candles burning everywhere, and some testimonials framed on the wall describing how marvellously she changed her client’s lives and how amazing she was. Comforting.

I was still fighting to keep it together when she took her seat across from me. We sat in a bizarre moment of silence that seemed to drag on and on before she finally asked me how I was doing. I just stared meekly in her general direction. I knew the next sounds coming from me would not be pretty and so I responded with a haphazard shrug.

“You’re hurting,” she said lamely. And I say lamely because anyone could have looked at me and seen that I was on the cusp of a compete breakdown. Leave it to a psychic to state the obvious.

No shit, I thought, and then it was over.

I sat across from this woman whose name I didn’t know, in her strange apartment, in a new city, feeling desperately lost and alone, and cried like an idiot. I cried and I couldn’t help myself. Too much had happened in too short a time and the finality of it all was catching up with me. I’m sure she saw a dollar sign for every tear that rolled down my cheek. She had hit the jackpot with me.

I started to tell her everything that had happened in the last month between my (ex) partner and I. She listened so sweetly while I spewed all the frivolous thoughts in my head about how confused I was, how lost. But of course, crying is therapy and more I let out, the better I felt until finally I was able to think with some semblance of rationality again. (It seemed to slip away so easily for a while…) When I finally finished my sob story she took me by the hand and stared intently into my eyes.

“I want to be more than your psychic,” she said, “I want to be your spiritual advisor.”

Well actually.. you haven’t really done much psychic-ing up to now,  if I’m honest. But I didn’t mention that.

She started to explain that she could help me. She knew what had to be done and she could get my partner and I back together in two months tops. (Guaranteed!) Relief was mine if I wanted it, she’d carry the burden from now on. She would give me her number and be at my beck and call whenever I needed her. Anytime of the day or night, all I had to do was call or text and everything would be alright. All I had to do was trust in her to do her work.

Oh, and dish out 800 dollars for a special candle.

Uhh…. what’s that now?

Yes, you read right, eight hundred dollars… for a candle.  

I explained to her that that was impossible as I couldn’t even afford the twenty dollars I paid for the sheer pleasure of crying in her company. But she continued…

“I’m so worried for you. If you don’t do this, you’re going to become more and more upset. The crying will never stop. You will be more alone than ever.”

A bit harsh, I know, but she was only doing her job. In any case, I needed to shut this perceived avenue of revenue down for her ASAP. I mean I know I looked desperate, but there was ZERO chance I was willing to give her 800 dollars to burn a candle in the hopes of rekindling my relationship with my ex.

The interesting thing was that as I sat there listening to her try to convince me otherwise, I started thinking… What if I’m not supposed to get back with him, though? I’ve just moved across the country to start this new life, I can’t turn back now. I can’t dilute my energy like that. Isn’t there a reason why I’m here and not there right now? Why can’t you be telling me that there are great things ahead for me HERE?

These thoughts took me a bit off guard. I mean, hadn’t I been crying over my ex for the last twenty minutes because I missed him so much? Wasn’t I so upset because our life together was over? And then I realized that no, that wasn’t it. Not to say that I didn’t miss him in that moment, because I did, but it wasn’t him that was leaving me crying in a stranger’s house at 1130 at night. I was just overwhelmed that so much was happening all at once. I was in a free fall with no idea where I was going to land, and I was scared. Of course I was. Nothing wrong with that.

Suddenly it seemed entirely silly to be sat there, crying over my ex with a strange woman, when I had so much to look forward to. I’m not exactly sure what I expected to get out of the encounter. Some guidance, I suppose. A hint that I’m on the right path. Truth be told all I really needed was a friend with a shoulder, and to her credit she gave that to me and I’m grateful for it.

Crying is like writing sometimes, you just need to get it out in order to make sense of things. I thanked her for her time, she gave me her card, and I left. I left having gained everything I needed to in that moment. Just a little clarity, a little piece of mind. And she gave that to me in the exact opposite way I imagined she would.

If you guys haven’t been to see a psychic yet, I highly recommend doing so. It can be quite the experience.

Arriving in Toronto

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I flew into Toronto on the 30th of June. I was exhausted and slept through most of it. I’d spent the entirety of the day before not only packing a shell of my life into the suitcase that I’d be living out of for the next two months, but also moving everything I still own out of the house that I own with my ex.

It’s a good thing I was already somewhat interested in minimalism before this all happened. I managed to sell most of my furniture on Kijiji which made the hassle of moving heavy, obnoxious objects someone else’s problem. And I just got to watch and collect a little sum of money. Not a bad trade at all. Only had one issue with Kijiji when a girl showed up to take away two large dresser drawers with a tiny little sedan. I asked her how she proposed to take the dressers in her tiny car, but she assured me she measured and knew it would fit.  Anyone with even a modest level of common sense and logic could tell that this was physically impossible, but nonetheless I got to marvel as she and her equally dimwitted (sorry) boyfriend attempted to fit these dressers into her car, and (of course) fail.

“That’s so weird,” she exclaimed, baffled at her defeat. “I totally thought it would fit!”

That’s because you’re an idiot…

After this experience I sadly began to mention in my ads that everyone had to have adequate transport for the items they wanted prior to coming… I mean you’d think it would be obvious, but apparently it isn’t.

Anyways.

Packing for a trip is pretty stressful on its own, and moving is pretty stressful on its own. Combine the two and, well, you can imagine… I spent half the time lying on my empty living room floor like this… because when I have too much to do I end up overwhelmed and then I do nothing.

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Rupert was there to help me out, fortunately. By licking my face and lying around with me. Support from loved ones is essential. To my detriment I’m pretty stubborn and thought I’d move everything out on my own. It took only a few hours for me to crack and finally call my brother to bring an SUV to help me with everything. I managed to move most of the things I wanted to, and left the rest for the ex.

Now normally when I travel I pack extremely light, I’m talking one pair of jeans, one pair of shorts, and maybe 5 tee-shirts. This was a bit different. I needed to pack enough that I could survive a month’s dance intensive, 2-3 months of regular clothes, and anything else I needed on a regular basis. I ended up having to haul all of this on a bus, and through the subway to the distaste of those around me.

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And I say distaste because the bus driver was a maniac and would take turns like Mad Max would. Every time a corner came around the suitcases would roll (damn the wheels!) into whoever was around me and I kept laughing to myself over how absurd it was and apologising to the people who were understandably irritated by me. But in fairness, that’s a lot of luggage and I didn’t have a choice, or any help. When I arrived at my subway stop I managed to choose the exit without an elevator or escalator so I had to he-man all of this up four flights of stairs. Again, could I have walked to the other side of the subway station to find an elevator? Maybe. But as I mentioned previously I am stubborn and felt committed to suffering to the end.

So that’s the story of my arrival in Toronto. The first night here was a little rough because of all the residual stress, but the days since have been pretty great. I’m really enjoying the energy of this city so far. I think it’ll be very conducive to writing and creating a new life for myself. Also there’s so much going on. The Fringe Festival has just started and I’ve been to see one show already and am looking forward to seeing more. Headquarters are conveniently located just down the street from my sublet. Tomorrow I start my dance intensive, and at some point I need to start the hunt for dog-friendly downtown apartments.

It’s all happening pretty fast!

How did everyone enjoy the weekend?