Melancholy in Vancouver

Once again on a very short three day spring stop in Vancouver I’m reminded of my dual life — I live in Toronto, I thrive in Vancouver. It remains the one place where I reconnect with what’s important to me, where I get back to me. I usually go home resolved to stay grounded. Then… I lose myself. I’ve never understood why and I won’t begin to this time either.

white cherry blossoms kits

Blooming spring, Kitsilano, April 2016

This visit is a bit different. Last time I was here for a luxurious two weeks. I walked everywhere, I saw everyone important to me. I went home feeling connected to people who have/make time to spend time. What a relief. In Toronto, I hibernate. I’m static. I hide out. I give out my time sparingly… I’m protective because my experience there is people are too busy… spending time isn’t a priority. I try not to take it personally. But, I do.

In Vancouver, I expand.

This time, riddled with a very sore back which makes walking very far a lot more difficult, I stayed close to home in Kits (thank goodness for great Airbnb apartments in familiar neighbourhoods). I had just spent four days in Portland on a work trip and the 50-minute flight to Vancouver flying over the Cascade mountains was gorgeous and left me happy to be on Canadian land.

Home. Second home, first home. They are interchangeable to me. My family and lifelong friends in one place, my heart and soul in the other.

cherry tree lined kits

Blossom-lined street in Kits, April 2016

If this life is about working out unresolved issues from a previous one, I’m sorely behind because I just can’t fully accept having to live somewhere that doesn’t suit me and constantly pine for the one I know does. I may never stop regretting giving up on Vancouver after only six short years. The best thing I can do is try to visit as often as possible the place where 16 years ago I finally came, after years of hoping and planning to live. One that changed me in every way:

  • I learned balance after a lifetime of extremes
  • I learned a completely different and much more suitable lifestyle
  • I finally began to reconcile the shock of losing my mother
  • Which somehow led me to an unexpected, life-altering reconciliation with my father
  • I took great strides in moving forward – something I advocate yet sometimes find hard to do
  • Tested my independence, learned to be alone, discovered I prefer and need great amounts of time on my own
  • Learned to accept my true character, learned how to stay true to it, and the kind of work that jived with it.
  • In a nutshell… living here meant EVERYTHING and everything important – every way that I am now began in Vancouver.

Alas, I leave for Toronto tomorrow – to cold and snow. Where I must wait at least another month for the kind of blooming abundance that is here now. It’s no small thing. It’s part of what suits me vs. what I endure.

It’s why I’ll be crying as he plane takes off over the Pacific Ocean tomorrow afternoon.

 

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