97. Maybe it’s because I’m in Toronto (Still)

I’ve really been enjoying my time here in TO. From the CN tower, to a Jays game (my first ball game ever), to an early-morning carbon monoxide scare (although the sexy firefighters made that worthwhile), to watching one of my newest friends hail a full-blown city bus as if it were a taxi cab (I attempted this myself the very next day — it seems to be a thing here), & an impromptu shadow puppet show… it’s really been quite the trip.

I’ve missed my BFF: I don’t know how many times I’ve laughed so hard I’ve almost peed myself, & I desperately don’t want this trip to end, but alas it is almost time for me to return to real life.

Much like last year, I’m not really feeling a pull home — rather I feel the pull to stay here. But, as much as my romantic side is screaming at me to drop everything & start my life in Toronto right now, my more practical side is winning out with its realistic assertions that I must finish my degree, save some more money (I’m going to have to lay off the shoe purchases for a while), & perhaps actually find a place to live first.

Sigh.

A quick visit is just going to have to suffice for now — quick visits are all I have to fix my Toronto addiction until I can actually get it together enough to move here, anyway.

So, I’m back to Edmonton on Tuesday, anxious to start school & continue biding my time until I can call this beautiful city home.

& now, some shameless photos from my trip (so far):

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96. Maybe it’s because I’m in Toronto (Again)

Well, I’m back in Canada’s largest city for what is slowly become an annual trip to see my BFF in real life & I couldn’t be happier.

I love this city, I love my BFF, & I love having a mini-vacation before the craziness of full-time school takes over my life.

So far we’ve ripped it up in some grunge bar whilst taking in a live show, wandered around Chinatown for a bit, & assisted in throwing a kickass 50th birthday party (barely… we basically sliced vegetables for 2 hours & drank semi-heavily for the rest of the day).

It’s been a good trip. I have only been here a couple days, & I already don’t want to leave.

So, we’re going to make the most of the rest of our 12-day sleepover, & spend some quality time eating, maybe drinking, maybe taking in some of Toronto’s tourist-y destinations, & definitely binge-watching seasons of The Hills together.

Watch out, Toronto.

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95. Maybe it’s because I never finish anything… Ever.

I can’t believe that at the end of this month I’m going to be starting my third year of university. It blows my mind. I never thought I would have made it this far — not because I’m not smart enough, or good enough, or (let’s face it) wealthy enough to complete a degree (thanks Government of Canada/Alberta for them student loans), but because I have trouble finishing pretty much anything I start.

I’m actually having difficulty finishing this post, to be honest.

I can’t think of anything that I’ve started & actually fully completed, barring a handful of novels or the original Super Mario Bros. I always find a way to excuse myself before I reach the finish line, & that’s why I can’t run 5K, or play the banjo, or speak fluent German; why I don’t practice yoga daily & can’t stick to a lactose-free diet for more than 5 minutes; & why I haven’t been able to see a real-life romantic relationship through from beginning to end.

I get restless & bored & maybe even a bit scared, & then instead of behaving like an adult… I just quit. Sometimes it happens well into a relationship; sometimes it happens mid-conversation. Either way it always happens.

So maybe I’ve failed to maintain a loving & fairly normal relationship because of my commitment-phobic tendencies & inability to see something, anything, through to the end?

Well, it’s definitely a contributing factor. Combined with my blatant insecurity & insatiable narcissism — relationships are going to suffer. There’s only so many quirks a guy can handle & if one of them happens to be ditching him mid-romance, I think chances of the relationship working out are slim.

If I’m going to full-on commit to something, well, someone, I think the biggest thing I’m going to have to do is actually admit that something (someone) is actually important to me. & I will have to make myself vulnerable (gross, I know) & let myself gain something I am going to be actually upset to lose.

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94. Maybe it’s because I’m the middle child?

I worked with a friend who I hadn’t seen in a long, long while & we were playing catch up when she hit me with the news that she has met the love of her life & is happily at home in relationship-land.

Must be nice, Meg.

Obviously I am happy for her, that’s not what this is about. What peaked my interest was the reasoning behind her assertion that this particular relationship was destined to be successful.

She has this theory about relationships — basically, if you are the baby of your family then romantic relationships will only be successful with those who are the inherently responsible, self-entitled, slightly damaged oldest children in families, & vice versa.

Her theory checks out (kind of) & it makes sense. The eldest offspring in any family has a strong, type A personality that, although effective, creates conflict when put in a relationship with someone too similar. First born children are used to being the boss, & giving orders, & getting things done. One bossy, control freak plus another bossy, control freak does not usually equal romantic bliss.

The same thing with youngest siblings: they are a wee bit spoiled, used to being fawned over for the smallest success, & if you have two people in a relationship trying to be the centre of attention… something’s going to have to give eventually. & it probably won’t be pretty when it does.

This made me wonder: where do I fall? As a middle child & Daddy’s Little Girl, I think I possess equal parts older, responsible, slightly damaged, control freak & spoiled-rotten baby. So, what combination is going to lead me to happily-ever-after?

I’m not sure — there’s just way too many factors for me to make a fully-educated hypothesis. I might end up with another middle child, or the baby of the family, or the oldest offspring, or even the elusive only child, & if it is meant to work… we will make it work.

It’s not that I don’t believe Meg’s theory — I actually think it’s a good starting point. It’s important to look at relationships objectively sometimes, & I honestly believe her theory will save me a lot of heartache when I apply it to the online dating circuit (also known as Tinder). But I also won’t let it cloud my judgement for when relationships organically manifest in my life.

In the past, I’ve found it easy to stop being romantically interested in someone for mundane & irrelevant reasons: too skinny, cross-eyed, bad sense of style, terrible hair. & I don’t want to add this theory to the list of “just-because” reasons why I shouldn’t date someone.

I think I’m going to reserve this particular theory for when some loser breaks up with me & I run out of wine & need to be reassured that it was never meant to work out in the first place.

 

 

93. Maybe it’s because I’m old: 2.0

I ventured over to Kdays a couple weeks ago with one of my oldest & closest friends. We decided to go out & enjoy Edmonton’s annual exhibition because Mariana’s Trench was playing, it was supposed to be a beautiful day, & (at least for me) I wanted to feel 16 again… even if it was just for a few hours.

So feel 16 I did.

We splurged on a ride-all-day pass, which anyone who has gone to Kdays with the intent to ride any rides will assert is an absolute necessity, & we ate any & all deep-fried food we could get our hands on, & we spent $7 on a drink, & then pushed our way to the front of a crowd full of teenaged girls to enjoy the musical stylings of Josh Ramsay & his motley crew of emo musicians.

It was amazing. I haven’t felt that sort of joy in years. & although it made me feel young at heart, I think it also made me feel old, too. Because as much as I felt like a teenager… the fact that I wear a shirt that covers my torso, neglect to let my bum hang out the bottom of my shorts (that can’t be comfortable, by the way), & can no longer bend down & get back up without a groan & the now familiar pop of my knee joints indicates otherwise.

I’m not getting any younger. In fact, the exact opposite is happening. & it seems to be happening rather quickly. Definitely faster than I would like, anyway.

Getting older is making me feel like I am running out of time. Time to date, & then fall in love, & find someone who wants to commit to a life of monogamy with me. When you’re young, it’s easy to find someone to hold your hand & kiss you for no reason. You go to institutions full of other people the same age as you & spend entire days with these people & the odds are good at least one of them will want to mash faces & attempt to inch his sweaty palms up your shirt.

As an adult, which I am (kind of), it’s not that simple. The older you get the harder it is to find someone. Although, when you do find someone the quality of the relationship is significantly better, & it’s also more likely that it will also actually last, but finding that someone to hold your hand in public & kiss you spontaneously becomes a heck of a lot more difficult.

This makes me wonder if I’ve missed the boat. Am I doomed to be forever alone because I just keep getting older, & older, & even older than that?

Maybe. Maybe not.

Apparently you’re only as old as you feel… & age is just a number, yadda yadda yadda. & I think this same concept could be applied to being alone: I’m only as single as I feel, & being alone is just my marital status. I am definitely getting older, & I’m definitely still single, but I think I’m only getting better. It may have been easier to meet people when I was a high school dwelling teenager… But I’ll take quality over quantity any day of the week.

92. Maybe I just need to take a step back.

“25 years & my life is still
trying to get up that great big hill of hope
for a destination…”

What’s Up, 4 Non Blondes

Well, I’ve had my semi-annual meltdown, & now that it’s out of the way & I’ve emerged relatively unscathed (thanks to two lovely ladies in my life for putting me back together — you know who you are)… I’ve got time to reflect on what made me go down the Rabbit Hole in the first place.

I know what brought it on this time — my well-meaning mum reminded me that I’m one-third of my way to being 25. The good ol’ quarter of a century… & I’ve nothing to show for it but a pair of Louboutins* & half a degree.

Depressing, am I right?

I mean, one look at my Facebook feed & my lack of success is immediately apparent. People are graduating, getting engaged (or even married), buying homes… & here I am, broke & alone & living with my parents.

Sigh.

Thanks to the crushing realization that I am making my unsuccessfulness a habit, & my neurotic personality traits that enable me to go from 0 to mental breakdown almost instantly for little to no reason, I have been out of commission the last week or so.

I’m too close to my problems, & that makes it all too easy to catastrophise. Luckily, I managed to wrench myself away, take a step back, & re-evaluate what the heck is going on with my life.

Turns out, I really don’t have it that bad. Yeah, I am not making six figures writing professionally… but that’s okay. I’m working on it. I’m a student, & I’m still writing even if nobody wants to pay me for it (yet), & even though I’m not doing EVERYTHING that I could be doing to snag my dream job… that’s still okay. Because, guess what, I’m not ready for my dream job yet.

I could drop everything & move to the big(ger) city, & take my chances on landing some sort of writing gig, & just hope like hell that it all works out. But that’s impractical, & it’s scary, & I would more likely than not have a serious mental breakdown & have to hitchhike home with my tail between my legs.

I mentioned to my BFF the other day how sometimes I wish I could fast forward to being a successful, full-grown, responsible human being just so I wouldn’t have to deal with the stress of being an unsuccessful 20-something. Which seems like a wonderful idea sometimes… But it’s really not.

Hitting fast forward takes all the fun out of it. I have become so focused on some imaginary destination in my life that I’ve stopped enjoying & just experiencing the actual journey.

It’s better to take it slow. To make a plan. To figure out my personal steps to success, & follow them.

All I needed was to take a step back, take a deep breath, & just relax. I will get there when I get there — wherever there is.

*I now also own a pair of Manolos: that’s what I call a step in the right direction.

91. Maybe it’s because I’m desperate?

There is a fine line between honesty & desperation.

& I toe that line.

Often.

Now that I’ve poured my heart out, I’m having second thoughts about it… Because maybe it makes me come off as kind of desperate &, you know, crazy.

It’s just hard to gauge how much is too much when it comes to divulging feelings to the other humans. I’m the type of person who is rather guarded with her heart (to put it mildly) so when I want to tell someone how I feel… it can be a bit of an emotional monsoon. I need to carefully consider the balance between saying nothing & saying everything. & sometimes I miscalculate, over-share, & look like a stalker. We all make mistakes though, & apparently expressing emotions in a normal, non-creepy  fashion is something I need to work on.

I mean, other people do it… right? So it can’t be that hard. For now, I’m going to leave the heartfelt, creepy, & mildly stalker-esque post up as a reminder of how not to communicate with boys, & hopefully moving forward I can develop a less… intense means of expressing my devotion.

Less is more, people.

So, my chances are probably shot with my dream boy thanks to my over-zealousness, but let’s just chalk it up as another one of life’s many lessons… & I’ll pledge to just do better next time.

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90. Maybe I need to take a risk.

I like this boy, & I have liked him for a while now.

In my eyes, he is perfection. He is funny, handsome, mildly successful, & whenever I see him, I just can’t help but smile.

I turn into this mushy, giddy, smitten version of myself whose brain refuses to function… I blush (read: turn bright red & start sweating profusely) & seem to be unable to string words into coherent sentences. I literally lose control of my body when he is around.

It must be… love?

Normally, I would say yes, but at the risk of sounding like a total creep… He has absolutely NO idea. He actually probably thinks I’m some weird girl who can’t talk & doesn’t know anti-perspirant is a thing.

I know, I know… Y’all are going to classify this as an obsession… or tell me it’s just a crush. But it’s more than that. I think that we have a connection, & the reason I feel so strongly is because I’m convinced it’s kismet.

You can’t fight fate, right?

The universe wants us to be together. I won’t see him for a while & just when I think all hope is lost… He will pop back into my life. Like, that shit doesn’t just happen. There’s got to be a reason why he keeps showing up.

I have gotten second, third, fourth, going on fifth chances to spill the beans about how I really feel… but every time I have the opportunity, I chicken out. I can’t do it.

But the only way that something is ever going to happen between us is if I get over my irrational fear of rejection & actually do something. Maybe he will be interested, maybe he won’t be… But I will never know if I never get up the courage to ask.

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89. Maybe it’s my bun?

As a girl with long hair & an unbridled passion for sleeping in, I spend a lot of time with my hair up in a bun. So much time in fact, that my bun has become one of my most identifying features: it’s a part of me. Most people who know me can probably count on one hand the number of times they’ve seen me with my hair un-bunned, & sans bun I am actually practically unrecognizable.

Now that temperatures are rising in good ol’ Edmonton (it’s 24 degrees out right now but it feels like 34 degrees, aka it feels like heaven), I have been rocking my signature coif more than ever. I mean, it’s just too hot to have my hair down, & buns are so quick & convenient — who can blame me for avoiding the possibility of permanent neck sweat?

Perma-sweat is just so unpleasant for everyone involved.

On days like today, there ain’t no way I am messing around with a blow dryer, straightening iron, or any other piece of over-heated styling equipment. Why bother? I honestly didn’t think my hairstyle of choice drastically effected my chances of landing a man, but when one of my co-workers commented on my appearance in a not-so-positive fashion (she now lovingly refers to me as Elton John) it made me reconsider the negative effect my state of constant bun-ness might be having on my romantic chances.

Might I remain single because of my overt fondness for easy up do’s & dramatic increase of lazy hair days?

According to my grandma: no. She prefers my hair up & out of my face. However, the rest of the planet may not agree. I actually recently received a surprise compliment about my hair (it was running wild & free at the time) & it made me consider liberating it from its bun more often.

So perhaps one of these days I’ll make like Rapunzel & let my hair down — watch out Prince Charming, here I come.

Happy Birthday, Canada.

I love being Canadian — it’s great. I mean, yeah, the television is sub-par, & our weather usually sucks, & the shopping is far better across the border, but free health care, freedom in general, & just being Canadian more than makes up for it.

This big, beautiful country is so amazing — the mountains, the prairies, the oceans & lakes. Physically Canada is gorgeous — she definitely doesn’t look 147 years old.  From coast to coast, the true North strong & free is ripe with natural beauty, & no matter how many times I see the sun set over the prairies or drive the winding roads through the  Rockies, I will never get sick of it.

But being Canadian is more than farmland, mountains, & lots of snow. It’s more than hockey, being unnaturally polite, & inadvertently ending sentences with “eh” — it’s a concept. Being Canadian is being allowed to be yourself, & July 1 that’s what I am celebrating.

I am celebrating a country that let’s me be me, & looks damn good doing it.

Bring on the beer & fireworks everybody, & let’s show our country how much we love her, eh?

Happy Birthday Canada!

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