A year ago

367 days ago at this time, I was hugging my beautiful Toronto work friends goodbye. I remember feeling a happy fluttering in my belly, along with a strong urge to throw up. Walking away from my downtown office is when I actually internalized the fact that, for better or worse, I was finishing and beginning an adventure.

Screen shot that says "you registered on WordPress.com 1 year ago! Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!"

This popped up on my phone on May 31, 2014. Thanks WordPress!

The night before, I had spent an hour hammering out my first blog post. Reading it brings so many feelings back into my head and heart. It was exhilarating to know we were finally going to give our dream lifestyle a shot. And horrifying to think we were leaving stability behind.

In the days that followed, I called our wonderful landlords (how I now admire their impeccable yard skills!) to tell them we were moving. I picked up dozens of regrettably empty boxes from the LCBO. And we ordered last suppers from our favourite delivery places — I miss you, Banjara Indian Cuisine.

Fast forward to now, when I’m often asked if the whole thing was worth it. It’s a tough question to answer.

Most days, I say yes. In this new life, I cook more, see JF more, read more, spend more time living en francais, see family more, and give back to causes that mean more to me. I also love working on our house, in our garden, in our little town.

But is our new life everything we expected? Of course not. I still overload my schedule. I haven’t properly broken in my new purple sneakers. My job is great, but short-term. Our red brick beast/house adds a whole new layer of busy. The hammock we pictured ourselves regularly lying in hasn’t even been installed. And there are Toronto people and things I miss ferociously.

After weighing both then and now, I’ve concluded that I’m closer to who and where I want to be than I was a year ago. I’ve also decided it’s important to have those someday dreams. But it’s equally important that I remember to enjoy the lumpy, potholed (or these days, mosquito-ridden) road I’m on. At the very least, I think I’m headed in the right direction.

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The last piece

I’m probably not supposed to virtually high five myself in my own blog, but I’ve got to hand it to me, I’ve been fairly practical through this transition.

With an exceptionally detailed to do list, I planned and prioritized the shit out of our move. I took an almost clinical approach to long-distance coaching JF on how to pack our apartment. I gathered amazing friends and family to help us renovate and settle. And through all of the job hunting muck, I stayed calm, reasonably organized, and moderately efficient.

Which is why I rather surprised myself today, when I traded my cell’s hard-fought 416 area code in for a no-questions-asked 705 model.  I didn’t think it was a big deal, but it was. As soon as I hung up with Koodo customer service, I felt a wooshing and sinking feeling in my belly.

I blame the new phone number. I don’t like the way it sounds. Too many fives or something.

Anyway, as I was driving home from work and pondering the wooshing, I realized this change was the last piece. The final vestige of my life in the city.

Tomorrow, I will toast the end of a process that took a lot out of me. Onward. Upward. And 705-ward.