It may be sacrilegious (as an enjoyer of Canadian music) to admit this, but I don’t care for The Weakerthans. Then again, it took years for Neil Young to grow on me, and now there is no Sunday morning without him. So anything can happen, is what I’m saying. Actually, what I’m saying is that BJB’s iPod drives me crazy. It doesn’t make any sense. It’s a mish mash of rock, classical, and Raffi. Then there’s the Dave Brubeck. No theme! I also don’t know how to take it off shuffle in the car that I also barely know how to drive. So I got stuck.
Last week I was driving to airport to pick him up from a business trip. The drive was especially long because I had to come from the goddamn suburbs (or, you know, our hometown) where we’re living to pick him up. And this Weakerthans song came on, right as I was approaching our street in Toronto that makes it aaaaallllll the way up here. It was one of those “Stab You In the Fucking Face” moments.
“Left and Leaving” – gets me EVERY TIME. Like, in a sobbing, introspective mess of EMOTIONS kind of way. I listened to it probably 4 more times in a row while I thought about how I won’t be living in Toronto anymore, and how I never thought I would in the first place.
My city’s still breathing (but barely it’s true)
through buildings gone missing like teeth.
See, back in the First Husband days, I swore up and down that I would NEVER EVER live in Toronto. Then that relationship fell apart in a heart beat, and that is exactly where I ended up. Ironically, the friend who insisted I live in her spare room then insists we live in her spare room now, because she RULES like that. (I have a lot more to say about letting people help you, but I think I will talk about that in a few days.) Toronto quickly became my home. I got over fears I knew I had and ones I didn’t. I learned how to navigate alone. I learned to think in NESW. I learned to cook for one. And I learned that yes, I can go out on a date with this guy BJB.
When we left our apartment, we both cried. A lot. It was our home. The city was our home. Everything was fucking perfect. Until it wasn’t. On the drive home from the airport we admitted to each other that we felt differently about it. Like a breakup where you know you are going to have to still go to all the same places you used to go together, but now you go alone. It just felt different. We ended up having a big “come to Jesus” talk about where to live, and we landed on The Suburbs. There are a lot of reasons that the chips fell this way, and it has nothing to do with not being able to raise kids in the city because I do not believe that AT ALL. It’s just… well, it’s a lot of things. It’s not a kneejerk. It’s a hard look at what we were doing with our time and money versus what we’d like to do in the future. It’s not my dream. It’s not my preference. It’s not what I want, but it is what I need to do. If that makes any sense.
I’m back with scars to show.
Back with the streets I know
Will never take me anywhere but here.
Yes, I am being dramatic about moving to the suburbs, which I know is not that bad. It is, however, completely different from the life I wanted, the life I planned and imagined. The life I had two months ago. I grew up in the suburbs which was fine, but I LOVED the city. Until I didn’t anymore. It is going to be an adjustment, wherever we go. It’s stupid things like finding a new coffee place, the best pizza, the dry cleaner who calls me “Mrs. Brad.” It’s knowing I can’t walk to everything, everything being a Big Box. But it’s also space, and safety, and settling. Settling. I’m letting that settle.
Until we figure out which suburb, I’m back in my hometown where things are actually…okay. Alright. Pretty good actually. We have love and laughter, help and understanding. BJB is making the drive into work and it’s not so bad. We’re figuring it out, moving forwards. Even if we are sort of moving backwards in a sense.
I wait in 4/4 time,
Count yellow highway lines that you’re relying on to lead you home.
So that’s where we are. Nowhere yet, but getting packed and ready to go.
But I still refuse to live east of Yonge Street. I have standards.
Things are not going so well. Some of you know what is going on, but many don’t. If you are finding out now, from a blog post, I sincerely apologize. It’s just… too disheartening and humiliating to talk about let alone repeat over and over.
The house didn’t work out for us, for our needs. It is back up for sale and the kids and I are staying at my (awesome) in-laws for the time being while we figure some things out. There is nothing wrong with the house itself (Beautiful! Structurally sound! Great neighborhood!) or our finances, or our marriage. It’s complicated, and has to do with my coping abilities, and I can’t really talk about it right now (hence comments turned off). It just isn’t the right place for our family right now. Hopefully things are resolved soon and we can start moving forward.
As much as I cognitively know that there wasn’t much I could do, and I’m doing the best I can, I am feeling like the shittiest parent/wife/friend ever right now. Maybe you would do this or that in our situation, but we just can’t. It’s a really difficult time right now, and the agony in my chest comes out of HGB’s body in crazy fits. He’s having such a hard time and I am struggling to help him through it. I remarked to a friend recently that it feels like drowning in air. This is a very challenging time. Trying to focus on swimming to shore without letting myself stop treading water. But every so often, I am able to forget the strain of swimming and splash around with my kids. The water will get shallower and there will be more splashing and less swimming. It’s just pretty deep right now.
We are doing okay. And we are going to be okay. We are working on it.
This month, rather than hosting our usual Monthly Theme Post, PAIL is encouraging you to participate in RESOLVE's Bloggers Unite Challenge as part of National Infertility Awareness Week (April 21-27).
This year, the Bloggers Unite prompt is "Join the Movement..."
The goal of this year's Blog Challenge is to bring together bloggers to talk about how you are making the difference in ways large and small in the lives of people with infertility.
My mum came to visit this week and brought down an old photo album of mine from our basement. 99% of the photos were of hot air balloons and fruit (don’t ask) but there was ONE picture featuring humans. A random photo of my (I think) Grade 3 class at Hallowe’en.
Note my many admirers, especially Robin Hood there on the left. I vividly remember those purple stirrup pants, and if I recall correctly, that fish shirt was bedazzled AND had glitter on it. My hair is simply amazing. Clearly, this is THE LOOK.
I regret that you cannot see my leg warmers. Sigh.