The last time I saw my therapist, I said I hope I’d never see him again. That would mean everything was okay.
It’s been about two months now. A lot of the healing I’ve been doing lately has been about not blaming myself for the past. Tragedy and pain are easier to accept when there’s a reason. Often, it was easiest to deal with both if I was that reason, even though it wouldn’t leave me feeling very good about myself.
But sometimes there are no answers, nothing to point the finger at when things fall apart. Looking back on old plans and important people, given the knowledge I had at each stage in my life, I realize I would have done everything exactly the same, every single time. Understanding that has given me a sense of self-respect again, and helped me come to terms a lot of things I found difficult to get over.
Anyone who accuses me of stealing their jokes can kiss my black ass.
Allie and Eric had a picturesque wedding at South Pond, a quant little farm in Bethany Hills. Their day was filled with delightful details, like carriage rides to the ceremony, dove releases, and paper lanterns. It all made for a wedding film that never loses it’s momentum. Even though I’ve been working with a composer to score my most recent films, I still take special requests from couples who want me to use songs that have personal meaning to them, and in this case it was Such Great Heights by The Postal Service.
I cut my teeth on filmography and discovered my personal style when spending time on Eric and Mark’s farm in Bancroft. Back then, I had a cheap camcorder1 but needed a subject, they had the snowboarding skills but needed a documentarian. That’s how I gained crucial experience with editing, composing, and grading, though it would be years before I got a real camera and finally understood aperture, shutter speed, and ISO as well. Filming Eric getting married was like coming around full-circle, where I could apply all the things I’ve learned through the years since those weekends spent in the country with his family and friends.
I haven’t had much to say, which is always a strange state to be in. Probably due to the fact that I’m making a conscious effort to listen more and speak less. You begin to wonder about the importance of your thoughts, and what really needs to be said.
It feels like I’m between…things. I’ve recently finished off a few projects, so I’m taking a break before I start another productivity binge. Me-time has mostly involved winning drafts and cashing in wagers. Lisa’s off to Hawaii for her honeymoon so it’ll be a month before I see her again, but that gives me a much-needed chance to spend time with the friends who aren’t part of my regular schedule.
The cats are into their spring cycles, shedding like mad, and sleeping by the door during the day. I’m tempted to cut my hair short again in anticipation of the heat, but I’m having too much fun growing it out right now. I’ve decided to embrace the length cause I know I’ll get sick of it eventually and cut of it off, like any other cycle of growth and loss, love and hate.
My new goal in life is to never end up topless in the Glebe some day.
Spring officially begins when I can leave the windows in my house open all day. This only lasts about a week though, and is also around the time I have to remember to turn the stereo down at red lights and residential areas, a small price to pay for the simple pleasure of waking up with a breeze on my face.
It’s been more than a year since I’ve been on a schedule. Even the number of meals I have in a day has started to vary. Goals and deadlines are what help me keep pace. I know this can’t last forever, so I’m taking advantage of the time to be free and explore and establish the bonds I’ll need for the next stage of my life.
The struggle now is about balance, mostly between nourishing myself and my relationships, as there’s rarely enough time for both lately. Thankfully, spring is teaching me patience too. I’ve stopped trying to control everything, and I’m letting go of the tendency to want things be to be different from how they are right now.
The old me would have been scared to so unreservedly place myself in the hands fate. Now I know I’ll be okay if I can find happiness in however things are at any moment.
I’m riding on so much momentum it feels like I’ll never come to a stop. This is a drastic change from only a short while ago, and I can attribute it mostly to the chances I’ve had to apply the lessons I’ve learned. Being able to prove to myself that I still have things to discover, that I’m still refining myself as a person, has left me feeling confident and humble lately.
Making peace with myself used to be a struggle. Now that I’m actually happy with who I am, I realize how low a bar that used to be. I’ve been through stretches like this before though and they’ve never lasted, so I’m still approaching it all with cautious optimism. At least now I’m wise enough to know that happiness is something that needs to be worked at consistently, in the little ways, and I’m strong enough to keep it going.
Jon-Kabat Zinn has been helping me on this path too. I’ve been listening to a series of his mindful meditation exercises, and I carry a sense of calm through the day whenever I hear his voice. Every now and then he offers gentle advice on doing this kind of work, like how important it is to give yourself permission to feel whatever it is you’re feeling, and I’ve been discovering that so much of it has relevance in other parts of my life.
It’s all a bit of a blur now, especially since we agree it feels like it’s been a year since my responsibilities as a son and a cousin and a friend in Toronto. I do remember trying to balance the caffeine — so I could be clear-headed and enjoying myself — with the insomnia that comes from having so much energy every night. Also, these acts of guerrilla happiness where messages of hope were expressed through posters and spray paint. It would appear that vandalism crosses over into art only in cities with a skyline worth mentioning.
We ended up at the Ontario Science Centre twice, once as nerds and again as wedding guests, which worked out cause the only exhibit we didn’t get a chance to see one day ended up being the only exhibit open to us during the reception. The highlight is always the planetarium though, in all it’s bean-bag, time-traveling glory, the experience itself worth the price of admission. With the exception of a poor facsimile of dragon’s beard candy, everything worked out.