I'm taking back my weekends

The prob­lem with work­ing from home is that you’re never really off. There’s always some­thing you can be doing, so it’s hard to detach and just relax. The days of the week lose their mean­ing. I haven’t had a vaca­tion in about a year, and I’ve been at home almost that whole time. It’s left me feel­ing burned out. Lisa and I are both going through the same thing at this point in our lives, and we’re try­ing to fig­ure out how to pick our­selves up from prob­lems that seem insur­mount­able when we’re liv­ing them by ourselves.

But baby steps first, and today was back to a greasy break­fast. I watched The English Patient, cause I’ve been in the mood for epics lately, and I’d been deny­ing myself the plea­sure for too long. I dis­cov­ered the part I used to place my kisses is called the supraster­nal notch. Now I won­der if she ever sees the English Patient, whether she’ll think I just stole some idea from some movie, or whether she’ll remem­ber and gen­tly fin­ger the val­ley my lips claimed as their own.

At the end of these movies, I always feel a mix­ture of emo­tions, the same when step­ping out of the Shakespearean plays I saw in high school: dejected from all the tragedy, yet amazed by such pro­found per­for­mances and pro­duc­tions. It was the same after I fin­ished read­ing Doctor Zhivago. Maybe cause I iden­tify with the poet-warriors, the themes of their love, the depths of their emo­tions, and the trap­pings of their fate. No mat­ter what the emo­tion is though, it makes me sit in the dark and write about things the way I used to.

And that’s enough for now.

I'm happy to report that my blood does clot

The best time of the year to make the drive to Darren’s house is in the Autumn. It’s about five hours door-to-door — bar­ring any traf­fic or con­struc­tion — so there’s a good chance I’ll catch a sun­rise or sun­set no mat­ter when I leave. It’s par­tic­u­larly beau­ti­ful when the leaves are chang­ing and the colours are at their rich­est along the stretches of the 401.

Sometimes I’ll turn on a stand-up com­edy sta­tion instead of music, and it helps take my mind off the drea­ri­ness of the less scenic parts1. It’s like hav­ing another per­son to talk to, except the con­ver­sa­tion goes one way, and they tend to be funny when not overly polit­i­cal2 or Andrew Dice Clay.

Chinese dishes

Zhaliang and clas­sic Cantonese noo­dles. #thingsIcouldeateveryday

I still think of mov­ing back to Toronto, where there’s every­thing that isn’t avail­able to me in Ottawa. But I hate all the things that come with such an unwieldy and poorly amal­ga­mated city. At my age, I value com­fort over excite­ment, and Toronto has become a city that’s bet­ter to visit than to stay.

After meet­ing Mike in London, I knew that’s where I was meant to live, with Bloc Party and Monty Python and The Underground and rainy weather and Portishead and a bil­lion accents and Only Fools and Horses and that stoic British men­tal­ity and Paris just a train ride away. But that wasn’t my fate, and the dirty streets of Toronto are the clos­est I’ll ever get to that.

Continue read­ing “I’m happy to report that my blood does clot”…

  1. Usually the small towns with no charm or per­son­al­ity. []
  2. Cause I never get it. []

Protected: resignation

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sailing through the changing ocean tides

It’s in these sto­ries, these moments, these con­nec­tions, these words, these images, these har­monies, these delight­ful chilly breezes that fore­tell the com­ing of win­ter where I find a part myself lost for so long.

child sucking her thumb


A gen­eral sense of numb­ness filled my life, but I’m start­ing to feel again, some­thing I’ve been need­ing for a while now. It was as if I’d lost a sense of pur­pose, and I couldn’t fig­ure out how to fix that cause I couldn’t tell what was wrong.

Maybe the fact that I started taper­ing off my dose of Cipralex (a few months ahead of sched­ule) is adding to the effect. It’s hard to tell with every­thing all mixed up, and so much hap­pen­ing at once.

I can’t imag­ine what things will be like in a few weeks, let alone a year. There’s never been so much uncer­tainty in my life, but that doesn’t scare me any­more. There’s always a way out. Ironic that I had to lose every­thing to learn that.

a million distractions to keep me warm

Two hours later, I woke up with­out any sense of direction.

Now I’m try­ing to fig­ure out how to stay awake so I can be tired enough to fall asleep again. The fatigue isn’t enough to keep me down. I had a big break­fast, some­thing I haven’t done in as long as I can remem­ber, owing to the fact that they used to be the rit­ual of a per­son with week­ends and a need for rituals.

At some point along the way, I real­ized it’s eas­ier to take care of my friends and help them fix their prob­lems. I can’t fig­ure out why I’ve avoided deal­ing with my own, but I decided that as long as my dis­trac­tions are ful­fill­ing and healthy in them­selves, there’s noth­ing wrong with that. Sometimes, there’s noth­ing else one can do.

In turn, they’re help­ing me through this odd pas­sage of time, where I find myself unsure of what to do or feel. I’ve had to open myself up to give them a chance to help me. It always leaves me vul­ner­a­ble at first, but when they lis­ten and under­stand and sup­port me, all my inse­cu­ri­ties go away. It’s a tan­gi­ble love that goes far beyond words and intentions.