a new year: on choice and possibilities






sitting on the couch, sun setting soon, it’s only 4pm. winter days are short, and when you sleep in they’re shorter. i’m in the country, it’s the first day of 2016. i drove out of town last night after work, darkness falling all around me, thoughts filling my head, the road the only visible thing in the headlights, a mild dizziness and tunnel-vision. i don’t like driving at night, there is too little to focus on. my friends had oh-so-kindly lit the fire in the house, so it wasn’t absolutely frigid when i arrived. i made the bed, filled a hot water bottle and tucked it down at my feet. i went to sleep with laurie brown and the signal playing beside my head, she probably rung in the new year, but i didn’t wait up.

this morning was laze in bed thinking about possibilities for the future, then yoga, then writing, then tea and reading, then making the new calendar for 2016, and as i was doing so, i realized it is year of the monkey! my birth year. well. it’s gonna be a good one, i think. then onto a breakfast of chicken farmer sausages, mushroom and feta omelettes and butter on garlic herb bagels. yu-um.

post breakfast was time for kindling chopping and bringing in wood. run the pump while the sun is out and fill the water vessels. then a walk, then a ski. now i am in and writing. since the canoe trip this summer i have decided it is time for a move. i have never been in love with winnipeg, but i have continued to stay, because as we possibly all know – staying is easiest in almost any situation. even if we know intellectually that leaving may be better, it can be so difficult to leave what we know. so this morning i was struggling with – to where. i decided a few months ago that i’d move back to the west coast, that’s where i was 11 years ago before i decided to move back to winnipeg, and it’s where i yearn for the most. but despite that, since not being there, it’s never felt absolutely sure as THE place. how long can i let that hold me back though? can i not take a step forward and trust that it will lead me where i need to be, if i know for sure that where i am is not the place for me? if i have at least that certainty. being out here – a mere hour from winnipeg and on the edge of the canadian shield, i feel like – this could be it. i could decide to move here and have the woods and quiet and endless canoe route possibilities. there is already infrastructure out here, there is a well and a pump, and creeks that run all year, a pond for swimming, ski trails in the winter. it would be cheap to move out here compared to trying to buy land on the west coast. but i think i am thinking all this because it would be easier and not as scary a step, i could back track from it if it turns out to be a mistake. but that’s not what life is about, is it? always having a fall-back? never taking a full step? and though i do love it out here, there is one essential thing missing that i want in my life – community. i know i’ll have that on the coast. a community hall with regular functions, dance classes, an arts center, movie nights, markets, festivals for every season. even if i tend towards the hermit, having those regular things to emerge to is necessary for me.

so i am sitting here at dusk coming to terms with my decisions. there is so much to do and it’s really scary to think about all of it, especially since i aim to move this coming summer, but i hope and have to trust that the universe will step in to meet me.

*i tried snow boarding for the first time last week (albeit on a tow rope behind a truck) and felt the beginnings of being hooked. so now i have wee dreams of trying to get a job on mt.washington for next winter and being a ski bum for a year. ha.


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