A Toronto Transformation

Reading Rainbow

Hooray Collective – Home for the Holidays

Silver Reindeer and sleigh votive holder

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog The Hooray Collective (formerly Pooping Rainbows. Yay name change!)

It smells like wood and chocolate and tea.

I live in a men’s size L plaid button down, nabbed on day 1 from my brother’s room. He says I can keep it. It’s too short for him anyway. I guess that’s where all the height I’m still waiting for went.

The house fills up with friends, cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents, and a significant other here and there and then empties down to just the four of us, eating pitas and playing boardgames and giggling like a family of hyenas at the dining room table where we ate as a family almost every night growing up. Each of us in the same places we’ve sat since as long as I can remember.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – The Ghost in my Closet

thedress

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

Its intricate bead work shimmered and sparkled, winking and beckoning to me from the shop window.

I spotted it early and was suddenly glad we hadn’t eloped.

It slid on effortlessly, skimming here and hugging there.

Like him, I thought. A perfect fit.

We hadn’t yet decided on a degree of formality, but I figured it would be perfect for an elegant cocktail sort of celebration, or to wear as a reception-rehearsal dress if I suddenly found myself swept up in the idea of something more traditional.

I posed and twirled and shimmied in front of the mirror, grinning like the fool in love I was.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – Cuba’s a Scream

Cayo Coco resort in Cuba

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

Once upon a time, my family and my then boyfriend took a trip to Cuba.

We took off in the middle of a ridiculous winter storm and arrived, bewildered and sleep-deprived, about a movie and a half later at our resort on Cayo Coco where a day of sun and sand was in full swing.

We found our rooms, each in matching pink buildings, changed out of our Canadian woolies, popped by the buffet, and then explored the grounds before going in search of a nightcap.

My parents and brother headed back to their rooms as night fell and, after nightcap part 2, boyfriend and I followed suit.

We made our way around the pools in the moonlight, and I noted, a little disappointed, that the resort didn’t seem to offer much in the way of nightlife. The pools were closed and we appeared to be the only night owls taking advantage of the fresh, mild night air.

“Too bad,” I thought, as we stopped in front of our hotel door and boyfriend fished the key out of his shorts.

I followed him in to the tiny foyer and turned to lock the door behind us, while he fumbled for the light switch.

I was still fiddling with the tricky bolt on the door, trying to get it to lock properly, when he said, “That’s weird, I wonder if housekeeping came by already?

“Hmm?” I asked, still focused on the rubix cube of a lock in front of me.

“Well, I’m sure I left my hat on the table here, but they must have moved it somewhere else.”

“What?” I turned to give him my full attention.

Just as I felt the lock finally click into place under my hand, a voice made of gravel and pitch rumbled out at us from the inky dark of the bedroom.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – Missing the Beauty

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

Lately the days have felt like a blur.

I get to work on Monday, someone asks what I did this weekend and I have to wrack my brain to remember, so consumed as I am already with what’s coming up this week.

It makes me uneasy. Because while I don’t think being busy is the worst thing in the world, and I certainly don’t want to live in the past, I also don’t want to speed through the present, and for Pete’s (not you, Pete, a different Pete) sake I should be able to recall what happened a day or two ago!

It’s easy to miss things when you put your head down and focus on working, on striving, on getting through another jam-packed day.

When you’re plugged in and tired out and dashing about like a racially insensitive cartoon mouse, it’s easy to steamroll over the beauty in your life.

The good news is, it’s also easy to remedy.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – Why Worry?

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

Like most human folks with human feelings, I have legitimate concerns about my life:

I worry that I’m not doing enough to contribute to the good of humanity.

I worry that I’ll never find an awesome partner to raise a little family with.

I worry that I’ll lock myself out of my apartment.

I worry that I’ll have another pulmonary embolism and die.

All quite reasonable. But I also worry, in nearly equal measure, about:

Birds flying into my face on roller coasters (Fabio’s fault)

Encountering bears (not a lot of bears in Toronto)

Skating on ponds (I blame my parents for reading me “A Promise is a Promise”, a story about the Qallupilluit, terrifying creatures who live under the ice and steal children, when I was little)

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – The Meanest Thing I’ve Ever Said

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

I like to think of myself as a kind person. I’ve always been fairly sensitive and empathetic, which I think makes it easier. Or at least harder to be deliberately cruel.

But, recently I had a stark reminder that I do not always live up to the picture I have of myself, or at least I did not always.

I came across a kleenex box full of elaborately folded notes that friends and I had passed back and forth to one-another in pre-cel phone high school. (I mean, cel phones existed, they just hadn’t been marketed to teens at that point, so none of us had them).

One of the notes contained two lists. One outlining the flaws of a guy my friend liked, and one outlining the flaws of the girl he liked.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – Once More Unto the Breach

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

As I begin to cast the occasional suspicious squint at the faraway world of dating from the protective cocoon I’ve been living in for the past few months, I know there are some things I need to address. Remnants of the past year. The whirlwind, the hurricane.

I was so determined to be open to love and unafraid of pain. I don’t know any other way. How do you love without vulnerability?

So I did. I loved with my whole entire heart. I was brave.

I wonder if it was worth it. Because I got them both. The love was breathless and exhilarating and oh it fit just right.

I knew there was risk, but I didn’t know how much. The odds had never seemed more in my favour.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – My Heart

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

My heart is that invalid boy from the Secret Garden, sniffling and whining and worrying, convinced of its own imminent demise, coughing pitifully while I drag it out into the sunshine and bully it into looking at the butterflies, breathing the air.

“Look!” I tell it. Wonderful things are happening. It glowers at me.

I tell it we’re going dancing.

It protests.

“But I feel – “

“Shut up!” I say. “Help me zip my party dress.”

I lead by example. I eat fruit and I exercise. I avoid alcohol and caffeine. I stay hydrated. I go to bed at a reasonable hour. I show it my resulting hint of a six-pack. It remains steadfastly unimpressed.

People say kind things to me. I repeat them to my heart.

We lie in bed at night and I cuddle up to it and whisper plans for adventures to come. It pretends to be asleep.

Finally I throw up my hands.

“Fine.” I say. “You can stay home until you’re ready to quit being such a pill.”

I go out. I laugh and I strive and I work and I learn and I plan.

I go through the motions of a life well lived.

And I trust.

One of these days, my heart will come around.

 

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Reading Rainbow – Things I Don’t Say

zippedlips

It’s that time of the month again! The wonderful time of the month when it’s my turn to post a little something for the fantastic collaborative blog with the terrible name, Pooping Rainbows.

Considering the staggering amount of time I spend talking, I actually spend a surprising amount of time creating a perfect imprint of my teeth along the edge of my tongue.

I have what might be a bad habit of keeping quiet when I’m hurt or angry. I can probably count on one hand the number of times when I’ve told someone that I was really angry at them or that their treatment of me was not ok, but if I ever run out of small talk, it’s a good bet there’s something eating away at me, which, really, still gets the job done, although maybe not as quickly as just coming right out and saying it. But I like to think that most of the things I leave unsaid don’t cause too much harm.

For example:

“Sippy Cup” I can’t explain it. I just LOATHE these two “words”? One compound “word”? I think it’s just because it seems to always be said in a cloying baby voice. Or maybe it just has too many ps. Anyway, don’t want to hear it. Don’t want to say it.

“Girls” when referring to myself, my friends or any other female over the age of 18. This one is more recent. I remember my mom occasionally correcting my dad on this one when I was younger, and I never got her insistence on it. But I get it now. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy being a girl, but I’m a grown-ass woman who pays her own rent. Being called a “girl” at this point, especially from older men just feels like a patronizing pat on the head. Not a fan. Although, if Ryan Gosling decides to end his relationship with whatshername and “Hey Girl” me, I might be willing to turn a blind ear at least once.

Click here to read the rest and check out some of the other great bloggers involved while you’re at it!

Fighting Fog

You don’t want to sleep, not for fear of night terrors, but for the agony of waking up from good dreams, and the slow-motion ache that feels worse upon waking than before your subconscious whispered a sweet reprieve.

Every fibre of you, body and soul, is screaming for battle, railing against injustice, refusing to lie down and grieve.

It’s not time for that.

It can’t be time for that.

So you arm yourself with words to be hurled, with logic and love and right on your side only to realize you’re fighting phantoms.

You’re fighting fog.

And fog doesn’t care about right.  It doesn’t care what you throw at it. It hushes your battle cries and with a lazy yawn, a bored sigh, swallows your weapons whole. It blurs your path and surrounds you and leaves you lost and afraid and utterly bewildered.

The creeping cold sets in. All your weapons are spent.

And then you remember.

Deep in a forgotten pocket, well don’t you just have a light.

It is a light that has seen better days. It’s watery and weak. Just a glow, really, but it’s enough.

So you curl yourself around it. You stop fighting. You leave the fog to its swirling confusion and you wait.

The waiting is harder than the fighting, but you wait.

Because you know that eventually, a matching glow will make its way to you.
And if it doesn’t? The fog won’t last forever.

And when it clears, well, at least you’ll know exactly where you stand.

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