Isolation has given me a lot of time to contemplate. To think about the last four years. To write. To study (but I’m not really doing that, as far as I’m concerned school is over). All the thinking and contemplating has led me to one conclusion: I spent too long putting things off.
I kept waiting for these “right moments” and “next times” but you don’t always have the liberty of waiting. I was supposed to have more time than this and I had planned to fill that time with all the things I was putting off. And I don’t mean my actual plans. I don’t mean going to formal, or philanthropy events, or partying with my friends. I’m talking about all the times I said, “I’ll do that later” and I won’t get to. All of the “next weeks” and “another times” that kept me from actually doing the things I wanted to do. And for that I’m not disappointed at the virus or the world, but I’m disappointed in me.
I should have gone to the beach more. I live in a city by the water and I don’t think I used it to its full potential. I went a bunch, but not as much as I should have. I should have lived on those beaches. I should have a “regular spot” where I sat and watched the ships, where I looked at the mountains. There should have been more mason-jar glasses of wine with my sister and relaxing with my friends. Why didn’t I walk the paths along Spanish Banks more? What was I waiting for?
I should have travelled more. I wanted to go to Tofino. Not even to surf but just to relax and get out for a little bit. Maybe try surfing and fail miserably. I wanted to go to Nanaimo and try all the Nanaimo bars my stomach could take. I wanted to learn the tricks of the trade from the source and just eat my way through that town until I was comatose in an Airbnb with my friends. And the Okanagan. I live near one of Canada’s wine capitals and I didn’t go. I didn’t booze up on a porch looking over a vineyard with my girls and I cannot imagine a good enough reason for me to have put that off into infinity. My sister and I never sampled wines while she spewed wine-facts at a very impatient sommelier. I never even really travelled Vancouver. Why didn’t I hike more in North Van? Or vintage shop around Main Street. Why did I waste so much time in the bubble that is UBC?
And skiing. I have a Whistler pass and barely got up to the mountain. I kept saying “next weekend, next weekend, next weekend”, but there are no more next weekends. I just shipped home all my ski stuff and I’ll be skiing the tiny hills that are Snow Valley, Moonstone and Blue Mountain. Never heard of them? Exactly. I’m going to take my beautiful Rossignols and drag them over man-made snow in Ontario and the icicle that is Quebec-skiing. When is the next time I’m going to sit on top of 7th Heaven, on a clear day, and just watch? Watch the mountains. You can see the whole world from up there. On a nice day, the world just stretches on for miles, mountain after mountain until the horizon curves out of sight.
I should have just told people how I felt. I kept waiting for the next party, the next night out to try and make a move but I never did. I spent, no, I wasted so much time trying to read into signals and figure out what people were thinking and now I’ll never know. I’ll never get answers, and I have questions. Why did we stop talking? What did it mean when you wanted to hear me play? Did you know that you hurt me when you did it? And even if I got the answers now, it would never be a satisfying ending. It’s not like I could see them and talk things through, it would be dm’s and unread messages and missed phone calls. I just should’ve shot my shot. But it’s so easy to talk a big talk and so hard to execute. (Y’all, if boys read my blog their heads are fucking REELING trying to figure out who those questions are about. Are they all for one person? Are the for different people? YOU WILL NEVER KNOW MWAH-HA-HA.)
I should have seen my friends more. Yes, my close friends, but also all the people I meant to grab coffee with and catch up with. Girls in my sorority, people from work, people from class. I should have seen them more. Made them more of a priority in my life. Yes, school is important, but I should have made more time in my life for people.
I should have done more stupid shit. I did a lot of stupid shit, but I should have done more. I should have just lived. Just done things for fun. Jumped in the fountain at UBC, danced like a maniac at bars, laughed until I peed myself, drank until I said, “I’m never drinking again”, done it all again the next Wednesday, and kissed the wrong boys (kissed the right boys?). I shouldn’t have thought so much about what other people thought about me. Because, honestly, I’m never going to see so many of those people ever again. I should have just lived more of life.
And I think about that last day, the last normal day, before all this started. It was my last day of university, which of course I didn’t know, but I would have done it differently. I would’ve hugged my friends when I saw them; I don’t know when I’m going to get to hug them again, or even see them in person. I should have invited more people to come to my show that night. I kept saying I’d invite everyone I knew to one of my shows, but I kept chickening out or worrying that people would say, “no” or wouldn’t come. But it was one of my best shows, and I wanted people to see it. I should’ve closed the bar down with my sister and drank with her friends and flirted with the hot bartender (holy shite what a fine-looking man). We should have gone home and got UberEats until we literally couldn’t fit anything else in our tummies. I should’ve but I didn’t because I kept saying “next time”.
This virus has taught me something. That life in its current state is fragile. I’m not saying, “live like there’s no tomorrow” and go try meth and cheat on your significant other and quit your job. There very much is a tomorrow. I’m just saying you don’t know what that tomorrow will look like. Nobody can predict the future, and if you think you can predict the future, well…we’re just not going to open that particular bag of cats.
I guess what I’m saying is I’m going to take this as a reminder to live with intention. To stop putting things off and just take advantage of more opportunities. To just live. Yes, it such a simple message, but it’s so hard to execute. And I’m sure I will have to learn and relearn this lesson many times over my life. But I’m going to do my best to live it, and hopefully I won’t need another pandemic to remind me.
From me, with love, to you,
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