Above, some remaining items in my empty bedroom before I moved for the fourth time in four years.
It's weird to get to the point where you don't really care what happens next, but that was my headspace for most of last year. I didn't care about whether my career (or lack thereof) worked out, I didn't care about my relationships with the people in my life, or my own internal happiness -- I didn't even care about having an organized and happy home space. In fact, between December 2014 and moving out two weeks ago, there were boxes in my apartment that I never bothered to unpack. I felt like a transient, not really at home anywhere I had lived in Toronto, and generally apathetic about most things. I spent my time working for the majority of my days and either drinking or sleeping the rest of the time. It wasn't pretty, but I suppose for a lot of people it's what could be described as a Quarter-Life Crisis. Simply put, I didn't give a damn about anything.
And then, one night in November I was out with friends. Friends I love dearly, but I was still feeling restless. I looked around the room at a blur of familiar faces and realized, like a dog trapped in a hot car, that I needed to get the hell out. Not out of that room, but out of Toronto, out of Canada, out of my mind and out of the life that I had been living up until that point.
I made the decision to move to London. I told my friends the next morning. I had no idea what I was doing. I had no idea if it was even plausible, but the more people I told, the realer it became. I knew I had to do it. I pictured myself in middle age, looking back on my 20s and wondering "what if" about the choices I had made. I knew if I didn't go now, right this moment, I would regret it forever. And so at 26, with no boyfriend, no dog, no cat, no goldfish, no 9-5 and no ties to anything at all, I made the decision that in the Summer of 2016 I would absolutely, 100% pack up a small amount of Marie Kondo-purged belongings and start from scratch in a city I fell in love with two years prior.
So now it's June, and I move in a month, and my tiny idea is now a big reality. I've sold or curbed all my furniture, I've donated more than three-quarters of my clothes and I've bestowed countless gift bags of makeup and perfume to my friends. I've been sleeping on my sister's couch and I'll be living with my parents in the weeks leading up to my flight.
I'm electric with excitement. For once in my life I don't know how things will be a year from now. I have no grand expectations, I have no solid plans. Yes, I have leads on jobs, I have friends in the U.K. who are helping me to find a place to live. I've researched the best banks, the phone companies. I have friends and family who are worried for me, who wonder what I'll do when something goes wrong. And I'd be worried too, perhaps if this was all happening four years ago. When I first moved to Toronto, I felt hopeless and homesick. But it's amazing the difference four years can make.
When I think about the fact that when my two year visa ends in London I'll be nearly 30, I don't feel panicky but rather optimistic about the growing up I get to do. I'll be a completely different woman from who I am now, with experiences in my past I can't even begin to imagine. How could that worry anyone? Where others see a mysterious abyss, I see a clean white page of a newly purchased journal (which any writer knows is a sight that brings out the most pure and joyful intentions). It's time to press reset on my life in a new city with the knowledge I've come to collect in this current one.
I'm ready and I'm waiting. I want nothing and everything. I hope you'll follow along on whatever this journey turns out to be.