Finding Happy One Year Later

Last Thursday, I got an email from my company’s CEO.

“Congratulations,” it read, “on the most important decision of your life thus far. You’ve been with us for an entire year!”

The email was a little presumptuous; I found it a little off-putting. But it reminded me of a milestone I would have marched right past had it not been for a standardized company email and nice little bonus gift in my paycheck—I’ve been living this adult life for 365 days.

Home Is Where You Find Yourself

I sat in the corner of the empty bedroom in my apartment trying to get that perfect picture for Instagram. It was my last chance to take in the view before I subleased it to someone else. It had been my home for over a year and a place where many happy memories were created.

Finding the Happiest Hour

I’m disappointed in myself for slipping into the darkest place I’ve ever fallen into, becoming bitter and cynical. Being told a hundred times that “I’m going to be okay” and listening to such words as a broken record of defeat. I guess it took some pita chips and a glass of wine to remind me that things can be half-full once again.

When Things Don't Go According to Plan

The truth is, I really didn't imagine myself here in this small town a few months after graduation. If you told me a year ago I'd be living in my boyfriend's grandparents’ basement and working at a winery, I'd have been a little disappointed. But regardless, it's good for me right now and truthfully, I am happy. I still have nights where I feel guilty for being happy with my life here; I sometimes feel like a failure for being here in the first place, for not living a flashier life.

On Asking for Help

On a Friday afternoon on a sticky day in August—summer break for teenagers—in a two-story bookstore in the biggest shopping mall in the largest city in Canada. That’s where I finally did it; something I had been thinking about doing for weeks but was only now at the point where I felt I really had to.

Learning to Be

There is a tattoo on my left foot that says “be.” Tiny little letters, inked into my skin when I was twenty years old, at a (well-researched and highly reputable, mind you) Spanish tattoo parlor, with two of my best friends getting their own ink beside me.

I’d heard there might be a little bit of regret. I’d heard I might wake up the next morning, see my new mark in the mirror, and think, What have I done? I’d heard of the minor panic that accompanies permanent, tangible change. So when I woke up the next morning, those two best friends and I texted each other to ask, “How are you?”

When Tragedy Occurs And You Are Far From Home

It’s just a text. A normal weekend text from your dad, who happens to double as one of your best friends. As I waved goodbye to a colleague on a Friday afternoon, leaving for a work lunch, I had decided I would walk home, even though it was a long walk and the sun was blistering. But it was the start of July Fourth weekend, and I was excited.

Except the text from my dad wasn’t the normal “what are you up to tonight?” or “have a great weekend and we will talk Sunday.”

The Journey of Learning Self-Care

Last year I graduated into a world of uncertainty. My life at the time was not looking the way I wanted it to look. I couldn’t find the coveted full-time job. I had just gotten out of a long-distance relationship.

I was nowhere near ready to face the world without school in it.

The Art of Sitting: Filling the Time In Between

My last college deadline was to be completely packed up and checked out of my on-campus townhouse by 4 pm on graduation day. Yes, after the nervous excitement of placing my cap just-so, figuring out how the mysterious hood was supposed to sit uncomfortably around my neck, waiting to be called to claim my diploma, successfully navigating my way across the stage without falling, and after waiting through another speech and another send-off, I had to rush back to my room and leave my four-year home in two short hours.

On Bad Days and Getting Dressed for Work

I recently started a new job that’s had me up before I’d like to be and at home on the weekends catching up on work-related duties. It’s an opportunity and a half but my poor anxious heart is struggling. It’s not exactly what I want to be doing (lounging on a beach being fed grapes paid for by my fat book advance) but… it’s cool and I’m working on it.

Living Well Between the Goodbyes

I wasn’t prepared for the high-speed film reel of memories to hit me the second we drove off the 405 onto the 101 highway.

Two hours of driving through my tears on the day I said goodbye to a boy my brain had grown accustomed to telling “I love you,” when my heart just wasn’t there yet. An entire CD of Lady Antebellum Christmas songs my sister and I played on repeat on our way home for winter break. A 40-mile trek with three girls who shared my apartment and the label “best friend” just to walk into a Target.