It’s hard to know where to begin.
Of course, if you’ve followed my blog for any appreciable time, you know that I’ve been very much away from social media for the last half year. Part of the distance came from the overly personal nature of the events that unfolded in my life, and the other part was needing a break while I discovered where the next steps of my life were headed.
I’m happy to say that the program I applied to for a Masters in Publishing at Simon Fraser University sent me an acceptance letter on April 1st, so I’ll be back in school and learning all about the industry starting in September. Words can’t express my excitement at this opportunity. I’m currently knee-deep in learning Illustrator, since graphic design is an area I can definitely improve on before classes begin. Expect a lot more posts in the future here to deal with my education there, and images from all around British Colombia.
Being in British Colombia has been interesting. The weather is decent, maybe a little too cold and cloudy for April (my Californian heart withers) but it has a lot of great points, too. The house I am staying at is within walking distance of a library, a movie theatre, a gigantic department store, Deer Lake, and SkyTrain, so I perceive that I’ll have plenty of reasons to get outside, get active again, and explore like crazy. The last year in Kyoto I spent far too much time indoors dealing with rib pain, which has strangely evaporated now that I am in Vancouver. I blame the heavy oil Japan uses in all of its food.
However, coming to Canada meant saying goodbye to Japan, and that was hard. Really hard. The last two months have been nothing but goodbyes and a ton of bad luck. A toxic online acquaintance, my father breaking his hip (he’s okay), the death of my grandmother (I didn’t know her well) and NJ’s grandfather (I knew him much better), and a critical lack of decent applicants for my replacement (to be described in a post down the line!) left us mentally exhausted to the point of being unable to process anything from the last 60 days. To make it even more stressful, I had to work full days while having the flu, because I couldn’t miss any of the last week of school.
All this, while deconstructing our home from the last six years, saying goodbye to our bird Pika, and ending one of the best work relationships I’ve ever had. I’ve been jokingly suggesting that the full scale of what has happened won’t hit me until June. In reality, it might be August.
Unfortunately, with the death of NJ’s grandfather, our arrival in Canada has been a somber one. It is hard to grasp at the straws of prospect with so much heartache around us. I know that, eventually, NJ and I will seize our new life and go running down the path meant for us, but at the moment, I am in a strange, muddy limbo, knowing the only steps to take are forward. Now is the time to grieve and pay our respects.
At the very least I didn’t have to miss the cherry blossom season in its entirety. It turns out Vancouver has some of the most beautiful cherry trees I’ve ever seen (in Japan, included). I’ve found it rather fitting, this goodbye and beginning during the time of the cherry tree blossoms’ passing. As cliché as it may seem, the petals symbolizing the transience of life really has meant a lot to me over these last few weeks––life must change, and preferably like the cherry blossom, gone before spoiling, changing before taken for granted, leaving peacefully and with smiles. The blossoms aren’t just about death. They’re about life. Living. Relationships. Dreams and virtues.
Hopefully, all of you out there will be patient while I get back to a regular schedule here. I’m not participating (obviously) in A-Z this year, but will at least try to put out a post a week going forward, and finish my Archetypes series. Just a few more to go!