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32: The Year I Let Go of Toronto... Birthday Reflections

Uncategorized Oct 28, 2020

32 made me let go of Toronto


This time last year I was in Toronto, after having just celebrated my birthday quietly with my family and Chris.  For those of you who are new to this story, Chris is American and lives in NYC, and so our vision was that we would split our time between both places. Easy breezy, right?


While I was still coaching, teaching online courses, and running retreats, I had also taken on some in-person work teaching 1:1 embodiment and movement sessions for women with eating disorders.  That in-person work was fulfilling, but I knew I was only meant to do it for a short period of time. 


Having to show up at the clinic twice a week was the only thing that was truly tethering me to Toronto.  And once I let that work go, and the shift away from Toronto began. 


The shift wasn’t dramatic in any way at first. The rest of my November went on as it usually does; I flew to Costa Rica to lead another incredible and heart-expanding retreat. Chris flew down to Nosara after the retreat to finally get to experience why I love it there so much.  


Things were feeling fully in alignment and great.  


And then… I started to feel the shift little by little.  


Ughhh, I knew that feeling.  It was the same feeling I got when I started to get the feeling I was being led away from law, and the same feeling I got when I started to feel like there was a bigger love out there for me than my previous relationship.


Things that used to tether me in Toronto started to fade or feel off. 


My parents’ house flooded earlier that year.  After it flooded, they decided they would sell the house and move to Niagara.  At Christmas, the old house was under renovation, so we couldn’t spend the holidays there. We spent Christmas in a rental house surrounded by boxes.  As a result, I was no longer attached to having holidays always in the same Toronto house we grew up in, and was starting to adjust to what life might look like without my parents being in the city.  


Because of my travel schedule, I stopped being able to diligently attend the yoga classes with my favourite teacher that always kept me so grounded in the city.  Not too long after, the studio would announce that they were closing, and I would be led to then find a new way to practice, and new teachers to learn from. 


While I loved my friends in Toronto, I also saw how I actually preferred to see them for quality over quantity visits. Many of them were starting to have kids, or were running businesses of their own, and so it started to make more sense to see each other less frequently, but for deep dives when we did. 


As new construction began to break down around me, familiarity of my neighbourhood started to fade. 


This is the Scorpio path though - let it all fall and fade away, without resistance.  Let the snake skin drop, slowly, as it’s meant to.  And then from that place… let yourself rise. A rebirth will happen, if you have the patience to stay the course and trust the process.  


In January I hosted my final in-person Circle.  I led Circles once or twice a month for 3 years straight.  I loved the community that was built, but I knew I was complete in that chapter and ready for a shift.  It had become cumbersome to find the right space to host it, as there were very few spaces in the city that could accommodate groups that weren’t event spaces with exorbitant fees, and my heart wasn’t in it in the same way it once was.


In the final Circle at the beginning of January, as we all spoke our full moon intentions out loud and what was falling away, I had the clarity that I was being pulled away from Toronto.  


All that I could sense was that the life that I had there, at least as I had known it, was falling away. 


This was alarming for me because I was deeply attached to my life in Toronto.  It was my safety net.  I was attached to the familiarity of the city.  I was attached to my family and friends being there.  I was attached to the cocoon of a condo I lived in by myself for the last six years. I was attached to my familiar walks and favourite places.  I was scared to give up the safety net.  


This whole revelation was also confusing for me, since I was a through and through Toronto girl. I grew up in the city, and never imagined that I would uproot from it in any way. Sure, I loved to travel, but I always wanted to come “home” to Toronto.  It was strange to me to feel this sense of what was “home” unearthing. 


But that’s the thing with our soul’s path, we never know where she’s going to lead us, and in following the paths that we didn’t expect we would find ourselves, we usually are led to the most magic. 


What I’ve learned, time and time again, is that it’s better to just surrender at the point you can sense the changes or shifts that are coming.  It’s better to trust that the universe has a plan that’s better than the one you imagined, so it’s easier to just hand over the reigns and let spirit lead instead. 


In that place of realizing that I was being untethered from Toronto, I decided to ask myself: “What if I stopped resisting this? What if I stopped trying to hold on?”


The Second I Stopped Resisting 


The next week I had planned to go to NYC to see Chris.  In those two weeks, I let myself stop resisting these changes, and finally embraced how much I actually loved NYC more than Toronto (I seriously think I was scared to admit to Toronto that I had found someone else), and had a really magical time.  


I explored more, found a yoga studio I absolutely loved, settled into working from the Soho House, had fun dinners in incredible restaurants with Chris, went to a Broadway show, and saw my favourite astrologer, Chani Nicholas, lead a great book launch event at the Brooklyn museum. 


When I stopped resisting where I was being led, I saw the magic all around me.  Instead of longing for Toronto, I started to appreciate all the beauty and inspiration that was right in front of me.  I started to understand why I was being led away, and began to embrace the inspiration and growth I was experiencing while away.  


Hawaii Plane Malfunction


The next week I was in Hawaii for a girl’s trip, which was a dream.  On the way home, our airplane got damaged (an attendant rammed a cart into the engine) and we were grounded in Hawaii an extra day and a half.  Tough life, I know… but I had to laugh because I literally had 5 days scheduled to be in Toronto that month, and spirit just took away 1.5 of them. 


I shared with my girlfriends: “see! I told you I am being led away from Toronto!!! I couldn’t have planned this”


My Parents Need to Be in My Space 


A few days later, my parents messaged me.  They realized they would have a few weeks in February where they were in between houses because of the move, and asked if they could just stay in my apartment instead during that time and I could stay with Chris in NYC. 




Once again, I now had a few weeks where I would be away from Toronto. 


I Injure My Knee and Can’t Walk


In the few days I was in the City in February, I was experiencing bad knee injury after a big fall skiing and couldn’t walk.  As a result, I was house-ridden and couldn’t even walk around the areas of the city I loved. Another cosmic joke. 


At this point, I started to find this all laughable.  The universe was pushing me out of Toronto in ways that I wouldn’t have guessed, but I was going with it. 


The New Vision Emerges


Then we all know what happens next…I was back in Toronto for a hot second for a baby shower.  One of my best friends who lives in Calgary was home, and I remember talking with her about when she left Toronto, and how she prefers to live away, but come back and visit friends and family and have a blast when she does.  


That felt like it could be a nice option for me too - it was never an option that I would be disconnected from Toronto, it was just a shift that was rising in the way that I interacted with my life there. 


Border Lock Down


A few days later I was in Florida to see my parents who were down there.  A few days after that, co-vid cases surged and then the border shut down.  Chris and I were already in Florida, and not wanting to be separated from each other, decided to stay in the US.  


I wouldn’t have anticipated that the border would continue to be extended and extended. I kept waiting each month for them to lift it… and it never happened. 


During that time being away from all my friends and family, and from Toronto, I grieved. 


My parents were moving away from Toronto, so I had to grieve that more fully.  I was so sad and grieving letting go of the house I grew up in and all the memories that.  I was grieving that the vision I once thought, that my parents would always live close-by and in Toronto that was no longer true. 

I grieved not being able to see my friends or family as often as I wanted. 


I grieved my condo in Toronto, and the life that I had lived there.  I grieved the woman I had become there, and let that go too. 


Being away for those six months without certainty of when I could come back gave me ample time to detach from my life in Toronto, and feel sad and process what I was leaving behind, without still being there.  


In my own channeling sessions, spirit made it clear: “you would have never let go of Toronto had we not pushed you to in this way.” 


True.  Classic Scorpio extreme path. 


Quarantine Outside of Toronto


Chris and I eventually came back to Toronto at the end of August, when my visa was expiring and I had no choice but to come back to Toronto. 


Except…I decided that I wanted to see my family, and am lucky to have parents with spaces far bigger than my tiny condo, so chose to quarantine with them instead. 


For much of the Fall, I was in Niagara on the Lake and Muskoka with my family, only spending a handful of days in Toronto with the sole purpose of seeing girlfriends and catching up and packing up my apartment. 


The Release = Complete


And now here we are, birthday day, and I’m writing this from NYC.  I’m about to spend the day with Chris letting the flow lead us to wherever we need to go.  I’ll spend Friday having dinner with old-friends that live there that I’ve been grateful to have reconnected to. 


I love the Scorpio theme that so perfectly was lived in my last year - surrender and let yourself be led.  Shed what you’re attached to.  In this instance, the layer I needed to drop was my attachment and life in Toronto. 


And in having done that now, I can sense this new energy emerging.  It’s the rebirth energy that’s always on the other side of having burned to the ground whatever was intended to be left behind.  I know a big expansion is to come from this place in the next year. 


From here, I have a few ideas of what will transpire, but I’m not trying to control it.  


Visa issues make staying in NYC as a “home” a bit more complicated, but after speaking with many lawyers, something I know will happen with ease. For those of you thinking that Chris and I should just apply for a green card, I’ve explored that path and it doesn’t feel like the right one for me at this time because you are land-locked into the USA for about a year while it’s processed, which doesn’t feel… expansive. 


So I’m letting it unfold.  While retreats are currently on hold, I know that soon I’ll be back to spending Novembers and Februarys in Costa Rica.  Tulum has been calling me too.  I always wanted a combination of being rooted in one city, and then having a few others I rooted into for different parts of the year, and now it’s all manifested for me. 


While I still love Toronto, it feels way more fun right now to head in for special times I need to return to my favourite parts of it, and to see my favourite people.  Instead of having an apartment there, it feels way more fun to treat myself to fun hotels and live my best robe life in the handful of days I’m there. 

Everything feels actually exactly as it’s meant to be.  Part of why I think I got pulled away from Toronto is that because I grew up there, and so much of my identity is there since my whole life has been there.

When I take myself away from there, I’m forced to connect with and embody who I am now, as opposed to who I’ve been. 

While I don’t think I’ll live this life of being in multiple cities forever, nor do I think I’ll be led away from Toronto forever, the truth is: I don’t know.  I think all we can do is take it moment by moment, year by year, and see what feels more authentic and aligned for us at that stage.

At this stage in my life, I truly feel that I am living the most aligned and authentic version of my life, from the work I do, to my health and how I choose to connect with my body,  to how I communicate and lead, the relationship I’m in, to the friends and family that support me, and I’m so excited to see what unfolds from here. 

I hope my story of this last year reminds you that it’s okay to let go of past versions of yourself, past dreams, past identities… all in the name of rising into the you that you are meant next to become. 

Love YOU.