For weeks I’ve been praying for things to fall into place, and not just for things to fall into place, but also to allow me to feel like they are, to be filled with certainty, peace, knowledge, and holiness, the grounding certainty that has carried me my whole life, that comes with being God’s daughter and knowing She is with me. Because things have been falling into place! Not always in the ways that I expected, but they are. I’m trying to take that as it is. But then comes stress! Anxiety! What if I run out of money? Why did I buy that taco or that drink?
Because, honey, sometimes, all you need is to get really drunk with one of your best friends. That’s what I did last night. And when I was standing outside waiting for the bus on the way to meet my friend, around 8 PM on Friday night, it was very cold, and I was singing along to the newest Taylor Swift song, Call It What You Want (buy Reputation on iTunes November 10th), and I felt it: that spark, that gentle, pleasant certainty of God’s love and plan. I didn’t lose that feeling when I was with my friend last night, nor did I lose it the next day. It only grew stronger.
I did find a place to live! I should probably mention that. It’s a little studio basement suite with low ceilings, lots of character, and a small window by the bed that cracks open so my kitty will be able to get in and out when she joins me (new drinking game for reading my blog: take a shot every time I mention Baby). It’s a lot more affordable than most places, and it really was luck that I got it. It’s small, gentle, and cozy, and everything I dreamed of for my first real home, without roommates or family. My moving in has been delayed by a snow storm that keeps my mom from bringing my stuff from Alberta until next weekend, but I’m very excited.
The job situation is not running any more smoothly than it was. But I mean, I’m only 21, I have very little experience and one Bachelor’s degree, and I’m trying to live in one of the hardest cities in the hardest economy. I was, and still am, angry that it has already been six months of searching since I graduated, but I can’t stay angry at God, at the world in general, at the job market, at mental illness… It eats up too much of my time and energy. I am slowly trying to let that anger go.
On days I’m not working, because my part time jobs are awful at scheduling, I’m always tearing through pages of Indeed and LinkedIn and other sites, applying to everything I can. I’ve been doing this all summer, even when I was back in Alberta, but I have no choice but to keep going. I am proud of myself for that, and for getting here, and for finding three part time jobs and a basement suite. As I said, and I know, it is enough for now. But for the future, beyond the next few months, if I run out of money, if I “fail” and have to move back to Alberta? God, who knows.
I am redefining my definition of failure. I don’t think that if I was forced back into my parents’ home, trying to make it in a city as difficult as this, that I would be a failure, even though it would feel that way. And if the words of the people that love me, and the belief in my own heart, are worth anything, I will not get there. I will stay here, and “succeed” here, in whatever sense of the word that looks like, because I am meant to be here.
God wants me here. It’s as simple as that. I’ve known that for a long time, since I first visited my aunt here in the spring break of my first year of university, even since high school, when I wanted to write books (rest assured, I still do). I wanted to write one called Vancouver, about a place I had never been, but was already deeply in love with. I may still write a book called Vancouver, and it may be a collection from a blog about Vancouver, and it may be a romanticizing of a life I am currently making. But what’s life if you can’t romanticize it?
Whatever it is, or ends up as, it will be as beautiful, honest, and gentle as everything in my life seeks to be. This life, this city, and my writing about it, are a soft, patient spirituality, forgiveness, and hopefulness that kisses my cheeks like cold autumn air on the way to the bus to meet my friend for drinks at Waterfront.
It is the reasons, the feelings of my heart that make me myself: a writer, a queer woman, someone who feels things very deeply, and wants to write about and love them as much as she possibly can with every gorgeous, blessed second. In this city, God is on every corner, in every shop, but most importantly, is within me. Her joy is a spark I am slowly regaining, through small, strange corners of this new life, finding Her everywhere I did not expect to.
She loves us so much. I keep asking Her, in my darkest hours, please do more for your kids. Please help us. We need you so much. Please help me. Give me a job, financial stability, a place to live, the strength to continue each day. In your mercy, keep us free from sin, and protect us from all anxiety, as we wait in joyful hope for the coming of our Savoir, Jesus Christ.
She is answering my prayers, albeit strangely and slowly.
Until then, I keep going,