It was seemingly if not accurately an erratic move back when I upped and left. If you know me, then you have an inkling as to why, and if you know me well, then you know the details. And if you don't know me at all, then you must think I'm crazy or unpredictable, and that's fine. There were a lot of good reasons, but really, I just needed to detach myself from everything going on and approach it differently.
At the time, I had sought a lot of help to deal with the stress. Yoga, massages, workouts, meditation, counselling, psychiatry. One professional had asked me what I did to relax. I went through the list of things that I pencil in. He said that that's nice, but asked if I like to do those things. I couldn't answer. I still can't. All I have are my recommendations of things to do to destress and my checklists that I use to keep track of them. But they hadn't been working. He told me to take some time and "find myself" and discover what it is that "energizes" me. He said that I was running at 20% and that I need to get up to 100% before I go on.
This was a tall order given that I'd never done it before. As far back as I can remember, I've basically just jumped from one thing to the next without stopping. I want to find what "energizes me" but I don't know how to take time to "find myself". I don't know how to stop. How do you do something you don't know how to do?
The answer is that you don't. (Not well, at least.) I had spent months trying to relax by doing the things that are typically relaxing and all I would find is that those things did not work for me. So, I did the only thing I knew how to do: I picked myself up, dusted myself off and got out there. I met people. I saw places. I learned things. I pushed my limits. I did what I do best. Succeed. Succeed in non-ideal circumstances. And I remembered what it felt like to get excited about something. I remembered what it felt like to be happy.
I returned because my sister and my mom were moving. The reason for the move was a huge source of my stress. However, it was a welcome excuse to return because I'd been curious to see how I would feel after being misplaced for so long.
It turns out that it feels like nothing. It was like I was in a warp zone. Every moment I was away felt exponentially longer. That is, the first week, I felt like I was there a week. The second week, I felt like I had been there a month. The third week, I felt like I'd been there a couple of months and by the end of the eighth week, I just felt like I had been there forever, like it was "home".
But when I returned, I felt like I hadn't been gone at all. How could so much happen to me, but nothing change back home? Did anyone even notice I was gone? Why should I have stayed? Why should anyone have asked me to?
I have been told by everyone who has seen me since my return to Toronto that I look happy and that they see a certain glow in me that they haven't seen in ages. I have been asked What happened? since they last saw me. What has made me so happy?
I'll tell you what happened: I took some time. I found myself and what energizes me.