So it is the end of the love month and I have one last post to make.
A personal love that informs and supports all of the other areas of my life. This is for my sweet and loyal husband, best friend and partner in all things, Noel. It has been a challenging month of juggling children, working our butts off, keeping the house together and making plans. Our lives are exploding with ideas and inspiration, diapers and distractions, tension and tenderness. While in the thick of this seeming insanity I get claustrophobic and emotional, I feel as though things will never loosen up or relax; there will never be enough time.
Where is that guy I married? We have talked about groceries, money, school drop offs and email, but we have not really seen each other. When I find my friend, all of a sudden I am back in a space where I feel like things are workable. We can operate as a partnership and a creative force, and my energy and capacity is exponentially increased. All of a sudden we have time to talk about subtle feelings and neurotic confessions, aspirations and theory or nothing at all. We see each other.
Five years ago we were married in our little apartment on Harvey St. We vowed to love each other and support each others work in the world. To take care of our family and take care of this world in all the ways we could think of. I am amazed at the weight of that commitment and the places it has taken us. Two children and two apartments later we are right on the edge of our lives. Devoted to this place of Nova Scotia and learning all we can from other parts of the world. Experiencing an incredible wave of creativity and collaboration and working to bring it into our home and work and city on daily basis.
To my partner in all things: Sweep me off my speedy feet, woo me with wonder, romance me with radical notions and accost me with affection. Let us keep up the love through all months of the year and explore our dark and deep hearts in every moment.
This was the title of a photo show a I did at NSCAD years ago. I felt so fed up with the myth of romance and much more connected to the reality of heartbreak. The images I used were of a wind-up toy heart in the refrigerator. It was a visual choice more than a symbolic one really, but the images have remained meaningful to me so far. They are fully in tune with the theme this month. All about the power of vulnerability, dissolving boundaries and exploring the real love.
In my relationships with parents, friends, lovers and children, I have experienced the greatest love through heartbreak. I am not talking about the “OMG I got dumped and now have to spend Valentine’s Day ALONE!” kinda heartbreak. This is the kind where you actually feel your heart. Bloody and beating and tender and gross. Together is not better than alone because they are equally exposed and terrifying. Heartbreak that makes you wonder if you will ever feel anything else, while kind of hoping it will last forever.
Let’s take this day, this stupid day of hallmark cards, disgusting candy and ridiculous pesticide soaked imported flowers and kick it to the curb. Make your own tradition of feeling your heart, as the magical and potent organ that it is. Wear it on the outside of your clothes and let the blood drip down into the snow as you walk down the street. Do not be embarrassed by your show of tenderness but instead feel the dignity and power of true love. A broken heart.
I was walking down Almon st yesterday, sending Gabe and Noel off to school and taking the Shrimpy one to the grocery. I said goodbye to the guys with”I love you”‘ and “Have a good day”, and headed down Robie towards Young. I walked along with a bright mind and a light heart. I started to think about my vow to reveal the heart of February as well as my own. What do I love? I looked around at the morning traffic, exhaust covered snowbanks, busy gas station and stressed drivers.
I LOVE not having a car. I love walking against traffic and knowing I wont have to go to the filler station, find a parking spot or pay parking tickets. I love that I have to walk in all weather and with groceries and children. I love the sun and snow and fog and grey. I may curse the wind tunnels and the icy sidewalks in January, but I love this city because we have an intimate and raw relationship. So I invite you cold wind, salt stains and late buses,wake me up and show me the edges of my heart.
It may look like snow to you but it looks like love to me. The heartbreaking kinda love that feels so good and so bad that you don’t even know what to do. As I walked the sparkly, snowy, silent streets of this sweet city last eve I found myself welling up with something that I cannot quite articulate. Awe of the beauty, energy from my day and heartache for the world. How could I possibly describe this in a blog post? What is it I want to share? Well there it was right in front of me- “Reserve you Valentine’s bouquet today!” on the side of Piltcher’s Flowers. It’s February and the heart shaped holiday is upon us. The oppression of a hallmark creation exaggerates our glaring aloneness or togetherness or lust or desperation. Do we have love, want it, need it or even believe in it?
So February, I challenge you to a duel. I am ready to explore my local love, regional romances and Halifax heartbreak for a whole month. Bring on the chocolates and roses, breakup mixtapes and romantic gestures, I will in turn find the grit behind the grand and truth of our tenderness. Send me your love story @ firstname.lastname@example.org
Enjoy the cold snowflakes on your cheeks and find out what makes you love…what you love and how to give it away.