If one must feel melancholy, they might as well do it near the ocean.
Yesterday was one of those days. A day where I felt nothing more like leaving my life, putting what I could in a backpack and just fleeing the city. Not for a day or a weekend, but for as far as my money would take me, as far from my life as I could get. Don’t get me wrong, my life seems pretty good most of the time. But sometimes the heavy sadness hits, and there is no place to turn – it is just best to acknowledge it’s there, and pray for distractions.
Distractions yesterday were few and far between. All my work-from-home friends were either out of the city or busy with deadlines. There were no tea dates to be had, no photo adventures to be found. And to be honest I think I was about as far away from creativity as I could get, anyway. As I sat in front of my computer looking at a gigantic wall of Bittersweets that I’ve spent the last 2 years of my life working on – which recently have almost ceased selling completely on Etsy, I just wanted to rip them all down and dispose of them. Set them on fire, run over them with my (borrowed) car, put them in a box and leave them on the side of the highway. Yesterday I was just tired of the reminder of my life standing still. THIS was the kind of day I was having. I just wanted to go to the beach. I *needed* to be near waves crashing so loudly that it drowned out my own thoughts – thoughts that were hell-bent yesterday on making me miserable.
So I packed up every possible thing I might need for a plethora of scenarios. I had my camera and all my equipment. I brought a change of clothes, my bathing suit, credit cards. If I made it to the beach I would be set – if I ended up in the Yukon I also would be covered (at least for a couple of days). Sometimes the mind does not know what the body will do until it does it. So I got in the car and drove.
Normally being in the car, driving barefoot and listening to the radio (yay for Vancouver’s awesome new station 100.5 the Peak… although ironically enough, the first song I heard was the Cure – how fitting), drinking a slurpee, the wind in my hair – these things usually cheer me up. But even as I drove up the freeway toward White Rock it wasn’t fading. I looked at the signs that read Surrey 9, Seattle 190. I wish that I had brought my passport, because I wouldn’t have hesitated for a minute.
So I ended up in White Rock, solo. I stood in the water, the tide inching in wave by wave, and just felt the heavy sadness. I walked up to my chest, and cried a little. If one needs to cry, they might as well do it in the largest body of salted water possible… It’s more incognito that way. I felt hopeless and helpless, and lonely and unsure – the whole day. It didn’t lessen at all as the day went on. I just went with it. When the tide crept up as far as it would go, I laid on the beach for 4 hours. Despite heavy application of sunscreen, I still burnt the shit out of the backs of my legs. When I finally got in the car I felt slightly more calm… and really exhausted. It’s funny how much standing in the ocean seeing nothing but a zillion gallons of water as far as your eye will follow can make your problems feel slightly more insignificant. Despite my stinging, lobster coloured skin last night, I was glad I went.
I woke up this morning feeling better. I’m still unemployed, and feeling lonely – but I feel much more equipped to deal with stuff… and not hankering to dispose of all my worldly possessions. Although I think that most people have been tempted by the thought of leaving it all behind and just starting fresh. I’m just really thankful I live in Vancouver, where I have the luxury of running to the mountains OR the ocean when my body takes me there. And that is something to be happy about.