Happy Self-Love Day!

self-love

When you’ve been single as long as I have, Valentine’s Day is usually the last thing on your mind. Contrary to what romantic comedies would like you to think, V-day isn’t single lady kryptonite. I don’t instantly burst into a fit of rage or tears when I think of the day. I also don’t feel the need to call up all my single girlfriends to celebrate Galentine’s, although that is totally cool if you do, we need more excuses as women to come together and celebrate each other!

To be honest, I usually forget the”big day” altogether. It somehow creeps up on me without much fuss and I typically live through February 14th as I would any other day of the year. Nothing special to see here folks, this single gal is indifferent to the magical day of love!

This year, however, is a bit of a different story. I still find the day (or at least its current commercially saturated state) to be nothing to write home about. However, I have been thinking more about the idea of love, specifically self-love. If I’m being completely honest, I’ve been pretty shitty to myself over the last 2 years. Really, ever since I moved back from Sweden, I’ve been going through a cycle of self-abuse and truthfully, an unshakable feeling of sadness and frustration.

I feel as though I’ve lost my most favorite version of myself. When I recall the adventurous girl who signed up for a study abroad all on her own or the person who picked up her life and moved to Sweden, I feel like these moments belong to another person’s life story. I can’t reconcile that person with this current version of myself.

Between adjusting to life back in Canada, going back to school and starting a new job, I’ve let stress  and the daily grind dig a hole and bury my past self, the version of me that I was most proud of seems to be dead and gone. I catch glimpses of that girl, every so often, before “reality” swallows her back up again. I don’t know what I can do to reclaim this person I once was, so I ignore her!

It wasn’t until very recently that I decided enough was enough, I needed my old self back. I needed to take care of myself, physically and mentally. I’ve just recently started practicing self-love and it’s a task I have to constantly remind myself to do. Slowly but surely I’m hoping to become myself again,  although I recognize that a lot of things will have to change in order for me to feel like I’m back on track.

So, this Valentine’s Day, I’ve committed to practicing self-love in any small way that I can and through small acts of self-love, maybe I can find myself.

I know this post isn’t all sunshine and rainbows (they can’t all be that way) but I do hope that everyone has a lovely Feb 14th filled with all types of love. Also, if there is anyone else out there struggling with self-love, you’re not alone! It’s  a journey and we’re all working at our own pace to reach a place of inner happiness and appreciation!

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Secret Garden in Toronto?

Whenever I travel I always find myself in a park. Even though I’ll swear up and down that I’m a city gal, I seem to gravitate towards the few green spaces I can find in the urban jungle (whichever one it may be). This tradition seems to have continued, as I’ve been craving some fresh air in Toronto lately. Maybe it’s the extra dark and dreary winter we’re currently having, but I’ve wanted nothing more than to go sit on a park bench, with a warm beverage in hand.

Unfortunately, the parks I’m envisioning in my mind don’t seem to exist in Toronto, so when a friend told me about Cloud Garden, a greenhouse in the middle of downtown, I knew we had to check it out. Although it took us a little longer than expected to find the excuse to venture over to it, we finally picked a day and went.

Despite the small size and limited hours of operation (Mon – Fri, closing at 2:30pm), Cloud Gardens is a really cute quick trip for anyone visiting the downtown core or any Torontonians looking for a new lunch spot.

Check it out below:

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