Sit quiet. Inhale. Exhale. Repeat.

I wanted to buy Onitsukas to celebrate getting halfway through the Nobel symposium proceedings. I wanted to sit by the lake in the dark watching the kayakers plough the varsity lake while chugging on Merlot and holding hands with my best friend. I wanted to finish writing the song I wrote. I wanted to record the month in Polaroid. I want to pack for Friday’s shoot and for the trip.

Instead, I keep reading, finishing the proceedings in record time. Routine becomes meditation. The silence is deafening but welcome at the same time. I do more. I read more. I push more. And the silence becomes heavier. I say hi on Facebook and sleep in strange beds which feel like my very own. I wash my hair and use only a pea-sized blob of conditioner. Again, silence. Like life is moving in slow motion.

My friends go through rough patches themselves — one changes her name at the advice of a numerologist, the other resorts to meditation and a whole lot of positive thinking. I can identify. I understand the constant burning gut sensation, the ever-present persistent heartache that throbs like a stubbed toe, the constant feeling of fighting back vomit. It seems easy to give up. To climb into bed, wedged under layers of pillows and blankets (fluffy pets are a plus), cry and wallow for a bit, get someone to hold you and tell you that everything will be okay. But we don’t do that. We get up. We spend more time in the shower. We brave through the day and give it our best shot. We go home, listen to soothing music and sip on teacups of wine til we fall asleep.

Work is salvation. Music is salvation. Dreams are salvation.

Understand that everyone screws up. Accept that things fall apart. Know that life is a learning process and we always grow — into hopefully better people than we were yesterday. No one lives in the past. You have today. I have today. You have the future. I have the future.

“No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” – Samuel Beckett