Facing the Firsts and Moving Forward

Facing the Firsts and Moving Forward

Dear Friends,

There has been so much in the news this week as the regulations pull back and people enter the period of "the firsts"... first hug, first drink on a patio, first maskless moment, first birthday party, first hookup, first live show... for some, those "firsts" come with emotion - a little trepidation, some relief, much joy!

I've heard it said that traveling allows you to return and see your home through different lens... This pandemic period has taken us on quite a trip. For most people, it's given us time to push ourselves, try out new ideas, meet new folk, think about where we've been and where we're headed... For the most part, the conversations these past 15 months have taken place in our minds; we've had time to think. Financial hardship, uncertainty and grief have walked side by side with new perspective, acknowledgement, understanding and a path to healing. Even the despicable online troll culture has forced us to take stock of our likes, dislikes, our core beliefs and and our boundaries.

I can't help feel that the vulnerability of the "firsts" is linked to this sense that we are at our day of reckoning - do we lean back to find what we left and "forget" the learnings, or do we lean in, take those learnings with us and rebuild our connections, careers and country on a better foundation?

Everyone will have to choose - and then we'll have to figure out a way of being together again!

For those of us in Canada, July 1st will mark a turning point in who we want to be and how we want to exist and thrive together. I will not be "celebrating" Canada Day nor will I be "cancelling" it. I cannot imagine gawking at fireworks as friends mourn intergenerational loss and injustice. As a white settler, I feel the weight of my ignorance and recognize the need to revisit the narrative I was raised with - revisit it, face it head on, and make space for its rewriting.

I feel some trepidation, but also a great sense of relief as we shed our pretence and begin to speak with courage and compassion. We can't stay holed up in our bunker for ever - literally or figuratively. It's time to push open that door and reach out to others, knowing that they too, are emerging from their own battles. We need to stand together, then walk forward together...

Regardless of how you mark the moment, I hope that the next few days - July 1st, July 4th for our American friends! - will bring you solace.

If you can make it to the Hang, I'd love to see you there. It'll be the last one of the season, and we'll take a short break for the month of July.

xo Nat

Nathalie Kleinschmit

Article by Nathalie Kleinschmit

Published 29 Jun 2021