Sometimes a change of pace is the best thing in the world.

It’s 6:30am and I’ve been laying awake since 4. I feel like I should be tired, but I’m really not. My brain has been swirling with thoughts as I lay here in the dark stillness of my new friend’s bedroom.

I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to spend the last two nights here in this big comfy bed. Last night, I slept better than I have in weeks. I’ve met many incredible women, and I’ve seen community lived out here in The Beaches of Toronto in a way that I rarely witness back in Hamilton.

I’ve had so many new experiences as well. I ate king crab legs for the first time. They are very expensive and even more delicious. I walked to a cute all day breakfast place and bought freshly squeezed orange juice. I accompanied my new friend while she went to show houses to her clients and met the cutest puppy named Steve. In my humble opinion, he was the best part of that house. I went to get ice cream with the cutest little boy ever (even if he’s a handful…). This may not be a new experience, but I’ve looked at all her books and I want to read them all.

Out of all the cool new experiences, my favourite moments have been the evenings we’ve spent sitting outside sharing our lives. We have much in common, so it’s nice to sit and talk with someone who’s a bit further down the road of life and, as such, has come to possess incredible amounts of wisdom. I feel safe to ask questions that I would never ask anyone else.

When this woman speaks, people hear her. It is evident to me that is she loved by so many, because she loves so well. She’s a strong, confident, powerful woman, but she is also intimately acquainted with pain and suffering. She understands the concept of authenticity in a very practical way. This woman is a Truth speaker. She is a woman of integrity; someone who is true to her word. She calls bullshit on people while at the same time identifying their strengths and building them up.

I’ve talked to a few people who know her well, and they confirmed to me everything that I have noticed as I’ve watched her life play out for the last 38 hours. She is both highly respected and deeply loved by everyone around her.

We were talking last night before bed and I asked her if she was proud of herself for how far she’s come. She told me that she is, but sometimes she forgets to reflect on where she’s come from so she doesn’t necessarily feel it on a daily basis. I want to make it known right now that I am so beyond proud of everything she’s accomplished and the woman she has fought so hard to become.

I’ve only been here since Saturday afternoon, but I am leaving a changed woman (Note the word woman…). I am inspired, empowered, and encouraged. This was just the boost I needed to help me get back on track, and I so appreciate it.

She’s a good friend of my mom’s but I wholeheartedly feel that this is the beginning of a really wonderful relationship.

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