Another year, another post. Like I mentioned last year, it wasn’t lost on me that my maternity leave started and ended around the same time of year as when I originally moved here and started this job. This past week at work has reminded me a lot of my first week here, five years ago — the same slight feeling of confusion (“where does this go? who is the right contact for this?”) and newness and excitement, mixed with a bit of trepidation. Add in all of my “one year ago today I was eagerly awaiting M’s arrival” thoughts and you have quite the nostalgic week.
My fifth year as a Northwestern Ontario resident — as an adult, I suppose, because I was also a NWO resident as a child — has made me feel more like this is home. Bringing a baby home from the hospital helped with that! Viewing life outside of the lens of work for a year allowed me to meet people on a personal level, attend events without a camera in hand, and get more of a ‘real life’ view of what happens around here. I have seen new facets of this town and I think it has seen new facets of me. We’ve also made a few strides toward getting our house feeling more like home, and that has added to feelings of belonging.
As always, I have no idea what the years ahead hold — I don’t know if we will stay, or go, or when any of that might happen — but this is my daughter’s hometown and always will be, so we have at least one bona fide local in the family. It feels nice to be here.