After my exciting, exhausting week in Toronto I’m having a quiet, restful time. My pre-surgery preparation. Very little tourism. The weather’s cold so far, and I feel I already know Montreal quite well, unlike Toronto, though I can see it’s changed. This house is so lovely! I feel peaceful and full of joy. I’m spending most of my day here, going out only to shop, to visit friends, and to dance. I have neighbours! I had lunch at their apartment on my second day, and one came over yesterday for tea. They’re a lovely couple of artists, also trans activists. I’ve invited them over for supper tomorrow.
My pre-op regime begins with lots of sleep. The insomnia I experienced in the last few weeks, before leaving Saskatoon, and in Toronto, is gone, and I’ve been sleeping eight hours every night. I’ve also been having a late afternoon nap in the last rays of the sun as it swings round to the other side of the apartment and shines in on my bed. I’ve taken some time for grooming, to manicure, and to keep the rooms clean and tidy. Nesting.
I begin my days, as is my habit, in bed with a thermos of strong milky tea, and Facebook. Then I put on music, and dance while I prepare breakfast in the sunny kitchen. First fruit; grapefruit, and a couple of mornings papaya with lime. Then two farm eggs on bread; ‘pain de nois’ from a local bakery. I sit and think, about the day, about what I’m planning to write. Then I have a bowl of granola with bananas, blackberries, yogourt, milk and maple syrup. A bit more dancing and tidying, then a visit to the bathroom, brush my teeth, and I get to work in the studio.
When I begin to feel stiff from writing, and dancing doesn’t seem to help, I take a break to do my gentle stretch routine, and some core strength exercises. I try to focus on my pelvis, the joints and the internal muscles, and do some kegels. Around 2pm, I begin to prepare my lunch. I make a large, cooked meal. Potatoes, or pasta, or chickpeas with garlic or onions, chard or broccoli, beets, sauerkraut and protein such as feta cheese or canned mackerel. Stuffed, I turn on the light and clean up the kitchen in the afternoon twilight, and then lie down for my nap.
After a half hour or an hour’s sleep, I get up and if I’m going out dancing, I shower. I have a light supper, maybe grilled cheese and sauerkraut on bread, or some local cheese slices, with a salad of raw vegetables and an apple. I’m taking dance lessons every second day; contact improv dance, often followed by a contact improv jam. I could dance more. Here, as in Toronto, there’s lots on offer. I rather exhausted myself in Toronto, and now I’m trying to build up my strength. Dancing has been great. The contact dance community, like in most places, is very welcoming. Many ages and genders. The lessons are in French. I listen carefully, relax, watch the others, and seem to understand most of what I need.
I love the walk through the dark streets, often snowing this week, and the ride on the metro. I have a chip card which I touch to the turnstile, and it lets me pass. I like to watch the people on the platform and on the train. It’s a short walk from the metro to my house. The porch light, with its little bird ornament, welcomes me home. I pour maple syrup into a bowl of yogourt for my bedtime snack. I brush my teeth, and then snuggle under the quilt to warm up the bed, and go to sleep early.
The days are passing quickly. Soon this little in between time will be over. What a lovely transition.