"It's just a dream, until you see it happening."
Start here, and press play:
Next, join me on a ride.
This song came on last night as Mitch took me for a ride through our old university campus at Carleton University. We do these drives once in a while, to feel the nostalgia in our bones. To remember the stories we've recounted so many times they're ingrained in both our minds - our guides to a life that's passed.
As we drove along the river that held so many memories, I remembered the first time I saw the university sign when I was 15 years old. I was being driven to the airport after a young leaders conference on Parliament Hill.
Someone on that trip told me Carleton was the best journalism school in the country. In that moment, it became my dream to go there.
"It's just a dream, until you see it happening."
The lyrics electrified my body as we drove through campus. I brought that dream to life eight years ago. And tonight, I was preparing for the next.
Something about this drive was markedly different from all the other loops we've taken around campus. This was the last time we'd drive through campus before I move to New York City.
I moved to Ottawa when I was 17-years-old. I came here fresh faced, scarred in my own special way, and ready to leave a mark. I left Grande Prairie, my hometown since birth with the personal dream to make a life for myself in Ottawa like the one my parents made for themselves in Grande Prairie. To be a household name in the community, known for my work as much as my spirit of service and giving.
As I'm packing up pieces of my life to leave this city that helped me become the woman I am today, I can't help but cry, the bittersweetness stinging my soul.
How can it be so hard in some moments to be excited to leave for NYC to pursue my dreams.
It's because the dream of Ottawa isn't a hard alternative to accept.
I could live here with Mitch and our best friend Drew, and enjoy the next few years of contentment and love. Then Mitch and I could move into our first home with a big backyard after getting engaged, ready for our big Indian wedding. We could get that second bedroom set-up for our first little angel, and know that the family we've built for ourselves were all 15 minutes away in any given direction.
That would be life.
But instead, I am taking off. To finish and launch the film of my dreams with one of my best friends, Erin. I'm moving into an apartment that costs a small fortune to live a few blocks from her so we can conspire and elevate our lives, and the lives of hundreds of thousands of others, day-by-day.
This move isn't about me. It's about impact. It's about more futures than mine. It's about more dreams than mine. It's about so much more than anything my tiny brain can even comprehend.
Sometimes in this process, I feel like an ungrateful child, unable to see the gift that lies ahead, but it's because I'm afraid of my own potential, and the real impact of what it truly is we are doing and creating.
I can't explain it, but I know Dream, Girl is going to change so many people's lives. It's already changed mine so deeply and so profoundly.
It's led me to this moment, sitting cross-legged on my bedroom floor in Ottawa, typing this on my packed up and slanted desk, cry laughing at the absurdity of it all.
How can this be so hard and so easy all at once? Maybe it's just about naming it all.
I'm going to miss Mitch, his warmth, his attentive gaze every night, his love so accessible and present for me everyday.
I'm going to miss having his mom and dad so close by. I'm going to miss Jordan and Josianne, and Brandon. I'm going to miss the Mirons, and Pras and the crew. I'm going to miss Costco runs with Meena, and familiar drives, going out of my way to drive past Parliament Hill and to revel in the beauty of our amazing country. I'm going to miss late-nights at Fran's with the fam, diving into anything and everything.
I'm going to miss this place where I've made a name for myself, the place that showed me what I'm truly capable of.
But it's going to be okay. Not right now, maybe not even next week.
But it will. On the days that Erin and I have breakthroughs in post-production, or on our press tour, or after our first public talk together. In the moments that women come up to me and tell me how what we've created has profoundly impacted their lives, and how in that moment, they felt seen, and heard, in all their complexity and power - in those moments, it will be more than okay.
"It's just a dream, until you see it happening and it changes everything."
Everything is about to change. And I couldn't be more unprepared.
Let's go, the time is now, and the risk has never felt better.
It's time to throw down, accept these tears and fears, but still take that next leap forward.
Thank you all for believing in me every step of the way, and for helping me build this space where I feel comfortable, proud, and uplifted to share exactly where I am at.
Buckle up, we're about to head into the abyss, and I couldn't be more grateful you're all by my side.