Being on the road most definitely has its’ perks: I’ve hiked the Rocky Mountains, gone thrift shopping in Woodstock NY, eaten fresh oysters in Victoria, and played music with my best friends. I’ve met some fabulous people whom I wouldn’t have otherwise known if it weren’t for this career choice. It all makes me feel so very grateful.
Though I’ve always been an independent spirit, being away from home isn’t always easy. In fact, part of what I love about being on the road is coming home. It feels so good! I’m lucky that all my brothers and sisters live in Saskatoon and are becoming accustomed to having an artist in the family. I can’t tell you the number of times they’ve invited me over for supper…then breakfast and lunch the next day because they know how much I miss home-cooked food and that I’m usually too tired to cook when I get back.
My sister had twin girls the last time I was away. I've never felt so far away from home as I did when they were born. I had to wait a week and a half before meeting the two cutest loaves of bread I love. Meanwhile, I was receiving family group test messages, photos and videos to celebrate this new chapter in our family’s life. They are the first grandchildren to join the Normand lot – so the oooing, awing and heart/love/baby emoji-sharing was out of control.
One evening, I face-timed my mom who was tending to the babies while my sister and her husband were napping. Mom told me something that really stuck with me: she said that she had never fallen in love. She’s grown in love, developed in love, but never actually fallen in love. Not even with my dad with whom she’s been married for over 30 years. The first time she experienced falling in love was the moment she laid eyes on her granddaughters. Mom told me it felt like falling off a cliff.
That was beautiful. I most definitely cried for a few minutes when I hung up the phone.
I realized that this is what life is all about for me: relationship. Whether it’s spending quality time with family, holding my nieces (even changing their diapers!), enjoying the best poutine in Saskatoon with friends at The Relais (Saskatoon’s francophone community centre), playing music with my friends, sharing music with audiences, etc.
It’s what keeps me going. I leave because the journey is rewarding and meaningful…and I leave, so I can come home again.