Moving to Vancouver -Quick Memoir

Moving to Vancouver -Quick Memoir


I recently got a request  by someone to write about how/ why/ when I moved to Vancouver because she is thinking of doing the same. If you are thinking about moving read this ! I hope it inspires you and you can relate to it, or just enjoy reading someones story 🙂 LOVE!

This is me, hope you like it.


The Beginning

I always knew I wanted to move. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Montreal but I knew it just wasn’t the place for me to live forever- or for the meantime. My parents knew I always went against the grain, and I fought my battles constantly always telling them I was going to live elsewhere. I am an only child and very close with my family, so leaving them I understood never settled well with them. The people that I grew up with, within the community was like this ; you go to school with them, grow up with them, date, then get married, get a car and a house and everything all at once, grand finale – pop babies out- and that is just awesome, but it wasn’t what I wanted. I didn’t want to feel like everything was so set, so planned.  I craved adventure, I craved to be a person with stories, I needed to get lost in the world, in a new city, walk down streets and love not knowing where I was going.


Why Vancouver?

 I always loved the west coast lifestyle, especially California. To be honest, Toronto was too close and I knew that so many Montrealers moved to Toronto, I just felt like it was a ‘safer option’ for me. I wanted to be far, to be dropped into the unknown. The mountains, the ocean, views, its so close to the beautiful natures of the world! In all honesty, I don’t even think I realized how far Vancouver was from Montreal… I think I thought “oh yay! its still in Canada thats good enough!”

I was 19, my parents always wanted me to go to McGill, while living at home. Not that that’s bad, but its so not what I wanted. I went to Concordia for a semester, and then just for shits applied to UBC and U Vic, I got into both in Psychology program. I was SOOO HAPPY, this could be it! I played my cards right and told my parents how amazing UBC was for Bachelor Degree in Psychology, and after many many conversations, they let me go. However, the decision now lay with me. I had the MOST CHALLENGING TIME making it. Why?! Here was an opportunity Ive always dreamed of, what was I scared of? Um let me break it down for you: The unknown– I knew no one, I was moving somewhere far- keep in mind a 5 hour flight away from home, life was going to change, everything will be different.

I asked ALL my friends their opinions, I was so torn. Its crazy when you could want something so badly, THEN when its finally presented to you, you have to really fucking think hard about it and it drives you BANANAS. “WHAT DO I DO?!” came out of my mouth a million times. The best advice was from my best friend Matt, I hope this helps you – this has stuck with me since I made my decision to move, he said,  “Mich, Montreal is your home, if it doesn’t work out, you can always come back”. You know what, heck yes. If I never tried this out, how would I ever know? It was my gut feeling – I had to go! The unknown is SO scary… or it? Its liberating, its life, its YOUR story, your adventure, your time to LIVE and experience whatever it is YOU want.

SO I DID IT! ahhh I made a going away party,  and the next day  my parents flew with me over mountains and dropped me off in my new city with tears and love!

How I got my job in personal training in Vancouver:

I lived on UBC  campus at Walter Gage for a year  with 5 other girls in a dorm- what an experience , in the best way {reminder, tom-boy, only child, living with 5 other girls it was a pretty cool experience}. I would buss everyday to Steve Nash gym downtown to just be able to ride the bus, see the city, I became friends with the personal trainers, and was offered a personal training position at the Steve Nash Kitsilano location {I worked there for 2 years – then became self employed}. I worked and went to school which was busy but I loved it {playing two roles teacher / student}. I decided to moved off campus after a year, it wasn’t for me, the whole living and studying in the same location, I needed some distance between life and school. So I found two really cool random guys on Craigslist to live with in Yaletown! It was wild and amazing and I loved it! I had this huge gorgeous apartment to myself they were rarely there! My room was overlooking the mountains with 180 degrees of windows  {it was way better than the UBC bus loop haha}


The Middle 

Truth is I go back to Montreal probably 3 x a year, and that can never change. I need to see my family. It kills me to leave them, it will never get easier. I see my parents getting older, my grandmother, its so sad, it breaks my heart each time I see them. But I made this decision to remain in Vancouver now, and I need to succeed. Life is what you make of it. I still can’t believe I live here. I always had school as my main focus, yet now that I graduated, Ive gone 100% with my business hence my GirlBoss BootyByMich mentality. Did I know I always wanted to be a personal trainer? No. I got certified for fun when I was 17,  my heart and passion just led to me to continue in this new city- and this is what it has become ! {ahh yay! }  Im doing it for myself yet also for my family, because I want it to work for me and for them. When Im in Montreal I go for 2 weeks… its like I never left,  I need that sometimes, my parents need that as well.

I still wake up often… and think holy shit, this is my life. I live on the west coast, I run by the ocean, I can hike a mountain on the weekend and its been 6 years away from my family… its wild and I have to pinch myself and be mindful of this life that I have, the amazing people Ive met,  and I am grateful for my parents for giving me endless love and support. I created this life that I had only dreamt of  when I was younger…. I turned my dream into my reality, so can YOU.

My Advice: Just dive deep into your own life and swim, because you and  I know, you wont let yourself sink. Embrace the unknown, the excitement, you can’t fail. Why? Because you can always just choose to go back home! At least you tried it out, and it wasn’t for you. If you have this gut feeling of “I need to go and see what its like…” FUCKING DO IT. Ill never forget I went to a Ben Howard concert alone {he was my favourite musician back then}, the first few weeks after moving. I got right up in the front by the speakers on my own,  and just felt so ALIVE, it was SO LIBERATING,  it was the beginning of “MY NEW LIFE”!

I have been writing a journal for the last 6 years, for serious! Since the first night alone in my dorm room up until – like yesterday. I don’t write as often as I used to, but I started so I can remember how I felt, how I thought, who I met, the dates I went on, the school assignments, my university friends, my current friends, love, my crushes, my challenges, my successes, and I LOVE reading back and seeing how far I’ve come; while noticing how somethings never change!  I highly encourage you to do the same if you move, you can learn a lot from yourself !


The End 

Ahhh but who knows what the universe holds for us all ! Just living life with positivity, determination, passion, drive, love, happiness…This is where my life is right now…this journey is one of a kind. I just got back from Montreal and I just know Vancouver is my home, this is where I need to be it did take a while for my whole heart to be here, because a chunk of my crazy  heart {my family and my beautiful good friends } is back in Montreal.


The Breakdown  :

  1. BE YOURSELF– that’s just a life lesson.
  2. DON’T GIVE A SHIT – ever. Just be you. Don’t care what others think, if they don’t like you, they aren’t for you and you aren’t for them, you’ll find your tribe !
  3. GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE– learn to be comfortable in the uncomfortable, you will grow as a person, and life possibilities are endless.
  4. GIVE IT 100 PERCENT, If you move don’t give it 2 months and then decide, you need to fully submerge yourself in your decision, your new lifestyle, the new normal.
  5. MEET NEW PEOPLE! You never know who you can meet, they can help you network, show you around, be your next best friend.
  6. EXPLORE. I still explore Vancouver with new eyes everyday, I love it.
  7. HOW TO PUT THIS….IF YOU HAVE FEELINGS FOR SOMEONE IN YOUR CURRENT LOCATION, BUT YOU ARE MOVING TO YOUR NEW LOCATION… TRY TO LIVE LIFE IN YOUR NEW LOCATION – sans thinking of your old home crush! Not to be harsh, but this will help you. It happened to me. I moved but had my heart back in Montreal for a couple of months and it was so F^%&king annoying. I would always think of this person who wasn’t living in Vancouver! It took me while to forget about it and accept that I had to move on, but it was tough, and Im juuust putting it out there just in case you go through the same thing! Leave crushes behind, its ok to break a few hearts.
  8. YOU FIND OUT WHO YOUR TRUE FRIENDS ARE . Oh My Gosh that sounds so intense – but its true. Once you move, it’s a full fledge long distant relationship with your loved ones, the strongest survive! And its sad, but its true…for example I put so much energy into friendships, only to realize after that the other party wasn’t putting in the same effort so its shitty but sometimes things come to a standstill (not an end, because you can see that person again and pick up right where you left off… but they aren’t the best at keeping up long distance friendships and thats ok..
  10. JUST DO IT.




Photography by Kat Timmins  {click here to view website}


ohhh  and this is me in my dorm no judgement please.

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