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Being an Aunt

I love being an aunt.

I don’t know what being a mother is like, and I’m ok with that.

Having this wonderful, amazing, beautiful, friendly boy in my life, it makes me want to get better more than anything.

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An Idea

Back in the early 80s, my mom’s younger brother moved to England.  He married a German woman, and had two sons. My uncle died in 1988ish, and apart from a visit they made here around that time, I never got to know these two cousins of mine until we were grown ups. We never had the money to travel overseas like my mom’s other brother’s family, nor did they.

About 10 years ago, with the wonders of the internet and German cousins getting good jobs and being able to afford to visit, I finally met these two men and found that they were amazing. Well, obviously, they are related to me, after all.

They have been over to visit several times now, and every time, they ask me when I’m coming to see them.

I’m in a position now where I’m not worrying about school, I’m not floundering in debt with little to show for it, I’m not being held back by some guy who is broke or won’t fly (the fact that I may or may not be seeing someone is irrelevant. More on that another time). Their mom has offered over and over to let me stay with her.

I came to Edmonton with a personal understanding that I would stay for one year, minimum, to see how I like it. My job is only a temporary one (no benefits with expensive medication sucks), but it pays quite well. I can apply for a permanent position, but I’m not too worried about it. The job is scheduled to last until August of this year. Right around my 1 year trial period of this new city.

I mostly like it here, though my social circle is quite small. Being able to watch my nephew growing and learning is just so amazing, he is a joy and I’m so lucky to be able to share in the love that he radiates. We found out this weekend that he will be having a baby SISTER join him in the spring. I am paying down my debt faster than I thought I would, and I’ve narrowed down some grad school options.

I am feeling a push though. A push to explore more. I can apply for a youth mobility visa (free work/travel visa for those aged 18-35), to quite a few countries. I have started researching all I would need to do to obtain this, and it’s feasible. I haven’t yet talked to my aunt or my cousins, because I want to be sure it’s what I’m planning, but right now, I’m hoping to move to Germany for a year, this fall.

Fingers crossed I don’t chicken out. The biggest thing I’m worried about right now is money. Can I afford to get there, find any sort of job, travel, tour, support myself, then get home? There are these two men who are part of my genetic makeup who are aware of my struggles and have promised to help however they can, and an awesome aunt who has invited me many, many times.

I almost feel like I can’t pass this opportunity up.

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Give Me a Break

I quit facebook today. I have been comparing myself to all these filtered lives, and it’s making me hate me. I don’t know how long my break will last. We’ll see how I feel in a little while.

I also realize I just need to give myself a break in general. Just because I’m 28 and haven’t traveled a ton or decided on a Master’s degree yet, does not mean I am a failure. I have survived, and considering how badly I’ve hurt in the past, that is an accomplishment in itself.

If my best friends, my brothers, my parents, so many people I value and love, still love me and support me, then maybe I should pay more attention to what they are telling me. I am funny, friendly, compassionate, excellent with children, fairly smart, strong, creative, quirky, imaginative, a good friend and Auntie, I have a cute butt and a giant smile. I love to read, play Settlers of Catan, be surrounded by trees, ski, camp, hike, and go on road trips. I love coffee and cheese and spinach and garlic. I’d rather read the book than watch the movie, preferably while sitting in the bathtub. I am quick to laugh, and get along well with other people with twisted senses of humour. I am affectionate, and thrive on physical contact, except when I’m trying to go to sleep. I have a tiny bladder which means drinking beer is more comfortable for me at someone’s house, but I’ve been known to enjoy several beers in a local park in the evening. I will never tire of the sky at night.

My depression has had a strong hold on me this past year. I am taking the time to figure out what works best for me, and rather than spending my downtime at work randomly surfing the internet, I have lofty goals. Read more books. Research grad programs. Teach myself with the resources I have at hand. I want to spend less time on social media, and more time being social or spending quality time with myself.

I hate making New Year’s resolutions. I always fail miserably. I am not so much making a resolution as trying to set myself up to be open to the offers the universe is presenting to me. I need to give myself a break, not be so harsh and critical of myself. This is my life, my life to live, and I need to remember that. I’m sure I’ll have those times of despair and worry. That’s just how I’m programmed, but tonight, right now, I want to choose to believe that I will be happy, that I am growing to accept myself and all of my failings, real or imaginary. I want to cut myself some slack. I would never treat a friend the way I’ve been treating myself, would never tolerate anyone treating someone I love this way.

Now that I’ve put these thoughts out to the universe, I want to hold tight to them. I know it will be hard, but I will not fail me.

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Quiet Lately

I have been very, very quiet lately. I’ve had no desire to write, and nothing really to say. How often can I write about being confused about where I want to be and what I want to do and what I want to be when I grow up?

So, some stuff I’ve been up to (most of these have been posted on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook):

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I went to a show, Walk Off The Earth, with some old friends and my roommate, a couple weeks ago. Check out their cover of Gotye’s “Somebody I Used to Know” and watch all 5 band members play one guitar, which I tried to get a picture of.
I had forgotten how much I love live shows with good music and good friends.
 

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I’m trying to embrace my natural curls more often. Sometimes it works.

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My older brother’s girlfriend made him an assorted-beer advent calendar.
My mom had me buy him 30 beers to celebrate his 30th birthday, the same day he got these. I’m sure he’s been enjoying them!
Happy birthday, big brother. I am so lucky to have had you as my protector growing up, and still.

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The roommates and I headed to a local little hill for a recent evening of cheap skiing (snowboarding for them. What can I say, I’m old-school). It had been a couple of years since I’d gone, but I was pleasantly surprised at how well I did (no falls!). I was worried my legs would be burning after just a couple runs, but nope! Granted, it was just a little hill. Oh well, it reminded me how much I love it.

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This past weekend, I went back to Vancouver for 3 nights for a visit. It was great to see my Mom, my stepdad, and several friends, but I was again reminded that Vancouver, as much as I love the city, its surroundings, geography, multiculturalism… it is not home.  Living in the Fraser Valley or Squamish again, might be ok, but not in the city again. Not unless something monumental happened, like housing prices drop and I find an amazing job that pays 6 figures. Heh. 

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Wayne likes to sneak in for kisses (ick, I try not to let him actually lick my face)…

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…and Flappy likes to cuddle my butt.

I finally finished watching the whole series of Lost last night. I can only handle so much tv at a time, so it took me ahout 3 months to finally finish all of it. I’ve started watching some Buffy but so far I’m not as engrossed.

I’m looking forward to the next couple of days. My Dad is here for 5 days, and we’re babysitting my nephew together this afternoon. I’m hoping I can convince him to take me skiing again. I am on my fourth of six 5 am shifts in two weeks (today and the previous three days), which make me very, very angry and unhappy (literally. I get out of bed in the foulest mood when I have to work this early), but luckily the next two shifts are not in a row.

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Whole Heart One Day

This sweet little boy and I have been hanging out a fair bit lately. His silliness and his happiness and his growing into his own person are such a joy to be around. He is an amazing, glowing ball of energy and love.

I have been going back and forth between doing well and doing terribly. I am still hurting so bad, so bad. I really don’t like how worthless and angry and hurt and used and just flat-out depressed I have been the last couple of months.  I just want the never ending heartache to ease. I feel like I’m just going through the motions every day, but I know that every day that passes, my heart heals a little. One day, I’m sure without realizing it, I will wake up, and I will have a whole heart again.

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Burn

I’ve now been told that…

…it was good that I was around, because it kept him from going crazy with just the animals.

and

…it was good to have me around to play so many games of the word game.

I sort of never want to date again.

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too little, too late

I ruined everything, just like I always do.

I had another post written,  but that has now been published as private, because I don’t think I can handle putting my heart out there. Not in an identifiable way.

 

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