Tuesday, July 7, 2015


I find myself wishing recently that I could withdraw or rewrite some of my Grandfather's eulogy.

In the eulogy I wrote, I talked about him being a man's man who loved his family deeply and who held the women in his life in the highest esteem.

And that's all very true, and I certainly felt that way at the time I wrote it.  The man was 150% all about his family.  Through and through - he provided for them, taught them, raised them, had fun with them.  Gave them things his parents weren't able to give them.  And he saved.  My God was he a saver.  But he also had problems that I was blind too - sort of.

1) when it came to loving everyone equally, I'm not so sure he did that.
2) when it came to mental health, I believe he often suffered with what we now understand to be mental illnesses of depression and at times anxiety, but he would have fought you to the death to be labelled as such.
3) he thought the best way to make you strive for more or better was to help you see the worst possible options as a means of driving you to be better than that.  Let me explain, because these are truly the reasons that I wish I could re-write it now.

I've spent many years trying to figure out "how I got to be the way I was."  There were lots of great things he taught me.  For example, he taught me to save at least 10% of my salary from day one.  I did, and it's saved me more than once in a crunch, and I have a real shot at retiring by the age of 55 and living pretty modestly and comfortably throughout retirement despite any of the set backs I've had.  He also taught me that the day I stop learning would be the day I died.  I am surrounded by people who I am often envious of, because they just go about their lives without seeking the meaning of everything, but I am plagued by this innate need to peel back layers, understand, learn from my mistakes and others, while others just simply move from one mistake to the next,  No worry, no dread.  Just meh - and on they go on their merry way.  I learn which is wonderful.  But it also means I've got anxiety at times that can be very debilitating.

But I also beat myself up in insane ways over my weight.  I brood over every piece of food - the good and the bad.  I've done diet after diet and exercise after exercise.  I've done weight loss surgery, plastic surgery, taken pills, and done everything short of actually take myself out of the equation entirely...and even that, well, I'd be lying if I didn't say I hadn't actually tried dismally at that once even.

And when I've thought back trying to pin point who in my family had actually reinforced that I was physically beautiful, or otherwise even Just fine the way I was, I could pinpoint exactly who said what and when.  Because clearly my self esteem or lack thereof had to have come from something I was hearing or seeing regularly enough to warrant it becoming a self fulfilling prophecy.  I can look at a photo of me as a teen, and while maybe I did mature early, I was smoking hot and slim and normal and nothing near what I envisioned myself to be back then.  I am certainly bigger than I ever imagined being possible now.  And the only voices that I remember hearing that countered those other voices were my mom's and a cousin's husband.  I can tell you exactly when each reinforced the good in me, because it was so infrequently heard, and so precipitated likely by a frenzied experience of hearing how horrifyingly fat and worthless I was, that they needed to be loud enough to be heard.

The voices who made me feel worthless, and horrifyingly fat and destined for a life of vomit inducing profiles, hiding from the world or putting myself on display at the circus?  My grandfather's.  My brother's.  In some ways my mother too who tried simultaneously to use similar tactics to my grandfather's and only countered the arguments when I would hit a breaking point, and who I believe tried desperately to overcome those feelings herself.

It makes me wish that the counter voices, the voices who reassured me of my worth and my beauty were louder, more frequent and more relevant than all the other voices.  It makes me wish I'd seen my mother stand up to my grandfather on my behalf, in front of me to stop him dead in his tracks.  It makes me wish our baby boomers didn't respect their elders to such a degree that they'd at least call them out on their bullshit.

And so when I find myself struggling with the decision about whether to reinforce my daughter's beauty or her brains, I try my damnedest to reinforce both at the same time.  At 5 she has already told me how un-pretty she feels.  And this is despite me trying desperately to model body positive behaviour for her even when it's not natural for me to do so.  And I wish I could find the right words, that would be the loudest of them all, that would tell her not to listen to other stupid and jealous people.  Words that would scream from the highest monuments, that other people's jealousy means absolutely nothing and that I've never seen anyone so beautiful as she is.

She stops the world, quiets a room, commands attention in every single way.  And it's her beauty inside and out that does that.  How do I make her believe that...?  How do I believe that for myself now that all the damage is done?

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Hide away

I still want to run away alone with my daughter and hide away from the world.  All the great things happening around me mean little to nothing.

I'm an empty shell of a soul.  I am the absence of anything solid.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Tide Shifting

So I done got told to update this blog for goodness sakes.  The last thing I had up here was so depressing.

Well, it rightly was.  I have depression.  I have anxiety.  Hello - means often times my thoughts are actually depressing.  :)  Fancy that.

What had precipitated the last post was the fact that my brother, whom I knew had been looking for reasons to fully distance himself from the family, finally found what it was he needed as an excuse and decided I was no longer a good enough influence on his child and therefore he wouldn't be bringing her near me again.  Now let me assure you that what he found pales in comparison to some of his nasty habits, and it's not even my habit that has him making this decision...but whatever.  I'm tired of clawing at things that would eliminate his excuses.  I don't want him in my life if he doesn't want to be in mine.  With that realization, which admittedly came AFTER the last blog post, I found a liberating peace in my life.  While it's been painful to have to tell my mom that her kids won't likely be in the same room for a good many years, she's had her own similar experiences with her own brothers, and I think she understands.  Besides which, she's good at staying out of things...so there's that.

But after that moment of liberation, I started to plot a course to better things, and the tide is finally shifting in my favour.  I've been offered a new job with more money and better title and better learning opportunities.  It's a really exciting change that I think will be better for our family in the long run.

It's not coming without it's fair share of anxiety.  At the moment I feel like a great big bungled up ball of whoa...and there's no way to release it because I can't submit my resignation for at least 1 more week.  The biggest anxiety I'm having though is putting my daughter back into a daycare situation.  There's no way to make it work with commuting to stay home til she goes to school, and be home in time to collect her from school.  They don't give parents 5 hour workdays and pay them this great.  SO, we're trying to lock down on a sitter that makes the most sense, but it's breaking my heart already.  She's been in daycare before.  But it seems like I'm giving up the cup of christ by handing her over.  It's no easier than when I did it the first time.  That's because no matter what job I do for another company, it will always be at odds with my baser instincts of being a mom first.

But onward and upward.  In 20 years, when my daughter heads off on her own path, she'll have seen an example in her mother of a woman who stopped at nothing to ensure her family was well provided for, and who broke herself in two trying to be everything to her and her daddy.  Not such an awful legacy to leave behind.  She'll have witnessed confidence in the face of adversity, and thoughtfulness in a woman who truly looked for every possible way to make the best decisions for her family each and every single day.  She'll see a woman who spent as much time with her child as humanly possible, playing, engaging, and caretaking...and she'll see a woman who hopefully made the world outside our home just that little bit better.


The big job changes come at the end of the month and hopefully keep me busy and engaged and inspired for a good number of years to come.  I'm beginning the second half of my work journey - and I'm hoping it's a wild and woolly ride!

Onward and Upward.

Thursday, January 8, 2015


Lost in my job.
Lost in my home.
Lost in my family.
Lost in my soul.

Feels like no one is knocking on my door, but some how there's so much to be done, to be said, to be felt from so many angles and people that I'm tripping over...and I'm lost.  Like I'm invisible to everyone around me.  My feelings mean nothing - they're easy to be trampled on.  As long as I don't infringe on anyone else's inalienable rights to be assholes, I should be able to survive and be happy right?

It makes me want to shut the world right off.  Makes me want to take my child and live in the smallest cabin I can find in the woods, and become a homeschooling hermit.  Makes me want to not speak to anyone...anytime...account for anyone else's feelings but my own and my daughter's.

Makes me want to hide and tell the world to just Eff Off.  If the world needs to be filled with and run by assholes, who am I to fight that?  I'll just find a small slice of something the furthest I can get from anything otherwise labelled as "civilized" and live off my own resources.

I'm close to a breakdown.  Maybe this is it already and there's no turning back.

Truth is, the people you love and who supposedly love you should be trying to be with you any chance they get.  I seem to be surrounded by people who are trying to stay away...so maybe I'm the problem here.  Maybe I need to just go away to make people happy.

Maybe the world would be a much better place if I weren't a part of it for all of those people.  I clearly don't bring anything worthwhile to the table that would make anyone want more.

Lost.  Invisible.  Alone in a sea of needy, greedy, fucked up people.
Stop.  I want off.