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Monthly Archives: November 2010

Change, But be Yourself Now

Changes. They are the scary.

I’m changing, (okay, trying to change) how I view relationships. “My normal approach\”Is useless here\” seems to be a recurrent thought. I normally leap blindly into things. I have gotten mixed results, though usually short-lived successes.

I don’t want a short-lived “success”  now.  I’m 23. I’m not getting any younger, yet I have a while before I’m considered “old” ( Though one of my Scouts this weekend looked at me with wide-eyed wonder when she found out I was in my 20s, and agreed to my joke of me being “very, very old”. Granted, she’s 11.)
I feel I have grown up enough to… I don’t know how to articulate this. I have grown up, lived a little, learned a lot and am working on making myself a better person. I would like to explore a mature, adult, grown-up relationship. It won’t be easy, but if something isn’t worth fighting for, why bother having it?

Now, this isn’t to say that I don’t feel whole or complete without the label of “girlfriend”. I am totally cool being single. I’m educated, independent, and capable of changing my own tire. But if an opportunity happens to show up, I think it would be prudent of me to take advantage, and see where it leads.
I think I’m nearly ready for something a little more… more.  If only life worked like that.

Shift to self-reflection:

I still have rampant insecurities about myself and especially about my body, but I have noticed myself thinking more often in the past few weeks that I am actually kinda pretty, sometimes. These are usually when I catch myself off-guard in the mirror, like when I’m brushing my teeth, glance up and see me, reflected back, all sleep-rumpled but with somehow shining blue eyes.
This is and will be a slow process. Not having any positive-reinforcement about my looks/body growing up tends to do that. My friends would use blanket statements when describing how beautiful we all were, and my individual comments/compliments focused on either my personality or eyes…

I was about 12, and just starting to figure out what pretty was, and I asked my mum if she thought I was pretty. She didn’t even look up from making dinner as she replied “Every mother is prejudiced to their own child.” Not even an ” of course you are” half-truth.
That same year, my after-school caregiver, who was also my best friend’s (at the the time) mum told me I looked six months pregnant.
Those words still hurt.
Explains a lot, doesn’t it?
I think I decided that if I couldn’t be pretty, I would be nice. I don’t know how well it’s worked, but I just try to be the best friend I can be to my friends. I’m told I’m a good friend, and I appreciate the acknowledgement. I can work on a couple things, but I’m not expecting perfection from myself.
I don’t do it for the glory; I do it because it’s how I want people to treat me.

Change takes a long time. I’m Making Changes. I’m getting there. Be paitent, I’m sure the rewards to be reaped will be worthwhile.

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Baby, It’s Cold Outside

This seems to be the phrase of the week for me. Dean Martin couldn’t have said it better himself.  (Actually, he does, he’s a much better singer than I)

The Best Way to Stay Warm

Is to groove like crazy!
I am hooked on this song. It’s so catchy, and I really just want to get up and bust a move when i hear it. And I have. I had a post-shower groove fest in my room last night. I basically put this on repeat.

And I don’t even like Phil Collins! (It’s Genesis, but still.)

 

Last weekend was FOCUS -a youth training course hosted by fellow youth for Scouting. It was a big course (33 participants! Holy) and 7 trainers.
I think the youth mostly enjoyed it, and it was a great experience for many of the trainers were new to the scene.

It snowed Friday night and was pretty windy, too. Saturday it was just COLD. Sunday, it snowed more. Again. I am ever so thankful I was able to get a scoop of gravel for Henrietta (My little truck). Otherwise Monday would have been a much different story.

The three female trainers who stayed in the cabin Friday night could not sleep. We all just laid there, not sleeping, thinking the other two were happily passed out. So, Saturday brought about some very tired trainers who managed to keep the energy up. I was very impressed with myself, I usually turn into a massive dragon-lady without enough sleep. I didn’t start to crash until about 3:30-4ish.
And then I still didn’t get to sleep until early Sunday morning!

Up here in the Lovely, sunny, temperate, warm, wonderful Southern Vancouver Island (We do have the mildest climate for all of Canada.), it’s snowing. SNOWING. In NOVEMBER. Last year, we had a wonderful extended Indian Summer and kinda skipped winter altogether. (I wore shorts in February.)

I really enjoyed the camp. I got to hang out with some cool Scouts, Venturers and Rovers, teach them a couple things, saw some different methods of training, and got to see some Scouters I haven’t seen in a while.

In a few short days, I will be braving the cold again to go camping (in tents this time) about an hour North of here.
It’s going to be Cold. And Wet. And Snowy. Possibly icy.

I have no boots (a pair of  rubber rain-boots will not be practical), so I will have to find some. I can winter camp and have done so before with no issues whatsoever. If I can RoVent, I can surely camp on a mountain and then go looking for a WWII plane crash, right?

….Right?

 

“All who wander are not lost” – words to live by.

 

Fall Clean-Up

I know it’s typically “Spring Cleaning”, but we tend to clean (at least, I would hope we all tend to clean) more often than once a year.

Yesterday, I spend an hour and a bit cleaning my room. It wasn’t extraordinarily dirty, just lots of papers and laundry to put away and I also managed to organise things a little more. I have floor space! I can comfortably sit on my floor now. Something I have missed. (I don’t know why, I like sitting on floors.)

This morning, I scrubbed down the bathroom (It’s been like, 2 weeks since I cleaned it last and I’m the only one who gives it a good scrubbin’) and mopped the rest of the house. And also made the kitchen sparkle.
(Only to go away for the weekend and come home sunday to find it dirty again, with a massive clump of hair in the shower stall, courtesy of my roommate with the lovely long, thick hair… Sigh)

Bitterness aside. I’m in a cleaning mood. And this counts for relationships, too.
I keep my facebook pretty clean, but will be going through and un-friending a bunch of people whom I don’t want on my list anymore. I feel I have reached an age where I am allowed to choose who is and who is not on my list.
I’m not being bitchy, merely drama-free. (I REALLY Love being 90% drama free. It’s FANTASTIC. Try it some day.)

This may be too much info, and possibly hurtful to the person, (I don’t know if he reads my blog or not),  but I also broke it off with my lover. (I feel so adult using that term. Nothing fits the definition better.)
In the time he and I have been involved, I have fallen in some crazy lust with him and grown out of it too.
The last time we together…… I wasn’t there. I was physically there, but… my mind was elsewhere. I think I hid it decently well, but by no means did I pull the wool over his eyes. He’s smart, I think he knows something is afoot. (One of the reasons I like him; He’s a smart cookie.)

I think I am finally ready to move on. For good.
He and I had a healthier relationship than one would think. We were able to discuss our situation, and when we  (okay, I) got frustrated, we (I) were (was) able to bring it up and talk about it and figure out a solution. We’ve had some bumps along the way, and we set out the ground rules pretty quickly – we were always free to pursue other relationships (if we wished) but were to break it off between us before we became physically involved with others. (This was to protect us from a health and mental point.)
We’ve been “off” a few times, but hey, that’s casual relationships for ya.

I also think I might be into someone else, it could just be that I’ve missed flattery and am temporarily dazzeled. But I don’t know the other side of the story – perhaps they’re only being polite; perhaps he is simply being friendly while he is dating someone else and I am wholly unaware.

I have my own reservations, but I think it could be lovely to be involved in a relationship again. After all, it’s been nearly three years (ack! Time really flies!) since I last had one. At any rate, even if I stay wholly single, I’m still comfortable with myself and will keep my feelers out for a good man. There’s gotta be one out there. Somewhere.
Perhaps.

I’m off to go train some youth to be the awesome leaders I know they can be, so I’ll see you after instilling foundation skills and knowledge into their brains!

Enjoy your weekend 🙂

Generally, Happier.

I have noticed something lately.

I’m kinda, sorta, sometimes…. happier.

I don’t feel as dour in the mornings (but am nowhere near being a morning person), I don’t feel like smacking people for their idiocy as often (though there are some….) and I enjoy some activities I had come to view as chore-like.

I’m talking to a couple more people. I’m getting out to be marginally more social (but I do mean marginally).

I’m taking a couple of risks, applying for a position in Scouting. I don’t think I’ll get it, but I think I have shown a good attempt anyway.

I’ve been pretty good about keeping up with the vegetarianism, but slipped the other night when I had pizza. I got one with chicken. Sigh. I never claimed to be perfect and it’s still something I have to think about all the time, so I’m allowed to slip every now and then.

I’m going home this weekend to see my parents and grandparents. I told Mum I was veggie and she pretty much told me it was a dumb choice. So I probably won’t have a veg-option at dinner, but there should be potatoes, so I’ll be okay. (insert teasing emoticon here. I’ll have more than just potatoes.)

School is a bit of a struggle. I think I’m going to change my studies Again.
I know, I know. But there is So much competition for the post-grad education programs. Over 2000 grads per year in BC alone. There are not 2000 spots in the post-grad schools nor are there more than two thousand teaching positions open. My cousin’s cousin (Does that make them my first cousin once removed? My aunt’s sister’s kids.) got straight As all through his B.A and didn’t get accepted into the B. Ed. program…

I have a B-ish average, thanks to a couple flunked math-type courses in Forestry.
And I don’t know if I want to deal with high school drama for all eternity.

But this is part of growing up. Figuring things out, making the best choice and trying my best.

And I need to drink more water!

I have not dragged my un-motivated self to the gym yet, and I don’t know if I can until the new semester. I have several 1000+ word essays, plus exams and presentations and school until exams are over.
My last exam is in the afternoon of the 21st of December. Thanks, computer prof. Way to make my enjoyment of that class reach pinnacle heights. /sarcasm

There’s an update on the generality of life. Now, I’m off to see some friends downtown. Have a good Friday!

Lest We Forget

Tomorrow is Remembrance Day. I have always… I don’t want to say “Liked” or “enjoyed” Remembrance Day, but for lack of better words, I have always liked and enjoyed November 11.

It was a day off school, and until grade 3, my family didn’t do much, but I’m sure we observed the moment of silence at 11 am.

In grade 3, I started Guides, and in my small town, we had a Remembrance Day parade that started at the Legion hall and marched through the streets to the cemotaph in the park on the beach. The local Scout and Guide groups were invited to march in the parade so from grade 3 until after high school, I was a part of that sacred parade.

A couple years went by before I really got what Nov 11th was all about. But since I grasped the concept, I have revered the day. I feel it a part of my civic duty to honour those who fell and those they left behind in those terrible wars. They fought so we might be free.

There is nothing so selfless as that. There is nothing more honourable than that.

My Grandpa was in the Air Force, but he didn’t get to be a pilot like he wanted. I believe he served in World War II.

And while war still rages on overseas, everyone needs to stop, just for a moment, and thank those who can’t be with us today, those who went overseas and never left. And thank those souls for fighting so we can enjoy the freedoms we take for granted in this day and age.

If you don’t support the war, at least support the brave men and women overseas fighting to keep our freedoms and privledges. It isn’t easy being away from everything you know and love for no less than six months at a time.

Growing up, I didn’t understand why other families didn’t at least come out to watch the parade. My town pretty much shut down (granted, it is a small town and shuts down on every holiday), so it wasn’t like there was something better to do. My friends used to ask me why I cared so much – I replied that I cared because I really enjoy my freedoms, education, and privledges that the soldiers fought for. They kinda looked at me strange. But I like to think it broadened their opinions a little.

If you can, I highly encourage, nay, implore you, to go to your local cemotaph or Remembrance Day ceremonies. It’s only about a half hour, and doesn’t cost you a penny. Wear your poppy, observe the moment of silence to give thanks and remember, and hug your family.

Lest We Forget.

Everybody Hurts, Sometimes.

….This is a hard one to write.

This one’s pretty damn personal, I’m warning you now. Navigate away or read on, just know that this is really hard for me to write. And harder to share to potentially millions of strangers on the internets.

(Hold onto your hats, it’s gonna be a long one.)

I grew up in a rural area. I was a weird kid, I realise that more and more the older I get. I was totally the weird girl that no one liked because I was different.
(No, not “that different”, I’m not coming out online. I’m firmly hetero.) Different in other ways – I was nice and got trampled over. I tried to be friendly and was scorned. I ate different foods, I liked different ways of playing games, I played different games than the other kids, etc. So, I turned to playing solitary games and reading. And the few friends I had in elementary school, were also outcasts; we just didn’t know it then.

We lived near a street with more houses on, and even a few kids my and my brothers age, but we had to go a 1/4 mile down the highway to get there. Ain’t happenin’ when you’re between 5 and some magical age your Mum decides. But, of course, by then the school ties have been firmly cemented and there was no breaking into those circles.
Because I had no neighbours around, I learned very early on to entertain myself. This also meant I didn’t develop the same set of social skills the rest of my classmates seemed to posess.

It also meant I hung around the house a lot, until I got some pretty awesome friends in High school and could stay after school at their houses, and later when I got my license I was home as little as possible.

Now, growing up, I did a lot of what my parents told me. Dad was clearly the alpha male in the house, there wasn’t a shred of doubt about it. Mum was Mum, with all the power that job entails.
My brother and I never really got along, but we can manage to have some conversations now. Usually about what we’re going to do for the parents for Christmas, Anniversary or respective birthdays.

I started in Guides because Mum signed me up. I liked it. Several girls from my class/grade at school were in the same group and later, in Pathfinders, I made some good friends with some of the girls – but we never talked outside of Guiding.
Later on, I asked to be in Scouts because it looked like way more fun, and I stayed in both all through high school.

I came out of my shell pretty well in high school – I made some new friends with similar backgrounds, we got along, we fought and had drama. Possibly more than normal kids, living in the Auditorium and all being drama/theatre fags (We called ourselves that. It was a sort of badge of honour for us).

I was in Guiding (As a Pathfinder, then Ranger as well as a Jr Leader for several years), and Scouting. I served on the Provincial council for Guides and the Area Service Team for Scouts. I was (obviously) active in my school’s theatre program, and I was involved in sports – rugby and wrestling – for a couple years too. I was in Leadership AND I pulled good grades in everything but math. Oh yeah, and I was trained as a lifeguard by 17, too.

When I hung out with my friends, I would tell my parents that I was going to this person’s house, with these people. Sometimes I’d say I’d be back at X time, but usually it was “See you when I get home”. This occured the few weekends I was not at camp or fundraising.

When I graduated, I had enough credits for 1.5 people to graduate. My diploma says “Graduated, with Honours Standing”. I am damn proud of those achievements. I put in a lot of effort into getting those extra credits.

I pretty much stayed out of trouble. I only dabbled ONCE in pot (for which I was ousted by my mum’s best friend (her daughter and I were in the same class) and grounded from Sept 14-Christmas.) and ONCE in drinking (which no one knew about, we were pretty sneaky about smuggling a mini-taster thing (those like, 20ml sample bottles that come attached to the big bottles) outside.

So! I ask you, if you’re a parent if this sounds like a pretty decent kid.

A (pretty much) cheerful, active, creative, social, involved young lady who turned out to be fairly pretty and a true hybrid of my parents genes, and whom also had a group of friends that didn’t drink, didn’t do drugs, didn’t smoke cigarettes and wasn’t just giving sex away. A well-rounded, productive member of society. Isn’t that what every parent strives for in their children?

That is what I am and what I grew up to be. A productive member of society who has morals and values and cares about others.

Apparently this is not good enough for my Mother.

We fought like cats all through my high school years. I loved school because it was 6 hours a day of glorious freedom from her yelling and anger. I didn’t get what made her so mad then, and I still don’t.

My Dad usually stayed out of it. He only stepped in once, and it nearly shut my Mum up instantenously.

I’m my Daddy’s Girl. And my brother is Mum’s Golden Boy. This is the family dynamic. Dad tried and still tries to treat my brother and I as equally as possible. Mum did not, would not, and probably still does not see that she obviously favours my brother.

I had a really incredible talk with my favourite Aunty this past weekend.
She is probably the best person I know. She has taken what life has given her and instead of turning into a bitter, hateful person as some other, weaker person might have become, she has instead fought to be the best person she can, to be the best Mum she can be, and is beautiful and insightful and loving and is so much, words simply cannot describe how much she means to me.

This talk confirmed a few suspicions of mine, and while doesn’t shed new light on anything, it perhaps clears a bit of fog off the glass.
My Mum won’t say a damn thing about why she’s so mad or angry all the time.

My parents almost divorced a few years ago. It was scary for me and my brother, but apparently Mum and Dad worked it out. After 25 years of marriage, my Dad was ready to call it quits. And my Dad is a creature of habit, which meant it was Very Bad News Bears.

My Aunt and I worry about Mum, but… we can’t talk to her about it because she shuts down instantly or lashes out.

_______
I have tried and tried and tried to make my Mum proud of me, but it seems I’m never good enough.

I have made choices solely to please her, which were perhaps not the wisest things to do, but too late now.

I have tried to be the best person I can be.

I have learned pretty much exactly how I want to raise the children I’ll never have.

I have two options:
I can keep on trying to please my mother, I can keep the hurt and the pain and the struggles and keep on keepin’ on.
OR
I can basically take what I’ve learned, cut my losses and go on with life.
The downside to that is not being able to talk to Daddy.

______________
This is not a choice to be taken lightly.

VanCity Adventures

Hokay, so!

This past week… kinda fell off the map a little. I had a lot going on with school, and felt a little overwhelmed by it all. I had planned to spend the weekend in Vancouver, then my host and a couple good friends of mine planned a hike and I begged to tag along as well, so that meant leaving a day early, as I wouldn’t make it via the first ferry out (the buses have more sense than to be running at 4:something am to get people on the 6am boat).
Which meant skipping a class (whoops…) and thus also missing the chance to talk to my prof about possibly doing something to better my midterm mark (60% = not nearly good enough. Yikes.)

But the hike was good. The “path” was paved and wide enough for at least one work-truck to drive on easily. We made a detour from the original plan, because walking on pavement at a quick hiking pace for 10k up and then 10k down would have rendered me unable to walk… Yay for switching to trails! We basically backtracked along a dirt path which was far better on my poor lower limbs, and I know at least one other was also pleased with the  (marginally) softer terrain.

It was also a really good chance to talk to my friends whom I love dearly and don’t get to see often enough.

Following the hike, I had a nap while the boys plotted, and then my host and I went for sushi (I have missed good sushi! It was wonderful and delicious.) and then went to a pub for dancing. A friend of my friend was having his b-day there, and apparently enjoys hanging out with Scout types, though he wasn’t much for dancing.

The bar/pub had a really amasing Irish/Scotch/Celtic band which was basically live camp music. I jigged happily away until my hip said “No more of that. You’re having far too much fun” and then I got to lean and sorta bounce along.

But Man, did I ever get my daily dose of exercise!

I didn’t do well for meal planning, but that’s what I get for not sticking to the plan.

So that brings me to the new week.
We started daylight savings this morning, which meant glorious sleeping in times. And they were, in fact, glorious.

But it now means that it’ll be dark by 3pm and that is seriously depressing for one who operates in a state of semi-solar-poweredness. Which also means I’mma hafta really step up my game so it doesn’t best me.
As well as get my essays rollin’ on down the river with the productivity. (Though I already pounded out an Excel lab about IF functions. Hells yeah. The afternoon will have some reading and research happening.)

If anyone out there has any suggestions on Veggie recipes, I would LOVE to hear them. I can troll the web for recipes and ideas, but I would rather have recipes from others who have tried them and know they’re tasty and awesome. Plus, who doesn’t love sharing their favourite recipe?

Thanks, y’all!