I just read the last few entries of my blog. It's been a while since I've written here. I haven't been here much, for many reasons. But sometimes I think there are still moments when I need to write and express myself.
A year ago I was in Prague for Christmas with my brother and his wife. I had many emotional moments - I was beginning my journey, my walk out of darkness into the light. I remember my last night in Prague. It was New Years Eve, and it was probably one of the darkest moments I had ever known. I shed so many tears that night.
And then there was my 4 month escape to Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Australia. I can't believe I've been home for 7 months now. That trip is only a memory now. I long for it again. I long for all those amazing moments...learning who I am. I can't even begin to express to anyone here how much I've grown and changed from those moments. To say I found my smile again doesn't even come close.
2012 was to be my year of change, and wow did I ever change. I am not the same girl I was a year ago, wandering the streets of Prague. I am not the same girl who was terrified for my first solo trip to Berlin where I would know no one. I am not the same girl who was terrified to face myself all alone in my journey. I faced her, and I grew to love her. In one swift moment, I learned who I was, and ironically realized I had always known. It seems so dumb to say that, but it couldn't be more true.
I wouldn't say my life is perfect. I'm still trying to figure some things out...but at least I know who I am. Now it's time to figure out what I want.
There's a part of me that wishes that we were going into the beginning of 2012 again....just so I could live those moments all over again. But I know I have to move forward, and continue to figure it out.
I'm going to miss my moments of 2012. It went by way too fast!
It was a rough day the last 24 hours. I got an email last night from the people I stayed with in southern Australia last week, expressing their disappointment with me during my stay, accusing me of being less than gracious and basically a freeloader. My heart raced at these accusations of me, in all of my 37 years, no one had ever accused me of such things. Within the last few hours, we have smoothed things over, but I am still left perplexed as to why they felt I had so missed the mark on their expectations.
They were strangers to me, connected by a mutual friend, and they offered to have me stay with them. I have learned that we have a much different value system, theirs is one in which they evidently have extremely high and unknowing expectations, and a "holier than thou" attitude. I felt it right from the time we met, but out it aside to enjoy my time there. But the backlash I got last night was hurtful and 100% the opposite of who I am.
It took talking to a few people, including my sister to realize that they had accused me of being someone so completely different than the girl I was raised to be. My sister said that neither of us nor our brother would ever treat people the way I had been accused of. It's very true, that's not who my parents taught me to be. I offered help where needed to make dinner, clean up dishes, pay for meals out, and to be gracious for the free place to stay. I did everything my parents would have asked me to be. To this moment, I do not know what they expected of me....maybe I needed to curtesy or something, I don't know! Lol
But I arrived in Sydney, Australia today...it's a little surreal that I am here. After all the drama, I forced myself to go out for a while. I hadn't intended on going to the harbour just yet, I was too bummed from the email the night before. But with my iPod on, I found myself wandering down there anyway. As I walked down the hill, around the corner to the left appeared the iconic Harbour Bridge, and around the other corner to the right, the even more iconic Sydney Opera House appeared just as "Paradise" by Coldplay was playing on my iPod.
In these moments I was saying (and pardon my language, but it is honest)...."fuck em all! If people don't like me for who I am, who I was raised to be, and who God meant for me to be, then fuck em all!". For the first time ever in my life, I didn't care what someone thought of me. I knew who I was, and they had viewed me completely wrong, and I knew it to be true. For the first time, I felt strong enough in myself to say so, and to know that this is me. And as these two iconic structures appeared to the lyrics of Paradise playing in my ears, I knew I was doing what I was meant to do....finding myself, and making it! I am making it on my own, and you know what? I'm doing a fucking good job at it too!
In those moments, tears came to my eyes. I was proud of myself.
I am blessed for these four months off, for the time to find myself and to learn so many wonderful and amazing things.
I am not sure why it took me so long to get this, but I only just realized this yesterday. It seems so logical, and yet it took me this long to get it.....
1. People come into my life out of their own free will. They participate in my life in their own choosing. They either like me, or love me by they're own free choice.
2. People who decide to depart from my life do so out of their own free will. Most times I don't know why, but often it's for good reason, and my life is better without them. For those whom I miss, well...it's a question I may never have the answer to, and I just have to accept that it's for a reason.
3. People who decide to stay in my life do so out of their own free will. I don't have to force them, and I don't have to always make sure everything is perfect so that they will stay. They show up everyday because they want to. They like me or love me just because they do. I don't make them do it, they do so simply because they want to.
I have spent my life worrying about those that I love, making sure that they are always happy, worried if something is wrong and it might threaten our relationship, and I try to protect it so deeply because I don't want to lose it. I almost smother it too much for fear that if I didn't, I would lose everything. But I realized that I don't have to do that. I don't have to make things perfect just so that they will stay. They stay because the see something in me worth being there for.
When I talked to my boyfriend about this, I said "you're here cause you want to be, you show up every day because you want to be with me, and you love me just cause, right?" and he said "yep!". And then I said "I don't know why it took me so long to get that", and he said "I don't know either cause I've been telling you that all along!"
I love the fact that I finally get it....and you know, the ones who have decided to depart, well I hope that it was the right choice for them. I hope that they are happy. And obviously it was part of some greater plan for me, and I will just chose to move on. For those who pretended to care, told me lies and then disappeared silently....I can assure you, my life is better cause you're gone, and I won't shed a tear over you!
But for those who are here with me now, and maybe want to stay in my life....thank you for choosing me. Thank you for welcoming me into your life and choosing to be a part of mine. I choose to have you in my life, too. I love you guys, and I know my life is better because you're a part of it.
I love the lessons that I am learning as I travel. It's amazing so far how far I've come!
I just read the previous post I made on this blog. That was about two and a half months ago, but it almost seems like a lifetime ago. I said then that I couldn't wait to get away from life for a while. Well.....here I am. I am halfway wround the world in Malaysia, experiencing a little bit of paradise. Back then, on new years eve, I never thought I would actually make it here, I just needed it that bad. I needed that escape from life more than any of you could understand. I needed to leave behind my entire life, my family, my friends, my precious niece, my sweet puppy, my job, my everything. I even left behind my love, all in an effort to find me without him, without everyone. He's still there. He stands back in the shadows, watching me, loving me, and encouraging me to take flight.
I have come a long way since that last post. Then, I was alone. I felt alone, all alone. I certainly have moments of loneliness here. I am traveling on my own across four countries in four months. But i dont feel quite as alone as i felt that night. I look at myself in the mirror, and someone very different is looking back at me now, much more different than the reflection when I was in Prague. Back then, my face was pale, almost grey. My eyes looked low, worn and sagged. In just a few years, I had aged twice as fast. I think that, in the last six weeks, I have lost a few of the extra years I had aged. There is colour in my skin again, although it doesn't hurt that the topical sun has given my face a soft glow. Still, my cheeks look lifted, my eyes are brighter, and dare I say, the corners of my lips are turned up slightly.
I haven't solved every mystery, but as my love would say, I'm "getting my shit together". I think one of my biggest lessons was learning to do things for myself. Not just taking care of myself, but doing things FOR myself because I wanted to. Being a little bit selfish, in a healthy way. I'm also starting to learn how to stop the negativity in my mind about myself. I'm not perfect at it yet, far from it. But I am learning how to turn it off when I find myself doing it.
I am proud to say that I am growing. I'm growing up in my maturity, my spiritual health, and my sense of peace. And I am growing young in my face, my body language and my outlook. I am evolving and changing, no doubt, and I like how it feels. If you asked me six months ago if the purpose of this trip would achieve what I was looking for, I would tell you "gosh I hope so!". If you were to ask me now if the purpose of this trip is achieving what I am looking for, I would say "yes it is!" Even if it's only achieving a part of the full spectrum, at least it's something!
I still have two and a half months of travel time left, which is a lot of time to still evolve and grow. I hope that along the way, I will experience more things that will allow me to do things I've never done before. I hope to find that peace in my life that, until now, has remained so elusive. Dare I say, I might have even found a tiny little bit already. I think it resides in my face.
It's good to finally have something good to write about!
The clock turned to midnight tonight. I was with my brother, his wife and her friend. We had a good evening, lots of laughs, good food and wine. Given the past couple of years, I was with the right people. I am on my own now, but I needed to be with people that I was close to.
I have never spent New Years anywhere but at home. Being in Prague is a different experience. They told me that everyone buys fireworks and sets them off in the streets, and with the old European buildings built so close to one another, the sounds hit the buildings, and it's loud, and it sounds like a war zone. I wanted to see it for myself, and so I ran down the four flights of stairs with my camera to capture it all.
I figured that the fireworks would be down the street a bit, in little squares and parks. I didn't know that they would be right on this corner to the left, and another corner just up the street, they were all banging right above my head. There were dozens of people out in the street, beer in hand, yelling and cheering their happy new year with their friends. I had never experienced anything like ths in my life.
It was then that I realized I was alone. Sure, my family and my friend were right upstairs. My love was thinking about me I know. My family back home, my friends, those who care about me, I know they were in my heart. Even my EP friends, I know they were thinking of me. But still I was alone.
In the midst of the non stop fireworks above my head, and the cheers of people around me, I stood there with my camera capturing it all.....and tears were streaming down my cheeks. I am halfway around the world, celebrations all around me....and I am bawling in the street. Crying for what? I'm not sure I know. A million things I'm sure. My freedom, my sorrow, my happiness, my pain, my loneliness, my fears, my blessings....and a million more.
The only thing I know is that I have found myself at my absolute worst this year. The new year can only go up from here. 2012 has GOT to be better.
Tonight was a night when I really needed someone to hold me in that moment. What I would give for that....I can't even begin to tell you what that would do for me.
I am ready for 2012....but this New Years Eve was definitely the most emotional one I've ever had. Tomorrow I go home, back to a life that I'm not happy in. Four weeks from tomorrow I get to leave it for a while. I need it bad...
"I will have to tell you; you have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love, I love, I love you. I wish never to be parted from you from this day on."
~Pride & Prejudice
I have seen the movie, and read the book...and just watching the movie again now....how I dare to dream that love could find me this way. I do not want it to be mere fantasy...I dream of love so pure and real. I may be foolish to think it possible....but if I've known it once, I believe that it is possible again.
Alright, I know I read slow...I'm still reading "Eat, Pray, Love". Why is it that I still find moments that make me stop in my tracks, my lip quivering, and tears falling from my eyes?
I was reading page 288...and it says "He said I seemed young but also open and excited and relieved to be recognized and so tired of being brave."
That's me all over again. I present myself as mature, self-assured and confident...and yet deep within I seem anything but that. I am just a young girl inside, just waiting to be recognized, to be seen for who I truly am, to be appreciated for who I am. And yes. I am tired of being brave. I looked up the word "brave"...possessing courageous endurance. I don't know how that could be anything but me.
Throughout the course of my life, I have been through the ringer, shot down, stood up and got shot down again. Faced a mine field of so many things. And now, facing my toughest endurance...the loss of my marriage, and the fight to find out who the hell I am in the midst of everything that shaped me.
I am so damn tired. I am tired of trying to make the world see me. I am tired of putting on a happy face for EVERYONE just because I have to be strong and push through it all. I am tired of accepting so much less than I deserve simply because I have to follow through with what is expected of me. I don't want to be brave anymore. Not that kind of brave.
I want to be seen for who I am, and to be courageous to step out into the world where I can be who and what I want to be without fear of hurting someone, without fear of stepping away from the path carved out for me by so many. I have to chart my own path for a change.
To realize this now, comes at such a poignant time, but it's not time yet to reveal everything. I have to pace myself and learn what that path is before I blurt it out that I simply need my own path. Careful steps first...taking my time.
In that one part of the book, Liz gives herself the chance to be seen, to be adored,to be beautiful to someone at a moment when she is just about ready to fly. Until then, it wasn't the time. It's not my time yet either, but I see the metaphor for my life right before me in this book. Every single step of this book has been showing me my path from the past, and showing me that I could find the path for my future. Like Liz, I am heading out on my own version of "Eat, Pray, Love". I am traveling right now, but will be setting off for four months of traveling on my own to figure out who I am in all of this life, following my divorce. I hope that I will find my own peace.
I am nearing the end of the book, but I am sure that page 288 won't be the last moment of tears as I see myself in another moment of this book.
As I am currently on vacation in the Czech Republic, a moment of history has come upon the Czech people. Their former president Vaclav Havel, has passed away today. He was the artist, the playwrite that fought against the communist ideals of the country in the 70s and 80s, leading to the Velvet Revolution of 1989, just a short time after the Berlin Wall fell. While there was much upheaval and unrest in Eastern Europe at the time, the Czechoslovakians led the peaceful revolution that saw the Communist party, backed by the Soviets, step down peacefully, leaving the country to the people. They became the symbol of peaceful change at that time.
In talking with my sister in law and my brother about Havel, he is a much beloved man here in Czech Republic. The man-next-door who just happened to run your country. He was never the power hungry man, ever wanting for fame and fortune. Just a man that believed in something for his country, and made it his desire to seeit through. He was quoted online saying...
"I would be glad if it was felt that I have done something generally useful," he said. "I don't care much about personal fame or popularity. I would be satisfied with the feeling that I had a chance to help with something in general, something good. That history gave me that chance."
He was an incredibly humble man...not something we often see in the political life anywhere.
My friend and my sister in law want to go up to the castle this week to light a candle for him. I want to be a part of that, shining a light on to someone who provided a history of greatness for this country. It is amazing to see how this man has touched the lives of the Czech people, knowing that he brought them out of communism, and brought them freedoms that many had never known. He is revered by the Czech people, and I can understand why. Although I didn't understand much of what was on tv in Czech tonight, I could see the simple character in videos from just a few years ago. He looked like he could be your grandfather, no one super special. But the changes he helped to usher in just 22 years ago, helped to change the course of European history of the late 20th century.
While I know that many will be mourning his passing, I am here for a moment of greatness, to be able to feel the energy of a man that has shaped the history that I truly love to read about. May he rest in peace knowing that he was more than just a simple man hoping to do something useful...he helped to change the very course of the European community when he became a part of the end of the Cold War. That's no simple man...that is a hero.
To think I might not see those eyes
Makes it so hard not to cry
And as we say our long goodbye
I nearly do
~ Run, Leona Lewis~
To those of us without our loves by our side...may we find peace in knowing we are loved, whether they are in our lives or not.
This video brought me to tears. I know how this boy feels because I have been there, and sometimes I still am.
It hurts me when I see kids hurt like this! This should not be happening anymore! I STILL hurt from the bullying I experienced from the time I was 10 until I was 18.....and sadly, even as an adult.
This breaks my heart....and yet mine is still broken...
We all know that friends come and go. Very few of them stay. It's inevitable. People use the term BFF so flippantly, and yet they really have nothing to stand behind it. It becomes selfish, what they can do for you, not what you can do for them. Promises made are broken so easily. It seems nothing is forever anymore.
Truth is, I don't believe in best friends. Too many people have proven to me that it doesn't exist. They call me their best friend, and where are they now? They don't give a shit about me anymore. I've learned.
Sometimes, though, we realize that there is a forever friend in our midst. No, they are not our best friend, or our best friend forever. Just a forever friend. They drop into our lives, or we drop into theirs. Our friendship isn't perfect, but it's perfect for us. We may not hang out and talk every minute of the day, in fact we live quite different lives. And yet....something....SOMETHING draws us together, a mutual need, a mutual giving. The bond is formed.
I realized today that I have a forever friend. We've known each other since we were 11. We became friends at 15, in spite of how markedly different lives we led. She stood up for me when we were 17, and I listened to her when we were 18. She moved away, we found each other, we lost each other, and found each other again.....a few times over. But every time, it's like no time has passed. We are still the same people, just with slightly different stories as the years have gone by. She remembers my pain, and I remember hers.
We live in the same city again, for the 3rd time. And something tells me that we will see more of each other. Our lives couldn't have been more different from each other, and yet our friendship remains the same. We will never be best friends. I don't believe in that shit. But I know that we will always be friends, no matter how close or how far away we are, or how much time passes between our visits.
Our friendship has never been work. It came so easily, and it has always been easy. I know she would still stand up for me, and I will still listen to her. We are everything that the other needs, and we are everything that we want to give. But there were never expectations. There were never any promises. Promises and expectations are what is toxic to a friendship. But clear that all away, and a friendship may just last forever.
Today I realized just how lucky I am that we could pick up right where we left off 6 years ago, and 5 years before that, and 4 years before that, and 4 years before that, too. Nothing has changed.....we're just a little wiser!
Today I finally got word that my four month leave of absence has been approved....*huge sigh of relief*. I have been waiting for this for a long time! Now I know that I will get the chance to set out on my own, learn, grow, feel and heal. It may not heal everything, but it can be a huge start.
Now that I finally know that I will get my chance, I feel a little overwhelmed knowing that it's actually going to happen, and I have to begin preparing myself. But it can only be a good thing right? It's a huge change for me, though, and I think I rightfully feel a little overwhelmed, and even a little scared. But I fully expect it to be the time of my life. Something that's only mine, and something that will change me!
It's perfect timing that I am taking my self defense course tomorrow....a young, blonde Canadian girl traveling through southeast Asia and the south Pacific.....well, let's just say I'll stand out a bit! lol I'm going to learn how to take care of myself. Hmmm......this whole trip I'm going to learn how to take care of myself in every way possible. It's my time to be selfish, in a healthy way. This trip is for me.
I am surprised that my happiness is quite subdued. I was expecting to be jumping for joy. And as happy as I am, I know that this time away will be time to face a lot of demons, scars and fears. It'll be a time to change and grow and learn. It's going to be a difficult time, as much as it will be the time of my life. Think of it as a mini version of "Eat Pray Love". I am Elizabeth, and she is me.
It's time to let the healing begin, it's time to start planning...
I don't understand why my days seem to struggle so much. I feel like I've fallen backwards, that I've lost some of what I gained in my confidence, in my self esteem, in knowing that I matter. Where did I go wrong? What did I miss? What got me here?
I wish I knew the answer...part of me thinks I do know the answer, but I'm not sure that I accept it yet. I think that there is this desperation for me to get out of here, to leave my life behind for a while. I think that everything in my body is telling me that it has to happen soon, or I'll break. I'm not sleeping, I'm eating poorly, I'm emotional, I'm withdrawn......I am the old me again.
As we speak, I am awaiting word from my bosses that they will grant me a four month leave of absence so that I can leave and travel on my own. Every breath, I wait to hear what they say. Every time I pass them in the halls of the office, I hope that they will stop me to tell me that everything is in order. My heart pounds in hope. And still I wait. I can feel my chest tighten at that thought. That's why I believe that this is my answer. It's all I have left.
I need to set myself free on the air, land in a whole other world and figure it out on my own. I need to learn how to be me with strangers, to be honest about who and what I am, and let life guide me on that basis. I need to learn how to succeed and fail, and accept my failures. I need to learn how to meet people, on my own, without fear and trepidation. I need to let them love me or hate me and be ok with it. I need to set my heart on the wind, and trust in something. I need to be ok with me on my own. It's the only way I can find me.....and maybe, just maybe......love me.
This time is my ticket to peace. It has to be. I know no other way to find it. I need to do it alone. I need to find it myself. I need to give myself up to God, to the universe, to faith that I will find what I am looking for. So many things have distorted my view of the world.....distorted the view of myself. I need to smooth it out and see it for what it really is.
I need to see that I matter. I need to see that I am important. I need to see that I have value. And I need to weed out all the shit that just doesn't matter. I need to cut ties with those who don't give a shit about me, and I need to realize that it's ok. It makes more room for those who do care about me. My life has been miserable enough, and I can't take any more of it. I need to be happy.
In the end.....I think I know why I am miserable right now. I know my life hangs in the balance, it is in the hands of my bosses, waiting to give me the chance to go and figure it all out. I pray with all my heart that they grant it to me. My life awaits me......
Today was a difficult day. I hate those days when I find myself on the train ride home from work, and I am fighting to hide my tears behind my sunglasses, hoping that no one sees. Today I found myself apologizing for something before it even happened, anticipating that it would happen. I was told flat out - I don't need to worry so much, that I am not an inconvenience.
I find that I tell myself often that I am an inconvenience, that I'm a nuisance, that I'm a bother, a failure, an annoyance....a disease. I don't want to let anyone down, and yet I feel like I am. My divorce, my feelings about myself.....I feel that those things let people down. I've let me down. I know that I haven't forgiven myself for these things. It's hard.
In my conscious mind, I know that these things are completely false. But you can't convince my subconscious mind that. To my subconscious mind, I am nothing but a failure. I am a disease to everyone, and everyone would be better off if I left them alone. I wish I could stop feeling that way.
I hope that this week I will find out that I am granted my four month leave of absence so that I can get away and travel on my own. Gah....it's more than hope, it's getting close to desperation. I don't want that time off, I NEED IT. I have never needed something so badly in all of my life.
After today, I have realized that this time away is for me to learn that I matter.
I matter. (gah, why does that sound so foreign to me?)
I need to know that I matter. Not on account of anyone else's words. I need to know that I matter to me...and then I can know that I matter to others. Part of me is scared that I won't find my light on this trip. I am praying for that "ah ha" moment when everything falls in to place and I find my grace. I suspect that it will be somewhat subdued compared to that, and far more gradual.....but if I don't find it in these four months, I am scared of where I will be without it.
This is my time to learn that I matter. I have value. I am good. I am worthy. I need to stop hating myself so much. I need to believe that I am not a failure. I need to know that I am not a disease that people wish to get rid of. I know that I will find myself sitting on the beaches of the Indian Ocean or the Pacific Ocean, and I hope that those warm waters cleanse me, and carry away my pains, my hatred for myself, my sadness. I need to be cleansed of all of this darkness. I am desperate because I don't know how much longer I can do this. Something needs to change.
I need to believe that I matter, that I'm worthy. I hope that I find that moment. I pray that I do. I need it desperately...
I am terribly confused and frustrated today. For the first time ever in my life, I am feeling a genuine distaste for something I love SO DEARLY!
I have been a dancer since I was 4. It's been a part of my life for 32 years now. I have found much success in dance - many competitive accolades, qualifying for nationals 4 times, 4 teaching certificates, a member of the world wide judges panel (an exam that only a third ever pass after a minimum of two tries), owner and director of my own dance school for 12 years...I have done a lot.
I was not blessed with a dancers body. I did well for what facility I was given, but I was never meant to dance professionally. Instead I became a professional by teaching and judging. I enjoyed teaching. I loved judging. Being a professional required much work to keep up with everything, professional development requirements, and participation in the political aspects of administering dance for our youth. I held every conceivable executive position in our association over 15 years. I did it all because of a pure love for that rush I felt when I was on stage. Nothing else could match it.
I have been a member of the judges panel for almost 7 years. I passed the exam that was far harder than any exam I took for my three university degrees. I was put on a restricted list as I learned to be a judge. The restricted list was small, it was easy to find me and to be hired to judge competitions. Now I'm on the full panel, and a tiny fish swimming in a much larger pond. I haven't had a job since, and it's now been more than two years. (to get a job, it's not what you know, it's who you know).
I have come to realize how much ass kissing I have to do to become part of that circle just to get a judging job, and to be honest, I don't want to be a part of that circle. They aren't my type of friends.
Just as bad, student numbers have gone down so much that my employer doesn't have a class for me to teach. Over the last couple of years, everything has been slowly going downhill for me.
As for today, I was in 6 hours of professional meetings today, politics, lectures and meetings....all required as part of my professional certification. I was shocked in moments when I started to feel distaste for this thing I have loved nearly my whole life. For the first time, I was frustrated with the politics that normally I put up with. For the first time, I didn't care about the little details I would need to know to judge a competition. I mean, why put in all this effort if there is nothing for me to gain from it? And the truth is, I'm not about to play that game that gets me into that special circle of dysfunctional professionals that claim to be friends, but stab you in the back if you deviate from the norm at all.
I sat there this morning, emotion choking me. How is it that I could even be considering leaving it all after 32 years? How is it that I could consider leaving this profession after 19 years of grit, and love, and contribution......and A LOT of money towards all of my exams? How do I leave? And yet, I can't deny that it is inevitable that I will leave sooner rather than later. I won't compromise myself to play that game just to get the work. I was never raised that way.....to love something more than my own integrity and honesty of who and what I am.
I am extremely confused right now. I know that i can't leave yet. There is a tiny bit of faint hope.....and yet I feel like a fool for even considering that enough could change to allow me to fit in to get the jobs. I'm not yet ready to admit that the time to end it all is coming...but at some point I think I will need to face the truth of it all.
It is unfortunate that the one thing that I love isn't enough to trump this decision that I know I have to make. In a life of not fitting in anywhere......the stage was my safe haven. I was good at what I did, and when I was on stage, the audience dark, and the light shining on me....no one could touch me there. No one could take away anything I've accomplished. In the end, my integrity is going to win out, and I will leave this professional dancing world for good. I don't want to know the tears that I will cry when I make that decision to resign from the panel, my association, the dance school. I never thought that door would close....but I think it's closing a little more each day.
It makes me sad....I feel lost......it's like losing a part of me....
It has been quite some time since I've written here. I suppose I haven't been feeling quite motivated. In a moment of pain, though, my sweet friend told me to write, and it would help me to feel better. I hope that it does...
I have found love again....but 1500 miles away. It has been almost 48 hours since we parted, and the tears constantly sit in my throat, and surface at a moments notice. This was our second time meeting face to face, and the second time was more blissful than the first. I didn't know that I could love him this way, but here I am.
He's my best friend. He makes me laugh (a lot!), he makes me smile. We always have something to talk about, and sometimes when we don't, it's just perfect being next to one another in quiet silence. When he holds my hand, it isn't just the touch of his fingers, it is all of him holding me. When he talks to me, his voice softens, there is a gentleness there with me. He talks different to me than he does to everyone else. It's sweet really. I know that he has a soft spot for me.
I have a soft spot for him, too. Little things that might annoy some, are only more endearing to me. When I see him, a smile comes to my face instantly. I love the way he giggles all the time. And I love how being with me makes him smile. I love making him smile. There is something different about him when we are together, and I can tell it's all because of the happiness within him. I love making him happy.
But it's when we lay together, his arms around me, his eyes searching mine....no words need to be said, and I can feel the love energy flowing between us. I know that I am precious to him, and I would do anything for him. He is so good to me, so protective and caring. He cares for my heart, and never wants me to hurt the way I once was in the past. I know that he loves me. I see it in everything he does.
My heart aches being so far away from him now, though. I feel like a part of me is missing....that part that is an extension of my hand, an extension of my heart. He's not there to hold me and snore in my ear (it sounds bad, I know! But I'd take that over a silent sleep any day!), and he's not there to kiss me when we wake. He's on the other end of my phone, and on the other end of skype each night. I miss him so much!
T...I love you. You are my best friend, and I feel lost without you. Thank you for making my week with you so perfect, and allowing me to meet your family and friends. I couldn't have imagined a better week together. I can't wait for you to come up here again. I can't wait to see where we go from here. Know that I am in your heart always. I love you so much.
One of my favourite Canadian journalists casts his opinion on many political and pop culture issues, bringing a unique and often controversial view. I find him fascinating, if not completely weird, but never far from the truth.
Last night he shared his opinion on the riots in Vancouver Wednesday night...he shares my sentiment better than I could word it myself. It is completely embarrassing - this is not what Canada is about. I am proud of my country, and am proud to be a Canadian. The loss of that precious game is all forgotten in the face of these losers. They are not hockey fans, they are not true Canadians.
I had to share Rex's words, so I've placed a link below for the video (there's some pretty damning evidence in the pictures), I can't em
Those clod poles, ne’er-do-wells, vandals, punks, thugs and assorted clueless dolts who smacked people around, piled on others, fought with and sought to injure police, set fire to cars, broke into stores, trashed and looted at will in Vancouver last night – are all a pathetic pack of cowardly destructive losers. An older generation, not bent by the winds of political correctness would rightly have called them the scum of the earth.
There aren't any excuses for they did. None. None. At. All. If these whiny, pampered, useless sacks of skin even try to claim it was because their team lost, then they haven't got the intelligence of a ball of mud. Fools don't need a motive to be fools and destructive and threatening fools, such as those who rioted last night in Vancouver are no exception to this rule. This kind of fool will riot when “his” team wins as easily as when it loses, the game was just a convenient trigger.
The damage was one thing. The insolence is altogether another. Consider what they did.
These vulgarians defecated on the reputation of one of Canada's first cities. They hurt the stores and the employment of honest city-caring people in Vancouver. They sprayed dirt and worse into the face of every half decent sports fan in all of North America. They turned what was – even with the loss – a moment of intense national interest and pride into a world-class embarrassment, an ugly, bloody, ignorant and arrogant stain on the city that hosted the Olympics.
They trashed our country's reputation as well.
Those who can be identified as participating in the riot; those who in any way had a hand in instigating or spreading it; those who damaged property; those who hit and hurt other people; those who scorned and savaged the police, set cars alight - all of the vandals and hooligans, within the confines of what is absolutely legal, should be sought out, named, charged, and offered real, substantial penalties.
Riots should not be written-off as pranks. Mayhem shouldn't be passed over as the actions of a violent few. Tearing the heart out of a city, ripping up its stores, despoiling its reputation and setting its citizens for a while in a state of fear - should draw the just, angry and full attention of the state. Those who riot should learn the hard way that it's not a free game. That their violence and lawlessness isn't a freebie – they have to pay for it. And ringleaders, if ringleaders there were, should be pointedly named and shamed.
Vancouver deserved better last night. Canada deserved better. Even the Canucks, who had a long worthy go of it up to the final games, deserved better.
The rioters are a third rate band of losers who still managed to cast a shadow on what should have been – win or lose – a wonderful night for all the country. Everyone in Canada who loves hockey and Canada despises these people.
For The National, I’m Rex Murphy.
Alright, so I am a few days late on this, but better late than never!
Wednesday night, I walked in to Commonwealth Stadium, along with 65,000 other people to see the U2 360 show. I stepped down into section V, all the way down to row 16. Before me was the mammoth claw, the enormous light, sound and 360 screen rig that rose out of the ground over top of the enormous stage. Chills went down my spine! I was here! A year and 6 months later, I was FINALLY here!!!
I've seen a lot of concerts in my day, but none like this one. I was never the kind of girl to get the concert t-shirt, but this time it seemed appropriate! The shirt is rather understated with a very small U2 logo on it, but certainly more artistic with airy angel wings across the front with celtic knots. I loved it!
I sat down in my seat, and began observing the atmosphere around....the excitement was there! I sat patiently through the obligatory opening act....The Fray. They were really good actually. I can't deny the lead singer was attractive, and even more so when he sat down at the piano! I've always had a soft spot for a musician, a rock singer who can play the piano. The discipline, the skill.......there is something refined about him! I was trained classically in piano for 12 years....I know what it takes to be that good!
It seemed like forever to get the stage ready for U2....I was getting anxious. Then the music started, the smoke began to pour out of the big claw....it was time!
When I caught my very first glimpse of them, I was completely unaware of what my reaction would be! I'm not the kind of girl that ever gets star struck....I have seen many concerts, some really big ones, but surely not as big as this. My heart began to beat faster, and my eyes got misty (no I definitely did NOT cry, but the power of the moment, tears welled in my eyes.....it was them!!!!!). I couldn't believe I was actually there! They began with "Even Better Than The Real Thing".....and hearing that iconic guitar sound right from the beginning....I couldn't believe my ears!
They played for two and a half hours...and I was blown away by the spectacular show, the lights, the 360 screen that morphed and moved, the music.....them! I stood the whole time, taking pictures with my phone, even taking videos.....and sadly the microphone caught me singing in the background a few times! Eeeep! Not good!
The concert was so much more elaborate and exciting than I expected, and for a few hours of something real, now it seems like it was just a dream! I am sure that others might argue that there are better concerts out there....but for me, this was one of the best, masters of the stadium show! I paid $300 for the ticket, and I would pay it again without thought or reservation! I wouldn't say that I am the biggest U2 fan, I'm definitely not. But that show made me a bigger fan!
A few pictures, some videos and a concert t-shirt prove I was there, it was definitely real.....but it was larger than life, and almost seemed like a dream!
I went to visit my sister and her family yesterday. I was needing a little bit of time with my niece. I hadn't had much time with her just her and I for the last couple of months, there's always been others around, and I've had to share her. Selfishly, I needed a little non-sharing time with her! We played all day long, and a few times I had her sitting in my lap facing me as she played with my necklace, her big brown eyes looking into mine so innocently. My heart soared.
I needed time with my sister too, though. I hadn't had any alone time with her for a while, and ever since I began to think about the next step in my journey to leave the country for a while, I knew that she would be the first in my family to hear about it. I got the alone time that I needed with her.
I shared with her things that I've not shared before - how I did everything for my ex, how every decision I made was to make him happy, how I sacrificed my own happiness for his. When I spoke of the fact that I don't feel like I belong in this city, and that I belong near the water, she turned to me and said "I'm not surprised". What surprised me was the fact that I've never really talked of that with her before. Perhaps she knows me better than I think she does.
But then, I told her of the one regret that I have. I told her that, three years ago I sat on a bench in the Princes Street Gardens in Edinburgh, looking up at the Royal Mile with tears touching my cheeks for an opportunity missed 9 years prior when my brother and sister went to live there and work. I didn't get to share it with them because I was waiting to get engaged. She said that she knew of my regret, and then asked me if I was going to leave the country for a while.
She read my mind.
I told her that I am, it's not a matter of if, but when. Instantly she embraced the idea and said that this would be the best thing I could do for myself right now. I told her that, if ever I am to be ready to settle into my life again, to find the love of my life and be happy, I have to be happy inside, and I cannot find that happiness without leaving it all behind for a while. She couldn't agree more.
I cried, knowing that I had her support. I kind of knew that I would, it was just a matter of taking that step to tell her. I looked at my little muffin sitting in her high chair eating pieces of cheese, looking at me, and tears fell again knowing I would be leaving her for a little while. But, I know that I have to do this for me.
I know that I am going, I just don't know where. I need to shed all of myself to find the real part of me again. I need to let go of my job, my dancing, my sports, my life, everything, and go out there and explore something brand new and establish the real parts of me again. It is just the necessary step I need to take to find everything I've ever desired.
Next step is telling Mom and Dad......eep! My sister thinks it'll go better than I expect it to....gah I hope so!
A year ago, tonight, I was sleeping in this bed for the first time. A week after deciding to separate, I moved out of my house, not sure if I was ever going to go back. How did I get here?
There's a thousand answers to that question, many of which are simple and yet complex.
I believe that, in every way possible, I was not ready to get married. Of course, at the time, I was more ready than ever. It was all I could think about. Nothing in my life, however, prepared me for it, and it was doomed to fail from the beginning.
I was not a whole person, I was broken. I mean, yes, within I had every capability to be whole, but I wasn't. Believe me! I was caught somewhere between self-loathing and desperate sadness. Everyone hated me, including myself, but he didn't. He softened this self-hatred within me by showing me love. I felt complete because I couldn't complete myself.
I remember saying to a psychologist at the time - "I need to marry him and lock him in because no one else will ever want me." It would be fair to say that this psychologist didn't do right by me by stopping me there and helping me to change that perception. Right there, I settled. I was in love, but I was in love because he wanted me, because no one else did, and because it guaranteed that I wouldn't be alone. Damn! What the hell was I thinking???
Yes I did vow for forever...but what the hell did I know back then? I married him because that's what I thought I was supposed to do. I was with him for 8 years, and I didn't have any courage to believe that I could survive on my own, I didn't think I deserved more. I thought this was what I wanted. I let go of every personal dream I had in exchange of this seemed wholeness that was going to fill me up and make me feel alive.
I bought into it all, and I had a part in creating this life - after 10 years of marriage, I had the nice house in the burbs, the SUV, the dog, the professional career, with my Starbucks coffee in hand. Dual-income-no-kids. We seemed to be doing alright. But it was empty. It was everything he wanted, and by the time I realized it, nothing that I wanted.
Things began to change - Mother Nature didn't give us kids; our similarities seemed to be more fake, and our differences seemed to be more real; I began doing more things on my own and he became a couch potato; we inspired the worst laziness within each other and stopped caring about doing anything; our dreams were no longer the same; we stopped making memories; we wanted different things. I was beginning to change....more than two decades of depression from bullying had taken its toll on me. I hated my life, and everything in it. I hated my conventional lifestyle which seemed to not resemble my heart one bit. I let go of things I'd dreamed of as a child because he didn't want them. I stopped desiring him to touch me.
A little more than a year ago, I looked myself in the mirror, and I didn't recognize who was staring back at me. My eyes were empty, my mouth was flat, my weight had ballooned to an all time high. I stared at this shell of a woman, wishing I could just die, rather than face another day of this putrid misery. But I woke again the next day, doing it all over again. I longed for freedom.
Freedom from a life I had a part in creating, but a life that was his, not mine. This conservative life was his dream, not mine. I wanted freedom from a family that never fully understood me. I sat on the fringes for years, and just accepted my place. I didn't want to be a part of that family anymore. I wanted freedom from the chains that bound me, that held me back. I needed to fly, even if the rest of the world walked. I didn't care. I just needed to get the fuck out.
It's been a year since I left. I don't know how I survived this year. I really don't know. I don't know how I had the courage to give everything up for nothing....well, nothing but the single most important abstract thought in my mind.....freedom. Where did the courage and strength come from? God? My angels? Me? I think I can attribute a lot to those three....but there were people that kept me going.
Without a doubt, the easy ones to name are my family and my close friends. My parents took me in, my sister allowed me to come visit anytime I needed to, and I did, and my friends at work helped me to keep going each day even when I wanted to slink back into the muddy hole that was my life. There are a number of EP friends that stood by me, giving me strength to face another day, listening to my stories and blogs, showing me care and love.
But there were two that saved me....
My friends in my divorce support group. (I hate that name for that group, but there's no other way to call them) The first day, we all stared at the floor, praying that we wouldn't cry in front of these strangers. We were all hurting, and all in the same place. I now call them my friends, and when I couldn't support myself, they supported me for me. And I did for them. I don't know where I would be without them.
But more important than anyone, my little niece. My little K. *tears* She was born three days after I moved out. She gave me reason to keep fighting. The first time I held her, I kissed her tiny little forehead, and I whispered to her that when she is old enough to know me, she will know that her Auntie is a happy person. I promised her that she would not remember me like this. I am keeping that promise to her. I have spent almost no money on her, but I have given her the world with time and love. When she kneels on my lap, playing with my necklace, and then looks in my eyes with her huge brown eyes, my heart is all hers. I love her more than I ever imagined I could love anyone.....and she has saved me more than she could ever realize.
I fight for me because I want to be there for her, and I want to show her what true happiness is. I will teach her everything I know about kindness, strength, courage and passion....I've come a long way learning those things, and I will do anything I can to make sure that she knows these things too. She will not grow up in a world where her Auntie has trouble showing her love because I cannot love myself. She has been my greatest blessing this year.
In this past year, I've gone from hell, back and to hell again. Without a doubt, the worst year of my life. But I continue on down my path, leaving behind a life that was never really mine, and following my heart towards a life that I had always dreamed of. I survived this past year, I never thought I would. But here I am....and now it's time to turn over into the next year....I am ready for something good...
Previous PostsWhere has 2012 gone?, posted December 19th, 2012
Next lesson learned, posted April 2nd, 2012
I'm starting to get it, posted March 23rd, 2012, 2 comments
Six weeks in, posted March 11th, 2012
New Years Eve in Prague, posted December 31st, 2011
I dare to dream, posted December 25th, 2011
Brave, posted December 20th, 2011, 1 comment
Surrounded by a moment of greatness..., posted December 18th, 2011, 1 comment
In our moments of sadness, posted December 7th, 2011
Heartbreaking....., posted December 5th, 2011
Forever Friends, posted November 14th, 2011
Finally!, posted November 4th, 2011, 2 comments
Understanding why I've fallen, posted October 31st, 2011
My struggle and my hope, posted October 25th, 2011
I never knew that I could actually think this, posted October 16th, 2011
The ache and pain of love, and yet, it's so blissful, posted September 12th, 2011
The Vancouver Riot - Rex's Point of View, posted June 17th, 2011, 2 comments
U2 360 - best show ever!, posted June 4th, 2011
The next step..., posted May 23rd, 2011, 3 comments
A year ago..., posted May 16th, 2011, 4 comments
My first 5km race, posted May 8th, 2011, 4 comments
Speaking my truth, posted May 1st, 2011, 2 comments
Tuesday became good, posted April 27th, 2011, 1 comment
It's ME in that book!, posted April 20th, 2011, 2 comments
Too young!, posted April 18th, 2011, 1 comment
Tuesday gone bad, posted April 13th, 2011, 4 comments
It's a risk..., posted March 31st, 2011
A Lucky Girl, posted March 29th, 2011
I want to hide, posted March 18th, 2011, 2 comments
Devastation, posted March 17th, 2011, 5 comments
When a movie proves that certain things just aren't reality, posted March 13th, 2011, 2 comments
0 for 5 and hitting the red 4 times!, posted March 5th, 2011
Best game of the season, and team camaraderie, posted February 27th, 2011, 2 comments
Tomorrow, he goes back home, posted February 24th, 2011
Perfect, posted February 14th, 2011, 3 comments
My Gratitude, posted February 13th, 2011, 1 comment
My Failings, posted February 12th, 2011, 3 comments
I ran my *** off tonight and it felt so damn good!, posted February 8th, 2011
I'm out of sorts, posted February 7th, 2011, 1 comment
He arrived last night, posted February 6th, 2011
My brother comes home..., posted February 5th, 2011, 1 comment
Embracing possibility, posted February 4th, 2011
Good people, posted January 30th, 2011, 2 comments
A journey toward healing, posted January 26th, 2011, 2 comments
Confused by the fact that the lines don't melt together, they are so defined..., posted January 24th, 2011
Please forgive me, my friends, posted January 23rd, 2011, 2 comments
I am numb beyond imagination, posted January 23rd, 2011
This is it..., posted January 16th, 2011, 4 comments
Two steps forward, one step back, posted January 11th, 2011, 2 comments
One Year....my special day, posted January 4th, 2011, 3 comments
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