Welcome to my foray into the blogging world. I don't promise to be your source for political and social commentary, but I will always endeavour to be entertaining, charming and witty (and by witty, you may also want to read that as sarcastic . . . I sometimes mix the two up).

You will see a mix of poems and/or song lyrics, my skewed little musings on life, the odd rant or two, and hopefully I can pass along some inspirational pieces – either from my own personal experiences or from those who inspire me.

I will try not to work Bruce Springsteen into everything I write, though it will be difficult as he does impact a large part of my waking world as well as a good portion of my dream world.

Enjoy. Be kind. Come back often and visit.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

365 Questions: What's my basic life philosophy?

234. What message would you send to aliens?
Hello. Yes, we really are quite normal and could use your help with a few things. I’m hoping we could do a bit of knowledge sharing and perhaps we could help you work through some puzzles while you helped us with a few of ours. I’m sure between our collective heads we could solve a lot of problems. I’d love to hear your ideas.

235. If you could have the answer to any question, what would the question be?
Oh, there are so many questions to which I would like answers.  What ever happened to my dad’s wedding band? Why can’t we all just get along? Why does Kanye West exist?

236. What do you like least about yourself?
I’m pretty darn likable and a big fan of myself.  But I suppose I wish I was a bit more decisive. I’m getting better at trusting my gut instinct but I still struggle with making some decisions.

237. What’s your basic life philosophy?
I believe in treating others as I would like to be treated. We are all humans and deserve empathy and compassion. For the most part, we all want the same thing: to be loved. So, just be yourself and the rest will follow. I also believe in telling those I love that I love them. I try to tell them often and I try to hug them as whenever I can.

238. What’s more important? Increasing your talent or character?
More important? Increasing my character. There is always something that can be improved upon . . . ever if it’s something little.

239. What piece of clothing can you not live without?
I’ve got a Grateful Dead bandana that I’ll probably never throw out. It’s worn out, soft and faded. It’s perfect headgear for the cottage.

240. If you could have front row tickets to any concert, what would it be and why?
It’s still my dream to lean my arms on the stage at a Springsteen show. I’ve been close to the front but never in the front row. I would love to have that up-close-and-personal perspective. Maybe get a guitar pick from Bruce or Nils or one of Max’s drumsticks. It would be an amazing experience.

241. Do you believe everyone should be a parent?
I believe everyone has the capability to be a parent, but I don’t necessarily believe everyone should be a parent. You should really want children. People shouldn’t have children because it’s the right time, or the thing to do. They shouldn’t be pressured into having them either. Having children is not a light responsibility, and they’re a lifelong commitment, so one should be sure about that decision. I think some people go into parenthood with romantic notions about what having children is all about. It’s a huge responsibility. And, I don’t think poorly about those who choose not to have children.  That’s a big decision on their part too and I’m sure they don’t make that decision lightly.

242. Would you rather be a famous actor, athlete, musician, inventor or humanitarian – why?
As much as I love music, I think I’d rather leave a legacy of having accomplished something good in this world. I love to help people. I remember listening to Craig Keilburger speak many years ago, and he told a story about meeting one of his heroes (I can’t remember who it was but it was someone like Nelson Mandela . . . darn ‘50s memory!). He told his hero that he stopped reading the paper because it was too depressing. This man told him that he read the newspaper every morning with his children. He said the newspaper was like one big to-do list, divided nicely into different categories. It showed you where you could help out on a local level, a national level or on a world level. I always thought that was a great perspective and good advice. I’d like to be remembered for having helped out my fellow humans.

243. What’s the most significant problem facing the world?
I think it’s a tie between the distribution of wealth inequality throughout the world and the rampant commercialism/materialism. Those I suppose those two things are definitely connected. Some people just have way too much money – far more than any single human being should have. And as human beings, we collect way too much stuff. As I get older I’m placing more emphasis on experiences and doing things with people, rather than buying things or expecting gifts for special occasions. Spending quality time with a friend is far more important to me than any present. I prefer the gift of time. 

244. If you were to own a fabulously impractical vehicle, what would it be?
Hmmmm. Funny question to answer after writing about materialism in the previous question. I’m not really an impractical person and pretty boring when it comes to vehicles. I’d love a black BMW convertible or maybe a pontoon boat for the cottage.

245. Would you choose to be the best player on the worst team or the worst player on the best team?
I think I’d rather be the worst player on the best team because if we’re the best team, then my worst can’t be that bad. I must be contributing in some way in order to be on that team. I was always a fan of the “most improved” player trophy.

246. If you were given money to remodel your house, what would you change first?
My first renovation would be to my upstairs bathroom. I would remove the bathtub and replace it with a nice tiled shower – something with a grab bar for my impending senior years. Switch out the huge vanity with a smaller antique-type cabinet. Ditch the ugly 1970s tiles and replace with some nice bead board, and tile using the same flooring that’s in my kitchen. I’d also get rid of the gross boxy light fixture and replace it with something nicer. Another plan would include expanding the bathroom into my back office and extending it to include a main floor laundry room perhaps.

247. What makes a house a home?
People. Doesn’t matter where you live or what you put in a house. It’s always having your loved ones around you that makes anywhere home.

248. In your opinion, what are the seven wonders of the world?
I’m not that well-travelled, but I would definitely include the iconic tree on the point at my cottage. I would also have to include childbirth – to me that’s a pretty darn wondrous thing. Love. A Springsteen pit (both wondrous and glorious). I would have to throw in the pyramids just because it’s amazing to think about how they were even built back in those days. Even though I’ve just seen pictures of them, I’ve always thought that those giant Sequoias in British Columbia were pretty cool. And, I gotta say that a starry night on the Paugh Lake deck is very captivating and never boring.

249. Is justice or forgiveness more important?
Forgiveness for sure. Forgiveness brings peace into your life. It’s rarely about the other person. You don’t need to even tell someone you forgive them. It’s about forgiving them in your heart and moving on. It’s very freeing.                                                            

250. Do you possess the qualities of your astrological sign?
I think I’m 99 percent bull J My astrological sign is Taurus and I do possess a lot of its qualities. I consider myself loyal, dependable, practical and a bit stubborn.  I am passionate and sensuous too. Apparently we’re good with money which I suppose I am to a certain degree. I’m no one-percenter, but I’m not going to starve. Where I would disagree is with the point that we Taureans are considered materialistic; I don’t believe I possess that quality. Nor am I lazy. I can “be” lazy but I’m not lazy. Taurus women long for true love and security and that is definitely true for me as well.

251. Has anything bad ever happened to you that turned out to be for the best?
Definitely. I was laid off from my job in the printing department at Georgian back in 1994. Luckily, I am a union member so there was a process to be followed after my lay-off. I did a short stint in a department before being moved to the Marketing and Communications department to produce the Part-time Studies calendar. While I was there, a part-timer quit and I was able to remain in Marketing, where I still work today. It was a great move and I love being part of this team.

252. Who is the most unusual member of your family?
Oh, there are many unusual characters in my family. One of the most interesting people though was my Great Uncle William “Billy” Murray. He was a tight rope walker and performed at many carnivals. He suffered a fall at one point and became extremely religious afterwards. He lived out his final days in Toronto, spending some time at 99 Queen Street which was a mental facility for 150 years. In her memoir Fragments of My Life, Catherine Doherty credits him for saving her life after he prayed over her dying body.

253. Are things pre-determined or all about choice?
I think there is a pre-determined plan for all of us. We are each here for our own unique purpose and to learn. Sometimes it takes us more than one kick at the can to learn certain lessons, but hopefully, we eventually learn. We do make our own choices and may take a more circular path to life’s end, but we all end up where we’re supposed to end up.

254. Which is more important – intelligence or common sense?
My boyfriend Jeff would definitely say that common sense is more important. He claims that it is his super power. I think having common sense may serve a person much better in life. You can be extremely intelligent but yet have few life skills, which can get you into trouble. 

255. If you could trade places with the opposite sex for a day, would you and why?
Of course! It would be fascinating to be inside the male brain for a day to understand how it operates. And naturally it would be equally fascinating to experience sex from the male perspective.

256. What’s the biggest lie we tell ourselves as humans?
I think the biggest lie we tell ourselves as humans is that we’re not good enough. We’re constantly trying to improve – be thinner, faster, richer, smarter – in order to have people like us. Just be yourself.

257. Which of your ancestors would you most like to meet?
I think there are some relatives I wish I had spent more quality time with or paid greater attention to while they were alive. I don’t think I appreciated my maternal grandmother or paternal grandfather enough. They were both fascinating people and I should have taken more care in absorbing everything they had to say. My grandmother was a strong woman who ran her own business and raised three equally strong daughters. She had spirit, a great sense of humour and a good head for business. After her first husband passed away at a very young age, she was forced into a second marriage to a man who was never faithful to her, drank, and eventually killed himself. I say forced because she didn’t want to marry him, but the local parish priest threatened to take her children out of school if she didn’t. Welcome to small town Catholic life in the 1930s. My grandfather on my dad’s side was a real Renaissance man. Despite only having a grade school education, he was a politician (a local Reeve as well as a Member of Parliament), poet, athlete and an entrepreneur. He loved nature and knew the importance of community. I would like a do-over with both of these people so I could truly appreciate who they were.

258. Who do you think is the most important person alive today?
That’s a tough question. You could go good or bad because both sides of the coin can effect important decisions and change. I think Craig Keilburger is doing important things because he works with young people, developing future generations of involved, compassionate and passionate influencers who want to make a difference in their world. If we can develop more people with that mindset, we can do wonderful things for this planet.

259. Would you stop eating junk food to prolong your life by a few years?
Definitely. I rarely eat junk food now. I can’t eliminate chocolate from my life but I stick to good dark chocolate. My personal favourite is the Lindt dark chocolate with coconut.

260. If you were offered a seat on the next space shuttle, would you take it?
Probably but if there was someone else who really wanted to go, I’d probably give up my seat.

261. What makes your generation unique?
Having been born in 1962, I’m considered a baby boomer. I think we’re considered lucky in that most of us have grown up in a time of relatively good employment opportunities. We’re also a good mix of healthiness, altruistic values and a good work ethic. I also believe we’re a bit more imaginative, as we didn’t rely on technology for entertainment. We created our own fantasy worlds without the aid of video games. And, we’re going to experience a wide gamut of phones! I can remember party lines, rotary phones, touch tone, the first large clumsy cordless ones, flip phones, iPhones, Androids, Blackberries – in all shapes and sizes – and whatever is next to come.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

365 Questions: Who is my personal hero?

213. What’s bothering you today?
My life is actually pretty darn good right now. I’ve got a bit of a kink in my left shoulder, probably from the spin class I just did. But other than that, I can’t complain.

214. Are you an introvert or extrovert? Explain.
I’m what you would call a social introvert and people are often surprised when I tell them I’m shy. I like people and enjoy spending time with them but I like to control “how” I spend my time socially with others. I’m more comfortable meeting people one-on-one and wouldn’t enjoy walking into a party or event where I didn’t know anyone. I could do it, but it would be a bit difficult for me. There are times when I can be the life of the party in big, loud gatherings – usually more with people I know really well – but my norm is to sit back, assess and take everything in. I also need my alone time to recharge. I enjoy spending evenings alone with Netflix or reading. I have spent a week by myself at my cottage. I like to think about things before I speak. And, I’m generally better at explaining myself or something through writing rather than speaking. Public speaking isn’t my cup of tea, but if I’m passionate and knowledgeable about the topic, I’m good. And, ironically I am a performer and can sing, dance or play guitar in front of a live audience. I like to be rehearsed though and don’t always necessarily need the spotlight. I enjoy writing my songs but I don’t have the burning urge to perform all the time.

215. What three things do you think about every single day?
Because I’ve been on a nutritional program for the past six months I’m always thinking: What am I going to eat today? Secondly, I’m a great sleeper but I usually wake up exhausted (could be my colourful dream life), so I’m always wondering why I’m so tired – especially after a good night’s sleep. Lastly, I have a sweetie in my life right now and it’s been a wonderful few weeks. He’s someone I have recently reconnected with and it’s amazing. He’s amazing. I think about him every day.

216. What’s the best way to your heart?
I’m a sucker for words. Woo me with your wit and crazy sense of humour and I’m yours. That being said, if you play with my hair I’d likely follow you home too.

217. What are you most ashamed of?
I was fairly promiscuous during a period in my 20s and I used to carry a lot of shame about that part of my life. I don’t anymore. It’s a part of my past and I can’t change who I was back then or anything I did. And because of my sexual history, I really dislike the culture of slut shaming. I was that girl. I never understood the whole double standard of why the girl who had sex was always branded with the scarlet letter while the dude always got away unscathed. They both had sex. What’s the difference? As women (and men too), we need to stop the slut shaming. Women and men both enjoy sex – there’s nothing wrong with that, as long as there’s two consenting adults. That’s important too.

I can also honestly say that I experienced date rape on at least two occasions. I was certainly in no state to provide consent. I bumped into one of my offenders a few years ago. We passed each other going in (and out) of a building. The way he looked at me – with a kind of knowing, condescending expression on his face – brought back a moment of shame for a brief moment. But afterwards I thought: why should I feel any shame? He’s the one who took advantage of me. He’s the “less-than” person, not me. And that’s the message I would like to convey to anyone who’s been through a similar experience. You’ve done nothing wrong. They’re the asshole who took advantage of you.

218. Do you believe in karma?
Definitely. It may not happen in this life, but it will happen. I don’t do good things because I hope to get good things in return. I just try to be a good person as much as I can. And you know: karma can be a bitch J

219. What compulsions do you have?
I’m not a big shopper by any means and I actually don’t enjoy it very much. But if anything will be my undoing, it will be my entertainment budget . ..or lack of an entertainment budget. I have a hard time saying no to experiences, especially good musical ones. I don’t spend recklessly but I believe in living my life and enjoying it as much as I can right now. I don’t want to wait for retirement to do fun stuff.

220. What’s the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever done?
Some people might say that purchasing a VIP ticket to see Derek and Julianne Hough’s Move – Live On Tour show two years in a row was pretty ridiculous. It was a lot of money, but my friend Laura and I had a blast – both times. I was a complete idiot meeting the Houghs the first year but was totally cool the following year. We’re besties now.

221. What are the five most important things people should know about you?
· I’m a master hugger and am very touchy-feely
· If you need someone, I can be counted on to be there for you
· I’m allergic to penicillin
· I love music and can be a bit of a music snob
· I’m a social introvert

222. Does time really heal all wounds?
Time, a positive attitude and a good therapist or friend(s) to help you heal.

223. What are the key ingredients to a good relationship?
Mutual respect. Open and honest communication. Emotional availability and a willingness to be vulnerable and authentic. Empathy and compassion. Friendship. Shared interests. Chemistry and attraction. Patience. Trust. And the knowledge that love is an action, not merely a feeling. You must choose to love that person every day.

224. What 12 songs would be on the soundtrack to your life?
I actually blogged on this topic last year. Here are my soundtrack songs.

225. If you had a diary, what would today’s entry say?
Dear Diary: I’m so incredibly happy right now. I’ve met someone very special and I’m looking forward to seeing how our life unfolds together. He’s unbelievably sweet and caring. I’m so glad that he reached out to me again and I’m enjoying the process of getting to know him. I’m seeing him tonight and I can’t wait!

226. If the weather person was going to forecast your life, what would they say?
It looks like mainly sunshine going forward. There likely will be rain or stormy weather at some point, but as long as you’re prepared, you’ll be okay. Enjoy those rainy and stormy days because they’ll give you a better appreciation for the sunny ones.

227. What song best describes you when you first wake up in the morning?
Todd Rundgren’s “Bang the Drum All Day.”

228. What have you always wanted? Have you got it?
Well, I always wanted a horse and never did get one.

229. If you could time travel, would you go to the past or the future? Why?
I would probably go into the past and do some things I didn’t get to do the first time around. I would travel back to the 70s and check out Bruce Springsteen’s early shows. Then to 1978 and go to a few shows on his Darkness tour. I would like to see the Beatles, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, go to Woodstock, visit Haight-Ashbury in its hey day.

230. What words do you think those closest to you would use to describe you?
Funny. Kind. Altruistic. Rainmaker. Generous. Creative. Loyal. Sarcastic. Loving.

231. Who is your personal hero?
This is such a tough question. Most people would assume my personal hero is Bruce Springsteen. But while I love the man, his lyrics, enthusiasm, music and work ethic, I don’t really consider him my personal hero. For me, most of my personal heroes are the people in my life. I have some friends who have been married for over 30 years and I admire their commitment to each other and their marriage – especially in this age of disposable relationships. I aspire to that. I have other close friends – like my friend Kristin – who is so incredibly creative, especially in the ways she reaches out to connect with our community and I am constantly blown away by her ideas. I want to be a part of everything she does. I have other friends who cope courageously with big day-to-day challenges. My friend Carol has lived with MS since her 30s and she is one of the most generous people I know. I love that about her.   

232. If you could choose your last words, what would they be?
I love you.

233. In what ways are you the same as your childhood self?
I was an avid reader as a kid and I still love to read. I’m also still very playful, silly and childlike. I can be serious but there’s a very big silly side to me as well.

Friday, 22 July 2016

365 Questions: When I think of home, what comes to mind?

I'm heading to my cottage for two weeks so will have limited access to the Internet. So, here are my answers for the next two weeks. I hope everyone is having a great summer. I'm looking forward to a restful vacation at my cottage. Cheers!


192. If you had to teach, what subject would it be?
There are a lot of universities that are teaching courses based on the music of Bruce Springsteen. THAT would be a cool subject to teach. That being said, I would probably teach something in the humanities, like English.

193. Who do you love, and what are you doing about it?
I love my co-workers who are also friends. They. Get. Me. And I’m free to be my authentic self around them, which is great. It’s kind of weird to say, but if I’m feeling low, I know that coming into work will usually make me feel better because of them. So, I love them back as hard as I can. I do this through hugs, kindness, compassion, being helpful, and acceptance of who they are.

194. What does joy look like?
Joy can manifest itself in a number of ways: a wide-eyed, big smile. Dancing with complete abandoned enthusiasm. Jumping around. 

195. How would you describe your relationship with your parents (past or present)?
I would say my relationship with my parents was probably a pretty normal love-not-quite-love relationship. I grew up with a mother of extreme emotions and a father with very limited emotions. This made childhood pretty interesting. My mom and I butted heads quite regularly during my teens and did not see eye-to-eye on a number of things. But, I was also the child who lived at home the longest (moved out when I was 29), so I think I had a very close relationship with them as I grew older. They truly were wonderful people and I miss them both very much. 

196. When you think of “home,” what comes to mind?
Even though I’ve lived in Barrie longer, I will always think of Barry’s Bay as home. That being said, home is probably wherever I am – especially if I’m with my loved ones – that’s all that really matters.

197. Name a time in your life when the impossible became possible?
I have a freaky gift that appears once in a while: on a few different occasions, I have asked for something out loud, with absolutely no expectations attached to it, and it has come true. I am usually asking for these things in moments of total frustration and don’t expect them to happen. Many years ago my car was reaching the end of its life and it was getting a bit dangerous to drive but I wasn’t looking forward to having a car payment again. I said out loud, “I wish someone would just give me a car.” A few days later, a friend of mine was dropping off a donation for a fundraiser I was involved with and asked if there was anything else I needed. I jokingly said, “Well, I could use a new car.” And he ended up giving me his wife’s old vehicle – a Toyota Corolla. It had been sitting in their driveway for months and he just wanted to get rid of it. It had almost 400,000 km on it but it got me through the next year and was a great little car. I have a second story involving a bunny, but it’s not quite as pleasant so I won’t share it here.

198. In this past week, what one moment do you want to remember most?
I went to a concert at a local bar this week that featured four amazing performers: Brett Caswell, Dave Thomson, Irish Mythen and Pat Robitaille. It was an amazing night of good company, great music and laughter. 


199. Life is too short to tolerate …what?

200. If you could live one day over and over again, what day would you choose?
There are far too many spectacular days to just pick one. Any of the days during my 50th year Springsteen pilgrimmage with my soul sisters Kimberly Wright and Laura Cornish. That whole trip was epic. The day in Ireland when we ended up at Gus O’Connor’s pub in Doolin, Ireland. The last good day spent with my mom and dad – maybe the day we celebrated their 75th and 80th birthdays.

201. If your life was a movie, would you enjoy watching it?
Oh God. I’m sure there would be some moments where I would just want to close my eyes, but it would be entertaining.

202. What do you owe yourself?
A little bit of trust in that I’m on the right journey.

203. What’s your soul like?
I’m sure my soul is a little bit rock and roll and a little bit Namaste. I picture it as a little turtle with attitude.

204. If you had power and influence, what would you change in the world?
No one should be hungry or living on the streets. I would love to eradicate that from our world.

205. What one thing do you hope to accomplish most this year?
I’ve been doing quite well in a new health and fitness program. I’ve lost a little over 40 pounds since last year and feel great. I started working with a personal trainer in January and she prepared a nutritional plan for me as well as a fitness program. I’ve always been a good gym person, but not a great eater. I think the change to how I eat has made the biggest difference and I plan to continue eating this way as best as I can for the rest of my life. I try to live by the 80/20 rule, so I know it’s do-able. My goal for this year is to lower my blood pressure medication or even eliminate the need for it entirely. 


206. If your life was a newspaper edition, what would the main headline be?
Springsteen fan brings joy to friends through hugging.

207. If you could choose how you die, how will you go?
I just want to go peacefully in my sleep of old age.

208. What ghosts haunt you?
None at this point. I’ve dealt with all my ghosts.

209. List the five people closest to you. Are they holding you back or helping you fly?
Here are five people who are close to me: my sister Andrea. Kristin, Pat, Kimberly. Audrey. They are all helping me fly and are very supportive people in my life. There are many more I could list and all of them encourage, love and lift me up in a number of spectacular ways.

210. Do you have any tattoos? Describe. If not, what might you get?
I don’t have any tattoos and probably wouldn’t get one. I think I would be the type of person, who once I got one, would likely become covered in them. I know I would get a Springsteen lyric – probably, “Show a little faith, there’s magic in the night” tattooed across the back of my neck as my first one.

211. If you could ask your future self one question, what would it be?
At what store did I buy that winning lottery ticket?

212. If Santa was real, what would you ask for this year?
Dear Santa: send me my special person. I have been so good, and I’m ready.

Sunday, 10 July 2016

365 Questions: What breaks my heart?

164.        Are you standing in your own way?
I may have been in the past but I’ve moved out the way for a lot of things. I’m certainly not perfect but I’m making better choices and working on my stuff.

165.        Where/when do you get your best ideas?
I find I can come up with some pretty great ideas when I’m running. Despite the fact I love music, I don’t plug in when I exercise. I like to be alone with my thoughts during that time. When I’m exercising I like to meditate, ruminate, think about things, and I find it can be one of my most creative times.

166.        If you were an animal, what animal would you be and why?
I think I would have to be a dog – simply because I absolutely love cuddling and being touched. And on occasion, I like to lick people . . .

167.        What do others usually ask you about?
Despite the fact that I’m single, my friends usually ask me for relationship advice or help in solving other kinds of problems. I also know a lot of people, so I’m a good source if you’re looking for someone with a particular skill. So, I get a lot of, “Do you know someone who does . . . “ kind of questions. 

168.        How open-minded would you consider yourself?
I’m a pretty open-minded person. I might be a bit opinionated when it comes to certain things like music, but I’m generally pretty open to hearing someone else’s take on things. Although, you will never get me to like Kanye West. I’m definitely closed-minded when it comes to him.

169.        Are you cheating on your future with your past?
I would definitely say I have cheated a part of my future because of past actions, but I’m living in the present as much as I can now and I have accepted my past as what it is: the past. I can’t change it and it’s made me the person I am today. But, the past is merely a reference section to where I’ve been and what I’ve done. It’s not a set of directions for where I’m headed in the future. 

170.        Do you “should” all over yourself?
Not anymore. “Should”ing serves no purpose.

171.        When are you most present?
Well, definitely not in the morning. It’s probably around the early evening . . . maybe 6ish. I also try to be very present when I’m with people – especially those I really care about. 

172.        Do you believe in aliens?
I certainly believe they exist on some level, but I don’t really dwell on it too much.

173.        What breaks your heart?
When my trust is broken it breaks my heart. I’m an “all-in” kind of person and I love with abandon. When I open myself up to someone and allow myself to be vulnerable and then, for whatever reasons, my love is not appreciated or returned in the same manner, it crushes me. Rationally, I know when this happens it has absolutely nothing to do with who I am, but rather who they are, but the initial impact still hurts. I’m a sensitive soul, and until I started this whole dating process, I never realized just how sensitive I am. But a good friend told me recently that one of my gifts is making people feel like they’re the most important person in the room when I’m with them. So, it breaks my heart when this gift is rejected.
I was recently “ghosted” by someone I was seeing. For those of you not familiar with the term, it basically means that someone you’re dating just disappears from your life. No phone calls. No response to texts or calls.  No explanation; they’re just gone. When things aren’t working out – for one person or both people involved in a dating situation – it’s never pleasant to have “that” conversation. But while you, if you’re the one on the receiving end of the conversation, may feel sad or disappointed that the other person may not feel a connection, at least you have some closure. When you’re ghosted, you still end up feeling sad and disappointed, but you also feel unimportant, confused and rejected on a brand new level. And again, rationally, I know it doesn’t have anything to do with me. Rationally I know that. My little sensitive soul on the other hand needs a bit of time to grasp the concept. All I can say to anyone dating is, please try not to do this to anyone. There may be a number of reasons you feel why disappearing is the better way to go:you may think it’s kinder, less messy, not awkward or simply the easiest way to extract yourself from an unwanted relationship. But bottom line, it’s really not a nice way to end things. None of us like breaking up with someone – or being broken up with – but do the person a solid, and break up with them rather than just disappearing.

174.        When was the laugh time you laughed so hard it hurt?
I can remember laughing really hard with my co-worker and friend Jaye recently about something that just struck us as funny. For the life of me I can’t remember what it was, but we both laughed so hard (and couldn’t stop laughing) we cried. 

175.        Is your glass half empty or half full?
My glass is totally full.

176.        Do you practise self-love or self-loathing?
I practise self-love as often as I can. It’s just another muscle.

177.        When did your heart last beat so hard it felt like it would explode through your chest?
I don’t remember if my heart felt like it was going to explode, but, when the last guy I was seeing kissed me for the first time (on our first date) my heart definitely kicked into high gear. It was the kind of kiss I hadn’t been expecting but it unquestionably touched a deep part of my heart.

178.        Who in your life do you wish you had met sooner?
The most truthful answer to this question is a person I have yet to meet – the person I hope to spend the rest of my life with. I will probably always want more time with that person, but I will be content with whatever time I have with them. 

179.        How do you spend your alone time?
I enjoy my alone time and can spend it doing a number of things: playing guitar, reading, watching Netflix, writing, and answering questions in my 365 Questions project.

180.        What is your favourite fairytale and why?
I’m not really big on fairytales. I either find them dark or a little too “happily-ever-after” for my taste. I know, I know. I'm such a romantic.

181.        Do you need to see things before you believe them?
I have to confess that I can be a doubting Thomas on occasion. It’s not that I don’t believe you necessarily but on some things I need facts and cold, hard proof.  But there are tons of things that fall into the other category. I have faith in a higher power – however you want to label it – and I don’t need visual proof. 

182.        What do you do each day that matters?
I’m kind to people and I hug as many as I can to show that I love them.

183.        Do rainy days make you sad?
Rainy days give me permission to snuggle under a comfy blanket and read or watch a good series on Netflix.

184.        What does beautiful mean to you?
Beauty can be anything that moves you, from a piece of music to a particular painting to the way a person’s smile can be reflected all the way up to their eyes.

185.        What was the most surprising thing about growing up?
Probably that the adults (myself included) don’t really have all the answers. We’re all doing the best we can with the resources we have. 

186.        What act of kindness were you once shown that you will never forget?
When my mother died, a number of good friends descended on my house and everyone told their favourite “Teresa” story. It was such a beautiful evening and helped turn what could have been a horrible memory, into a wonderful one. I love my friends.

187.        What three words best describe the last three months of your life?
Risk. Growth. Possibilities.

188.        What’s your favourite sound?
Really good piano music.

189.        Thinking only of this past month, what life lesson have you learned or re-learned (gentle reminder)?
That my chance for lasting love does not begin or end with one particular relationship or person.

190.        What’s important enough to go to war over?
That’s such a tough call as I’m not sure violence truly solves anything. It just creates more violence. Overthrowing a racist bully like Hitler was a pretty good reason to join the allied forces back in the day, but the world seems to have found a number of bullies to replace him. There is so much injustice in the world like poverty and genocide at hands of these bullies that I fear we would be at war all the time. I wish there was an alternate solution, other than brute force, to eradicate such atrocities from our world.

191.        If you could choose one story (fictional or non-fictional) as a message to those you love, which story would it be?
I think, being me, I would rather send my friends lyrics to a song. Now, having said that, it might be difficult to narrow it down to just one song. But I would want to let them know just how much their friendship has meant to me and how much I love them. So, I would probably send them James Taylor’s “You’ve Got A Friend.”

Sunday, 5 June 2016

365 Questions: No, I am not a morning person

143.        What makes you nostalgic and why?
Certain songs make me nostalgic because they remind me of a certain time in my life. The Irish Rovers or hearing Danny Boy will always remind me of my dad. Springsteen’s “Cadillac Ranch” always reminds me of my grade 13 year as it was one of our main party songs.

144.        Are you a morning or a night person?
I’m definitely a night person though I am going to bed a bit earlier these days. And, I can get up early for certain events (trips, golf) but it’s not my happy time.

145.        What kind of lifestyle makes you jealous?
I have to confess that I am a bit envious of those who just seem to have an easy time with relationships. My friend Kristin has decided there are two groups of people in life: those who move through life with ease in relationships and those who struggle. I’m in the latter category but I’m hoping that will change in the near future. I’m always hopeful.

146.        How would you describe the raw, unedited version of yourself?
Sensitive. Sexual. Tactile and affectionate. Quiet. Sweaty. Tired. Compassionate. A bit indecisive but moving in the right direction.

147.        How would you describe the sunset to someone who can’t see?
I honestly don’t know how to answer this question so would probably not be the best person to describe a sunset to my vision challenged friend. I might find a really beautiful piece of music with a lot of different parts and sounds and tell them a sunset is basically visually comparable to that piece of music. 

148.        Why are the things that are so bad for you, so good?
Good is relative. Everything in moderation is okay. But we all need to be a little bad sometime too.

149.        What do you know now that you wish you knew five years ago?
Your chance for love does not begin and end with one person.

150.        What are you pretending not to know?
The balance on my credit cards.

151.        If you were a word, what word would you be and why?
I think I would be touch, because I’m very tactile and I like to touch people – whether it’s a hug or rubbing their back. It’s one way I express love for people.

152.        Why don’t you do the things you know you should be doing?
Sometimes it’s just too overwhelming. For the most part, I think I’m doing everything I should be doing but some tasks or activities just take a bit more energy.

153.        What can you do today that you couldn’t do this time last year?
I have learned a number of new skills at work. Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? I have learned so much from Jaye, the graphic designer I work with and I am more confident in my skills. 

154.        What’s been the greatest adventure of your life?
Following Bruce around has been a pretty fun adventure. I joke that I have seen the arenas and concert halls of many great cities. I have met some very nice people along the way and been able to spend some great quality time with friends.

155.        When you think of ‘home,’ what comes to mind?
Home will always be Barry’s Bay. It’s where I grew up and still home to my favourite place on earth – my cottage.

156.        Do you give your loved ones the attention they deserve?

157.        Do you believe in past lives?
Yes. In fact, my sister and I often joke that we were married in a past life. You meet certain people that you have such an instant connection with, you have to have known them before.

158.        What legacy do you want to leave?
I don’t have any grand ambitions, but I want people to feel like they were truly loved by me and treated with kindness.

159.        What is your personal blind spot?
My indecision or not trusting my gut instinct enough.

160.        Do you believe in magic?
I don’t believe in the David Copperfield kind of magic but I certainly believe there are magical moments in life as well as miracles.

161.        What does the committee in your head usually argue about?
What’s the “right” thing to do? If we do or say this, what will happen? If we do or say this other thing, what will happen then? Am I doing or saying the right thing?

162.        How is life asking you to grow right now?
Life is always challenging me to grow when it comes to relationships, and since I’ve been doing the dating thing for the past year, I feel this is where I’m being asked to grow the most right now. I’m learning how to be vulnerable and yet safe; how to develop trust and still be authentic. I’m learning how to set healthy boundaries and still be able to compromise for a partner. I'm learning when to let go and not to take things personally.

163.        In what ways could you be kinder to yourself?
In relationships, it’s not always about me . . . sometimes it’s about the other person and what they are going through. I need to remember that people are going through their own shit and stuff happens (or doesn’t happen) because of that . . . not because of something I’ve done or said.