Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

As the hours count down to the end of this decade, I ponder the changes in my life. If I could tell my 21 year old self of 1999 [as she danced to Prince] what was coming up for her in the next decade she may have felt overwhelmed.

Between the years of 2000 and 2009, I have attended various universities, moved several times, supported women in crisis through on-call phone work, worked a high stress/well paying job - quit said job to start a Wedding Decor business, worked my ass off creating other people's weddings, married, travelled, had a child, grieved many family deaths, separated from my husband, spent 2 years on my own with my daughter, moved several more times, and said "Hello" and "Goodbye" to many friends.

Now it's the Eve of another new decade, and this 31 year old is ready for anything. I feel strong and optimistic, and I know in my heart that I will have a wonderful life from this moment on.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Take a look from the other side....

All of us single Moms, jilted Ladies, and broken hearted women, feel so hurt by the ending of our [romantic] relationships; but what of the men?

I know that some relationships/partnerships are abusive, or less than desirable, and others are fine but end none the less, and we all need to move on.

In our anger, sadness, and betrayal, we analyze our side over and over. We deconstruct the minutiae of events, words, feelings, and outcomes. We may grow to resent our ex-partner, and think him to be thoughtless. If he feels upset by the breakup we may believe this is deserved and feel no sympathy.

As we experience the deep loneliness of being single and having to re-group to move forward, perhaps these men do too. It is possible that they have unresolved feelings of rejection, sorrow, guilt, sadness, etc. I mean anything is possible right?

While we reel in the misery and relief that comes with a dissolution, maybe our Ex's are doing, and going through, the same things. Perhaps we should give them more credit - maybe not all of them, but some of them.

As much as we want to grow and find ourselves again, they must want this as well - I'm speaking of the mature men.

I was listening to the lyrics of "You Still Touch Me" and I thought about what life may be like on the other side.

Another night finds me alone
In my dreams
You still touch me

Now if I sleep
I sleep here alone
In my bed tonight
You still haunt me

In my nightmares
You still hold me

And after all that we've been through
Now I'm wondering
If you still blame me
If only half of this was true
That you believe of me
You still shame me

I close my eyes
I seem to hear the raindrops saying
You won't come back

- Sting; You Still Touch Me; Mercury Falling, 1996 -

So much sadness for everyone involved in a disintegrated union.

Instead of lashing out at the other side with words, actions, etc. perhaps we can give each other a break. This is hard on every one of us as it is - we all need the space to go inside and heal.

Take away the Man vs. Woman, Woman vs. Man energy, and we're left with humans who are flawed, and who just want to be loved and respected.

If we look at our Ex's and accept who they were, who they are, and who they'll be, then respect can flourish.

[In this post I'm not speaking of relationships where extreme abuse, endangerment, or inappropriate behavior in front of children occurred. In these cases emotional and physical distance, hope, time, and the law may have to be factors in letting go and gaining respect.]

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Guilt trips - not an ideal trip

Guilt trips are not fun, period. I really feel that when someone pulls a guilt trip they're actively attempting to take away your personal decision making. We all know what we want, and don't want, to do. When someone urges us to do things their way, then it's unfair. If we choose an outcome that differs from their wants, then they pull out the guilt card. Well, I'm sticking to my own decisions, and I'm not going to apologize if we disagree.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

What to do....

How do you let go of a man you've loved since the moment you looked into his eyes? How does he let go of you?

So many years, and many unspoken words. Conversations that should have come about; neither person spoke up out of fear of appearing foolish.

What do you do when the thought of this man makes your heart beat harder? The though of him warms your skin.

The resonance of his laugh makes you smile.

His feelings for you are deep, but not often expressed to you.

Where do you go when his beauty makes your heart swell, but he's oblivious?

What do you do with all of this love that has been growing inside of you, and may never be revealed to him?

In your mind you've created romantic settings and tender touches - but this energy remains inert.

You have moments when you second guess yourself - your beauty, desirability, and intrigue. Then you remember yourself and laugh at the nonsensicality of the doubts. You are wonderful.

...and your love lingers.... you want just one kiss to make your knees kiss to make you forget yourself.

This progression of thought leads me to think of a little song by Otis Redding and re-worked by the Commitments.

"'ve got to hold her...squeeze get to've got, you've got, you've got to try a little tenderness...."

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Stay in the moment....

As I work on relationships with people I have to remember to stay in the present. It doesn't help, and it isn't fair, to revert back to the past way of communicating. We all grow in maturity, and emotionally, as the months and years pass. Everyone deserves to show who they really are - beyond our perceptions of them.

Perhaps I can find a rapport where I thought there was none. Maybe our conversations, respect, and just honouring each other for who we are now, will grow our connection.

I move in, and out, of feeling optimistic, and I know that this is based on my fear around repeating more of the same from our preceding interactions.

Stay in the moment....

Monday, November 16, 2009

Where are we now?

Many of us women are struggling in our relationships. We may need breathing room; the space to be ourselves; to feel love for ourselves; perhaps to find hope that our unions will last.

Some of us are clinging to complicated bonds, and others are solidifying broken ones. We face the fear of being alone, or of starting over again. Some Ladies fear change and some of us fear that we'll repeat the same dynamic.

We all know someone who has jumped ship to swim to an island for some alone time - and this strong woman will move towards better experiences. Sometimes it takes longer than we'd like to reach this decision....

Maybe some of us need to look, yet again, at the men in our lives...I've added some examples of good and bad interactions with your man:

Good - Your man is wonderful to you - he shows love and respect to, and of, you. He adds to the energy of the room, and he always has kind words for you. He's supportive in the ways that you require. His touch feels good. He holds himself accountable for his feelings and actions.

Bad - He's mean verbally/mentally/physically, and you question if you should stay. He sucks the energy out of a room, and cuts you down.

Please don't waste anymore of your precious time with a bad man.

If we want to attract the best possible relationships in our lives then we must respect, love, and enjoy ourselves. It's time for women to pick up their self-esteem/confidence and try it on again. It's time for us to hold our heads up and stare down the hurdles on our paths. Let us embrace newness, challenges, and opportunities.

Monday, October 26, 2009

A troubling conversation between teens....

Recently, I was eating lunch with my Mom and Ava; we were enjoying a quiet conversation - then three teen girls sat at the table next to us. They all appeared to be about 14 years old, and in the moments to come, I did not expect the words that came out of their mouths....

The cell phone, of girl #1 rang, and she answered with a, "What do you want?" to her mother. Then came some more blunt/snarly words, and a few whines. After she abruptly hung up, she said, "How much do you weigh?" to friend #2. Her friend said, "I weigh 110 pounds...." Girl #1 came back with "Well, I weigh 95 pounds...." I was sitting there thinking about how ridiculous this moment was as the girls had a 6" height difference, when the third girl cut in and made fun of her "fat" friend (the 5'8", 110 pound one). She told the tall girl to stop eating one meal a day, and she would lose weight....

My Mom and I looked at each other wondering if we should say something as Ava was now listening to the conversation. Before I could ask the girls to consider another topic of conversation so my toddler wouldn't hear damaging words (I would have phrased it differently), they brought the conversation to a close. The "fat" girl said that she eats all of her meals, the 95 pound girl said that she eats only lunch, and the third girl said that she doesn't eat any meals - and then I noticed that she had no food in front of her.

I know that eating disorders have always existed, but I have never personally heard females openly and competitively boasting about theirs. When I was 14, I guessed that a few girls in my class were dealing with food issues, but no one spoke of this. Honestly, I have to wonder how all of the music videos, movies, young celebrities, the Internet, etc. has affected the mentality of girls. When I was a teen we covered up - it was the grunge era - and if anyone exposed skin they were ridiculed. Now, girls from 5-25 years old dress the same. Upper thighs, cleavage, bare arms, and backs are on display and this has become the norm. There must be a great amount of pressure on girls to be the thinnest, prettiest, most experienced, etc.

I really feel that if families eat meals together [and spend more quality time together] then the parents may notice changes in their teens. If a girl is not eating breakfast or dinner then maybe they could pick up on this.... I know that as parents we are stretched in many directions, and we can not give the time to everything in the way we would like to, but we still need to spend the one-to-one time and have the deep conversations with our children. We need to check in more with them.... I really believe that our little girls need us Moms as role models - not the pop/rap singers, chicks in the videos with their breasts hanging out (making out with each other, grinding with the Male/Female lead), or basket case young celebrities who are on their own highway to personal hell. Perhaps if we talk about self-love we can prevent teen girls from participating in sex tapes, sexting, and everything else that they are not mentally or emotionally prepared to handle.

The topic of weight, disorders, attire, and the influence of the media and technology is so vast that I'm not presuming to cover it entirely. I just wanted to get this troubling conversation off of my chest.

I will always be considerate of my words to Ava; I will talk about food being a source of strength/nutrients/energy/growth; I will talk openly about outside influences on self-esteem, and most importantly, I will show her what it means to be a whole and confident woman.

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Wiggles Go Bananas &

My little Ava turned 3 recently, and my gift to her was a set of Wiggles tickets. She was so excited for the concert and the whole week before she wanted to watch her Wiggles video - constantly.

When we arrived at the stadium, and Ava saw the stage set up, she did a little jig of glee. I wish I had it on video.... The concert was great and Ava had fun dancing and interacting with the group. The action on stage was steady, so even the adults were entertained. At one point I looked over and noticed Ava's Daddy bobbing his head to the music.

The Wiggles and their dancers performed some gymnastics, and they even had a couple of male Russian Olympic gymnasts (and oh, were they buff).

I was pretty amused by the mosh pit - vastly different from any concert I've ever been to before. The 1-5 year olds weren't head banging, but they were doing variations of "The Worm", "Fry the Bacon", and much rolling around and running. If we have the opportunity to attend a concert again, I'll make sure to get floor seats.

Overall it was a wonderful concert, and I couldn't help but smile in the positive atmosphere.

The Wiggles have launched Wiggle Time which I have signed Ava up for. (When you sign up you can choose the length of time, and if you want to donate to Unicef.) It's a great site where she can play various games and watch videos. The games allow children to be creative, use different skills like memory, and exploration. After children have played for 20 mins the a pop up asks them to get up and take a wiggle break; the Wiggles promote fitness and wellness.

As well, there's a Parent Resource Centre which covers these topics: Competitions, Early Childhood, Healthy Body, and Safety. All of the upcoming concerts and events are listed on the site too.

Wiggletime -

Monday, September 28, 2009

Stay Strong

To all of those women who are leaving abusive relationships - stay strong. Remember that you do know what is best for yourself and your children. You have more rights than you think you do. Do not listen to your partners' lies about your character and intentions. You are not a bitch - or worse - and you are not being selfish in leaving. You have more people surrounding you in support than you realize. Do not look to your partners' family to assist in the process - blood is thick.... Pack now and pack fast - get out.

Ladies, we need to be our own heroes and rely on our own force. Our little ones love us unconditionally and look to us for their safety.

This post is for someone I know who has made the decision to move forward with her life. Hold your head up Lady, and know that we all have your back.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Soak...a handwashing jewel

Well Ladies, I took a little time to tend to some of my hand washables, and I'm pleased with the results. My new [and very pretty] H&M hot pink Peasant shirt is very soft and fresh, and my under garments - we'll just leave it at that as this group is more practical than racy - are sweet smelling.

I tried out a product called Soak, and used four different scents (Flora, Aquae, Citrus, and Unscented) fav is the Aquae. (My sister washed a shirt of hers while visiting, and wanted me to mention that her fav is Flora....) I washed one of Ava's dresses in the Unscented and it smells like it has been line dried.

Soak is simple to use - fill the sink with cold water, pour in your Soak scent of choice, and let the item soak for 15 mins; then gently squeeze out the water - no need to rinse. (Soak can be used for both hand washing and washing machines. The formulation can handle light and heavyweight fabrics.)

I think the next batch of hand washing will include some of Ava's stuffed friends. She has a few of my animals circa 1980 that would be happy to be hand Soaked...they fear the washing machine....

If you would like to find out more about Soak then check out the link below. You can find a retailer in your city via their site.

I received some samples to try, and I based this post on my opinion.

Friday, September 4, 2009

I want to go back to school - now!

For the first time in my life I know what I truly want to study. I've been to various universities and studied many topics, and in the last year I've realized what I would love to focus on.

Since Ava's birth I've been home with her - I've been her teacher, her soft place to cuddle, her cleaning lady, her personal assistant, her chef, and her protector. I feel guilt about potentially putting her in daycare so that I can pursue something that I really want to experience. At the same time I know that I can choose a safe learning environment for her to experience a little more independence. In the long run, my degree will allow us a better standard of living and no financial dependence on her father. Who knows, maybe we'll be very comfortable monetarily....

My frustration now exists in my having the funding for school and daycare, and no daycare to put her into. This city has waiting lists like I've never seen, and it may be fall of 2010 or later before we get a spot. I'm so close I can visualize myself in classes, and I may have to wait....

I have so many things I want to do within the next 10 years and I want to get moving on them. Ava will be 3 in a month, and I want to build a fabulous life for us. Now!

PS. I should have listened to another Mom when I was pregnant. She told me [as soon as I knew the sex and could write a name down] that I should put Ava onto waiting lists for daycare. I thought she was exaggerating, and at the time intended on being home until Ava entered kindergarten. I guess I should have taken her advice literally.

PPS. The registration for 4 year old preschool (Sept 2010) is in Feb and I think I'll get Ava's Daddy to do the camping out [overnight] in line. It's first come first serve....

Monday, July 27, 2009

Oxytocin and the ties that bind....

I recently read an interesting little piece of information regarding the hormone oxytocin. Apparently, in addition to being released during childbirth/breastfeeding, it has another function - to bind us to our men.

Now Ladies, perhaps it's time for all of us to think about our "romantic" relationships in a new way. Why are we attracted to the men we're with, or why are we staying with men who don't deserve to be with us? Furthermore, why are we repeatedly going back to less than stellar gents? Oxytocin. This hormone keeps us attracted to men: who are good or bad in bed; who can't commit; who keep us coming back by using kind words after mean actions; men who we stay with even though we know they cheat....

When I read this bit of intelligence, a few expletives slipped from my mouth, and then I laughed at myself. Deeply. The big "O" has bound me to my Ex and I didn't even know. Even though sometimes he says mean things, and I question if he respects me, I always give the benefit of the doubt. I made a real effort to see if there was any potential in us being together, and perhaps I've spent more months than I should have pondering this union.

Information you can use:
After we have an orgasm with a man, just cuddling, touching, and smelling him releases oxytocin in our bodies. Subsequent to multiple orgasms with a man, just the sight of him releases the hormone. [Insert your own curses here.]

Think about your current situation - are you happy and in love? If not maybe you're being tricked by oxytocin. Perhaps it's time for a lot of us to move on.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Maggiepie Handmade Creations

Ava wore this sweet knit cupcake hat all last Fall, and it will fit her this Fall too. (Hers is a chocolate cupcake with raspberry-tangerine frosting.)

Maggiepie uses high quality, luxuriously soft natural fibres, and Canadian-made acrylic yarns - meaning there is no itch factor. As well, the shop owner uses ethically produced, earth-friendly materials as much as possible.

The sizing ranges from infants to adults, and custom orders can be made. There are great hats to choose from for your little guys or gals.

Little Friend Slippers

I have listed the Little Friend shop under my "Etsy Fav's Links" and I thought that I would mention the great slippers made by Catherine. The slippers in the photo are Ava's more recent pair - waiting to be worn in the Fall. She had a smaller pair last Fall and we both loved them.

Catherine uses only recycled/upcycled materials - sweaters, and leather for the bottoms - and the slippers really stand up to the wear of little feet. The sizes available are infant to 4 years old.

I appreciate well made items, especially for children, and this shop ships items quickly.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Stupid Boy

Well, she was precious like a flower
She grew wild, wild but innocent
A perfect prayer in a desperate hour
She was everything beautiful and different

Stupid boy, you can't fence that in
Stupid boy, it's like holding back the wind
She laid her heart and soul right in your hands
And you stole her every dream, and you crushed her plans
She never even knew she had a choice and that's what happens
When the only voice she hears is telling her she can't
Stupid boy

So what made you think you could take a life
And just push it, push it, around
I guess to build yourself up so high
You had to take her and break her down

You always had to be right
And now you've lost the only thing that ever made you feel alive

It took awhile for her to figure out she could run
But when she did, she was long gone, long gone, long gone

- Keith Urban; Stupid Boy - Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing, 2006 -

The real deal is that my Ex was a stupid boy - as the song states. He took the wind out of my sails and he pushed me down; controlling without a smile. During the beginning of our separation I listened to this song for an apology [because until recently, I never received one from him].

The greatest hurt wasn’t the end of the relationship – it was realizing I never mattered enough for him to fight for me to stay. I wasn’t cherished, and he didn’t truly love me. I worked so hard to maintain the marriage – but lopsided unions never succeed. My definition of “wife” didn’t match the actions and lack of respect in our relationship. To me, a wife and husband are partners and friends. Well, he wouldn’t let me in enough to be a friend, and he pushed for everything that he wanted.

I have a warm heart and I’m a kind person. I put other people first [with boundaries] and I’m thoughtful and patient. I put so much effort into what we did have together. He gave nothing – and I accepted this nothingness by staying. I took the crumbs he dropped on the floor for me to pick up.

I can see that the years of covert comments and veiled jokes chipped at my spirit. He continually told me that I had no sense of humour, and I needed to be able to laugh at myself. What he really meant was, I was supposed to think he was witty, and allow the mean comments.

I understand why he has such low self-esteem. He doesn’t love himself, and unless he works on himself he won’t ever be able to love another. With this insight, logically, I shouldn’t have taken his treatment personally, but I’m human, and a woman, and this hurt.

I’ve always enjoyed writing. One day, years ago, I decided to remove my shield and let him into my world; I asked him to read my writing whenever he wanted to. It was an open offer, and nothing was off limits... four years later he still hadn't opened my book. He didn’t care to know me.

The end of the song gives me closure:

Nobody's ever gonna love me like she loved me
And she loved me, she loved me
God please, just let her know
I'm sorry, I'm sorry
I'm sorry, I'm sorry
I'm down on my knees
She's never coming back to me

Saturday, June 6, 2009

My Prosperity

At this time in my life I feel appreciative for having simple luxuries. The following is a list of things that make me feel prosperous:

Laundry: Every article washed, dried, and put away (fortunately, I feel prosperous every other day x multiple loads)

Flowers: A vase of fresh flowers in every room including Ava's bedroom

Dishes: All used items washed, and air drying in the drain tray (this I feel grateful for at least 4 times a day)

Garbage/Recycling: I feel good when I empty all household cans and put in fresh bags (this positive feeling is mixed with guilt that the bags and garbage will sit/be burned in a landfill...); recycling makes breathing easier, figuratively and literally

Re-filling liquid soap dispensers: In the kitchen and bathroom - I don't care if this seems ridiculous to anyone else

Deleting old e-mails/spam/files: It keeps my computer clear and therefore my mind (I really like organization)

Vacuuming/sweeping: I dislike it, but I feel better when my floors are unsoiled

Dusting: Way too infrequently done - this is always bumped down the list due to the remainder of my to-do list (I should add 'wiped baseboards' to my list, but they're neglected like the dusting); perhaps if I can achieve the completion of regular dusting then I'll be happy...kidding...

Cutting fabric: Every day I'm closer to being able to create an on-line store to sell my wares - doing this will help me to sleep better at night (I have marriage debt to pay off... it adds to keeping me awake)

Stocked fridge: Fresh food for Ava and me; it turns out that I can cook... I'm good with my hands in everything that I make an effort with (minds out of the gutter, or maybe not...), I always have liked baking more (my Ex cooked and I cleaned up after)

Baking: Fresh cookies, banana bread, etc, placed on a pretty cake tray next to a vase of fresh flowers (did I mention I like the aesthetic of a room?...I like to decorate)

Wine: A bottle in my little wine rack (if I have three bottles in my 3 bottle wine holder then hang on Ladies! Prosperity is gushing!); If I can, I enjoy a glass a couple of times a week (I'm so responsible I nauseate myself sometimes); I use wineglasses that my Mom painted for me

Cheese: I love soft white cheeses; ok, I love most cheeses - I'm not really a chocolate person

Bread: A fresh loaf of French bread makes me happy - especially when combined with cheese and wine... (Voulez-vous de beurre?)

Opera: It makes me light up, and occasionally makes me cry (only Italian)

My home decor: I love my yellow antique armoire (probably salvaged from a farmhouse); my black [Home Depot] chandelier - it hangs over my bed and I feel a little sexier; my bedding/pillows (thank you HomeSense); my desk (it's teak and from a place where I used my "Designer Discount" - double thanks, Universe); my kitchen table/chairs - from a local vintage shop - Ava talks about the owner occasionally while we eat - he gave me a great discount; Ava's white and green polka-dot chair - she loves it, and it makes great guest seating (my girl friends are laughing because we all rotate into this chair); I love everything in Ava's room - most of the items came from HomeSense (always my go-to place) and what I didn't buy I made - I'm thankful I can sew curtains, blankets, and pillows - I have a vast selection of fabrics, and my next project will be awesome pillows for the living room

Cheap cable: For the next few months I have a cheaper rate, after that I'll cancel...I think...I'll be so much more productive without watching shows, but for now it offers a break mentally....

Scarves: I have a small collection of pretty ones, the one that I wear most of the time is purple with white and yellow flowers - I feel so relaxed and feminine in it

Music: I feel better when I have a chance to listen to my iPod - I can escape into dancing

Grandmas' jewellery: I have a few pieces of costume jewellery that belonged to my Grandma and I wear them occasionally (I'd rather she was here to wear them); sometimes I pin a clip-on earring to a shirt; (I wore a broach in my hair with my wedding dress)

My health & youth: I'm tired, but healthy - there's so much illness going around and I feel grateful that I'm untouched; I look younger than 31 - I refuse to let the "bitter bus" park outside my house

Books: I love it when I have a new book waiting to be opened, or a great book waiting to be re-opened

Family recipes: I just received copies of a few recipes - I feel closer to my Hungarian heritage by having them in my hands

My laptop: It's pink, and it's spectacular; very fast, and loaded with memory (just like me)

Seinfeld: I laugh again and again even though I've seen them all repeatedly. I use references to the show daily - most people don't get this....

Canadian music: I saw Blue Rodeo last night, and I'm inspired that I will be loved as I deserve; I'm looking forward to the Hip show in two weeks - I've seen them many times...they're the soundtrack of my teens/20's; The Guess Who make me remember my childhood; Loverboy - makes me laugh and sing along; Brian Adams - another childhood love; Corey Hart - under-appreciated for his singing ability in my opinion; Sarah Slean - such a soft and feminine voice

I'm feeling "in-like" with my life right now because overall I'm moving through great changes. As I mentioned before, this is uncomfortable, but remarkable opportunities are heading my way. Perhaps I'll meet my match.

Babysitters vs. Fathers

I need to vent for a minute....

There is a vast difference between the duties of a babysitter and those of a Father.

Babysitter: Paid to watch a child for the short-term

Father: Chose to have a child, and therefore is expected to watch the child for the long term

Babysitter: Paid an hourly wage

Father: Chose to have a child and therefore is expected to watch the child; if wages are stupidly requested they should be forfeited to the Mother

Babysitter: Seeks employment in childcare

Father: Chose to have a child and therefore is expected to watch the child; it's not considered a favour by the Mother when he watches the child for an evening; the Mother is repeatedly annoyed by the insinuation that she spends too many nights out - two nights a month over the past 6 months isn't a lot... the Mother spent every night at home for the 2 years prior - most of which she took care of the child alone

Babysitter: Is not a parent, and gets to go home at the end of an evening

Father: Is a parent, and should enjoy having his child over for a sleepover; when he whines about not sleeping much then he should know that the Mother will not be impressed - she had her first 8 hour sleep in 3 years last night....

Thursday, June 4, 2009

*#@!%"# lack of romance....

I've been with a string of the most unromantic men, and rather than feel bad about this, I feel the urge to laugh. I want to laugh at their ridiculous indifference on the matter.

I want to be with someone who is sensitive and romantic like me, but I've always settled with men who cooled in "the moment". What a bunch of dough heads. (In my head the language is a little harsher, plus I have my sisters' voice saying a few choice words.)

Conceivably, these men are romantic - except with me. Maybe the women who they dated/married after me received words of love and ardour.... I wonder if there was a break in the connection between us which didn't allow the space for tenderness. I know that we weren't great love matches....

It really doesn't matter - I'm a completely different woman than the one who was with each of them.

I'm no longer that 25 year old girl who walked down the aisle hoping that the relationship would improve after the wedding. [If the relationship is broken before the wedding then it will crumble during the marriage.] Maybe I would have made a different decision if I had listened to the quiet thought squeaking out of the recesses of my mind. Trust me Ladies, if you feel lonely, ignored, tense, secretive, disregarded, etc, then you will experience this and more during matrimony.

If you think that divorce isn't a scary thing then remember this, a divorce costs the same as half of your wedding budget (when it's amicable, and messy ones cost extra). Unless you get divorced within the first year or two, most likely there will be children involved. Divorce rocks their world no matter what age, and you're tied to your man for life. Tied to this person who you couldn't communicate with in your relationship and now you're having to work out schedules regarding kids - who has them when, etc.; and who's paying who, what support, to raise them. Not good times....

Think about what I've said.

...and I digress....

Romance, right, the point of my post today.

Passion, adoration, love, and mutual and complete respect - I want it! I've heard of it. I've known people who've had it. I'm optimistic that I'll receive it someday soon.

Friday, May 29, 2009


I've been feeling uneasy for the past two weeks. Discomfort means growth - which doesn't make me feel any better. I've made big decisions regarding the end of my marriage, and I'm struggling to figure out what to do in other areas.

For the first time in a long time, I'm feeling uncomfortable in my skin. This Lighthouse is dim.

Being on my own with Ava has kept me tired enough to fall asleep the moment my head touches the pillow. Lately, I've been restless during sleep, and even in my dreams I know I'm not sleeping well. That's frustrating.

Ava is so sensitive and she picks up on my feelings. I think we've both been reacting to each other, and feeling like we need some breathing room. It feels like 'the chicken or the egg' - who started out with the crankiness and lack of patience, Ava or me?

As the days move along, I know all of this will improve. My tension will ease, and I'll be able to go to bed without feeling guilt about a less than stellar [Mother] performance. Every day is a new start, and I'm doing the best that I can each day.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I'm still cool?

Ava and I were quietly eating dinner, and talking about our plans for tomorrow... when on the radio came the song "Rock the Boat" (Hues Corporation, 1974)
...To rock the boat, don't rock the boat baby...."

Ava asked, "What is this music?" I scrambled in my brain on how to answer the question - should I say what type of music it is, ie. rock/pop/disco? but what would it be classified as? disco? As I was trying to quickly come up with an answer, Ava interrupted my thoughts and said, "Yuck" [pause...] "That's your music" (meaning it's not an animal song, or any kids' song).

I had a flash to her teen years and her saying the same thing to me.

...At 31 am I already an uncool Mom?...

Friday, May 8, 2009

Mother's Day

I'd prefer to spend my Mother's Day thinking about children who are so much more special. I can utilize other days to take time for myself. I don't need the recognition - I'll focus on making Mother's Day an enjoyable day for my little girl. I'm a Mommy because of her.

Some children work so hard to make it in this world during their early days and years. I haven't experienced anything as heartbreaking as seeing my 7 day old baby with an IV coming out of the top of her head. She kept fighting, and her strength far surpasses my own. She doesn't need to show me appreciation for all that I do for her, I feel grateful that she's healthy and happy.

My little Ava has the ability to live in the moment. She stops to look at every flower, and she speaks lovingly to every living being - as well as inanimate objects. She finds glee in things that I don't even notice. Having her in my life has made me a better woman, as I have to be able to look her in the eyes.

Tomorrow Ava will spend the day with her Daddy, and I'll hang out with my fabulous sister. First I have a manicure (a Mother's Day gift from my sister), and then we'll window shop. On Mother's Day I'll watch Ava take pleasure in playing with Grandma and Auntie, and Grandma and Auntie will be enchanted by Ava.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Controlling behavior - I think that it's rediculous

I greatly dislike it when people attempt to control others; I think that it's egotistical and self-righteous.

How dare someone tell me what I can and can't do! I can do anything, and everything, that I set out to accomplish. If I feel excited about a new direction/project then people should feel happy for me, rather than trying to convince me of their projections of impending failure. Instead of letting their words get to me, I remember that they obviously don't know me; they never knew me, and they don't want me to be successful. If they were to really look at me they would be awed by the depth of my energy, the strength of my character, and my willingness to continually take on more challenges.

It's a good thing that my optimistic voice and thoughts are louder than the negative voices speaking at me.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Taking the long road

I feel like I've been on a long road in my marriage/separation, because just when I thought that my decisions were finalized, I took a detour. Not a detour onto another road, but a deviation off of the road... through the trees; and I stand, staring at a fallen log blocking my path, as the sunshine breaks though the tree tops and warms my arms.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Celebrity Moms - Tell me why am I supposed to feel a connection with them?

Again, and again, I read articles about celebrity Moms which go on, and on, stating that these women are in baby/child bliss. The articles talk about how "normal" these Moms are, and how their concerns are the same as other women.

I read one article about a particular 20-something celebrity who is a single Mom, and she was talking about how great she feels in her life, and how she's started dance classes. Now, if I wasn't paying attention I might feel a connection to this woman because we're both single Moms, but I read between the lines of the article. This celebrity gained 70 pounds during her pregnancy, but she had personal trainers to help her get her tiny shape back. She talked about her love of cooking for her son and friends, but she has a personal cook too. She talked about the stresses of being a single Mom, but she has multiple live-in nannies. She talked about the freedom and enjoyment she feels while taking classes, but she has the childcare [and money] to actually get out to classes.

(I understand that they have some stresses that "normal" women don't have. I don't have to worry that I'm not perfectly put together when I go to the grocery store - no paparazzi will be following me around. They have pressure to continually look good so that they can keep getting work post-baby - that must chip away at their self-assurance.

On the other hand, I wasn't applauded when I got back into shape post-baby - no one wrote about my "beauty" and "amazing" life.)

I think that it's unfair for women to compare themselves to celebrities, and it's especially unjust for Moms to do this. We already feel like we're not doing enough for our children ("Mom guilt"); we already wish that we had more resources to work with (money, time, sleep, more hands). These celebrity Moms look great, but wouldn't we all look fabulous if we had personal stylists, professional makeup, loads of money, personal trainers, 24 hour nannies, 8 hours of sleep a night, and vacations on the French Riviera?
(I'd be interested in receiving free designer clothes and shoes.... I may delight in trends based on what my 2 year old wears....)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Manners - Are they important to any one else?

Over the past two years, I've observed the interaction of
parents with their toddlers regarding manners. When a child acts out, or does something to cross the boundary of another child, I wait to see if the parents will involve themselves. Yes, we need to give children the time to resolve a conflict/speak up for themselves, but there are also times when we need to step in.

Today in music class, a little girl slammed right into Ava while dancing, and Ava stopped stunned. It was an accident, but completely the other toddlers fault, and I waited for a moment to see what her parents would do. The Mom started laughing and riled up her child more, so I looked to the Dad, and he too encouraged his little girl to keep on dancing. This was a perfect opportunity for either parent to quietly crouch down and ask the girl to say sorry - but neither person acknowledged Ava.

By pretending that nothing happened, and continuing to laugh and clap, her parents were letting a teaching moment pass by, and this girl will continue to push others around. (Last week she started pulling Ava's hand and hit her feet several times. She also did this to other children.) As this girl is several months younger than Ava, and it's not my place to parent her, I just reached for Ava's hand and quietly said, "Just say, excuse me", and I pulled her around the other girl. (Ava's very aware of her boundaries, but she gets quiet when she feels bullied.) I told Ava that it was an accident and then I smiled and encouraged her to dance again. As the class continued I watched the girls' parents, and they continually encouraged her in her misbehavior - calling everything she did "cute" and doting on her. Yes, she's a toddler, and toddlers can't be expected to "behave" all of the time, but at what point do we start instilling manners and politeness - age 5?

(I watched all of the parents interact with their children and most of them were doing the same thing - praising every move regardless if it was appropriate. I caught some of them watching me too, and I knew that they were wondering how I was able to keep Ava sitting in her chair, following what the Teacher was doing, without speaking to her.)

I'm not blaming these small children for their actions, nor am I saying that they should be expected to act like adults. I'm just observing how some adults who lack manners are raising some children who lack manners, and some adults who have no children are lacking manners in public too. Perhaps most people are always in a rush and don't think to take a moment to be courteous. Perhaps some people just don't think beyond themselves.

When I was 6 months pregnant, I slipped and fell on slick tile - I caught myself on a sandwich board and prevented landing on my tummy. I was right beside a very crowded bus stop and no one came over to help me up or to ask if I was ok (I hit my knees so hard on the tiles that I couldn't get up for a few minutes.) Not a single person - they all looked away, and I even heard laughter from some male teenagers.

When I was 7 & 8 months pregnant, I rode the bus frequently and I can't remember a single time when someone offered me their seat. Many times while walking in crowds this pregnant, people bumped/elbowed my tummy because they were in a hurry and not paying attention. Once Ava was born the same thing happened except people bumped into her stroller.

One time, I opened a door for Ava (in her stroller) and myself, and a man squeezed through from behind and walked in - because I was obviously holding the door for him.

I get frustrated that basic courtesies have been lost by enough people that these things happen frequently. I secretly smile when Ava says, "Excuse me" to an adult because they squeezed passed us without saying it. (She started doing this on her own before she was 2.)

Maybe I can change the world one polite moment at a time. If this is too daunting, at least I know Ava will think about other people.

(The other day I was struggling to open a door with Ava in the stroller and a woman [walking by] came over to hold it for me. Moments like this make me feel good.)

(On dates I've walked up to a door [and paused] and the men walked past me to open it, and kept on walking through. None of these men had a second date.... I have no interest in teaching politeness to grown men; perhaps their Mothers should speak to them.... Besides, if they don't do something small like this, I have to wonder what other kinds of things do they not give attention to?)

PS. I'm a Feminist and I like to have a door opened for me.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Library book

Library book,
Oh, library book,
I am so sorry I left you alone with a 2 year old.

You were wounded,
It was all my fault,
I knew better.

I am sad that a great book had to die,
I am cheerless that I have to shell out $25.00 to replace you.


He feels like Home to me.... Unfortunately, this Home has squeaky stairs and wood across the windows. As I stand knocking at the door, I see a few fingers pull the drapes to peer out from the darkness. He doesn't answer; he doesn't think I can see him. He's scared to face me because he fears letting go of his relationship patterns. He's scared to face me because he doesn't feel he deserves my love.

Part of him hopes that I'll give up and walk away, and part of him hopes that I'll keep knocking. He wants me to keep knocking in spite of his low self-esteem; he wants me to keep knocking in the face of his immaturity. He prays that I'll keep knocking, and that I won't give up on him. The truth is, he long ago gave up on himself, and I will never give up on me.

I realize that this feeling of Home is centred on a smell, his smell, and I will not base my future on a scent. This smell will be an archive in my memory, and if One walks past his Home they will see a grown man, silhouetted on a shade, crying into his hands.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Keep on keeping on

It's amazing to me, that after all of the years, and all of the accomplishments that we women have made, we can still move into low self-esteem at the drop of a hat. It's absolutely ridiculous that we can feel so small inside because of something someone else says. Why does this make us forget what we feel for ourselves? We spend our lifetime up to this day growing our view of ourselves, and with one thoughtless, or insecure, comment we forget our self-love.

How is it that the lack of shown love from a man can make us question our greatness? We're the same fabulous ladies we were before the so called men came around, so why would this change? Yes, sometimes we lose ourselves in a relationship, but there's no shame in that. At least, we love openly, and we gain knowledge about our weaknesses; when we're strong again we bring more to the next relationship. It's called learning, and there's no disgrace in that. Perhaps the dishonour should fall to the men who can't step up and look us in the eye (and they're such pretty eyes).

When we make decisions in our lives, big or small, we tend to look to others to run the idea(s) by. Sometimes we talk to people who will say what we want to hear. These people think that they're supporting us by just going along with what we say, but perhaps we need to hear their opinion.
Sometimes the "support systems" in our lives don't have our best interests at heart, but they think they do. What they're actually doing is projecting their ideas of who we are onto us. They give advice based on what they would do. I think that the real support comes from people who will be supportive regardless of the decisions - these people truly respect us, and the women we've become.

Ultimately, inside we do know what paths are best for us, and even though we may linger before stepping onto these paths [and people may question, "Does she have it all together?"], we need to trust ourselves.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A previous conversation

I just remembered a conversation that I had two years ago with one of my Uncles. He was saying how his Mother (my maternal Grandma) was his Lighthouse. (She passed away when he was 18.) He said that I'm Ava's Lighthouse, and when I asked who mine is he said "You". In his elderly wisdom (he's 7 years older than me) he was totally right.

I've always been completely independent inside. I've always been emotionally and mentally strong. I've always been my own rock. Sometimes I just want to cuddle up into a pair of big strong arms, and crumble. I want to be with a man who has my back - so I can take some time off of watching my own, and I can be mushy for a little while. This will come soon - I can feel it - and instead of following my past patterns of pushing away to stand tall, I'll let him be there for me. (I may even open my arms and ask.)

This photo was taken 6 years ago when I was a new Bride. It's me, a rock, a sunny day, and a Lighthouse....

... The visual of a Lighthouse differs so greatly - a faint light, in the dark night, barely visible in the thick fog; and a blindingly white tower, on a beautiful sunny day, standing tall on a cliff side (perhaps a little weather beaten). Both exist, and both portray the flow and the way we feel inside.

(I swear to God just now a tv commercial came on about a Lighthouse!)

Monday, March 30, 2009


This photo was taken at the end of my pregnancy. (Six days later, at my baby shower, my water broke and Ava arrived 6 hours after that. Her Auntie joked about her missing out on seeing all of the great shoes she was receiving as gifts, and an hour later I was heading for the hospital.)

(Last week at music class when we were supposed to be quietly following the teacher, Ava loudly started complimenting me on my new shoes - which she hadn't seen before. "Mommy, you have new shoes! Your shoes are so pretty Mommy!" I was laughing and trying to hush her at the same time. She's such a girl.)

Anyways, this post is supposed to be about me....

I like this photo because it foreshadows my contemplation and decisions to come. It's a quiet moment, on a beautiful day, and my butt looks great! Kidding, partially.... Actually, I was kicking butt at Bocce Ball and feeling strong. This strength will always carry me along. (Sometimes this strength blasts through, and takes down, whatever opposition is in the way, and she does it with a smile.)

I've always been a creative person and I have both Type B & A qualities - to add more labels. I'm very organized, punctual, and business minded which fulfills the Type A requirements. As for the Type B traits, I love to make things with my hands and to write. I just sold my Wedding Decorating Company, and started another company under which I'll make and sell bags and jewellery. (Once I have some product ready I'll start an Etsy shop.) I'm looking forward to my evenings being filled with baubles and fabric.

I'm a Pisces, and I recently found out that I have a lot of Aries in me as well - which makes so much sense. A lot of the time when people complain, or waffle, I hear in my head "Just deal with it!" Make a decision! Change your life! Buy those shoes! The Aries doesn't take over, thank God, and most of the time I'm very sensitive and I get my feelings hurt regularly. I'm a romantic and I know that life will only get better from here. I have arrived into my 30's and I'm excited!

I feel more like myself than I ever have before. No more hiding my thoughts because others can't handle my truth. I have a history of quietly losing myself when in a relationship with a man. I've always been so different than the men I was with that I withheld myself. Honestly, I didn't want to freak them out - some things that I think about are kind of out there. Now that I'm older and wiser, I see clearly that none of these men were right for me. They didn't fit into my life, not the other way around. Too bad I didn't get this by 20.

I was raised Catholic and thank God I got over that guilt years before the Mother guilt set in. That would have been too much to handle. Besides it wasn't a good match for me. I'm psychic, I don't like having rules put onto my existence, and I think that people should be able to make their own decisions about who, what, and when they do stuff in the bedroom.

I feel like I've moved past a crossroad in my life and now I have to make another decision. Perhaps re-make a decision - perhaps solidify a decision - perhaps change a decision. And around and around in my head it goes. At least I'm clear on the topic of the decision. Sometimes I have moments when I see how endearing I am, and there's no one else there to appreciate it. I know, I know, the wrong people were there (see two paragraphs above).

Overall, I'm flawed, real, and the perfect role model for my daughter.

My little Ava

My little Ava will be 2 1/2 in a couple of days.
She's a light in my life, and the cause of the sleep deprivation
I've experienced since week 1 of my pregnancy.

Ava's the sweetest and most considerate person I know. She's highly intelligent and very observant. I'm not boasting - I speak the truth. (Last week she assembled two Ikea bookshelves.)

Her likes are: Reading, colouring, playing Hide and Seek,
Dora, Max and Ruby, animals, and music.

As her beautiful curls grow longer, and her bright eyes show more knowledge, I know that I'll be in for a fun ride. Some days are smooth, and other days I'm hanging on, gritting my teeth, and feeling resentment that I alone have to handle some situations. Alas, this is the reality of being a Solo Mommy, and if I were to sugarcoat it I wouldn't be doing myself any favours. I'm human, she's human, and this life is a journey... not a destination ... Steven Tyler says so....

Well, here I am

After years of writing my thoughts in journals, I thought I'd give this blogging thing a go.... (Why not invite others into my daily life?) I'm a "Single" and "Stay-at-home" Mommy, and probably many other labels that would fit me into boxes very nicely. I married, had a baby, and separated between the ages of 25 and 30 [which must fulfill some statistic], and I just celebrated my 31st birthday a couple of weeks ago.

My [ex] husband and I started this New Year together with optimistic thoughts that perhaps things between us had changed, and we decided to put a halt on our divorce for a few months. The plan was to do some counselling and to work on building a friendship. We wanted to let things progress and see if we wanted to be together. Well, it's been a few months we haven't done any work yet. He's appearing to be the same person as before, and I'm starting to feel like I have so much more freedom on my own.

The great part about all of this is that because we're more open to being around each other, I get to see him parent our daughter. He's a good Daddy. I'm confused regarding our relationship, and as the days move along I'm leaning more toward my initial assessment - we may not be the best match for each other. The three of us being together as a family would be the ideal, but I'm not about to settle for "good enough". This life moves too fast, and I'm too fabulous to ever settle.