Thursday, August 30, 2007


You read my blog nearly every day, yet lie to those around you. I hope you've found the past year to be entertaining and fun filled all around, as have I. I am sorry you are unable to let go. It's been suggested to me that I hide my blog, but where's the fun in that? I do hope you continue to read and find what you seek within.

My words are simply that, words. The expression of that which lies inside. By asking that J not read this, I'm free to truly express who I am. While my form of expression has not changed, who I am has changed. It's funny how the drama left my life a year ago. The peace and love that has filled it since then is worth more than you'll ever know.

True happiness is not something you can force or manipulate. You can't bend it to your will. It comes when you least expect it and touches all around you with it's light. I am finally becoming who I want to be, surrounded by that light, protected by my very soul. The past cannot be changed, nor do I want to as without it, I wouldn't have my present. I am grateful to you for both my present as well as the ability to understand what a gift the present is to me.

The past year.

This past year has seen a lot of changes - not the least of which is the bathroom reno that I now leave. Of course there's another bathroom reno at the other end of the move and probably more of the same in the future! Tiles? I can tile! And grout. And paint. And don't forget the shopping!

I've lost friends and regained some old friends. S for example - we're both downtown and tend to go out for coffee at least once a week. R is gone from my life. The decision is mutual, however I think she believes otherwise. Sadly, I shouldn't have let her back into my life the first time, but I thought "what's the harm, it's not like she lives here or anything."

Shortly after, I was asked to be in her wedding - I agreed. I was asked to be maid of honor ("old maid" of honor was my joking title) - I agreed. I drove to Calgary to shop for dresses. I drove to Calgary to attend wedding shows. I spent time online looking at dresses. I picked her up in Sher. Pk and spend the day dress shopping with her. We discussed flowers, issues around her parents and her birth mom at her ceremony, having to change the venue, etc etc etc. I was reminded why I'll elope next time around!

She asked that I drive to Red Deer for bridesmaid dress shopping. Fine. I can drive to Red Deer. The problem was that both of our lives were so busy that there wasn't time - except during the week. So I was expected to drive 1.5 hours after work to shop for bridesmaid dresses - not exactly what I wanted to do after work on nights I wasn't curling (admittedly, there weren't many of those last year.)

I was expected to be in Ontario several days before the wedding and it would essentially be a minimum of a weeks vacation time for driving and wedding participation. Hair and makeup were added to the list. Travel costs. A dress and shoes. Hours spent driving from city to city for shopping and whatnot. The reality that I'm not a size 6 and won't be any time soon.

Last Dec. I was in a car accident. At the time, I was driving to a Christmas party she was having in Olds. She felt bad that none of her friends from Edmonton were going, so J and I were on our way down there. I know how it feels so I didn't want her to have a disappointing party. My car was written off. Both J and I spent months and a lot of money recovering from our injuries - the other driver was likely going 65-70 on that piece of road and never hit the brakes! I still have to see a massage therapist regularly or risk back pain and horrid headaches. I never used to get headaches or have back problems.

About a month ago, I joined Facebook. I clicked through the "find friends" screen not realizing her name was in the list. Hers and my ex-husbands - lol. He managed to be civil about the whole thing and we were on each other's friends lists until I realized it was affecting me too much.

She, on the other hand, replied with an email about how selfish I am and how she's glad she asked me back into her life because now she sees me for who I really am. I'm paraphrasing - but I'm fairly certain that's almost her exact last line in the email. On one hand, this bothered me. I don't want to be considered a bad person. The reality of that time in my life is one that she clearly is unable to comprehend so I'll forgive her that. Today, I'm still working on my personal budget. May brought huge changes to my relationship with J and a lot of stress. Work is finally getting itself straightened out. My back - well, let's just say I'm happy to have a massage appt for this weekend.

In the past year, I've had rising mortgage rates take a bigger chunk out of my bank account, a car to buy, and renos I've completed - with more on the way. I haven't received an insurance settlement for the accident so my line of credit is still inflated because of the car I'd hoped to have paid off by now.

I made the decision in February (I think) to back out of the wedding. My life was such at the time that I knew I couldn't act as a maid of honor should. The entire situation was driving me crazy and simply adding to the inordinate amount of stress I already had. I made the mistake of letting R know via MSN. First because I didn't want to talk myself out of it. I've spent my life trying to please other people and given time, I would've chickened out and gone ahead with something I couldn't handle. Second because I was at work and in cubicles, that isn't a conversation I want broadcast. By her reaction, it was the right decision.

At the time, J and I were trying to plan a vacation somewhere warm. We ended up settling for Kelowna - a trip we could afford at the time. There was a lot of pressure placed on that trip as at the end of it we were planning to move in together. Obviously, that move didn't happen. It was postponed and will now happen starting tomorrow. I was told that her wedding was more important than any vacation J and I wanted to take. Yes, really. I don't even want to get into the things she said - she's rather vicious when angered.

Most people consider me a good friend. Sure, I've been "downsized" a time or two (*snicker*) but for the most part, I'm a good friend. The problem is that in the past 3 years, I've gone from doormat determined to make everyone like me to someone who is worried about my own happiness just as much as the happiness of others. Those who knew me before, may not like the person I am now because I will stand up for myself. In this case, I suspect that's the cause.

I know a wedding isn't an easy time, and having a member of the wedding party drop out is stressful. The reality is, I tried to give her as much notice as possible. I told her as soon as I made the decision. The moment I made the decision, huge amounts of stress lifted from me. Enough that any vitriolic emails made me laugh rather than upset.

The decision was made in February. The wedding takes place in Sept so it wasn't a last minute decision where she has to struggle to find someone to fill a spot. Tuxes weren't rented. Dresses weren't purchased so the option to NOT fill the spot is there.

Do I regret the loss of a friend? Of course. I'd be heartless not to. However, in the end, her behavior made it very clear to me that she wasn't concerned about me at all. She never asked about the car accident or our injuries past the first phone call. She was unconcerned with my search for replacement vehicles. She just didn't care about me at all - only herself and her wedding.

Keep in mind, there are two sides to every story and this is simply my side of this story. My reasons for doing what I did. My musings on the changes that have occurred in my life and the affect they've had for me. Am I sorry I had to back out of the wedding? Yes. No one ever wants to do that to a friend. Was I uncomfortable in the role of "Maid of Honor" uhhh yes. I didn't feel our friendship warranted that - especially given the other falling outs that we've had.

Well, that's enough about that. The great change in my life in the past year is J. Someone I never would have met without the last idiot I dated - bathroom reno already started in the form of shopping completed - and one of my best friends T (Yay T!)

It started with wings - I'm not crazy enough to let some strange guy into my house! According to T, she felt like she wasn't even there. I remember it differently as I felt out of place and like a 3rd wheel, but hey... It was a tumultuous time in my life with the last relationship turning into an on again, off again, bad situation. It was like he'd want me back just to make me feel horrible again. Hellooooo back seat of the truck with the kid who didn't make it on the favorite list. Good God, the emotions I was going through at the time. It's a wonder I managed to be a normal person while out with J.

It progressed from wings to a drink. Still remember that night - a claim that he wouldn't date me because I was just coming out of a relationship. *smile* I was stunned since I hadn't thought we were talking about dating, I thought it was about a bathroom reno. Then a kiss in the parking lot when he walked me to my car (yes, I'm THAT irresistable). The next morning a request from T to give J my MSN address. The rest, I suppose is history. Mere steps on the path to what we have now.

A relationship that's grown with respect and love. Sure, there have been problems, but I haven't had to tiptoe around anything at all. And problems are to be expected - especially given the external events of the year. We've fished together, traveled, camped, spent numerous weekends with each other. He's there when I need him. He's curling in my work league this fall and taking me shopping in Paris and Las Vegas. I know I can count on him. My cats even like him and I'm sure Tigger's going to appreciate the warm chest to cozy up to. For some reason he doesn't feel the need to keep J up all night... odd. He is the right one, I've never felt that so surely. I don't have one doubt about him.

I'm happy with who I am and the decisions I've made to bring me to this point. Now, I'm going for a walk.

Monday, August 27, 2007

It's official

I have a move-in date. It's coming quickly even if it is what was discussed previously. I waffled, fear of a repeat of April made me hold back slightly. But in all honesty, deep in my heart, I know this is right. I'm excited. My friends are happy for me. And the biggest surprise - my parents seem excited about the move. To the point of wondering if an engagement is in the future!

I'm the president of my curling club. This means phone calls inquiring about the league and all that fun stuff. So far, I've gotten a new team (which is fantastic) and a couple other calls. I'm excited about the year ahead, yet a little nervous about the responsibility in the presidential role.

I have a new job. Starting on the 7th. New building, new office, new job. Completely new job. No more lotus notes. No more development. BA/PM. Congratulations me.

Big changes in my life. Big things in store for the year ahead. I only hope it lives up to the past year.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Manifesting my destiny

Had brunch with the "in-laws" on the weekend. Not sure what other title to give them to be honest. And hey, they're introducing me as J's wife so really.... Anyway, it turned out to be a great day. Skipped the H&S fair to have brunch with them, then started the search for an apple peeler/corer. S gave me a... well, it might even be a bushel... of apples and I've gotta do something with them. After 3 pies, my hands cried for mercy (and the odd band-aid). Alas, no peeler/corer to be found.

I did get 2 pictures of paris for my walls - well, 4 if I'd bought enough frames, new dishes for J and I's snacks, a new mat for the cat's litter box, and suggestions from J's mom. Great suggestions!

First, to explain a bit about her. She's retired and has started filling her time with new-age-y stuff. Very spiritual without being religious and very at peace. She's just a warm friendly person to be around and it's infectious. She believes heavily in The Secret and to be quite honest, it seems to be working for her.

So, Jeff had me tell his parents about my goals and everything. And I said I'd filled my office with pictures of mini's. She asked about my bedroom. Well, I'd done nothing there. Now, the term for her is "manifesting." Essentially you can manifest anything you want with the right attitude (The Secret). So she suggested pictures of thin me, pictures of what I want to wear, all of that in my bedroom so I see it before bed and see it when I wake up.

Well, I could hardly sleep last night between the great pictures of myself and that huge picture of the Eiffel Tower. Jeff looked me right in the eye and said "you can't fail." He didn't mean it as a threat. I'm surrounded by positive energy, positive people and every one is willing to help me reach my goal.

I'm no longer "trying" to lose weight. I am losing weight. I'm healthy and happy and totally intend to stay that way.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Hi everybody!

Didn't quite know what to title this post. Suppose they don't really need titles if you think about it, but I'm not usually one for thinking so...

An update on me. I am getting serious about this weight loss thing. Ok, maybe that's the wrong way to put it. I am serious about losing weight. Really serious. I've started eating right - well that started weeks ago - and now I'm adding exercise. Good exercise - walking and yoga for now to get my body back into the swing of things (oy, the flexibility I've lost!). And to slowly loosen my back up.

The yoga is helping. I got up after my last session and my hips cracked about 5 times. Ok, that sounds bad, but means I loosened the muscles up enough to allow the joints to move. That is a good thing.

I have goals. Some big, some small. For example - after I lose 5 lbs, I'm getting me new sandals. After every workout, I reward myself with a nice long soak in a hot, salt filled tub of water. The big kahuna of my rewards is... a Mini Cooper Convertible. If I hit my goal, I'm buying myself THAT car.

Yay me. Now, to get this back straightened out. I want to go back to my pain free days, but I can't. Apparently, I never can. On the plus side, I'll be seeing my massage therapist regularly, and who really wants to complain about regular massages?

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Road Trip!

Yesterday morning dawned bright and sunny. While discussing our plans for the day, J suggested a change of direction. Rather than cooking lake, he wanted to hit Jasper for lunch. As always, I was in. Unfortunately a lack of preparation had us hitting Jasper at 3 rather than lunchtime, but it was a blast nonetheless.

Well, a great road trip and several caches later, we had our first travel bug and Tucker was covered in mud. How that pup finds water EVERYWHERE we stop, I'll never know. What a great trip!

The state of the..uh.. goddess?

Well, here I am. Last week would've been 10 years, but alas it wasn't. I guess it still was 10 years since the day, but so much has changed. Time changes everything and it seems I'll come to terms with it over time. But just not quite yet.

I had some anger. Some tears. It hurts. His next big day is next month and I don't understand how when for me the hurt is still so real. But to each his own, I suppose. Still, I wish he'd hurt just a little. Otherwise it was all for nothing. Of course, in reality, it really was all for nothing.

The accident was last Dec. Still no settlement from the insurance company, and today I'm back to massage therapy. Ok, it's partly my fault, but that tree reached out and grabbed my foot... I swear it! A walk at lunch will hopefully straighten that out a bit and make it so I'm not aching all day.

The car still sits on my line of credit. Is it any wonder I'm stressed with that sitting there? Lovely. More debt. My bonus from work which should be for fun was eaten up trying to pay for a car I shouldn't have had to buy.

The trips I'd planned this year vapourized. The last attempt - solo trip to Scotland went away with roof repairs required for my house. Now everyone keeps asking about that trip. Yeah. No. No vacation left. No money left.

Yet, I'm happy. Content, if you will. I have a guy who's wonderful. He knows how to make me laugh, even if he doesn't know how to handle the tears. His family is this perfect fit and they want me around as much as J does. I'm going to be an aunt again - twins!

I've made decisions in the last 5 years, heck even the last year, that aren't popular. I've stood up for myself and sought my own happiness rather than trying my darnedest to make other people happy, when they'll never be happy. I spent more money than I should have trying to meet the demands of someone who cares only for herself. I fell into the trap of trying to give J everything while asking for nothing.

Looking back at things makes it all so much clearer. People who were only in it for themselves. Some still are. I see that T is fishing even more now. Good for him. It only solidifies my decision. My goal in life is to be more than a bed warmer when someone decides he has time for me.

Then again, it's my goals and direction in life (heh, PM/BA!!!) that have caused more problems than anything else. But it's who I am. And I'm finally taking that strength and backbone into my personal life and standing up for myself there. Yeah, it sucks for those who took advantage of it, but oh well.

Fun fact: Did you know that the average bridesmaid will spend $1400 for the "honor" of participating in a wedding (this is from women's health's August edition)? Note to self...skip the wedding party and let my friends enjoy themselves rather than be slaves at my beck and call while I drain their bank accounts and energy levels.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Who'da thunk it

Last night J had offered to make me dinner so after watching part of Dr. Phil's show on nightmare in-laws, I lugged my stuff over there and met him as he was coming in the back gate. There was a slight change in plans and we ended up at his parent's place, although he still cooked me supper (BBQ pork chops, yum!). And as I sat visiting with his Dad after dinner, I realized how lucky I am right now.

J and his Mom were downstairs trying to get her computer to burn CD's for the family reunion. It took longer than expected and his Dad and I had a great conversation. It wasn't grating (never is) it was much like plunking myself down with my dad and chatting.

Pictures were discussed and a new "family" one must be taken. The official reason is that the twins were only 4 for the last picture (2 years ago, or so), but J's mom (also a J!) is adamant that I be in this one as well. *Fuzzy*

I feel at home with them. Comfortable and relaxed. J's right, our families are mirror images of each other - sometimes in very creepy ways, but oh so similar.

I'm happy, I'm content and I'm loving where life has brought me, even if I don't love so much how it brought me here. The "family" reunion is a week away. It seems I may be meeting some of his family much sooner as some begin to arrive as early as this weekend. And I can't wait.

Ugh, what a boring little blog post for today, but it had to be done... This whole liking his family thing is new and unusual for me. After thinking something was wrong with me for so long, I'm realizing how wrong the situation really was.