Ciao 36

And so a new chapter begins…

I turned 37 yesterday.  I got up and the first thing I did was sit there and just think long and hard about what a long, strange and exhausting journey it’s all really been.  Looking back on everything up until this point, I would have to say that so far 36 was the hardest and challenging years I have ever had.

  • I lost my job of 4.5 years due to petty betrayal.
  • I lost my father to cancer/COPD.
  • My childhood home, the only home I have ever known has been sold.  I spent my last night there on June 9th 2015.
  • People I thought were friends have come and gone and other people I just needed to let go because of their toxic behavior.
  • I got thrown under the bus more times than I care to count because people don’t have the guts, nor the integrity to admit that they did wrong and I somehow ended up paying for their mistakes and their lies in more ways than one.
  • I’ve seen far too many people I love suffer a similar heartbreak as mine when it comes to loosing the ones you love, especially a parent.  Which is a special kind of hell like no other.
  • My OCD and Anxiety is by and large the most crippling it has ever been and that’s legit scary.

And yet 

  • I went back to school to finally pursue my dream of being anything but a Chef.  So I consider myself officially retired from the industry.
  • I have learned to accept that it’s OK to be anything but.
  • I was reminded once again that you don’t know how strong you are until it’s the only option that you have left.
  • I have embarked on my photography journey and discovered a love of digital art along the way.
  • I have learned to put myself first.  It’s not selfish, it’s a basic human need.  I refuse to apologize for that.
  • I have learned who I can truly count on when I need someone the most.  I’ve always kept my circle small and I am thankful that I have made good choices when it comes to the people I love and I have had to walk away from a few people for no reason than they take up precious space in my head and I can’t and won’t make space for that.
  • I take so much more joy in simple pleasures and take time to smell the flowers, laugh more, be silly, be crazy, being ME.

There is so much more I can add to this list, but I won’t.  It’s all going to be OK.  Not today, but someday.  Like Rachel Platten said: I might only have one match, but I can start an explosion.


Priorities vs options and good intentions.

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There’s that saying: “Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option.” -Maya Angelou

Now don’t get me wrong.  Sometimes I am a sucky friend.  I’m the worst at keeping in touch with people at the best of times and it’s not because I don’t love my friends, I have legit memory issues and well adulting is hard yo!

I have learned one thing through the years though, even more so after moving to Montreal: who my circle is.  I have a lot of friends and I am fortunate to be surrounded by them and I am secure in the knowledge that they love me, even when I am not always around, or when I am not very lovable.

I have one very important thing in common with these people though: Loyalty.

I know who will be there for me in a heartbeat and I know who won’t.  Some people I can count on when it really matters and some not so much…  So it irritates me when some people complain that I come home and I don’t go out of my way/make the time to see them.  It’s not usually a secret when I come home (except for that one time) and I’m really not that hard to find when I am in Ontario.  Up until recently, I would always be staying at the same house.

Mind you, it depends on why I returned in the first place.  I had truly wanted to meet up and see a ton of people but I was just done.  So done with this whole adulting thing and having just finished up final exams for this term, my mom sold the house, my dad died and the list goes on and on.

I was SO very, tired this time around.

So sadly I missed out on a lot of stuff, but it was in part by sheer exhaustion, not so much by choice.  I made my mom and option this time around.  I didn’t come home to Ontario for a vacation per se. I came home to give back because I haven’t been able to help out as much in a physical sense, I was however pulling my weight behind the scenes which is just as exhausting. Except some people don’t ‘see that’ and it doesn’t count in their mind.

But fuck them.  Seriously. 

Anyway, it was nice to be able to come home and not only help out my mom but indulge her a little.  It doesn’t take much to make her happy and if taking her out for a few meals and doing some laundry makes her day a little brighter, than so be it. She’s the best mom ever and she totally deserves it.  She bends over backwards to make people happy, even when they don’t deserve it.

I did make it a point to stay later this time with the hopes of seeing/doing more but i’m old yo and when I don’t get enough sleep and my allergies are being douchy I get uber lethargic and it just takes too much effort overall, even more for those who would never respond in kind (aside from my mom putting my ass to work on the daily).  You get what you put in after all. However, to the people who claim to miss me and complain and carry on that *I* don’t make time for them…

Would you make time for me?  Montreal isn’t that far, I’ve lived there for 11 years now and only five of my friends have made the trip to see me.  I don’t care about your excuses.  I know some circumstances can’t be helped, I totally get that…  However I am unemployed, a student and yet I made the trek for the second time this year.  There are SO many ways to come see me on the cheap, you just need to be willing to do them.

So your excuse(s) is invalid. 

One last trip…

I had this crazy urge to blog, i’m on a bus that just left Kingston en route to Toronto so this stirkes me as rather absurd.
As most things in my life seem to these days.

My dad dad passed away at 1:24pm on Feb 28th 2015 and that was the catalyst of a massive shitstorm that left myself and several people I care about emotionally devestated and simotaniously crippled at the same time.

This isn’t about that though.
This is about the house.
My dad’s hosue specifically, my childhood home.
I don’t begrudge my mom for selling the place, in fact if I was in her shoes I would do the same.
Yet, I feel lost in a way.

Yes, it’s just a house, but it was the house that everyone knew.

More importantly, it was the only house that *I* knew.
I came home from the hospital to this house and my tiny room upstairs was always mine, even when I shared it with my sister for many years.

No matter how crazy my life would get, there was always the big white house on King street that everyone knew and it was the place that I would always come to when I would make the long trek from
Montreal to Ontario.  No matter where I was, no matter what I was doing or what shape I was in, there was always a place for me there..

So many memories contained within those walls…

No, i’m not OK actually.

I call my dad everyday now, ever since I got the news that basically changed everything earlier this month.  Life is much, much too short and I don’t want to have that guilt of knowing that I didn’t call my dad that one last time.

Today was no different, I got up early and called my dad.  He has lots of company these days and he tires easily so I try to get to him before everyone else does.  So I was shocked when my phone started ringing at 10 am and it was my mom saying the words that no one ever wants to hear:

“The Doctor was here to see your dad today, they’re not expecting him to make it through the weekend.  How fast can you get on a plane and get here.”

Not a bus or a train.  A plane, because the flight it short, I would get home much faster.  At that moment, it felt like my mom reached through the phone and sucker punched me.

You see, I’ve been pretty far removed from the whole situation with my dad.  I basked in the blissfulness that was my ignorance.  I knew what was coming, I’ve known it since June when the diagnosis first came to light.  Yet I was able to pretend that it wasn’t happening because I didn’t physically see it.  So my first instinct was to say no, if I didn’t go home then this wouldn’t happen.  The last time I fell apart this hard was when I got the news that Jason had passed away.  Yet this just seemed to be somewhat more insulting because it’s my dad.

Had Nick not been there to hold me up, I would have fallen to the floor.  Bawling.  I would have won an Oscar for my epic ugly cry.  Except it wasn’t a performance, this is my life.

I’ve never flown anywhere before.  I’ve never had the luxury of going anywhere special, being a Chef doesn’t really give you the time or the affordability to take any significant time off.  So clearly I have never stepped foot into Montreal’s airport, which is pretty daunting under normal circumstances, even more so when you’re crying so hard that you can’t breathe, let alone think and try to plan an emergency trip home to see your dad to say good-bye.

Also, I am afraid of heights.  So going on a plane alone?  Yeah, that’s not going to happen.

Thankfully my other half is much more well traveled than I am and will be able to accompany me to Ontario.  Today has been tough so i’m just trying to keep it together for my family and do what I can from here until I get there.  So I’m OK right now, but that doesn’t last that long.  It comes and goes.  I will forever be astounded at just how hard and fast those feels can hit you.

So if you ask me if i’m OK and I say yes I might be lying.

I’m sorry. 


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