When I was young, I dreamed of the future. I dreamed of marriage and motherhood. I dreamed of who I would one day love. I dreamed of how many kids I’d one day have. I dreamed of the profession I’d one day do (geologist? interior decorator? teacher?). I dreamed of the house I’d one day live in. I dreamed of the future.

Later, my dreams were with worry. I dreamed of parents that loved each other. I dreamed of a world in which my mom was happy and whole. I dreamed of my father’s laughter and lightness returning. I dreamed of no more yelling, no more anger. I dreamed of different answers than those I was seeing – violence and harm. I dreamed of what should have already been given.  

In high school, I dreamed of difference. I dreamed of escaping the mountain. I dreamed of being a part of the busy, fast, moving world. I dreamed of a changed family dynamic that I could understand. I dreamed of meeting the standards of beauty. I dreamed of being liked and being wanted. I dreamed of that which I didn’t have – difference.

In college, I was in a dream itself – one albeit finding and fumbling. I dreamed of getting my life together (it took a few tries). I dreamed of being someone that my parents could be proud of. I dreamed of accepting myself. I dreamed of getting the grades for which I’d be found worthy. I dreamed of friendships kept, relationships lasting, and me not fucking it all up. I stayed in said dreams for many a year.

These days, I dream of peace. I spoke of this peace recently. It is peace within myself. Peace within my living arrangements. Peace within the chaos that is raising children. Peace within my professional landscape. Peace with my parents. Peace with my brother. Peace with my changing friendship circles. Peace with my ex. Peace within my love life (or at times lack thereof). Peace within my body. Peace within this world. I dream of peace.

Future me, what will you dream of? And will you find it?

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There’s been a shift as of late, a space being made for someone new. I’ve met someone. And as I dip my toes into the feelings of “new relationship” – rushes of dopamine, hints of love drunkenness, and joys over the tiniest anything and everything – I watch myself. Curiously, critically (I am me, after all), and reflectively. I watch what I do and how I act. I wonder.

Am I love bombing?

Am I trauma bonding?

Am I doing that codependency-affection-flooding thing?

Am I going to mess this up, too? (she says, always laying blame inevitably at her feet)

Am I going to turn into my mom – again? (… see above)

I worry, as worrying is me, and poking with ALL the questions at ALL the things with ALL the thoughts is what I do.

I wish to not elaborate here on the answers to the questions above, however, as the answers to all of them are no (when I’m in my right mind, that is, however rarely that may be).

There is something that I keep coming back to though. It’s an excerpt from “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin” by Louis de Bernières, which reads:

“Love is a temporary madness; it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of eternal passion. That is just being in love, which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Those that truly love have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches, they find that they are one tree and not two.”

During the last five or so years of my marriage, I thought of this quote often. Every time it came up on Facebook memories, I re-posted it. Be it to justify and make pretty the reality of my dying marriage, or to cling to it out of hope that where we were at was normal, this quote saw me through. All of our love had burned away, but we had roots. I couldn’t see at the time that those were roots of habit, stubbornness, predictability, and convenience, however. Roots that when finally given a proper looking at practically crumbled, but that’s a story for another time.

These days, I look to this quote in light anew. It is not the roots of it upon which I reflect this time around (there hasn’t been time yet for those roots to grow), it’s the temporary madness. It’s the breathlessness. It’s the passion. It’s awareness that these are times of pretty blooms.  It’s the curious inquiry as to how one helps those pretty blooms last longer. It’s the realization that I am (happily) one of those fools, but at the same time, possessing of agency and mindfulness this time around to better support and guide the narrative, choice, and decision.

It’s hope. It’s open eyes. It’s excitement. It’s tempering. It’s adoration. It’s balance. It’s foresight.


Something I would have given anything to have those sixteen years ago.  

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My self narratives.

A year of beliefs, taken from a year of conversations. All the following came after my words, “I am…

Boring as hell.


Terribly socially awkward.


Complicated and not easy.


Silly keener.

Not a leader and nor do I find comfort in it.

Entirely too curious.



A cheap bastard.

Being extra AF.


Afflicted with the curse of competency.


Movie dumb.

Pansy Canadian.

The worst.

Being very normal.

Truly terrible.

Not to be trusted with life.

Not very good.


So socially inept.


Oddly excited.

Too doom and gloomy.

Kinda doom reincarnated.

Paranoid AF.

Slightly panicked.


Fucking vexed.


Super freaking anxious.

Most proud.

Running solely on caffeine and stubbornness.


Born from the loins of crazy.

Absolutely rattled.

Not prepared.


Not innocent.

Not perfect.

Not without fault.

Two seconds from screaming.

Too predictable.


Utterly disenfranchised.

Wrong tho?

Over simplifying the fuck out of everything.



A heathen.


That way.

A giant confused noob.

Ready to commit violence.

Because I’m scared.

Incapable of making important decisions.

Slightly doubting myself.


Super vocal.


Legitimately terrified.


So enlightened.


Not drunk enough for this.



An exception to the rule.

So out of shape.

Going to conduct an experiment.

Asking for too much.

Not up to date.

A smarmy asshole.

Wont to do.

Entirely too honest.

Not worth it.

Not worthy.


Like, high on life right now.

SO relieved.

Sadly not surprised.

Accepting and embracing this reality.



So excited.

Guilty of.

Really bad.

Here for it.



For this plan.

Not sure why.

Not allowed.

Much more than what I look like.

Slightly biased.


A silly hopeful optimist.


Sleepy AF.

Very people-y, yes.

So fucking happy.

The least fanciest person of all time.

Not going to Google if that is a thing.

So boring.

Crazy owl lady.

Way overthinking this.

Not at all that calculated.

12 years old.

Going to weep with joy.

So god damn tired.




Lame AF.

Reading too much into this.

A terrible person.

Allergic to shopping.

Dumb and hopeful.

Going to be inexplicably joyous.

Dumb when sleepy.

Dreading this with my everything.

Still confused a bit but I always am.

I don’t know how (I am).

Low key embarrassed.

Wading in “I have no idea what I’m doing” waters.

Awe in the stupidity of humanity.

Most blessed.

Lacking cohesion.

Confirmed old.

So mad at myself.

Anxious and nervous.

Always 10 steps behind.

Busy, but often I am equally slacking.

Over it.

There with you.



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One way, and then another.

(I wrote this yesterday and promptly forgot to post it. Please know that today was a better day, however.)

I am having a particularly shitty day.

I’m not here to talk about said day though, because we all have shitty days. We all have days we wish possessed a restart button. We all have days we’ve wanted desperately to be over. We all have been there, and it’s a (shitty) fact of life. A shitty day does not make me unique or special, it makes me human.

In hopes of being able to see myself past this day, I am here to write. Not about shitty days, but about an entirely different subject. One that if I put more focus on, could help me better understand how I operate, and could potentially eschew today’s grumblings about shitty days to another day.


I’ve started therapy again for the second time this year. It’s… been a lot.

There are two predominant reasons as to why I was driven back.

Firstly, my self-confidence is staggeringly low these days. I’ve lost a lot of weight since the beginning of March and I’m now at a size I haven’t seen since high school. Looking at my face in the mirror these days is a continual surprise, and I catch angles of my new figure in photos and am shocked. Despite that, my self-image and self-worth remain unchanged, stubbornly and frighteningly so. What I thought would be a reciprocal relationship of losing weight/loving myself – it has not panned out. My painfully deprecating sense of humour, pitiful self-worth, and floundering sense of self, all of it is still very much with me, 80+ pounds lost be damned. I don’t like it. I don’t like that I can’t be complimented without telling someone why they are wrong for doing so. I don’t like that my immediate gut reaction to men who are interested in me (and lately there has been one in particular who’s caught my eye) is to convince them as to why they are wrong for doing so. My self-confidence seems intent on sabotaging my very self, and I have to stop it. If I don’t, it threatens to push people away. It threatens to be my undoing.

Frankly, I refuse.  Fuck you, self. I’m better than that, and I need to start believing that.

Secondly, and said succinctly, I don’t know how to be alone. Said more specifically, being alone in the evenings is something I possess a staggeringly terrible capacity to tolerate. In the day time, work takes over my mental faculties. I can easily manage my emotions and needs. But once my kids go to bed in the evening and I am left to my own devices from 7:30-10:45PM, it’s a different story. It’s as if I forget that I have hobbies of my own, and I feel lost without someone to chat with and take up all of that “space”. I grab onto whomever (lately, that someone I mentioned earlier) will fill the void of that time chunk, seeking attention and conversation. Which is not bad, per say, but I don’t know how to fill that space on my own. If I don’t have someone there, it all falls apart. I try to distract myself with video games, books, and TV shows, but it’s only a temporary solution. Merely a Band-Aid for my deep-seated need for continuous companionship in my evenings, and if I lack it, I fall. Hard. Therein come waves of feelings of “less than” which start to bleed into my already shitty self-confidence, further perpetuating a cycle of sadness that I do not want.

That I do not want.

I want to be able to be alone (if need be). I want to not find it scarily open and empty anymore if I don’t have someone there to talk to in the evenings and take up the space.

I want to know how to take up that space on my own.

And if I could love/like/not dislike myself just a bit more in such motions?  

I’d like that, too.

A lot.

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My first memory.

I don’t have one.

I try. God, I try. I dig deep into the back of the dusty corner of my memory, but I know know not what is real or taken from a picture. It all feels too far removed for me to be sure. Strings I pull at, hoping I tug at *the* one which unlocks something of truth… but mere strings they remain.

I spoke with a good friend of mine once about this. Her earliest memory is not a memory, but someting taken from a photo. Outside of that, she doesn’t remember much else of her childhood. Her counselor suggested this could have been due to repression – a tampering down for the sake of trauma.

Knowing my childhood, I wonder the same.

I reach out to my brother and sister, curiously so. Do they remember? If so, what was their first? We don’t talk all that much these days, and this question they may find strange. I persist.

But before I hear back, I stop myself. There has to be *something*. Even if it took place at the age of, say, 12 — you have some recollection of your childhood. Why not try to write it out?

I remember long days spent on the very flat and large rock next to the spring wash, towels laid out with Jess and Rachel. Uno played for hours under a warm sun. Dips into the wash – chilly from the snowy runoff. Hair slowly drying in the sun as the hours crept leisurely along.

I remember rides with Aaron in his go-cart. A mad man he was, pedal floored as he raced around the rocky and wooded neighborhood, reckless for speed and thrill. I’d hold onto that red roll cage for the life of me, terrified I’d spill out onto the dusty roads. I still have a scar on my right knee as evidence of that having eventually happpened.

I remember sitting on Kimberly’s deck, drinking tea with far too much milk in it, pretending to be regal ladies. Trips inside her dark house to see what her mom had on the telly – often Supermarket Sweeps. Kim’s laughter at my learning that phone was in fact not spelled “fone”.

I remember my first crush, Jacob, and sleeping with his professional, wallet sized karate photo under my pillow for nights on end. I worshipped that photo. Jacob had no idea I existed, I was merely the younger sister of his sister’s best friend. Back then, tho, I could have sworn it was love.

I remember my dad whistling as he drove. All of us in the back, covered bed of his truck, on the carpeted built in that was dangerously unsafe but perfectly acceptable by the 90’s standards. On the radio would be his Jazz CDs, and like a bird he’d whistle their every note. His radar on the dash occasionally beeping in tune.

I remember my mom’s big, wooden, roll top desk. She didn’t use it all that much, there sitting against the window, but I found it magical. Afternoons I’d spend at it, pretending to play secretary. I’d bring out her ledger books and pens, acting as if I could balance them (spoiler alert: I could not).

I struggle to evoke memories that directly involve my mom, For those that I do, I remember the fighting. I remember the perpetuation of harm. I remember after the most heated of arguments, leaving the house with my dad and siblings, all of us saying goodbye to mom. Again. She was leaving this time. Really leaving. She’d be going back to Canada. She’d finally have enough.

But she was always still there when we got back.

I don’t know what of these are my first memories. I know not the starting point of my childhood recollection.

Perhaps it doesn’t matter. Perhaps, nearing the age of 40, it’s inconsequential in the scheme of things.

I still have yet to hear back from my siblings.

Maybe they don’t remember, either.


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