Day 42


WILL RUN FOR WINE! You know why?

Yep. If someone even RESEMBLING George is waiting at the end of the run, I’m IN! Well, and let’s face it, after a few glasses of wine, doesn’t ANY guy with salt and pepper coiffed “do” start to seem oh-so-charming anyway?

I digress.

The thought of being about to drink some wine with my gal pals tonight without guilt, has me primed for a run, and likely some time in the pool today!

I had a swim lesson yesterday and realized I have a fear of drowning. I guess I always knew but tried to push it out of my mind and forget about it, I could get over it. I’ve realized I tend to do that. Instead of facing things, I put them on the back burner and figure they’ll sort themselves out. But they keep coming back until I just face it and move on!

I had a panic attack in my apartment pool several years ago and nearly drowned, and I had a similar experience as a kid. I was always a good swimmer, never afraid, took swim lessons, always at the public Lion’s Pool in the summer but those couple of experiences stuck with me. However, I had to face the fear. 

The good news is, my swim stroke is awesome, according to my coach, it’s my breathing that needs work. That will only come with practise. Jill said that the key to swimming in competition is to be able to do it so well, you don’t panic, because it’s like second nature. It was good advice and when I calmed down enough to work on the breathing slowly, and not get so concerned about swimming quickly, I made progress. It’s really up to me now to conquer and overcome the fear and panic I may encounter.

Mind over matter it seems. Seems that way in a lot of things in life.

I biked to the pool for the swim lesson and we did an aqua-cardio-kickboxing class which, as you may guess, seemed kind of effortless in the water but because of the resistance, I felt it today! Plus, Lisa once again kicked my ass with a training session on Tuesday, so my hamstrings were that of a not-so-finely-tuned Stradivarius!

Back to mind over matter, I had a session with life coach Michael Duhaney this week! We did a powerful visualization exercise in which I imagined sitting down to tea with my future self, twenty years from now. It was amazing to see how great looking I imagined myself, happy and content. He asked me to ask “future self” my nagging questions. First was “who does your hair?” and then, “does sex get even better?” I knew my future self would still have a sense of humour!

I imagined “future self” telling me not to worry, to “let go”, that trying to control my future was pointless and only getting in my own way! Happiness, contentment, all the things I envisioned for myself would come, if I could only quiet myself and “be”.

And something else came to me after I thought about it a bit. Long after the session and probably into today. And after I watched Oprah’s fascinating interview with the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson.

I have been angry at people for foolish reasons that had nothing to do with them. Nothing at all. It all came from my fractured sense of self. My own lust for acceptance, and my perception that others didn’t accept me. And that anger was only bourne from that fear. Fear that I wasn’t accepted. And this phrase stuck out in my mind like a billboard.

ANGER IS FEAR PERSONIFIED.

So simple but so meaningful. My anger at others has come straight from my own fear. And who creates that fear? Me. My dull, doubting, harassing, drone of an inner voice.

That voice doesn’t have to stop. But I can choose to stop listening to it. I choose to do that to the best of my ability NOW.

And so from a “funk” a few days ago, from the ashes, a phoenix of sorts.

I can fly. And if I happen to fly to Italy, into George Clooney’s arms, so be it! 🙂

Today I feel like something sexy!

JT! That’s the Justin that ain’t a Bieb!

Day 40


I’ve been in a funk! A really mind-numbing funk!

The weather has been phenomenal and all I’ve really wanted to do is drink beer, sit and have a few laughs! (And although I drink Guinness, beer is not typically my choice… it’s just this awesome weather!)

I’ve been working out with Lisa, last week I only managed one session and one good run! My bike is great, ready to go, but in the basement it sits! I had a nightmare the other night that I woke up the next day and had to the triathlon with no training! I woke up with a knot in my stomach about the swim, and terrified that I would drown!

I haven’t even signed up yet! I need to decide on an event, make sure I have enough time, and COMMIT the time! I’m starting to think I am a commitment-phobe! Is that possible? We always chastise guys for being just that but maybe I’m a commitment-phobe in a lot of elements of my life, including relationships!

Is it the fear of failure? That’s part of it, but I don’t want to do an event to COMPETE with anyone but myself… and right now, she’s my worst enemy! Am I afraid to succeed? Afraid of what that will mean? Maybe.

As far as the job front goes, I have applied for a ton of positions and heard absolutely nothing. Not one whisper, email, phone call. However, just yesterday, I invited the head of sales at the Delta Armouries here in London to join my LinkedIn network. She obliged and sent me a note that she’s like to meet me for coffee! Don’t know why or for what but my profile labels me as a “broadcast communicator/social media marketer”. I rattled off a few things I thought she may want to chat about but she said there was nothing really specific, I think she just wants to pick my brain! It could be exciting!

I also paid for and booked a “headshot photo session” in Toronto to give me a more professional profile picture for biz cards, social media profiles, etc. So another trip to TO!!! That should be fun!

I meet with my life coach Michael today and I haven’t seen him in I think three weeks now so we should have lots to talk about! Perhaps we can talk about my phobia to commitment!

I finally washed my floor today and tidied up! My neighbour’s brother, a carpenter, agreed to help me put up some pictures on my wall that I have been procrastinating. Hopefully we can get that done before the party… He’s a really nice man and I quite like him!

So I’m unmotivated and feeling the pressure to move! I will try a bike ride shortly here and see where it takes me!

Ironic that I feel like I am still spinning my wheels!

I love Jeremy Fisher! He’s Canadian!

Day 33, 34, 35


Sunshine! Finally!

For me, sunny weather always makes me feel better! It makes me want to spend more time outside, it warms my mood, it generally makes me happy that both myself and my dog can get natural, authentic, Vitamin D, and I’ve found, that most people have a little more spring in their step when the sun is shining!

Busy the last few days, attending a multimedia conference that I found fascinating. I know I’m working towards the pieces of the career I’m carving out for myself and it felt really good to be part of the “media” again at an event. It was a two-day event and I was lucky enough to hitch a ride with a very dear and old friend, he, his wife, and myself all went to high school together and his wife is one of my best pals! Both my friend and I were there as freelance writers, he for a hugely successful website, and I was there to write a web piece for a local arts and culture magazine.

I learned a ton. Technology, the web, social media, I find all of it spellbinding and want to be on the edge of what will happen next. That seems to be the issue. Not many are looking forward, they are trying to catch up!

I was especially intrigued by an American anthropologist who studies the effects of media on our human culture. His name is Dr. Michael Wesch and I completely agree with his observations and research. He is also fantastic at explaining things in an easy-to-understand package. You can view his most popular videos here!

Physical-wise, I felt out of my element! I’ve had the benefit of my own routine without a work schedule and the food offered at the conference wasn’t the best but looked and tasted great, as is usually the case right? Plus, combatting some SERIOUS PMS cravings for chocolate and carbs, which I indulged and didn’t feel bad about! However, only one good run so far, and because of the conference sched and Lisa’s daughter not being well, I postponed workouts with her until the weekend. I can’t expect her to be at my whim, in the least, as I’m not paying her and frankly, she needs her own time! I’m not discouraged however! The weather is gorgeous today and I’m out for a bike ride and run tonight! Swimming lessons begin next week… I only have 4 weeks but haven’t signed up for Woodstock yet! I want to complete one BEFORE the reunion and it’s the 2nd weekend in July. I’m not pressuring myself, I feel really good!

I’m working towards self-acceptance and not putting too much pressure on my body! I’ve had a lot of conversations with people recently, older generation, who say they wished they hadn’t been so hard on themselves when they were younger because now they’ve had to have knees replaced! I want to be able to walk without surgery for as long as possible, at least till I’m old and spiteful! 🙂

So in honour of the gorgeous day, celebration of Cinco de Mayo today and maybe the chance I can finally pack away my winter coat (I think I’ll wait till the end of the week) how about a little J-Lo?

Day 30, 31, 32


A ton has happened in such a short time!

Of course, the Royal Wedding happened on Friday, we saw all the fabulous hats, Kate’s dress, the awesome cars they were parlayed around in, but I think this was my favourite, her gown for the evening’s events, after the “formal” portion of the reception “tea” was over.

Then,

… today is election day here in Canada and I am feeling so much pride that so many Canadians are exercising their honour and right to vote for our federal leaders! I am encouraged as I feel a shift in the thoughts and hearts of Canadian people! Hopefully we will once again become the “community” that the men and women of our military fought wars to uphold and protect! Incidentally, I used a picture of Canada’s Coat of Arms, instead of the Canadian flag, as I had it on my hard drive and had to look up its meaning! You can find it on Wikipedia here! Scroll to the bottom where it says “Symbolism”! I found it really interesting!

And finally…

… the American government says Osama Bin Laden is dead. Apparently one of the most evil and dangerous terrorists of our time. I am suspect, just because I am a cynic, however, I wonder how this will affect the way people think about one another, how they relate?

Will people stop being suspicious of others who “appear” to be Muslim, terrorists, even just “different”? Will airports now loosen the rules as we go through security? Will all the money spent and discussions had about using X-ray machines that render us “naked” to the customs officers, be all for not?

It will be interesting to see how and what unfolds in the coming weeks and months.

Just a weird aside, I could not access this blog for the past two days! This was the first day it would let me onto the site from the home PC!

I actually teared up today walking in to the polling station to vote! It was so busy and it was early on in the day, when most people would be at work!

I was SO proud to live in this country!

I then stopped into my local coffee shop to grab a takeout and ran into some dear friends! We had a fantastically uplifting conversation over coffee about perhaps this will mean people will become more compassionate and empathetic towards one another and suspend their harsh judgements of their neighbours!

I sure hope so and so did they!

I also managed to run 5k this afternoon in just over 30 min! I just have to wait until some money comes through and then I can sign up for the try-a-tri! I’m very excited!

I’m also covering a multimedia conference for London’s The Beat Magazine! It’s called Canada 3.0 and it’s in Stratford, my home town! I’m driving down with a great, high school pal, he’s freelancing for www.wired.com so is covering it also! I’m just interested in being a “sponge” in relation to what’s up-and-coming in the media world!

I am covering the conference on a volunteer basis but it also means I can get access to the event!

I’m so encouraged by all of these things!

And you know what? I’m also a romantic at heart and I truly believe that William and Kate may change the old ways of the Royal Family and give it back some of the stronghold its lost. Plus, I really DO believe in fairy tales and theirs is such a sweet one! I LOVE those damn dresses! 🙂

Like I said, I am feeling supremely patriotic today and what’s more “Canadian” than Gordon Lightfoot???

Day 29


As a self-proclaimed “hat person” I couldn’t have been happier today watching the Royal Wedding!

When I was a kid, I got up early to watch the wedding of Charles and Diana. It was like a fairy tale! Today, I set my alarm but couldn’t bring myself to get up until 5:30! I saw the kiss and went back to bed!

Watching the ceremony though, I couldn’t help but think, maybe this couple will change things.

I was trying to think about why so many marriages, famous or not, ended up on the skids and in tatters.

We just don’t treat each other well enough. I mean men AND women.

We expect too much. We expect our partner to be “perfect”, to never make mistakes, never mess up, never change, never want to grow. All of those things are preposterous and it’s no wonder so many of us have ended up in divorce! I’ve done a lot of those things! Hindsight, sadly sometimes, is 20/20.

But maybe there’s hope now. Maybe there are enough young people who have been ill-affected by their parents’ split to really want to work at it.

I think back to my parents’ generation. My mom and I talked about it today. She was 19 when she married my dad, 21 when she had me! She left her parents’ home, not knowing how to cook, clean, nor balance a cheque book, let alone how to be an adult or parent. She felt smothered. My dad was all of 21 when they married and 23 when he became a father for the first time. It was expected. That’s just what they were supposed to do.

Now, people are waiting longer and it’s for the better I think. I wonder though if people take marriage seriously. I’m not saying that people can’t be committed and not marry, each couple is different, but why take the plunge if you aren’t in it for the long haul? Honestly. I just don’t get that. I mean, of course if there is physical or mental abuse, you should get out of that situation, but why get married when you’re not completely sure? Why does our society put so much pressure on people to be “coupled”?

If I had the answers, I’d be taking over for Oprah!

Careerwise, I’m excited about all the opportunities coming up!

My session with Lisa last night was fantastic, she is just the best motivator and so good at what she does! I can’t say enough about her!

I had this idea that I wanted to start a camp for pre-teen girls, “tweens” if you will. I want it to be outdoors, overnight for a week at a time, no technology, a “famous” motivational female each week, along with of course other support, improving self-esteem while teaching these budding young ladies how to communicate face to face, learn how to stay active and fit without having to starve themselves later or join a gym (a lot of gyms won’t allow that till they are 16 anyway) and basically let them know that it’s okay to not be a size 2, that they are beautiful because of how they treat other people and for the love they have for themselves.

Lisa had some great ideas and I think I have a bang-up one for a fundraiser, piggy-backing on this Royal Wedding hoopla!

I sure would be grateful to be able to help some young girls not feel as tormented on the inside as I did as a pre-teen!

I am hopeful this last Friday of April!

And excited that the weather is expected to turn! I plan a long run tomorrow as well as a nice long hike with my pooch!

I loved seeing Victoria Beckham’s hat and it reminded me of how much I loved the Spice Girls and how inspiring I thought this song was at the time it came out!

Day 27 and 28


It’s all an exciting, hilarious whirlwind!

With a whole lot of fun thrown in!

I have simply the best life!

I’ve been training with my financial advisor, learning about the world of finance, I’ve been working out with Lisa, which is always good for me, I’ve been out for an annual dinner at a swank restaurant, for charity, with a really fun bunch of pals, and now I’m set to attend a multimedia conference in my hometown and do some freelance writing, Tweeting and Facebooking! Thrown in, I met a pal for coffee, went for some long walks with my pooch, browsed my local neighbourhood shops in the rain, and cleaned up and organized my pad! Plus, decided on a date and narrowed down a “theme” to a few fun ones, for a picturesque soiree, another to hopefully go down in the history books!

Pretty productive!

However, I’ve not been out biking and running too much! I can’t say I’m sad over that, in fact, I feel fantastic! I’m learning so much about so many things and I’m truly loving writing and connecting with people!

I also remember how great it feels to be “busy” and keep your brain that way too! It’s invigorating!

The weather could be better, but it will come around soon!

During my strolls into my neighbourhood shops, I was reminded of my great love of everything “pretty dress”-like, feminine and lacy, but also just “vintage” in general! One shop in particular, Lovesick, is one of my favs! Kim always has “new” and fabulous articles adorning the front windows!

Also found some great hats at The Secret Garden!

Even though it’s been drab for most of the past month, all in all, it is turning out to be whimsical and fun!

The magic is just starting! And I’m SO ready!

Here’s hoping a little Kid Rock brings the summer in just a little quicker!

(Political ad unintentional and does not reflect the author’s view)

Day 26


Sometimes a dream is just outside your grasp, and it doesn’t turn out to be YOUR dream after all!

What was it Garth Brooks sang? “Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers”?

I thought of this as I watched Oprah interview Phil Knight, the mastermind behind the Nike empire. He has always shied away from the media but I suppose Oprah is someone most just can’t turn down! He seemed modest and honest and seemed like he truly loves what he does. Still to this day!

But his story was that he, like so many young people, wanted to be a professional athlete. Once he realized that dream wasn’t going to happen, he simply wanted to work with inspiring University of Oregon coach, Bill Bauerman. The two formed an agreement with $500 each and were selling custom shoes out of a car at track meets.

Fast forward to one of the biggest empires worldwide.

A few athletes taped thank-yous  to Mr. Knight, Lance Armstrong even made a personal appearance. When the two originally discussed the Livestrong wristband, neither of them thought it was a good idea!

There have been 80 MILLION distributed to date.

As I was watching the whole thing, Oprah said she started running again. Seeing her smiling and openly showing so much affection for what these two men had done, it occurred to me that Oprah didn’t have to be a champion. Her job was something else. These two men inspired people in completely different ways, as did Oprah. Phil Knight never did become a major league baseball player but he is still doing what he truly loves!

It was like a lightbulb went off.

What am I doing trying to be someone else? Why am I trying to pursue something that isn’t what I am supposed to do?!

I like to be fit. I put pressure on myself and it backfires. I feel guilt when I don’t succeed.

It’s been that way in my work life also!

Although I have truly enjoyed doing most of the jobs I have done, only one did I really love.

Interviewing people. Making people think a different way. Writing and for that matter, blogging. Allowing people to talk, have a voice. I’m good at that. I wasn’t meant to be a champion athlete. I need to leave that to the people who spend every waking moment thinking about how much they love it.

That doesn’t mean I can’t conquer a triathlon, but it means I don’t have to do it over and over. It’s the journey anyway, not the finish.

So maybe all this confusion about what I’m supposed to “do” careerwise and what tri event I should commit to should be more about what I LOVE, about what makes me happy and that comes right back to what my life coach Michael asked me to do this week.

I was asked to write down 100 things that make me happy. It was hard.

I realized being fit makes me happy but feeling guilty about not working out doesn’t. I need to stop the cycle. Truly enjoy what I’m doing, or why do it??? Who am I doing it for???

I felt really good about realizing all of this!

Ironically, I worked with my financial guy today, helping him get his office organized. I told him I would volunteer to learn more about his business and see if it was a good fit for both of us before we entered into a “working” relationship. It was fun and I learned a lot! It was also great to get the brain juices flowing again! I am discovering other skills I have and that’s encouraging! I’m going back tomorrow to learn more and see how it goes!

I’m also training with Lisa tonight, for the first time since being in hospital. I’m really looking forward to it!

More epiphanies! Great day!

This is the only decent video I could find of that Garth Brooks song. It’s from the series Jericho!