Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Popping the bubble

I have often been told that I am quite sheltered and live in a bit of a "bubble".
In all honesty I like my bubble - it's cozy and safe.

Well here's the thing I have noticed about people's perspectives. Because they have experienced some different aspects of life than I have, they feel everyone should experience these aspects.
but these experiences have not always or even often been positive for my peers - however they just don't like my being on the other side of the proverbial fence so to speak.

And I am kinda ok with having been sheltered from certain experiences and associated pains.

What I find unusual is if my bubble isn't hurting anyone, and it costs you nothing to support me in it, so why are some people so adamant about challenging me in it? It is my choice, and it's a choice I make rationally, without any impairment or infirmament to cloud my judgement.

So next time you see my bubble, maybe just give it a polish instead of trying to shatter it with a kick.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Dream analysts unite!

I had the absolute weirdest dream last night (technically this morning).
So strange in fact (well strange and unprecedented for me) that I sat in bed thinking about it for a good half an hour after I woke up.

Ok so Here's how the dream played out:
It's midday, and I have a meeting for some committee for Church (maybe I dreamed this part because I just got an email from Pastor Steve about facilities use?).
So we're meeting in a chapter's like cafe.
I go rushing in because I am late (as usual), and see Brent and Nathaniel sitting at a table. I am about to approach them, when I suddenly realize that I am almost completely naked. I am saved from total ruin by a pair of white cotton undies. (I have NEVER dreamed of myself as naked before)

Of course I freak out. But I don't want anybody else to know that I am freaking out or draw attention to myself in any way. So I hide behind a conveniently placed stack of books and pop my head out and start casually chatting with the boys. Then Kevin comes along, and walks in from right behind me. Thankfully not noticing my state of undress, or that anything is out of the ordinary. (phew!)
Next come Amy and Boomer together. And Amy of course notices, and of course exclaims rather loudly about my condition, drawing attention to us. I am mortified! Now everyone in our party and the entire store has been made aware of my situation.

So Amy and Boomer walk around the store to find me some clothes to put on. And of course in my magical dream world, the bookstore/cafe suddenly has racks of clothes in it (that I didn't notice before). So they grab me a white long sleeved T. There are some cirque du soleil moments as I try to put the shirt on without revealing any skin, hiding behind the stack of books.

once the shirt is on, I feel a little less constricted in my ability to move around. I wander through the stacks of clothes and find a red sheath dress, which I put on on-top of the long sleeved T. So I go from too little dress, to a little too much. And I look ridiculous with white sleeves sticking out of a red dress.

but I hold my head up high - thanks to the total and complete mortification of my experience, and walk what I hope looks calmly to the table where the guys are seated, and try to act like nothing happened.

Then I woke-up.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

my 100th Post

Wow! I have written and posted 100 times.

That is an accomplishment.

I don't post as often as I planned to.

And I'm not often as funny/ironical as I had hoped to be.

But it is cool to have this record.
So I thought it might be neat to reminisce about favourite posts - you know like how TV shows do flashback episodes of favourite or best moments.

This means I need your help - let me know which of my posts is one of your favourites.
For me I love the one where I explain how my mother is a catastrophizer - "The Sky is Falling"
That is my favourite post.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Power of the Human Mind

I've heard rumors.
I've even heard testimonials.
But I have never before experienced it, and as such never before believed it for myself.

You can make something your reality, simply by willing it to be so.

For Example:

#1 - If you've ever heard me tell a story about the way that I run, you'll know that I am hands down the world's slowest runner - no hyperbole.

I run so slowly, that you could probably be walking backwards beside me and still have to slow your pace.

I also tire of running very quickly, despite years of practice. I have only managed to run 5K 4 times ever, even though I joined the 5K clinic @ the Running Room 4 times.

I used to run with some coworkers, and one used to always tell me I needed to just put my mind to it and it would happen. I never bought it. When I would say I was tired and would be about to stop, she would say "ok, just run to the fire hydrant" or some other landmark. When I would reach it, and again, be about to stop, she would say "no, I meant the next one".
And it mostly worked. But I always hit that point that no matter what she said, I just could not go on. And I never managed to run nearly as long or as far on my own.

#2 - I have very recently discovered that I can make up my mind not to feel something, and I just stop feeling it. I haven't figured out yet how to make up my mind to feel something that I don't.
But this was revolutionary for me. I just decided one day, that I was going to stop feeling A, and it held. I no longer feel A, and it's been about a month. Yay me! This is especially exciting to me because I find that emotions cloud objectivity. And so when I can remove my emotions, I can make a much better, much more rational decision.

Now if I could figure out how to feel where there is an absence of feeling that might come in handy as well: then I could add an emotional exclamation mark to my rational decisions.
There is much to be said for the fervor and commitment that is born of passion.

I guess it can't hurt to keep trying - so if you walk past me sometime and I look like Hiro Nakamura - I'm not trying to stop time, but rather add emotion.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009


I am obsessed.
I can't escape it.
Every thing I say, do and see, I mould my perception of, to fit my obsession.

It's surprisingly common - and documented by attribution theory, sort of.

ok so Attribution theory tells us amongst other things, that we will always interpret our environments to match our beliefs and perceptions in order to avoid cognitive dissonance.
Cognitive dissonance is psychologically discordant, and thus uncomfortable - so our psyche works pretty diligently to avoid it - sometimes by changing our beliefs, other times by discarding sensory information, and most commonly by trying to make our sensory information fit into our beliefs.

So let's take an example where you are interested in someone else. And you really really want them to be interested in you. You will interpret every word, every gesture, every action from this other person as a sign of their interest. We all do it, we even ask our friends to interpret in our favour..."then he said XYZ, but he said it this way...what do you think that means? Do you think it means he likes me too?" And as friends we support this fallacy "what else could it mean? He said it this way.....he would only have said it this way if he was actually interested..."

And we feed the obsession. We become obsessed with analyzing every last detail of every minute everything...and really at the core, it's a useless endeavour.

I am obsessed with several things - a couple of reality TV shows, a couple of not so reality TV shows, completing my daily TO DO list at work, and more.....

And everyday when I wake up, everything I say, do and see always serve to solidify my obsession.

I would feel trapped, except I am aware - and in the infamous words of the G.I. Joe " knowing is half the battle!"

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Hidden Talent

If you're a girl you're very familiar with the ability to put a shirt on top of another shirt and then take the shirt underneath off. Without showing an inch of skin the entire time.

If you ask a girl how we learned to do so, we'll talk about gym class and modesty - truth is it's an expression of insecurity about the quality of our bodies underneath.
So we all learn to do it pretty early on, and we do it often, and perfect it while still pretty young.

Today I was at Canada's Wonderland, and I got a little chilly around 8:30pm, so I put my sweatshirt on. but then I found that because I had 2 T-Shirts on underneath, it was a little too hot. So I twisted and finagled, and managed to take my base layer T-Shirt off, under the other T-Shirt and Sweatshirt. And True to form, I do so without flashing an inch of skin.

Well I was impressed with my accomplishment - it's not easy taking a fitted T off under another slightly less fitted T. And so as we were leaving the concert area, I wondered about my ability to do accomplish a similar task with pants.

I was wearing my jean capris (they are loose, this has an effect). So I took my also very loose yoga pants out of my bag, and put them on on top of my jean capris. Well with twisting and hopping, and taking off of a shoe - I did it!

I was able to take off one pair of pants from underneath another pair of pants without flashing anybody.

Angela is my witness.

Admittedly I must have looked ridiculous, hopping around on one foot. And when I managed to get one leg off, and had to shove it back up over to the other leg to then come down and off - I had a few moments where I looked like I had an elephant crawling down my leg under my pants.

But a monumental accomplishment it remains, despite how foolish it may have looked.

I feel very accomplished and proud.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

What a way to start the day

So this morning I'm minding my own business and driving to work on a dreary, drizzly Thursday morning.

I look over to my left, and the guy in the passenger seat of a white cube van is looking over at me. (you know the kinda van, where they store dead bodies in the back in B movies).

So I kinda look away, but then peek back again, and smile at him.

So now he rolls down his window, and is kinda half sticking out - to look over at me.

Ok so this has pushed past my threshold of ok into mildly concerning/creepy - and I do my best not to look at him again.

Well about a block and half later he leans out, and blows me a kiss. I couldn't help but giggle.
Then the car had to change lanes, and I continued along my merry way to work.

But suddenly I was smiling despite the dreary drizzly day.

Thank you cute stranger - it was a nice way to start my day.

Monday, June 01, 2009

The Friend Zone

Do you have any friends who just always seem to magically float from one relationship to another? You know the guy/gal who always seems to meet someone at the grocery store, or Tim Horton's, after about 2 weeks of being single. And somehow their 5 minute conversation with this incredibly cute member of the opposite sex, leads to a phone number exchange, and usually at least a few dates, if nothing else.

And then there are people like me (please God, don't let me be the only one!) We have no trouble talking to people of the opposite sex, and make friends quite easily. But somehow for that one person that we kinda like, we always seem to NOT turn into a potential love interest for them, but rather a best bud.

Somehow you go from imagining what your "new name" would sound like, to giving him advice about how to approach the person he's interested in. The advice giving smarts worse than road rash on your face with your salty sweat running down into it.

I know that I am very guarded about my interest in someone, and I wonder if most of the guys I've liked would even have a clue that I ever did. But still - how is it that this keeps happening to me?

I have developed a theory that every interaction with an available member of the opposite sex (assuming that is whom you are attracted to), begins with the potential for a more than just friends relationship. No matter how buried beneath the surface, and unbeknownst to your conscious mind - it's there. Now there seems to be a pivotal point where the potential shifts and you are firmly in the friend zone.

I don't know what tips the scales in the favour of the friend zone. I refuse to buy the line "you're just too good a catch" - that's a bunch of malarky. If you truly were that incredible a catch, shouldn't you be beating off suitors with a stick?! (but thanks for trying to stroke my battered Ego anyways)

And the timing is not fixed - it can take a moment, a day, a week or a month. I've personally never had it take more than a month, but that may be just me.

So many variables remain undisclosed. And the mystery of the friend zone remains.

Nothing I can do about it, until I figure it out I guess - until then, here's to my next "friend".

Friday, April 17, 2009

This is NOT a Pitt Stop

Lately I have found myself in an oddly reflective frame of mind.

It's a good kind of reflection. Powerful, encouraging and motivating.

And true to form, God is coming at me from all directions to drive this new truth home.

So here's what's been going on:

#1 - I've started hanging out with an old friend again. It's been a while since we connected. She's a blast! I have been so invigorated by my interactions with her. She's the first person I have ever met who has actually thoroughly celebrated being single. Most people I know whether consciously or subconsciously treat being single as a pitt stop. A necessary but temporary state towards the goal.

And while I do want to get married and have a family of my own, I have caught her enthusiasm for "this is perfect for right now, and purposeful right now!"

So while I am a novice at living in the moment, and not worrying about tomorrow, because today has enough troubles of it's own (Matthew 6:34) - I am amazed at the effect my just starting out baby steps have had.

For example, my previous self, if I had met a guy that seemed nice, and cute, and interesting would probably would have started thinking about what we would be like in a relationship together, what our wedding would look like, and probably even what we would name our children.

The new and improved me, just thinks, cool, nice guy, cute and interesting. And that's it!

The old me would get uncomfortable when a stranger would smile at me - I'd think, who is this person, what do they want, and my future thinking brain would wander.

The new me, was walking to class last week, and a very very good looking guy smiled at me. So my live in the moment self smiled back.

It was nice.

It's not always easy, my brain is so used to being a future-thinking entity. Sometimes I have to push the future thinking back down. And sometimes it's ok to let the future thinker wander - it is an important part of somethings, just not EVERYTHING.

I am really enjoying the new and improved try-to-live-in-the-moment-most-of-the-time me.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The up-swing

Amazing the things that can happen in a week. And the huge effects it can have on one's mood and outlook.

My Teta (read grandmother in Arabic) is home from hospital. She had a lumbar puncture, which drained some of the excess CSF in her brain. And has resulted in some very positive albeit slight improvements.

I finished my group presentation in the course I am taking, just one final paper to complete (I am procrastinating a little on completing it) and 3 classes left.

I have actual food in house more often than not now, not only beverages :)

It's not pitch black outside at 4:30pm anymore!! I actually didn't have to turn my headlights on in my car until 7:43pm yesterday!

And I am feeling great!
It's such a turn around.
I was tired and grumpy, and sick just a little while ago!

So I'm looking to celebrate!
Life is sweet.
God is good (well, God is always good, I just wasn't paying attention for a while).

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I HATE feeling helpless

I think my parents were extra-diligent to make me independent and self-sufficient. Maybe it was foreshadowing for the future they knew was inevitable.
Then when my parents' divorced I was totally parentified, and had to flex my "be in charge" skills.

And they did a good job, I am good at it.

I don't know how to ask for help, because even when I wanted/needed it, there was nobody around who could help.
So I learned how to figure things out on my own. How to take care of things.
That is my job. My role.

I think that's also why my mom relies on me so much in facilitating the care of my grandmother.

Here's where my steps start to falter. I feel so helpless, and I don't know how to deal with that. My mom is stressed, and over-reacting (as she is apt to do), and my whole family is looking at me to take charge.
And I'm trying, but what can I do?

Sometimes I think if only I had followed through with becoming a doctor I could be more helpful now. But then, I might have been just as helpless, it's not like I had planned to be a geriatric psychiatrist or neurologist.

My grandmother was admitted to hospital today, for hopefully what will prove to be a short stay. She had a CT scan done when we brought her to the emergency room 2 weeks ago, and it showed some hydrocephalus(sp?).
So now she needs some more tests, and possibly a spinal tap to help drain the excess CSF.

It's funny how I expected to spend the bulk of my life working in a hospital, and how I never minded them, and now I hate hospitals.

Her room stinks of urine.
She seems so small, and distraught by all the strangeness around her.
A different stranger (part of the nursing staff and medical team) keeps coming in to ask the same questions.

I can hear the others in other rooms, and their loved ones, trying to help, trying to bring some routine and normalcy into this abnormal existence.

And I feel totally helpless. I can't do anything when she complains of pain, because she can't tell me where it hurts. I can't tell the doctors what to do, because they're already doing what they can, and what they should. Well, that and they know more than me :)

I don't know how to help reassure my mom or my aunt, so I just snap at them to hold it together. Tell them this is not the time or the place to behave this way. Then I feel guilty. It's not fair, that's how they're handling what's going on, they have a right to their own coping strategies.

So I am left feeling helpless, and I hate it.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Do you ever notice how people always only ever talk about Karma in a negative sense?
They seem to only notice when things are not going well.

I am no exception, I was over at a friend's last night, and I guess said something about having bad Karma several times - and well I was called on it.

Now the other weird thing about my perceptions of Karma is that it's not overarching, it seems to be localized to certain areas. However by definition, Karma is a general overarching principle - you get back what you put out.

So I technically have good Karma for some things - I seem to win a lot of tickets to sporting events - and pretty good seats too.
And I seem to have very good Karma with strangers. Just the other week a gas station attendant bought me a lottery ticket, because he felt I looked lucky, and I didn't want to buy one.

I have good Karma for finding people to spend time with - I am never alone for too long when I don't want to be.

Here's the other inconsistency, Karma's suppose to be about what you put out there. Well, I'm pretty sure that I'm a consistent predictable person, so shouldn't my Karma be consistent across all genres?

I guess Karma is definitely not an exact science - if a science at all :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Bucket List

Place an X by all the things you've done and remove the X from the ones you have not, then send it to your friends.

Things you have done during your lifetime:
(x) Gone on a blind date - more than one
(x) Skipped school - not until I was 18 and able to provide my own notes for absences
() Watched someone die
(x) Been to Canada
() Been to Mexico
() Been to Florida
() Been to Hawaii
(x) Been on a plane - got to fly one once
() Been on a helicopter
(x) Been lost
(x) Gone to Washington, DC - grade 9 school trip
(x) Swam in the ocean - several actually :)
(X) Cried yourself to sleep
(X) Played cops and robbers
() Recently colored with crayons
(x) Sang Karaoke - on the night Laura met Andrew
(x) Paid for a meal with coins only
( ) Been to the top of the St. Louis Arch - I don't even know where or what that is!
(x) Done something you told yourself you wouldn't.
() Made prank phone calls
( ) Been down Bourbon Street in New Orleans
(x) Laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose & elsewhere
() Caught a snowflake on your tongue
(x) Danced in the rain
(x) Written a letter to Santa Claus
() Been kissed under the mistletoe
() Watched the sunrise with someone
(x) Blown bubbles
(x) Gone ice-skating
(x) Gone to the movies
( ) Been deep sea fishing
( ) Driven across the United States
( ) Been in a hot air balloon
( ) Been sky diving
( ) Gone snowmobiling
(x) Lived in more than one country
(x) Lay down outside at night and admired the stars while listening to the crickets - Dryden Ontario during Challenge '97 - best Northern lights ever!
() Seen a falling star and made a wish
( ) Enjoyed the beauty of Old Faithful Geyser
() Seen the Statue of Liberty
( ) Gone to the top of Seattle Space Needle
(x) Been on a cruise - Nile cruise
() Traveled by train
(x) Traveled by motorcycle - I have been a passenger once, AWESOME ride!
(x) Been horse back riding
( ) Ridden on a San Francisco CABLE CAR
() Been to Disneyworld
(X) Truly believe in the power of prayer
( ) Been in a rain forest
( ) Seen whales in the ocean
(x) Been to Niagara Falls
(X ) Ridden on an elephant - YUP, at the Ex, with Emma
( ) Swam with dolphins
() Been to the Olympics
( ) Walked on the Great Wall of China
( ) Saw and heard a glacier calf
( ) Been spinnaker flying
() Been water-skiing
() Been snow-skiing
( )Been to Westminster Abbey
() Been to the Louvre
(X) Swam in the Mediterranean
(x) Been to a Major League Baseball game
(x) Been to a National Football League game - as long as CFL counts
( ) Jumped in the ocean when it was 20 degrees - I don't know what 20 degrees translates to, but I think the cold that one Canada day (where Matt in his wetsuit was like" It's not that cold.") should count! Well except that was a lake, not an Ocean, but it was still very very cold!