You Just Never Know…

…where your life will end up.

I didn’t think that a year ago I would have met a super awesome man on an online dating site when I was least expecting it (but isn’t that always the way, I guess?), that the relationship would have taken me to Jamaica twice, and that within a year of meeting we would be living together.

I also didn’t think that I could be this content AND that I would be preparing to conceive in the new year.

I’ve been thinking of taking this blog to a new location to start over documenting this new chapter…stay tuned….


Bitches be hatin’ (maybe)


I am tempted to wear a shirt that reads “THE BITCH IS BACK” on my first day back at the old office.

Of course I won’t actually, but it is tempting, if only because I would find it funny. I do, however, already anticipate that there may be some cattiness from the women who were hired after me in the same department.

Yes, I’ll be coming in as “the new girl” so to speak, but one that already has a good rapport with members of management.

That should be expected, of course, as there is 5 prior years of history there, and I was well liked. I travelled often with the President (my soon to be new boss) and the VP of Sales and learned a lot about them / spent a lot of time with them as a result.

So while yes, I’m the new girl, I am still coming in with a leg up, and since women can be so catty sometimes I wouldn’t be surprised if there was some animosity there.

I’m hoping we can get along like one big happy family, and although I don’t exactly come off as “friendly” (according to Mr. Dreads) I am actually a really nice person who wants to see everyone included.

That doesn’t preclude me from stepping on a few toes if I need to though – after all, I’m there to do my job well and further my career, not to make friends (that would just be a bonus!)


It’s about balance

How do you balance working towards a common goal with someone that you want to be with long-term, but also ensuring that YOU will be ok if things fall apart?

I’ve never been very good at that. I guess I just throw myself into things and let other things slide, things that would make the transition to “unattached” easier.

I have to try really hard to remember that I must do what is right for me (and the dogs).

This is not to say that I have any doubts about where A and I stand, or are going. We are great, and work really well together. We have similar goals and want the same things in life. We respect each other and there have been no red flags of any kind. Also, we make a damn good-looking couple together.

BUT I am somewhat torn in the living situation. Due to my new job (on the other side of the city), it makes more sense for me to be closer to work – which means, literally, across the city from A (when he comes back to Canada).

Of course, across the city is really nothing compared to halfway across the world…

I’ve promised myself that I would at least wait to make a decision on the living situation until he is back and somewhat settled – it’s unlikely though that he will find a job in the same area of the city (that would just be way too convenient, life cannot be that easy).

It’s hard though when I see condos in my price range and in my desired location that I want to jump on, but I keep reminding myself of what my father always says to pull me back from impulse decisions: “there will always be another one.”


2014 is really shaping up…

Oh how I cannot wait to catch up on everyone’s lives since I’ve been offline. It’s been a crazy couple of weeks – first there was Jamaica, which was amazing. In fact, I’m going back in a few weeks. Then there were major changes with work, mainly that I resigned on Monday and accepted a job offer with my previous employer.

Actually, I accepted the job offer first and then resigned, because I’m not brave enough to just resign without something else to go to.

Just before I left for Jamaica in February my employer re-structured my Department to better efficiently use all of our respective skills. At first I was happy with the change, but while in Jamaica, and having a lot of time to think, I realized that this new job structure was probably not going to work out for me. Not because I’m not capable of doing it, and doing it well, but actually because I could see myself getting bored with it really fast.

I’m the type of person that thrives when I feel like I’m accomplishing something, or working towards a goal. This new job was not going to allow me that – it is more task based, as opposed to project based. So when I got back from Jamaica I decided to start looking to see what jobs were out there, and in the meantime I updated my resumé and portfolio.

While updating my portfolio with accomplishments from my current job and my prior job, I realized very quickly that the accomplishments I was most proud of (and where I made the most impact) was with the previous job. I also came to realize that although the pay was shit (I started right out of college and was promoted numerous times but it was always a bit here, and a bit there….) I got a ton of great experience.

So I called my old boss and asked whether he wanted to meet for coffee. I also wanted to see the new building he had purchased and is in the process of renovating. Once he took me on the grand tour and we sat down for coffee and caught up, he started talking about how he was restructuring and looking for Senior Product Managers to come on board – long story short, he sent me the job offer the next day, we went back and forth in negotiations over the week, and I accepted the offer on Friday evening.

This will be a big promotion for me, and one that I’m very excited for. In fact, I’ve already started re-subscribing to all the trade magazines I used to read, and have started doing research on different aspects of the industry so I can be somewhat back up to speed. The salary bump was significant (best decision I ever made was to leave and then go back for almost double the salary!) and I will get my own office once the new building is renovated. It will mean responsibility, and a lot of work, but it’s something that I’m really looking forward to jumping into again.

My old/new boss have been emailing back and forth quite a bit since I accepted – my first job will be to launch a social media campaign for one of the brands I’ll be managing. Exciting! I’ve always wanted to get experience in the social media setting and this is the perfect opportunity to top up my resumé with digital experience.

The new job does mean a long commute though, literally across the city of Toronto. It also means that I’ll likely be moving closer to work, and further away from A (when he does come back to Canada). That whole thing though – do we live together, where is he going to work, etc – is all up in the air. As much as I’d love to predict what will happen, there are too many unknown variables. Things are going well between us though!

I feel like I’m trying to pack a lot of things into one post, so I will stop here….and pick up another day!


I am not dead.

A leaves in less than two weeks. I have been counting down while trying not to count down and spending as much time with him as possible while I can. I admit that I have been off these past few days – whether it’s the changing weather or the knowledge of his imminent departure I’m not sure. I have a lot of concerns about him leaving, about us when he leaves, and I hate that none of it is within my control. I hate not having control.
A few weeks ago my ex-husband emailed to tell me that he’s leaving for Calgary this coming Sunday and he wanted to know where the paperwork was for the divorce order. Suddenly there was a rush to get the paperwork filed with the court so he could be served before skipping town. I took my ass down there first thing yesterday morning hoping to get it done before work. The line was insanely long even though it was 5 minutes to opening. As I was standing in line I started to feel an overwhelming rage at my ex-husband – as usual, I felt I was the one taking care of everything, making sure things got done. Why wasn’t he the one standing in line missing work when he was the one who had cheated? Not only once, mind you, or with one person, but with numerous people since nearly the beginning of the 12-year relationship. Remembering this made me fume, and I think if he had walked in the door at the moment I was standing in that line I very well may have killed him.
It seems like such a trivial thing, yes, so what if I had to stand in line and miss work? I wasn’t expecting to even have any reaction – though I suppose my lack of emotion over the breakup was coming back to bite me in the ass. Once the dust had settled after he moved out I moved on fairly quickly. I know he didn’t understand that and as a result it caused him great anger when he found out that I was sleeping with Mr. Spice so soon after the separation.
Aside: Nobody told him. He used his key to get into the apartment when dropping the dogs off after one of his weekends (yes, he had weekends with the dogs, just like kids), and I wasn’t home yet. Instead of dropping the dogs off and leaving he started snooping and ended up in the bedroom, on my iPad, and saw a picture of Mr. Spice in full undress. 
Clearly I haven’t fully processed the whole separation thing for me to get that irrationally angry over being a few minutes late to work and I’m sure I’ll have more moments as the process unfolds. At least now I know to expect it still.

I should have just stayed in bed

If things happen in threes I think I’m done fighting for awhile.

Life has been insane in the last week. Work was overwhelming and exhausting until two days ago, and then I ended up having major issues with my cell phone provider and my ISP.

I spent Tuesday fighting with my cell phone provider because I was eligible for an upgrade to a new phone, except when I went into the retail store to get the upgrade they told me that I needed to shell out $400 PLUS the cost of the phone to upgrade. I explained that I bought my phone at full price from Apple in November 2010, I’m not on any contract with my provider, so how could I possibly owe them money for my phone? Somehow my 3-year-old phone was registered as an upgrade 4 times this year in their system. Clearly that was an error, but when it was fixed in their system it still showed that I owed $305.

Turns out sometime before my ex and I split and had a shared cell phone plan, he upgraded his phone on my line. Once we separated the account was split, but I ended up with the balance of his phone. I explained numerous times that I shouldn’t be held liable for a phone that I’ve never had, but I was just told “sorry, can’t help you.” So since I had to pay them $305 anyway, I cancelled my plan and switched providers. I then emailed my ex to see whether he could help with the bill for his phone – I haven’t heard back from him yet.

After fighting all day over the above I got home late to find my internet cut off. Of course I couldn’t reach anyone at the ISP because they were closed for the day but I knew what the issue was and I have been dealing with it for a number of months. I cancelled my cable TV with my ISP late last year. To return the cable box to them they send a prepaid UPS box that you pack your equipment in and return it. Sounds easy enough, right?

I’ve been waiting for this box to show up since last year. A few months ago they charged me with a $500 “non-return of equipment” charge on my bill. When I spoke to 3 different people on 3 different occasions about subsequent UPS boxes being sent out and not received (I’m on my 4thbox now, hoping this one actually makes it to me) they all told me to ignore the charge. A few weeks ago I had a call from the ISP’s billing department about non-payment. I explained the situation – no problems. Apparently none of the conversations I’ve had with their CSRs made it into my account because my bill went to the Collections Department who then suspended my account. I called in yesterday to speak to someone, and every one of them was very unhelpful (I think collections people must really hate themselves). Finally somebody transferred me to someone helpful who patiently listened while I ranted about how much their company sucks and why – then he got his supervisor to call the Collections Department to have my service reinstated. I apologized to him for the rant and intend to send an email to the ISP about how helpful he was.

See, I’m only a bitch sometimes.

When I got home my internet was back on and I was happy again….until Mr. Spice called and left me a voicemail while I was walking the dogs. This voicemail set off the third and (I hope) final argument for the next little while.

A former tenant of Mr. Spice’s had left a 55” TV behind when he moved. It seemed to work fine, except the colourwas off and it would sometimes turn itself off. Mr. Spice asked me to find someone to have a look at it and quote to have it repaired. I found a company that I thought was very good, and they came in and quoted $400 for the full repair. Mr. Spice agreed to it, and they took the TV.

The technician called me yesterday to say that he was having trouble finding a replacement LCD screen and gave me a few options. I spoke to Mr. Spice and he agreed to let the guy continue to look for the replacement LCD screen. I get this voicemail about an hour later where Mr. Spice is saying that he doesn’t know what kind of clown I found to fix this TV and next time he should just do it himself.

Since my threshold was already high having spent, by this time, 2 days fighting with big telecom companies, I called him back and told him to forget asking for my help next time because every time I do something for this man there is always something wrong with what I’ve done. This led to both of us yelling at each other and we didn’t speak for the rest of the night.

It was blessedly silent night.



Our bodies get bigger but our hearts get torn up

Mr. Dreads made a comment to me over the weekend that he doesn’t understand my hostility towards my ex-husband. That I seem to give Mr. Spice more breaks than most confident and self-assured women would. That I shouldn’t be upset that my ex-husband chose to sleep with men because it doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with me – just that there was something he wanted/needed that I couldn’t give him (in this case, a penis).

I’ve been thinking about the following:

I am not hostile towards my ex. I make comments sometimes that may come off as hostile, but I don’t actually feel hatred or hostility towards him. I’m not even angry with him. I hope that he meets someone with whom he is happy with and compatible with and who can accept him for who and what he is. I only wish the best for him.

lyrics: Wake Up, The Arcade Fire

I miss my ex sometimes. Not always, not even often, but sometimes. I have been lucky I guess in that there have been people around me to fill the “hole” left when he departed my life – for 12 years he was my best friend and confidante and that was one of the hardest things to grieve over once the dust had settled. To say my world was shattered feels like an understatement. There were days when I didn’t want to get out of bed and face this new life with this giant gaping hole in my heart. If it wasn’t for my dogs needing to be let out and fed and taken care of there are days when I probably wouldn’t have left my bed.

Do I seem to have recovered? I guess so. I feel ok for the most part. I no longer feel like my life is broken. My heart feels better, if not harder than before. I sometimes wonder whether I acted too quickly and made a mistake in breaking up our marriage.

Then I remember the part that I’m not usually open to explain. The disgust and discomfort every time I thought of him with a man. Knowing what I know about what he did, the sex in public places, the BDSM aspect, the daddy games, his complete emasculation – it made me lose a lot of respect for him as a man. That turned out to be the deal-breaker for me. I simply couldn’t look at him the same way. He was no longer the wonderful husband and friend (and yes, aside from this he was a wonderful husband and friend) but a sexual deviant who disgusted me with his actions.

Maybe that’s harsh, but it’s the truth.

It may not make sense, but I probably would have been more forgiving had his actions been with women. I know men cheat – I actually don’t expect a man to be 100% faithful so it’s not a matter of the adultery itself, but the details and the nature of the adultery that I couldn’t get past.

As an aside:I am not disgusted by gay men, nor am I homophobic. I am not even disturbed by the fact that he sought out men, only disturbed by the nature of his interactions with men.


Canada Day was never the same

It was after 8pm. The phone rang. From the other room I could hear him pick up, say “hello,” and then a long silence.

I paused the movie I was watching and went into the bedroom. He was sitting on the bed with his head in his hands, the phone still at his ear, saying “what? what do you mean?”

Mo was dead.

She had died in a head-on collision the day before, July 1, 2010. The death was instantaneous – the driver's seat of the car she was in with 3 others flew back upon impact and crushed her core.

She had been heading back from miltary training, was on her way to meet her long-time partner at the hotel. He was waiting – she never showed up.

It was a terrible night. There was alcohol, there were tears, there was shock and sadness and grief and regret and guilt. We had all lost touch to some degree. Although we still spoke sporadically the relationships had become diluted with time and distance.

The next few days were mostly just sad. Life continued on, as it does, but with a cloud of grief. An informal get together of Mo's friends, all of us sitting around a table, in shock, telling stories of times spent with her.

Then the funeral. All of us together for this incredibly sad day. I remember wishing that a happy event could have been the catalyst to bring us all together again. Not the death of a friend, this wasn't supposed to happen so soon. Despite my grief, the moment when I saw her partner unable to stand, so consumed with grief, my heart shattered for him.

Mo's death became a reminder that life is fleeting and friendships are important. It was a reminder that every once in awhile, despite time and distance, it's important to tell those you care about that you love them. That even if you have grown apart you still think about them, will be there for them.

– image: trekearth.com



Thoughts on Motherhood

I feel like a mother.

Childless, but only because I haven't met my child yet.

I've been feeling the need to start preparing for a child. What this means, I don't know (and no, I am not pregnant), but the anticipation is there.

Of course I'm a long way from being ready to have a child – emotionally I may be ready, but that's about it. I want to settle down with someone, be in a stable relationship, and go through the process of conceiving, pregnancy, birth, and beyond with that person. I also want to be more financially stable and I'm simply not ready to leave my job for a year – I feel like my career has just started, despite being in the workforce for as long as I have been.

This is all rather new to me. Up until 2 years ago I never wanted a child and I believed that I would follow the path of the other women in my family – staying child-free by choice. Then something in me changed in my 28th year. Not only did who I am become clear to me, but also what I want in life became as clear as day. A child was at the forefront of that revelation. The desire to have a child became an actual tangible feeling, and there are times when my heart actually aches with the anticipation.

So I am excited for many things. I have this picture in my head of this ideal everything – relationship, pregnancy, childbirth, baby. Of course I know life doesn't work in an ideal way most of the time, but I'm also looking forward to the surprises that will follow – I need something to keep me on my toes!

So here is what I have considered, in no order at all:

Baby Names: Yep, I have names picked out. The girls' names are easy, it was the boys' names that are harder. I'm keeping them to myself for now though as pregnant family and friends have already taken some of my favourite baby names – I don't want to jinx myself more!

Labour and Delivery: After watching The Business of Being Born I would love to have a natural childbirth at home. For one, I hate hospitals and can only imagine I would be incredibly anxious. And two, I'm a bit of a hippie in that I truly believe that when the time comes my body will know what to do, and I should just let it be.

Pregnancy: Oh how I am looking forward to getting fat and not being able to tie my own shoes! I say that in all seriousness. I think the pregnant female body is beautiful and voluptuous and I look forward to watching my own body change to support a life.

The Beyond: This is everything, the good and the bad. The diaper changing, the sleepless nights. Watching the little one grow. Seeing the world through the eyes of a child. All the milestones, big and small – first word, first steps, first day of school, first heartbreak…and all the little moments in between that I hope I remember to cherish when the time comes.

I guess I have a lot to look forward to!

– baby names image: styleista.blogspot.com
– labour and delivery image: inhabitat.com
– pregnancy image: makingtheworldcuter.com
– the beyond image: littlemissmomma.blogspot.com



Change in the House of Blues

The below was written in 2006 after returning from a business trip to Chicago. This was a pivotal time in my relationship with my ex-husband – it was the first time I found out about his extracurricular activities. Shortly after I returned to Toronto we broke up for 6 months.

I didn’t notice him at first, not until he started talking. It was hard to hear him over the noise of the Stones cover band. He introduced himself and I did the same, all the while keeping my distance. It was not the first time that night I had been approached, but there was something different about this man. Despite the fact it was in industry-only party, he was the only one in a sea of hundreds who was wearing a suit. He explained that he had come straight from work, that he was a lawyer specializing in intellectual property. He pointed to the left, told me his client was in the private box next to ours, and had asked him to join the party earlier that afternoon. After a few minutes of attempted conversation in the noise he left me, and I continued to get lost in the anxiety I felt and the turmoil that my life had become. Being away from home had only made things worse, and the only thing I wanted at that moment was to be on the first plane home to Toronto, somehow thinking that if I was there I could somehow fix everything and be happy again.

But then my Chicago stranger came back and in a few short minutes everything changed. Nothing prophetic was said, no light shone down from above, the earth did not quake beneath me (from anything other than the people dancing around us), but I left the House of Blues that night feeling like somehow the turmoil would fix itself and all I had to do was exist as best I could.

We kept in contact once I was back home and when the chaos in my life had settled and things had finally been confronted and put to bed, I was able to tell him thank you for approaching me that night. While never his intention, he managed to change something, somehow, and I’m better because of it.

I received a christmas card this year from him. It came late but stood apart from the rest for a different reason. The impact that was made on me that night when I felt everything was going to be alright has stayed with me long past my departure from Chicago. I will keep his card as a reminder of things I’m not even sure I am able to accurately and justifiably express in words.

– image: imradio.com