Mi Life Is An Adventure

Mi crazy, wonderful, beautiful life.

Someday… August 6, 2012

Waiting for my someday….

I’ve been on vacation for the last two weeks, I’ve not blogged, but have been able to spend some time reflecting on what I need and want for my future.

At this point in my life everything is so up in the air, I feel very out of control, and overwhelmed with the changes that are fast approaching. Shaughn is moving in less than a month, my surgery fu for the end of September, we are talking more about Paisley and school, and I am missing friends and family who are far away.

I guess the following is just really my own little pipe dream, and if bits and pieces of it come true than fantastic, until then…I’ll keep waiting for my Someday.

SOMEDAY, I want to have my perfect life. I don’t mean like white picket fences, or lots of money. I just want a partner who loves me and Paisley. I want to be comfortable, I don’t want to have to worry about money or bills, and I want to have enough saved up that I can take a vacation, or go someplace neat on a rainy day. I want Paisley to grow up knowing that even though Shaughn and I couldn’t make it work, that we still love her, and that we will always have her back. I want her to know that she can have a fairy tale ending even though I didn’t.

SOMEDAY, I want to have a job I love and that I feel like I am making a difference in people’s lives. In most respects, I have that now. I do love my job, I love the kids, the chaos, and the joy I feel when I am with them. I generally feel like I am making a difference. But, my hours are long, I live at work, and sometimes I feel under appreciated. I’m not sure what I want to do, a big part of me wants to work with LGBTQ youth, or to work in the school system teaching teachers and staff about the many issues LGBTQ youth face at home, with friends and family, in the community and at school. I don’t know how to do this, I don’t know if there is a need (I really think there is though), I don’t know what kind of education I would need, or if it is something that I would be satisfied with in the end.

SOMEDAY, I want another child. I want to give a child in the system a forever home. I can’t have any more of my own, and I don’t really want a baby (ugh, I’m sooo not a baby person) but I would love to adopt an older child, someone who needs a family to love them, and to celebrate them.

SOMEDAY, I want to fall head over heels in love. I want to go to bed wrapped up in love, and wake up the same way. I want to be smart about it next time. I want to value myself, and treat myself properly. I have to be ok with being alone first, knowing I can do it on my own, before letting someone new in. I can’t let the fear of being alone cloud my judgment in the future. If I end up alone, I have to be ok with that, but if I find a new partner, I need to make sure that they are the right person for me. I can’t do this again; not to myself or to Paisley. Separating and divorce sucks rocks. The End.

SOMEDAY, I want to be able to look back on my marriage to Shaughn and not feel anger, guilt, or sadness. I want to be able to be open-minded to all the good things that happened despite the breakdown. I want to be able to see all the good things that came out of it, and not just see the bad stuff. I want to be able to share silly stories with Paisley about what her daddy was like, and the crazy things we did when we were young. I want to look back and feel a sense of happiness. It hasn’t all been bad, it’s just hard to see the good some days.

SOMEDAY, I want a cure for cancer, all cancers, not just mine. I don’t want any other families to go through the same shit I am going through, and that my family has gone through in the last 10 years. It’s heartbreaking.

Lastly,

SOMEDAY, I want to wake up and know that everything is ok in my world. I want to smile, and embrace my life. I want to feel happy, I want to feel safe; and I want to feel that I can take on any challenge thrown at me because I am strong enough, smart enough, and good enough to take it on.

I can’t wait for SOMEDAY.

 

 

What’s Good, and What’s Not Broken July 12, 2012

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And now I have to focus on what’s good, not what is broken.

So I’ve kept rather quiet about all of this for over a month, I’m not sure why. Maybe I was trying to protect myself, maybe I didn’t want it to seem like my whole world is caving in. I don’t want to be seen as a failure…so many different things I guess.

My 9 year marriage is ending. Suck Ass. It’s been a long time coming, it’s just the time is now. Not perfect timing, but the cancer stuff happened after the decision to end things.

Shaughn and I are two very different  people. For the last few years, we have drifted further and further apart, this last year with him at school has just exacerbated many of the issues that have always been there.

We are still friends, and I hope that we can always remain friends. This marriage took two people to make, and it’s taken two people to break it. We are ending things now so that we can still be friends, so we can leave not angry or too hurt.

We are both committed to being the best parents to our lovely Paisley that we can be, and to do that, we need to be committed to being friends, to communicating, and to still remaining as much of a family as we can be.

So now I’m looking at being a single Mum with Cancer…FML.

Really though, as much as all of this hurts, I’m excited about my future again, I’m looking forward to finding who I am, who I’ve lost over the last 12 years. I think a part of me has been hidden away. I did that because I thought that I would never find someone who loved me, I put my own feelings aside because I was in love. I chose to alter myself, my needs and wants to stay in this relationship because I was too afraid to do it on my own. This was unfair to myself, but equally as unfair to Shaughn. This last year has taught me that I CAN do it on my own, and that I know I can do a good job of it.

While I am excited, a part of me is scared. Pais is not going to do well initially, I know that, and I am going to be the one who will have to pick up most of the pieces of her crumbling world. I’m scared that I won’t have time to do it all. Shaughn has always done certain things; taken out the trash, cleaned the cat litter, he sets the dishwasher and unloads it everyday, he looks after the yard work. I wonder when exactly I’m going to get it all done. on top of being a Mum, having a full-time job, doing my volunteer work, and having a minute social life. He even makes my coffee for me every morning…now after a few trials and errors, I have figured that out, and when I say errors, ooh man I mean errors!!!!!

So yeah, the ride gets bumpier and has some crazy twists, but I’m doing ok. I am going to be great. We are going to be awesome parents to our girl. We are determined. This is totally sad and sucky, but it’s going to be ok. We all deserve to be happy, Paisley, Shaughn and I, it’s just unfortunate we can’t all be happy together.

Live and Learn my friends, Live and Learn.

 

The Walk Before The Run April 25, 2012

We all have to start somewhere...

We all have to start somewhere right? We aren’t born doing all the amazing things we can do as adults. We have to learn to feed ourselves, to talk and walk. We learn empathy, how to appropriately express our feelings of happiness, anger, joy and sorrow.

We don’t know anything, and everything is a learning process. This continues our whole lives, through school, through relationships, through jobs, and through our surroundings.

I have thought a lot about what I am learning about myself lately. I’ve taken time to examine who I am, where I’ve been, and where I’m going. Figuring out how I am going to get there, and what I need to do to reach the finish line.

My life wasn’t easy growing up, it wasn’t horrible by any stretch, but it wasn’t easy. I always felt that I had to live up to my parents standards, even when I tried my hardest, I still failed in their eyes. They loved me fiercely, and still do. I’m blessed to have them both as a huge part of my life. I still find myself reaching to meet their expectations, but I allow myself to fail now. I’m ok with it, even if they aren’t.

I spent a lot of my teenage years in turmoil, bouts with depression, relationships that weren’t good for me, drinking, drugs, doing stupid things just to make my pain stop. Of course none of it worked. I still managed to keep up a good average at school, and got into college with no problem. I was taking law, but dropped out after a semester. It just wasn’t me. I was bound by all these rules, I’m not much for conformity.

After dropping out, I volunteered, I travelled a bit, I needed to find out who I was, what I needed to do with my life. I needed to slow down, and look at my life. I had always done what others wanted me to do, and pushed down what I wanted for myself.

After a year of no school, I re-applied and was accepted into the Early Childhood Education programme, where I finally felt at home. I was in my element. I could get down and dirty with a bunch of two-year olds and go home at night, happy. I’ve never had a super paycheck, BUT I get a lot more out of my job.

I had to try one thing in college first before settling on what I really loved and needed for my life.

I find myself in a situation now, where my life is up in the air, Shaughn is still in school, rarely home, I’m a mummy who does it all. I’m learning the ropes still, 8 months later. It’s painfully slow, and some days I don’t know if I can do it. I just think I have it figured out, and wham, something stops me in my tracks, and I have to start over again.

One day I’ll run again, one day this will figure itself out, and I will find my footing.

 

Singleton Guilt. February 12, 2012

The One And Only One

I often (too often) am asked about when we are going to give Paisley a sibling. I am asked by family, friends, strangers, other mothers at the park, teachers, cousins, and just plain everyone. I’m sure that everyone who asks is well meaning, but as far as I am concerned, they are far too nosey.

Remarks like ‘So, she’s four, when are you having another?’ or ‘Wow, you had better hurry up or you’ll have one in diapers and one in college’ are not helpful, rather, they feed into my guilt for choosing to have just one child.

In todays society the number of singleton children is increasingly growing 43% of Canadian families have only one child (according to the last census), that is a lot of  children without siblings. So why am I constantly questioned about our decision?

Most people have arguments about why having an only child is a bad decision:

-They will be lonely

-They won’t learn to share

-They won’t have good problem solving skills

-They will have trouble making friends

-They will have trouble with conflict resolution

-When we die, they won’t have anyone to lean on

And the list goes on and on. What many people don’t realise is that all of these reasons are not valid. Many children with siblings have the same issues, it has nothing to do with having or not having siblings, but in how the children are raised.

Our decision to have one child was not one we made lightly. After four years of infertility, and a year of treatment for it, we were spent; emotionally, physically and financially. When we recovered and had the discussion as to whether or not we even wanted to entertain the thought of another, it was pretty clear to both of us that no, we were happy with our one, and that having another would not make our family any better, happier or fuller.

By having  just one, we feel we are able to offer her more than if we had two or three . She generally has our undivided attention, there is no arguing over who’s turn it is to do anything, it’s always Paisley’s turn (unfortunately for her that also means it’s always her turn to set the table and tidy shoes). By having one child, financially we will be able to provide for her much more than by having siblings. Only one university tuition, one prom, one wedding (hopefully). We are able to spend more time with her on school work, sports, reading, and tea parties.

With all of this being said, all of it, I will admit that sometimes I do feel guilty for our choice. I question our motives, are we being selfish? I wonder if she will be lonely, will she have trouble, what if she doesn’t end up making a strong connection with someone who will help her through the hard stuff, but again, it’s a lot of what if’s.

I watch her now, at almost 4 (eep!), and I see that she has friends, she can share, argue, and problem solve with the best of them. I also see a child who is confident, is beyond her peers educationally, is a great communicator. I see a child who is empathetic, who is caring, and watches and explores the world around her not caring that she is alone doing it. I see a child who when she needs some extra love and attention doesn’t need to wait, or fight for it.

I think it is wonderful that many families have more than one child, I think that it also has many fantastic things to bring to the table. I am happy that there are people out there who have lots of children, I am just not one of them, and I’m ok with that. I just wish everyone else was too.

 

Absence, And Coming Back. February 10, 2012

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/shellykaynyc/4450086651/

it's been awhile...

I was on a bit of a blogging hiatus, I’m not sure why. I think sometimes life is just so overwhelming that I cannot think about much more than getting through my day, and counting the hours until I can go to sleep. Given the fact that my life is so hectic, when I sleep, I sleep well, deep, and un-dreaming. It’s that total state of absence. I don’t hear Shaughn come to bed, I don’t remember tossing or turning; often times, I wake the same way I fell asleep.

I miss blogging. It is a great outlet for me,  a way for me to organise my thoughts, and to remember things.

Shaughn is also absent from our lives a lot these days, he will leave for work around 8:45 on a good day, and I won’t see him until 10 that night. I would be lying if I said this wasn’t impacting our marriage. I miss my partner, my love, my person. Often when he gets home he is beyond exhausted, and certainly not in the head space for meaningful conversations, or talk of bill payments and laundry. Most nights I go to bed alone while he works on homework for the next night. I have learned to cherish our short weekends, our family time.

I have had to let a lot go these last few months, I am not nearly as concerned with my windows and floors, laundry is always at the bottom of my list…My main priority has been Paisley, trying to be a great Mummy while balancing the rest of my life. I’m doing ok with it, granted there are days when I’m not going to win Mother of The Year, but there are others when she just looks up at me and says ‘I love you Mummy’ that I know I’m not doing too bad of job.

I know my absence has been felt within my circle of friends, with them checking in occasionally to make sure I’m still treading water. I feel isolated much of the time, with my only connection to the outside world being the radio and text messages I share during the day. It’s not all doom and gloom, my brother (read: Saint) picks me up every Tuesday to take Paisley out for dinner while I grocery shop for the week. Weekends I usually get out for a bit, thankfully otherwise I might just lose my mind entirely.

I’m going to try to be less absent from this blog, I feel like I need to get my words on paper, to focus my thoughts, and to be more introspective. So, please forgive me if I am not posting regularly, forgive me for my absence, and if another hiatus is looming in my future, please pre-forgive that one too.

 

Waiting For Autumn September 4, 2011

As a new season is upon us, I can't help but be happy for the change.

As most of you know, I’ve kind of had a shitty summer. Work has been less than satisfying, my vacation was challenging, and to top everything off the news of Paisley’s MHO.

So, now I’m waiting for Autumn. I am waiting for crisp mornings, where you can breathe in the cool air. I am waiting to see the children walk down the road with their new backpacks, and sneakers. I am waiting for the smog of Southern Ontario to clear, and the gorgeous sunny days to come out. I can’t wait to see pots of fall mums, and to go apple picking in the orchard.

I am looking forward to the leaves changing, and eventually falling off. I can’t wait to see Pais jumping in the mountainous piles that the 7 trees in our yard make! She had so much fun doing that last year.

With the autumn comes death, the leaves die, the grass becomes dormant, as the earth rotates on its axis and our days become shorter and our nights longer. I get up in the dark, and finish work in the dark. The days are challenging, but there is nothing better than snuggling in on a cool night.

I am ready to leave this summer behind. I am ready for a new beginning, even if that beginning is really an end. I need some new perspective.

This autumn will bring my family many new challenges, Shaughn is starting school again, we have welcomed a girl from China into our home as she studies English, I have a new daycare child starting after saying goodbye to another. I will essentially be a single Mum five nights a week, and truthfully – I’m scared shitless. But again, I look forward to a change of pace and a change of scenery.

I am determined to be more organised, I have menu plans ready to go, cleaning schedules in the making. I have childcare arranged for when I need it, and my gym schedule is set. I feel pretty good about the changes I have made, and I don’t know that I could be more ready for what is about to happen, but as we all know, we can’t predict the future and I’m sure I will encounter some craziness.

So as autumn creeps up on me, I again look forward to what is to come, I am going to embrace the crazy, cherish each day with my girl, be open to the inevitable changes upon me, and above all be thankful for my beautiful life.

 

1 in 50,000 August 7, 2011

This football stadium holds 50,000 people. Only one person in the crowd will have MHO.

Those are the odds that someone will be born with the genetic disorder Multiple Hereditary Osteochondromatosis or MHO for short.

MHO is caused by abnormalities in the EXT 1 and EXT 2 genes, resulting in benign tumours that grow on the long bones of children and teenagers, resulting in disfigurement and pain.

I just found out that my daughter has it.

Oh yeah, and as an adult, those benign tumours can actually turn into cancer.

I refuse to cry, I am trying really, really hard to not be pissed off, and I am trying to focus on the here and now. There is no room in my life for a pity party.

But right now, at 2 am on Saturday night, I am feeling alone, scared, angry, sad, and definitely not hopeful.

What does this mean for my beautiful daughter? She already has a wonky shoulder, we can see and feel the tumours on her knees and ribs. How are her peers going to treat her as they become more noticeable?  Are adults going to stare at her? Will people laugh and tease her? Will she come home from school in tears?

How do I prepare myself for the inevitable, especially when there isn’t much help, or hope out there?

I refuse to cry.

 

 
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