Monday, July 30, 2012

Childlike Wonder

Whenever I witness a child experiencing something for the first time, whether it is eating new food or seeing a new sight, I always feel blessed. Not religiously blessed, just lucky to be able to watch and enjoy all the awe and excitement that goes along with the moment. That sheer amazement that makes them pause, if only for a couple seconds, and simply enjoy whatever it is they are seeing, hearing, thinking, or feeling.

Children are a world of firsts. Every day something new crosses their paths. That tickles me because, as we get older, our firsts become sparser and, most tragically, less noteworthy. It's like as we lose our innocence we also let go of our desire to discover and our passion for new things. Which kind of seems backwards, since we're supposed to get wiser as we age. In our 'grown up' state, one would think we'd become more observant, but for some reason it's as though we develop blinders and often ignore the opportunities for growth.

The older we get, the less impact the world around us has. We become tougher. Less emotional. Cynical. We no longer pause to witness something we've never seen before. A glance, a subtle acknowledgement, this is all we can muster for a bird we've never seen before or a piece of music we're hearing for the first time. How heart-breakingly truthful.

What's even sadder is how our wonder over things that once astounded us slowly evaporates until we no longer see the things that used to render us speechless. Our firsts become routine, tiresome, insignificant. What once caused us to stop in our tracks and hold our breath in amazement no longer seem important. Interest fades. We continue to move along, not really seeing, and certainly not taking notice of the life around us.

I don't want to be like that. 

When I was camping with my friend, he pointed out the deer roaming around the camp-ground and I felt this flutter inside, similar to the butterfly feeling in your tummy when your crush says something ridiculously sweet. It's the feeling of excitement and affection and desire and happiness all rolled into one, and seeing the doe with her fawn sent this unique feeling surging through me. And it isn't like I haven't seen deer before. I've seen hundreds of deer, if not thousands, yet I still got excited. I stopped walking and took note of what I was seeing.

And I told my friend that I hoped I never lose my sense of wonder over seeing deer. He asked what I meant and, because I love to hear myself talk, I explained this whole thing. About how people are less amazed the older they get, or the more they witness something. They become desensitized to their surroundings. Things aren't as remarkable or awesome. It's like the world loses it's colour. And I never want to be like that. I want to take note, to stop, to wonder and revel in my admiration as much as possible. I want to use my senses and see and feel and hear and smell and think. Forever.

Of course, he's wise, you know. He said I don't have to lose my sense of wonder. And he's right.

None of us have to lose our childlike wonder. So, why do we? Are we really so busy that we can't stop for a few seconds? That we don't have the time to take a brain-snapshot of what we see? To imprint an image, sound or smell on our memories? To enjoy what we are experiencing, even if they aren't firsts? Even if we've seen, heard or felt them a hundred times before?

I try my best to reveal in my childlike wonder, to keep it front and centre as I walk through life. Yes, at times it's embarrassing, like when I stare up at the heavens with mouth agape and utter such ridiculous phrases as, "Look at the sky, it's crazy" and "The sun is so cool." Anyone who's witnessed these moments probably thinks I smoked a few dozen marijuana cigarettes and am spaced out and orbiting earth, but that's not the case. The world just amazes me.

Every time I see the night sky, I'm mesmerized. Nature astonishes me. Animals enthral me. Art impresses me. Music dazzles me. Old buildings calm me. Patchwork quilts excite me. Hands massages comfort me. Cake thrills me. Horror movies delight me. Puzzles entice me. Books please me. And I'm going to let my six year old self out every time I'm doing, seeing, feeling, thinking, smelling or hearing something that amazes me. I'm clinging to my childlike wonder, no matter how silly it seems, because that surge of awe and excitement feels good. It makes the journey worth it.

And I'm not too busy to enjoy the big, small and seemingly insignificant things. Not now. Hopefully not ever.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Where The Forest Meets The Sea

Once upon a time, I stood at the edge of the world with my toes curled over the cliff and my arms spread open wide welcoming a new summer. The wind whipped around me, billowing my dress and sending my tangled hair in a million directions. I closed my eyes and took the deepest breath I could manage, filling my lungs to their fullest until I thought they'd burst like balloons. When I released the air, I let out all the toxic negativity weighing me down.

In that moment, I felt light and free.

The chains binding me to the girl I was supposed to be, the girl everyone wanted me to become, no longer existed. I didn't feel lost or broken, in need of being put back together, or soothed and loved. I didn't feel scared or hurt. For a few seconds, I simply existed. Me and the earth danced together. And nothing mattered. Not my family. Not the anger and pain waiting for me at home. Not my dissatisfaction with my homely self. And not even the troubles of the world.

I was twelve years old, but the memory remains impeccably clear.

It was a place where the woods were a stones throw from the beach. Behind me, trees peppered the cliff, growing thicker the further back you walked, but beneath the ledge water crashed upon white sand that was fit for an hourglass. The day was clear, save for a few puffy white clouds flecking the otherwise limitless blue sky, and birds floated on the breeze, hovering in place, appearing as if they weren't moving at all. Waves rolled in and out and the swooshing sound of the water caressing the beach brushed against my ears. The sea shook hands with the forest, their scents melding together to make the perfect concoction from the saltiness of the ocean and the sweet aroma wafting off the trees.

I was only there for a moment, a minute, before my parents called me back to the car, but whenever I find myself in a place where the forest meets the sea, that feeling of being free comes back to me. It comes without warning, unstoppable and knee-weakening.

I've made it clear how I feel about nature. I am a nymph of the forest, a siren of the sea. My ultimate goal is to fill my life with the sounds of the ocean and the smells of the damp earth after a summer thunderstorm, to sit on a porch and watch the seasons change. Whenever I am able to combine my two favourite places, forest and sea, I'm in my element, I am at ease. Contentment reigns. It matters not if the sky is grey, if raindrops dampen my clothes, or the sun scorches my exposed skin. The wind can howl. Thunder can clap. Lightning can fork the heavens. The sea can roar. But I find peace in simply being close to land and water. Think of the two things you love the most in the world, then put them together, then you are experiencing a bit of what I feel when I'm standing where the forest meets the sea.

This last weekend, I tasted the bliss that comes with being outside. And it's still as sweet as always. It was the first camping trip of the year, and it didn't disappoint.

First off, I'm an expert camper. Weather doesn't affect me. I don't complain about being cold or hungry, wet or sweaty. I know how to pack for all occasions. Breaking a nail digging up rocks on the beach isn't an issue. It doesn't bother me when my clothes are dirty, or my hair is a tangled mess of knots, or when sand is in every crack and crevice known to man. No, I like being filthy. (Both mind and body.) I love burning my feet because I'm sitting too close to the camp fire. I enjoy smelling of smoke and sweat, bundling up and hiding in the tent when it's raining. My trip isn't ruined if a tent leaks. And I don't even mind when someone hogs the bed and I'm left with a sliver of blanket on the cold tent floor for seven hours.

The only thing I'm not a huge fan of is being bitten a hundred times by bloody thirsty mosquitoes, but I don't even really complain about that, just scratch a lot as I enjoy the view.

Our location was this tiny island, tiny meaning that we were able to walk around the entire thing in a couple (five) hours on the Friday, that was only accessible by boat. It didn't even have any cars on it and that felt oddly perfect to me. Random wildlife was seen as well, like chipmunks, a raccoon, a heron, Canadian Geese and deer. Baby ones too! They frolicked and I watched with child amazement. I'm pretty sure I wore a goofy smile, but that's usually when I'm at my most charming anyhow.

For the first time in my life, I had a S'more. I know, I know, apparently, I had a very stunted childhood. Regardless, this thing of chocolate and marshmallow was a wonder in my mouth. I took it upon myself to heat my chocolate up on the grate over the fire as I roasted the 'mallows. Whoever invented this thing should be given a medal of some sort. My beef, I don't like the name, but the only thing I could come up to rename it was "chocolate graham crackery tasty thing". Doesn't exactly flow off the tongue. Don't worry, I was in fact mocked over the suggestion.

We, being my undeniably handsome camping buddy and his owner (just kidding, the hound is cute though), did some beach scavenging. Rocks and glass and shells were collected. Some treasures were stolen even though they belonged to the person who found them (me). And, on top of that, we made some beach art - a flower out of seashells and sand-smoothed glass. Well, the final design took a few tries to hammer out. At first it was just white shells and glass for petals, but then on a whim we changed the brown glass to the leaves and the green to the stem of the flower. Then, the white glass was shifted to the centre and muscle shells were utilized in creating an alternating petal pattern with the white. Complex stuff, right? I would have loved to have taken it with me. Unfortunately, it really wasn't possible. Next time I'm bringing crazy glue and making it a permanent beach fixture.

Isn't it funny how you can visit a place for the first time and still have a connection to it, like it's where you're supposed to be. Maybe not forever, but for the moment. It's like you're coming home. The forest and ocean welcome me. The more time I spend out of the city, the clearer my head becomes and I get to brush shoulders with the girl I'm supposed to be. Sometimes you do belong somewhere. And I just happen to belong amongst the trees, close to the waves crashing on the shore and a hop, skip and jump away from a field I can run through. 

They say when you know you know. And sometimes that's true.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Dear First Draft

Lately, I've been avoiding you. I know that's hard to hear, and is only confirming what you already know. And I want to apologize for my immature behaviour, but it doesn't change the fact that I've been sneaking around the house, refusing to make eye-contact with you. Acting like a complete child. Ignoring your file. Refusing to acknowledge your presence. 

I do see you.  

And I think of you often. More than you'll ever know. All the time, really. You're on my mind when I wake up in the morning, on my guilty concious each night when I rest my head on the pillow, and throughout the day you pop into my head at the oddest moments. It isn't that I don't want to see or talk to you. I do. I really do. But other things get in the way. Life things. 

I suppose that just sounds like an excuse to you. You'd be right. 

The truth is, it's not just me. I could take responsibility for the deterioration of our relationship. Say it is all my fault. But you are to blame as well. All those typos. Those poorly constructed sentences. The plot holes. And let's not even talk about the pacing. You're a mess, and I'm supposed to fix you? Clean you up and make you presentable? Most days I don't even think it's possible. And it isn't that I don't have faith in you, I do, but the work involved is daunting. Not to mention tedious.  

I told you from the beginning, I'm no editor. I am a writer. A creator. I craft and think up ideas, write them down. It's your job to be perfect and clean and lovely. I can't do it all on my own. I need help. You're supposed to be my support, make all my efforts worthwhile. And here you are, showing me dangling modifiers and adverbs and comma splices. Even after I comb through one of your chapters, I find more mistakes, ones I swore I just fixed! It's like you want me to be someone I'm not! I don't even own a red pen. 

You're sitting there demanding all this attention and time and it's time and attention I'd be happier directing elsewhere. 

I didn't want you to find out like this, but I've started another novel. Don't get all upset. We both saw this coming. We've been growing apart for awhile. And I'd hang my head in shame and avert my gaze, but she's so fresh and pretty. Flawless, really. She's so full of possibilities and excitement. I get out of bed for her. It's true, I don't know where we will end up, but we are weaving a plot, developing characters and prettifying sentences by using the perfect words.

It's not that you've been replaced. No, you could never be replaced. You have a special place in my heart. And I promise to return to you. I will finish your edits. Just not right now. Not when my new manuscript's cursor is blinking, begging me to type just a couple words, a few sentences, a paragraph. 

I guess all I wanted to say was, I'm sorry. It's just editing isn't my strong suit. My brain won't shut down long enough for me to reread your sentences and clean them up, make them sing. The sad part is that I know you have such potential. But right now, I have this new idea. One I need to write down. I know you'll understand because we were here once too. You remember the beginning of our romance. How thrilling it was to sit down together and work as a team. I know you won't begrudge me this. 

I do love you. Never forget that. 



Thursday, July 12, 2012

A Different Sort Of Girl

Yesterday someone told me I'm not girly. My first instinct was to laugh in his face. Probably not the most respectful of responses, but it's what I considered. Before I could start the manic laughter, I actually paused to think about what he said. As I mulled, I realized I was slightly put off by his flippant comment. But why?

Was it because it seemed pointless for him to point out? Or because he was a friend? Did I cherish his opinion? Did I hold stock in it? Was it the implication that I'm boyish? That I didn't have a girly side? Or was it something more?

Usually, I couldn't give a damn what people think of me, friends or foes. That's not saying I don't value what *some* people think, but please note the emphasis on 'some'. You see, in my older age I've come to terms with the fact that people have their own thoughts and opinions and that those thoughts and opinions sometimes extend to me. It's all out of my control. And I'm okay with that. The people who matter will understand me, and excuse my inappropriate behaviours.

The thing is, I do think I'm girly. I just don't flaunt it. Tomboys rarely ever do.

Wait, hold up. Am I saying I'm a tomboy?

Yes, yes I am.

As a young girl, I spent a copious amount of time with boys. (Well, that didn't come out right.) I mean, I had a lot of guy friends, and three brothers, and kind of was my dad's sidekick for my early years. Which meant, I kind of cultivated a boyish outlook on life. And I didn't have anyone to teach me how to be a girl. Both my sisters moved out when I was fairly young and my mom worked full-time and had my brothers to contend with. So, I was left to piece it together on my own.

I guess I did a pretty crappy job. Even though I wear dresses and paint my nails - sure the paint ends up everywhere and my dress gets dirty.

So, maybe a tomboy can't be girly?

Instead of crossing my arms and pouting, and looking unbelievably cute while doing so, I decided to ask some people what they considered girly - just in case I had it wrong and I'm actually a man. Well, you might be surprised at how many scrunched up noses and eye-rolls I got. Apparently, girly-girls don't go over well. Little did I know, girly is actually another word for high-maintenance. Surprise!

Here is a brief run-down of what the people I consulted considered to be 'girly-girl' traits:
giggly, waxed, tanned, bleached, dyed hair, dramatic, huffy, says 'I'm fine' when they aren't, reads Cosmopolitan, likes romance movies, unrealistic expectations, wants to be taken care of, pink is her favourite colour, takes a long time to get ready, cries easily, fashionista, divas, calorie counters, buys designer clothes, wears high heels they can't walk in, short skirts, push-up bras, make-up, made up, fake nails, yoga pant wearing, weak, hates bugs.

On second thought, I might not be girly. I rather like bugs.

Not saying I don't possess some of these characteristics. I like romance movies, even though I roll my eyes and mock them mercilessly, and I'll have you know my glasses are actually Armani! That's a designer brand! Also, I've been known to shave on occasion, not wax though, that shite hurts. Truth be told, I don't need a push-up bra, and cleavage up to my chin doesn't really sound appealing. Furthermore, I'm 5'9, high heels would be pointless as I'm already taller than most people and don't enjoy looking like an Amazon woman when I venture forth from my lair.

And, even though it's painful to even type out, I want to be taken care of. Just in a way that isn't controlling and makes me feel like I still have all my freedoms. I'm a Sagittarius, for crying out loud, we get panicked at any sign of restraints. Unless they are handcuffs, but this blog isn't about dirty things and I refuse to ramble on and deviate away from the point, which is...

I like pretty dresses. And painting my nails. I like clothes and bath products, candles and cute pictures of puppies. Shoppers Drug Mart is my favourite place to shop. I enjoy bubble baths, tea and cookies, and having my hair brushed out of my eyes by a dude. I cross my legs when I'm wearing a skirt. I have at least fifty pairs of underwear, and they're all cute. There's a lady garden between my legs and breasts upon my chest. And I like boys! Actually, I love boys!

So what if I say whatever's on my mind and have a mouth that'd make a sailor blush. It doesn't matter that I think shaving above my knee is a waste of time and who really cares if I'd rather be outside getting dirty than at the mall buying something cute and pink. Yes, I cut my own hair. No, I don't brush my hair, it's curly, there isn't a point. Yes, I pair my Converse shoes with everything, even dresses at weddings. No, I don't like sparkles, rhinestones or glittery things. Yes, I invest more time in my music collection than I do on making myself look presentable. No, I don't cry when I feel fat or if someone says something mean to me. Yes, I like ATVs and dirt-bikes and boats. No, I don't give a flying feck what's 'in vogue'. Yes, I will say anything to get a laugh. And no, I'm not overly-emotional, dramatic, or need to be doted on. But these things don't change the fact that I'm a girl, a woman, a lady. They don't make me a boy. They just make me a different sort of girl. And I suspect there's more than a few of us out there.

In the end, I might not be girly, at least not what the stereotype is, but I am feminine. There's a soft side here. A gentle side. A side that wants to feel protected, look pretty, smell sweet, get swept up in a whirlwind romance, and be seen as tender and nurturing. But I guess I do a fantastic job of hiding her away. And maybe that's my fault. But I'm pretty sure I can blame my childhood and parents or chalk this up to my fear of being vulnerable and exposed. (Just kidding) ((or am I?))

Either way, non-girly-girls should unite. And prove that just because we have grass stains on our knees doesn't mean we don't giggle from time-to-time.

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Pretty Percentage

In a world where we are so fixated on physical attractiveness, it interests me that two of the most pant-worthy qualities someone can possess to me are a sense of humour and compassion. Of course, physical stuff comes into play. I do like to find my crushes attractive on a more...well, primal level. But the older I get the more I realize one's sex appeal is directly proportionate to their ability to tease and be witty with me.

Someone can be a lusty lump of sinewy muscles with flawless features but remain in the 'meh' category until they show a bit of a spark. I'm not one to gawk at pretty boys. The truth, just between us, I actually hide the sexy photos of models people post on Facebook. Because that's not what I find attractive. Give me a music nerd talking about their favourite bands or a brainy lad explaining the wonders of the universe over a stereotypical hunk any day of the week. Maybe I'm just wired differently, but I want to see some personality. Quirk, if you will.

I've never taken compliments on my outside stuff well. I touched on this before, but they make me uncomfortable. Not because I don't like my face, I do. Now. But I struggled growing up with it. Mostly because I didn't understand beauty. And I thought I was ugly. Awkward. Unlovable. It took a long time to shrug out from under the whole low self-esteem phase and emerge this vivacious creature you see before you. (ahem) In truth, I much prefer compliments on inside stuff, like how long my large intestine is.

Which is why when someone told me I was 'at least 47% pretty' this weekend I didn't get my back up. Obviously, the comment was said in jest - I mean, look at me. I'm totally over fifty percent pretty. But the thing is, humans have this innate ability to get upset over things they know aren't true. I mean, I can't tell you how many 'no, I was just kidding you're not a fat, ugly beast' conversations I've had in my life. Suffice to say, there have been more than a handful. The thing is, even when people know they are easy on the eyes, they get their back up when their outward bits and bobbles are questioned.

And I get it. We're all Sensitive Sallys. Most of us were teased in school and have residual self confidence issues because of it, and almost all of us have suffered a barbed comment from someone who wasn't just (to use a phrase I hate) taking the piss. In the end, we all want to be pretty, cute, beautiful, devilishly handsome or whatever your ideal compliment may be.

Except, I just don't give a damn.

Before you get all sassy and hands on hippy with me, let me explain.

I'm never going to be someone's trophy wife. First, I'm too old for that nonsense. It's a fact that trophy wives are usually under twenty-five. Second, I don't have the time and energy to invest in being one of those girls. Or money. Do you know how expensive it is to tan, dye, bleach, wax and perfect the human body? A lot. And third, I am not the typical hotness one would expect of arm candy, and I never will be. Mostly because I can't afford Photoshop in real life, meaning plastic surgery. Not that it would be an option anyway. Flaws are beautiful, aren't they? I've always been under the impression that it is our imperfections that make us perfect. Or at least they make use who we are. Otherwise we'd all be given the same face and body at birth. How boring that would be?

So, 47% is a pretty low pretty score, but, even if he was serious, I wasn't insulted. Why should I be? We all have opinions. I can't control what someone else thinks of me. I am who I am. That said, if he had of told me I was only 47% funny I would have raged. Because I am hilarity in human form. A walking talking jokefest. I might not be wolf-whistle hot, but I'll make you laugh. If it's the last thing I do. Mark my words. Okay, this is just getting menacing. Let's get back on point...

In truth, the pretty percentage is subjective. Even if I was 47% to one bloke, I might actually be a 78% to another. This is because we all don't find the same things attractive. Crazy, right? I know, it's shocking that our likes and dislikes, even in people, differ. (sarcasm abound) What's even more fascinating is how we all notice different details in people. For example, not too long ago, a friend told me she went on a date with a fairly attractive man only to notice his hands were really small. As the date wore on, she found him less and less appealing, until she was completely turned off by him. I know, who even notices hands? Just another thing to worry about and it's why I walk around my hands hidden in my sleeves.

Not only is the pretty percentage subjective but it also fluctuates. It's a sliding scale, so to speak. When I first meet someone, I might start out at 47% but my wit and charm and general awesomeness might help to slide me up past 60%. Or down. I might also get less purdy as time passes because, let's be honest, I have a few heathenish qualities that might work against my hotness percentage.

We've all met people we've found attractive only to cringe in disgust when they open their mouths or do something appalling, like kick a kitten or put a baby in a plastic bag. Then there are those people who you might not write home about based off looks alone, but they are so animated and different that your motor gets going. There are no rules. Attractiveness is far more than the size of your waist or the symmetry to your face. It extends beyond how you look in short skirts or whether you can play spoons on your washboard abs.

Attractiveness is so many things, like style, flare and quirk. Personality. It's the passion you harbour for your art, hobbies and goals, it's your drive, determination, and empathy. I don't care if you rolled out of bed or spent an hour getting ready. I'm more concerned with the way you smirk. How easily you laugh. Your musical nerdiness. The gentleness you only let certain people see. Your weaknesses and strengths. I don't care if your skinny or plump. I care what makes you tick. What gets you out of bed. Who you want to be. Where you came from and how you got here. And your stance on cake. Of course.

You see, looks are just looks. I'm not naive enough to say they don't matter. They do.

They just aren't quintessential. They just aren't everything.

And how we see someone changes the more we get to know them.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

For My Friend Mrs. Renner

This morning a friend is on my mind. It's because I'm wearing this awesome belt. It's purely for aesthetic purposes, because it doesn't matter how tight I cinch it, my pants still fall down. And then there's butt-crack. A heck of a lot of butt-crack.

But this post isn't about my arse, its cracks or cheeks. I mean, I'd seriously have to be hard up for material to blog about my rump. And who would read it? Someone seriously hard up for reading materials. 

No. This is about my friend. Who just so happens to have given me the out-of-this-world belt I'm wearing. For this wee blog, I'm going to call her Mrs. Renner. Sure, none of you will understand why that's funny, but she will. Don't you hate inside jokes that leave you out of the loop? Yeah. Me too. But in this case, I'm so far in the loop it isn't funny. And I don't care that you're outside of it.

Well, Mrs. Renner has a bit of a problem. She doesn't know how awesome she is. How sad!

As I was driving to work and my massive belt buckle was digging into my crotch because I was sitting at an odd angle, I got to thinking about her. You see, I'm ever-so thankful to have her in my life. Not only is she almost as sick and twisted as me, but she gets it. Life. And how it's not always fairy-tales and roses and sunshine and sweetness. Like me, she also attended the school of hard-knocks and came out on the other side alive and relatively well-adjusted, albeit a bit disenchanted with mankind, but laughing none-the-less. She's a fighter. Unfortunately, she's a worrier as well. And sometimes life's not so awesomeness can get her down, have her questioning who she is and what she's doing.

It makes me sad that she doesn't understand how fantastic she is. Because she truly is one of my most favourite people. She's not just a friend - she's family. In so many ways, she's like the female version of me. Oh, wait. That came out wrong. She's like a clone of me. Her wildly inappropriate sense of humour parallels mine and, shockingly enough, sometimes surpasses mine. Hard to believe, I know.

She's the type of girl who will cut off her arm for her dog, get excited about silly things like Marky Mark movies and Mexican food, and text you four times when you're on a road-trip to make sure you haven't been trafficked. Or, if you have been sold into the sex trade, that the guy got a good price for you. She's that girl. The one everyone loves because she's simply delightful to be around. The girl with amazing hair, perfect eyebrows, gorgeous eyes and the cutest bum in the world. No, seriously. It's so grabbable it isn't even funny.

And she's clueless to her perfection.

I get it. In reality, we are all a lot like my friend Mrs. Renner. Most of us don't see ourselves the way others do. We are our own worst enemies, battling our reflections and flaws and idiosyncrasies. Except it's such a colossal waste of time to fight ourselves like this, because our perceptions are skewed. This reminds me of that weird Baz Lurhmann song Everybody's Free To Wear Sunscreen. Not sure why. Probably because it says, "You're not as fat as you think you are." And I don't know a woman alive who can't relate to that.

Anyway, back to Mrs. Renner and her fantasticness...

Sometimes people do things you will never forget. When I was down and out, she put her arm around me and accepted me as her sister-wife. (Another inside joke) For that, I will always be in her debt. No matter what happens over time. No matter if our paths split apart (so not going to happen). No matter if we get into a huge fight and call each other names on Jerry Springer. I will owe her for simply being my friend. For showing me love when I didn't think anyone could ever possibly love me.

And for making me laugh. Every day. Without fail. You can't put a price on that. Never.

She is awesome, amazing, and astounding. All I want is for her to know that. To accept it. And to walk this earth knowing if I was a lesbian I'd be all up in her grill. Sadly, I don't do taco. Still, I think we'd make the perfect couple.

Oh, and because you probably don't believe me on how awesome my belt is. Here's proof:

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Road Trippery And Who I Am

There's nothing better than getting out of dodge. When I leave the city, a weight is lifted off my shoulders. It's like I'm returning to where I'm supposed to be. Like I'm dipping my toes into the waters of my future. Not long ago, I wrote a post about not being the one. It was featured on my friend Jane's blog and located here. The premise is how we struggle to find ourselves, but how people often end up loving us for someone we aren't, instead of the amazing creatures we are. I won't be recapping the blog here...because you have eyes and are perfectly capable of clicking the link and travelling over to take a look yourself.

Anyway, this last weekend, I took a day trip up into the mountains. It was random because of the circumstances and involved stranger danger, an adorable dog, a few awkward moments, bouncy boobs and pie. No, not any cake. I know! I feel like a traitor, but a chubby girl's gotta do what a chubby girl's gotta do. And pie was available. This does in no way diminish my love for the cake, though.

So, as we fled the city in a low riding car that was about an inch off the ground, all the more perfect for combat rolling out if need be, I got to thinking about what I wrote for Jane. The truth is, a lot of people don't know who they are. It's a life long goal to figure ourselves out. And, just when we think we know our ins and outs and ups and downs, just when we think we understand the fabric of our being, we change. Morph. Transition. And sometimes become entirely different people.

Here's the funny thing. The last ten years have been hugely pivotal for me, but essentially I've reverted back to my nineteen year old self. It's almost like I've come full circle. Except, I'm a better kisser now. And my sense of humour is far more mature. (I almost typed that with a straight face). Oh, and I pluck my eyebrows. Don't laugh. That's huge! People underestimate the difference a little plucking can make. It can turn two dead caterpillars into beautiful arches perfect for raising when you need to challenge someone, or mock a bit.

Before I deviate too far away from the point, let me steer us back on course. Unlike a lot of other people, I know who I am. I'm the girl who'll drive to someone's house to give them a hug. I'm the girl who'll come pick you up at two in the morning if you're drunk and stranded, or simply talk to you and not be angry about the late night phone call. I'm the girl who kisses dogs mouths, who stands stock still in the forest and digs her feet into the dirt in an effort to root herself to the earth. The overly candid, no strings on me, let's just love one another girl. And yet, the misanthropic, humans suck, let's run away into the mountains and live with the birds, bees and trees girl too.

Thankfully, I know who I am. It took awhile to get here. You see, I started searching at a very young age. It doesn't mean I don't get lost and it doesn't mean I'm not growing, changing, evolving into a new version of me. But I still know who I am. My core values are the same. The things that make me tick, that wind my clock, that keep me moving along remain set in stone. My moral compass may be a bit broken, but it still manages to guide me. And every so often, I get a flicker of the girl I'm going to be, when the healing is done, when I've grown up. (No, I'm not grown up yet.)

She exists in the future, but lives inside me and from time-to-time, I get to see her. And it's oddly invigorating. Her peace and gentleness is mind boggling. Her compassion dwarfs my frustration and hurt. I see her when I take off my shoes. When I skip through a meadow. When the dew from the grass kisses my legs and mud paints my feet. She appears when someone needs help, out of nowhere, like a vengeance, wielding understanding and empathy like razor-bladed swords. And I see her when I stroke a dog's ears or listen to the birds' morning chorus. She's here, inside me, but isn't fit to handle the day-to-day nonsense like jobs and bills and people pulling her in a million directions. So, she can't come out to play all the time.

But she's there and she's doing all those sexy things, like frolicking and singing and dancing. Don't get me wrong, it's not a physically sexy thing. Not at all. My frolicking is nearly as bad as my robot, but slightly better than my Christopher Walken impression. None of which can get anyone's motor going. But being out in the wild, smelling the trees and feeling the wind tousle my hair...that's sexy. It makes me feel all one with nature and Earth, like I'm going to sprout wings and soar through the limitless blue sky.

And on Sunday, the sky was blue. Much to my delight. And it reminded me of the path I've taken to get here and the girl I am at the centre of my being. The one sitting on the front porch, sipping tea, listening to the birds banter, and watching the sun set. She's my future. And she only waits for me.

It's hard not to let the daily grind wear us down. But if we keep our grasp on what is true and honest, if we remember what motivates us, what makes us beat, breathe, move and laugh, then we will find our way. Sure, we may not be the person we want to be today, but as long as we are working towards it, then it's okay. And it will always be okay.

Until then, random road trips into the mountains with cute boys will have to tide me over.