Category - relationships

1
Why You Should Go To Your High School Reunion
2
Great Grandparents
3
Instagram Stories Are The New Twitter
4
Separated Siblings: She Waves Goodbye As He Leaves For High School
5
It’s Important To Protect Your Blog
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A Trip To The Mall That Meant So Much More
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Dealing With Conflict—The Story Of An Empath
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Small Kids, Big Worries
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How Do We Protect Our Special Daughters?
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The Hills Are Alive, With The Sound of…. What IS That Sound Anyway?

Why You Should Go To Your High School Reunion

Getting invited to your high school reunion isn’t necessarily exciting. In fact, the idea of reuniting with former classmates can be downright nauseating. Not because you find your old school chums repugnant, it’s the thought of small talk and the notion of maybe not quite measuring up.  I wrote a bit about the awkwardness of being a human, with examples of personal awkward moments. I mean, if you can’t laugh at your own idiotness, what’s the point? Every person, even the super confident ones, are socially awkward at times. It’s a fact.  I didn’t go to my ten year high school reunion. Not because I didn’t want to, but because at 4,386.5 km away, it was a daunting trek. And not one I could easily take having just started a new job.  By all accounts it was fun and there was a good turn out. But only ten years out of school, there were still egos to manage, reputations to overcome, and importance to prove. So, it was fun, but with an edge.  I did make it to our twentieth. With two young children at home, I welcomed a little “mom-cation.” The atmosphere was quite relaxed. Now in our thirties,[…]

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Great Grandparents

One of my grandfathers died when I was little, but I was privileged to have had three grandparents, actively and lovingly participating in my life well into my adulthood. Two of them lived long enough to become great-grandparents.  I lost my last living grandparent earlier this year. He was ninety-seven. But not an old ninety-seven. But rather a witty, knows-your-name-plus-the-names-of-every-one-of-his-childhood-friends, sharp mind, but ailing body, kind of ninety-seven.  This weekend my family spread his ashes, and my grandma’s too (he kept her ashes so they could be together again one day).  My parents were there. And aunts and uncles and cousins too. I regret that I wasn’t able to make the cross-country trip to help honour them.  I am grateful though that I was able to see my grandpa one last time. My daughter and I visited him last spring. It was a special visit. I knew it would be the last.  When I told people my grandpa had died, many were surprised, saying, “Wow. You still have grandparents?” My grandma Fraser died suddenly and unexpectedly in her mid seventies. I don’t think my grandpa ever quite got over the loss. He lived independently for nearly two decades after she had[…]

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Instagram Stories Are The New Twitter

I miss Twitter. Ya, it still exists, and there’s fun to be had, but it’s not quite the same. Twitter used to be the go-to SM hook-up for a quick dose of social interaction. You’d post a rando thought like, “I adore guacamole!” and within seconds you’d be chatting with ten people, trading guac recipes and marvelling at how crazy it is that avocados go from ripe to rank in a blink of an eye. I miss that kind of serious engagement.  Now I’ll post a funny quip  or question and nuthin’. It’s like outer space—silent vapid nothingness.  Twitter has become “The Upside Down” ala Stranger Things, but dotted with political rants and branded ads.  I miss my community!!! Where are you guys??!! I also miss the instant feedback and real time interaction once found on The Twitter.  You can still rustle up some interaction on Facebook, but it’s hit or miss. And progressively pay to play.  As for blog comments? You’re more likely to get hit by an asteroid than hit with an actual blog comment from a living breathing non-bot human.  So where does an attention seeking social person find the love on social these days? Instagram! But[…]

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Separated Siblings: She Waves Goodbye As He Leaves For High School

My daughter packed her backpack weeks ago in giddy anticipation of returning to school. She asked me to paint her nails and “do her hair pretty.” She couldn’t be more excited to start grade six.  My son was in denial that summer was ending right up until the end. He gave little thought to his first day of high school outfit. He wasn’t even planning on brushing his hair until I “suggested” it. I pleaded with him to let me take him shopping, but he refused. “Mum, I’ve got enough clothes. I’m fine.” Kind of hard to take him seriously when he’s arguing his point in mismatched socks and pants that are miles too short.  But he’s in high school now. He’s a big boy. In short pants. His pants, his choice I guess. (Mind you, I went to the mall today and bought him a few new things against his will. I can’t have the kid looking like he’s been stuffed into shrunken kahkis all year.) High school… no longer at our local elementary. He’s moved on and this is the first time his little sister will be at school without him.  At first she didn’t make the connection. “What?[…]

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It’s Important To Protect Your Blog

You might not be a Blogger (not all of us are, it just seems like it) but chances are you’ve journaled, or kept a diary or calendar of milestone moments, or made a photo album to preserve special times. That’s what this blog is for me.  Yes, I write the occasional sponsored post and get paid to heave my “digital social influence” around here and there, but this space isn’t about that. It’s personal. Personal, yet shared publicly across the internet. I started blogging shortly after our daughter was born, ten years ago. I blogged before most people knew what a blog was. I started writing about what life was like as a parent of a child with complicated medical issues and uncharted special needs. I was scared and looking for answers. Writing helped connect me with other parents going through the same thing.  It was also a way for me to keep track of significant milestones—surgeries and illnesses, and firsts, and major accomplishments, and all the feelings. It’s funny, I’ll look back at an old post and be all, “Wait what? She had Scarlett Fever? I totally don’t remember that!”  As the years passed, this blog became a way[…]

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A Trip To The Mall That Meant So Much More

This post isn’t intended to be political, but his electoral “win” makes me worry about my daughter’s future. He who shall not be named doesn’t even try to hide his distain for people with disabilities. It makes me wonder if her life will be more difficult because he’s giving people the message that it’s okay to be intolerant and cruel. However, there’s a kindness army rising up against hatred and discrimination. Kids are being raised to believe in equity and love and compassion. We’re surrounded by it, basking in their warmth and inclusion.  My daughter’s school and neighbourhood friends treat her like the important person she is, worthy of respect and friendship.  Avery’s been asking to go shopping with friends for weeks. She doesn’t actually care about buying anything. It’s about the experience. And her purse. She brings it with her on special outings. Inside you’ll find her lip balm, her pretend debit card, her (bicycle) driver’s license and a handful of coins.  I drove my daughter and her two friends to our local mall to do some Christmas shopping.  I tried to stay in the background to give Avery the feeling of shopping on her own with her friends like[…]

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Dealing With Conflict—The Story Of An Empath

Conflict turns my stomach. It makes my chest tight and uncomfortable. I feel legitimately sickened by it.  I avoid arguments, and negativity, and pot stirring, and drama as best I can—not because I’m a high road walker. It’s more about self-preservation. I wasn’t kidding when I said conflict makes me sick.  As a sensitive, over thinking, soft-hearted, earnestly reflective, people pleasing, peace making empath, it’s a struggle for me to let it go. Why can’t I be more like Elsa?! I take hurtful words or actions to heart. I absorb them and replay them in my mind. That’s the tricky part about being a “highly sensitive empath“. It eats me up.  When friends in my life are in a bad place, I absorb it like a mushy sponge. Instead of spitting an insult back at the insulter, I swallow it. This is not to say I swallow people’s spit. Only my own.  Somebody told me once that this makes me weak. So I slapped her hard across the cheek and kicked her squarely in the crotch. Okay, not really. But I really gave it to her… but only in my head. Don’t get me wrong, if you mess with one of[…]

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Small Kids, Big Worries

Anxiety is a pain. Whether we come by it genetically or situationally, it hits all of us at various times in our lives. I’ve written about my struggle with worry—as a parent of a child with a variety of medical issues, I worried about our girl a lot. I looked too far ahead and fretted about the what ifs. I couldn’t stop the catastrophizing.  When you live in the past or in the future, you miss the present, and that’s where all good stuff happens. So I did the cognitive behavioural therapy exercises and it made a world of difference. Don’t get me wrong, I still have moments where I freak the hell out, but I know how to reign it in. This whole being mindful thing is a work in progress.  Adults coping with anxiety is one thing, but what about children with anxiety? Watching your child worry is like being poked in the stomach with a sharp stick.  I’ll unabashedly tell you about my battle with my worry monster, but sharing someone else’s story is offside. But I can say that having a sibling with disabilities can create fear and anxiety for good reason. Watching your sibling choke and[…]

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How Do We Protect Our Special Daughters?

  We listened to this man’s thoughtful commentary on the radio and welcomed the other man into our homes every Thursday night for eight television seasons. Both intelligent, successful, well respected, charming—why wouldn’t we trust them? It’s hard to believe they’re actually monsters, if not sick puppies at the very least. I’m not the only woman who believed they were the “good guys.” If you don’t know who I’m talking about then your computer, television and radio are broken. Oh, and your newspaper subscription has expired. I consider myself a pretty good judge of character and my “creep-o-meter” is seldom far off the mark. Yet I didn’t sense anything but trustworthy. Up until recently, Bill Cosby was ranked as the #3 most trusted celebrity in America. He’s since dropped 2,615 spots. As for Jian Ghomeshi? I listened to him daily. I respected him and usually agreed with his opinion on a variety of topics. I even encouraged a friend to go out with him! She didn’t. Thank… god. I have to wonder what happened to make them this way. You know that something happened. Somewhere along the way an incident or prolonged exposure to something dark or painful twisted them[…]

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The Hills Are Alive, With The Sound of…. What IS That Sound Anyway?

You’ve heard of the Von Trapps — a beloved and marvelously musical Swiss family whose music lives on amongst the hills and beyond. Our family is also musical. That is to say we attempt to make music. It may not be harmonious or even bearable to listen to, but it’s a fun way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon with family. So pull up a chair, insert some earplugs and get ready to witness the most horrendous and off-key music you’ve ever heard. I give you, the Von Crapps! You’re welcome and I’m sorry.

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