Posts tagged ‘women’

January 10th, 2012

Saying Good-Bye to Punxsutawney Phil

Good-bye, Punxsutawney Phil

By Heather Von St. James, Guest Blogger

Throughout my life, I have been called an eternal optimist. I have always believed that the glass is half full, not half empty. I am blessed with the ability to see the best in any situation. But my optimism was sorely tested on November 21, 2005, when I heard the three words that no one ever wants to hear: You have cancer. I was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a life-threatening form of cancer, just three-and-a-half months after the birth of my precious baby girl. I was only 36 years old.

When you are diagnosed with cancer, you have two choices. You can curse God, ask “Why me?”, and spend your time immersed in bitterness and self-pity, or, you can choose to accept the diagnosis and get ready for the fight for your life. I chose the second option, and I have never looked back. I was determined to make the best of this situation, to fight as hard as I could, both for myself and for my child, and to use my positivity to help others along the way.

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August 18th, 2010

Getting back to “Me”

To be honest, and I’m all about brutal honesty behind the comforting veil of this blog, I am in a rut. Since returning from Europe I’ve felt displaced and out of sync; I am floundering and undirected. So here, now, for every-one’s eyes, is a list (a l…o…n…g list) of things I need to get back to Me:

I need more yoga. I need to stretch, breathe, bend and focus.

I need to write more, blog more, read more.

I need to find the eloquence of Earnest Girl, the honesty of Her Bad Mother, the commitment of PhD in Parenting and the moxy of the Yummy Mummy Club.

I need my husband to come home from his business trip. Things are better with him by my side.

I need to move. My place of residence and my body.

I need more tea, less coffee.

I need to watch less TV, eat more fibre, get more sleep.

I need to have a long, leisurely lunch with my girl-friends.

I need a FAB new pair of shoes. Something with heels. Something impractical. Something red.

I need my new 10-week-old kitten to overcome the retrovirus ravaging his body.

I need to judge less, embrace more and just say, “Yes.” What I need is an attitude adjustment.

I need to learn a craft, something right-brain oriented and therapeutic in nature: sewing, knitting, perhaps découpage?

I need rain. Not just any rain, but a heavy, cleansing, deluge from the skies to wash away the malaise and make everything new again.

I need fresh flowers on my table.

I need to de-clutter. My house. My closet. My mind.

I need a glass of fine red wine. Blasted Church vineyard’s Nothing Sacred would do very nicely.

I need fruit, organically grown and fresh from the trees of the interior of B.C. No hot house fruits need apply.

I need to do better. Just two weeks back into a ‘Regular Schedule,’ and this is what I have fed Little Miss over the past 36 hours: Take-out Chinese food for dinner last night (including deep-fried chili chicken wings, which, I suspect, are not really Chinese); a Starbucks ham-and-cheese breakfast sandwich and chai tea latte for breakfast this morning; topped off with a left-over dry ginger beef and Chow Mein (veggie Chow Mein, mind you, my one saving grace) for lunch today. I am contemplating pancakes for dinner tonight. I need to be less lazy. I need my “Good Mom” badge revoked.

I need to express patience when I don’t have it, gratitude for all of my blessings and to exude pure joy at the many, many little things that make me happy everyday. I need to remember these.

But mostly, I need to be myself. I need to let that be enough.

• • •

Anyone else out there stuck in an emotional rut? Tell me what you need to get back to You.

July 29th, 2010

Calling All ‘Fun Moms’

On July 28, 2010, Sharon DeVellis, blogger at the Yummy Mummy Club, wrote an honest, heart-felt portrayal about the realities of being a WAHM. You can read her post, and I suggest that you do, at Ya…I’ve Got No Title For This One.

What’s a WAHM? WAHM is the acronym defining that growing segment of women who choose to be Work-At-Home-Moms. I am a long-standing, card-carrying member. We are a well-established, successful group, trying to find that delicate and elusive balance between working from home so we can be there for our kids, and still working. Working hard, I might add, with all of the responsibility and focus and commitment and yes, time, that entails. It is no easy balancing act.

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July 28th, 2010

It Doesn’t Have to be Perfect, Mom!

What? It doesn’t have to be perfect? This is news to me. And while my twelve year-old Little Miss seems quite comfortable with this notion, it is one that I have yet to fully embrace. Over the past weekend I was twice, quite correctly, singled out as a “Perfectionist.” Who knew, after all this time, that I don’t have to be?  Bear with me while I tell my little tale. It goes like this…

Just last weekend, my husband, Little Miss and I were visiting family friends at their lovely lake-front summer home in the interior of B.C. Our hostess, an out-going, welcoming, vivacious blonde, with an eye for designer fashions but an easy, friendly nature that makes them seem irrelevant, had gone to a great deal of effort on our behalf. Among other obvious preparations, she had baked. When it became apparent that not all of it would be eaten right away, the simple task of wrapping the banana loaf for freezing fell to me.

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May 28th, 2010

The Things My Mother Told Me

In the time since I began writing, I haven’t once yet written about my mother. My mom is a private person; part of me wanted to respect that. But another part of me, the writer part, simply felt overwhelmed by the prospect. How do you summarize a mother in brief essay format? I let Mother’s Day slip by this year without one written word, choosing to let others more brave than I take up the mantle, and I wish that I hadn’t. It was this post, http://www.themomoirproject.com/?p=992, by Danielle Christopher, that inspired me to follow the Nike creed and Just Do It. I don’t want to wait until my mom is gone to say what should be said.

•••

The Things My Mother Told Me

My mother always told me, “Christie, be a lady.” My mother always asked, “Christie, is your room tidy?” And, when feeling a little over-taxed by the non-stop demands of her three busy children, my mother could occasionally be heard to exclaim, “Why don’t you stick a broom up my butt and I’ll sweep the floor while I’m at it!”

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May 13th, 2010

Reflections in My Bathroom Mirror

From iStock Photo

This morning, as we prepared for our morning walk to school, I stood side-by-side with my daughter at our bathroom vanity. She fiddled with her hair, brushed her teeth and applied (with some need for re-work) her mascara. There she was, unaware of the scrutiny from my side-ways gaze and completely un-self-conscious. I was struck. The mirror reflection that I saw—not the one directly in front of me, but the one two feet to my right—was of a ghost from days gone by. There I stood, a young girl replete with newness, fresh and un-jaded, innocent of what lay in wait: challenges to be conquered, dreams to come true and expectations left unfulfilled.

In an instant decades long, I saw it all: Her future, my past, our present life together. The face of the young woman she will be, vaguely veiled behind the features of the child slipping away. I suddenly longed for the days of bed-time stories, bath-time frolics and hand-holding as we crossed the street. Approaching her thirteenth birthday, she reads herself to sleep, would rather die than have me anywhere near her bath and has crossed the street on her own for quite some time, thank you very much.

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May 10th, 2010

My Body Image, My Daughter

I eat too many pistachios. This is the thought that repeats in my head as I stand at my kitchen counter, stomach rumbling, mouth salivating, hand immersed deep within my pistachio jar. Again: I eat too many pistachios. I look at the brimming handful of delectable, bright green nuts that I am attempting to extract through the narrow opening of the jar and swallow in anticipation, wondering if I will successfully convince myself that the mass encased within my fingers is equivalent to ten nuts, roughly, maybe eleven, close enough. Why ten? Didn’t you know? Ten is the maximum number of pistachios we are supposed to eat within a 24 hour period. I read this once in a book on diet and exercise, something related to Pilate’s if I’m not mistaken, and if I read it, it must be true.

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