And If I Don’t Make It, Know That I Loved You All Along

My Grandma is dying. She was diagnosed less than two months ago with lung cancer that has spread like wild-fire into her spine and throughout her body. Chemo was a no go, because the cancer was too far gone, and Radiation has only been recommended to help shrink some of the larger tumors that are causing her so much pain she can’t even sit or stand, but not as a cure. She has deteriorated so quickly that as of this past Monday, she was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance while she had a heart attack, and is now being placed on palliative care.

In the simplest terms, she is waiting to die.

Death brings out the worst in everyone, and my mom has been trying her best to help, but things came to a head yesterday after she returned home from what could be her last time seeing her own mother. She spent the last week in BC, taking my grandma to and from the hospital and lawyers offices (will’s) and cooking, and cleaning for her, all while watching the woman who raised her wilt away to nothing.

My grandma can’t do anything for more than 5-10 minutes before having to have a nap because she is drained from exerting any energy. So, my sisters, N & R and I figured we should plan a trip, sooner rather than later to go visit her one last time.

R asked me to look into flight costs and find the best price (since I’ve done the most travel and have the best experience with booking flights). BUT because of R’s busy life, she’s only available like 2 out of the next 16 days and she wants to go there and back on the same day. ALSO since she’s on a strict budget, she expects me to find return flights for under $200. Ummmm yeeeeah. Highly doubtful. So then she brings up the fact that she saw some deal for flights to “somewhere in BC for $49 so it should be fine!” Um, the flights you saw go to a city 4 hours from where we need to be?!? So she recommends that we fly there and rent a car and drive the rest of the way.

What? You wanna fly inbound, in the morning, drive 4 hours, visit for 10 minutes, drive back 4 hours, catch another flight and be home in time to put your kids to bed the same night? Like it would just be much simpler to just fly straight to the city we need to be in, even if it means spending a little more money, the PITA factor will more than make up for it.

I told her I would work on it, but in the end I found a flight for $269 that she thought was cool.  Either way, I’m good since my boss overheard the tail end of one of my calls with R and so I explained about my grandma and how I might need a day off next week and he was fine with that… SOOO cool in fact, that about 20 minutes later, he came by my desk and told me to let him know before I book my tickets because there might be some “arrangements” he can make. The co-owner of my company lives in the same place I have to go, and he said we can possibly write it off as a work trip saying I have to “meet” with the owner while I’m there for my 3 month review, and probably pay for it with points. So basically he’s willing to pay for my flight as a business expense, woo me!

But as it turns out, after all this arranging back and forth, looking for flights, rental cars, getting free trips from my boss, annoying calls between sisters… turns out my grandma no longer wants to have any visitors.

She has asked that nobody else comes to see her, since it’s becoming to overwhelming for her, and she’d rather people remember her as she was instead of how she is now, which I gather from my mom is pretty rough.

Ok, I totally get it. I don’t like people around when I’m sick, didn’t want people around when I gave birth. I don’t like indulging people to make them feel comfortable, I can only imagine how I would feel at that time in my life when I know I basically have nothing left time wise. Maybe I’d want to be surrounded by loved ones… but only if they were silent. I remember I screamed at the doctors to shut up when I gave birth, and then apologized profusely after lol. But sometimes just knowing people are there helps. You don’t need the nervous chitchat. You need peace, and you need people who can bring that peace into your life. And if they can be there with you at the end, then I would welcome them. If they want to try to settle their nerves and their uncomfortableness with death, then I don’t want them around me while I’m trying to die. Because I’m fine with death and dying. It’s part of life. Or more specifically it’s the end of life, but it’s something EVERYONE on this planet has in common. No matter how you lived, you will die. And I’m fine with that. I have no fear in death. When it’s done, it’s done. And when my grandma dies, I will obviously not be happy, but I will move on with my life, until I also die. No, I’m not heartless, I’m just ridiculously practical and probably to logical for my own good.

My mom on the other hand, like most people, is not handling it well. When I called her yesterday to see how her trip went and how she was doing, it was definitely bad timing. When she answered the call I could hear some yelling in the background, and my mom walking into her room.

She’d just been going through a heated exchange with another family member that didn’t end pleasantly at the time.

I had to spend the next hour on the phone with my mom trying to talk to her about it all, explaining where she “might, possibly, slightly” have been wrong due to her high emotions because of whats happening with grandma. Or actually perhaps she was right in her observations about the individual during the argument, but had not handled the situation well due to her emotional state.

Like I said, death brings out the worst in most people.

Unfortunately, we’ll all have to learn to deal with it soon enough.


-Our Lady Peace/4AM-

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Only For Tonight Only For One Night Even Though You Don’t Love Me

My friends… at least the single ones, are constantly coming to me for “dating” advice. And when that happens, I laugh inwardly. In the entire history of the world, I’m like the least qualified person to be giving out advice about dating. Getting a guy for a quick fling, sure I’m your girl. But Honey, if your actually seriously about getting with someone long-term… walk far away from me lol.

I think co-workers and friends just liked hearing my stories each week about my weekend romps and whatever hilarious guy I was with recently. And I do have a flair for the dramatic when I tell those stories, as well as way too many dick pics to back them up.

Oh, and seriously what is with guys sending out those pics if I haven’t asked for them, which I think I’ve done maybe twice. It’s like a guy thinks if I have given him my number, then I want to see a picture of his junk. SOOO NOT TRUE!  I gave you my number so we could call… on the phone… and possibly hook up sometime. If I got to the point of giving you my number, than I already pretty much plan on sleeping with you, you don’t need to try to “impress” me with your penis. Trust me I’ll see it eventually. Ohhh and a heads up (lol, pun intended, I’m so funny) it probably won’t be the best dick pic I’ve ever gotten so PLEASE stop sending them. I honestly keep them for a week or two (not even, sometimes its DUA/delete upon arrival lol), and then delete them to make room for pictures of my kids on my phone. I have only 2 dick pics on my phone right now, and they both belong to K so it probably only counts as one. But to be straight up, I never look at them, nor have “used it” while taking care of my business on my own. Like it does not turn me on. But to each their own.

I think some chicks were jealous of the sheer number of guys I was dealing with at certain times. But to be honest ladies, it’s not hard at all. Like if you want dick… it’s out there and pussy has power. So the choice is yours.  I don’t regret the number of guys I’ve fucked, because for the most part I’ve enjoyed them. Sure there’s the odd dud every now and then, but that’s life. Sex is meant to be enjoyed. Would I prefer it to be enjoyed with one person… I think so, which is why I’ve deactivated my online dating accounts. But doesn’t mean I live in shame of the guys I slept with. Sometimes it just gets overwhelming…. Trying to remember who is who can get complicated.

Here’s a regular night:

Like this screen cap used to be a standard night, before I finally invite one of them over.

But doesn’t mean I live in shame of the guys I slept with in the past. It was what I wanted at the time, and made for some good memories.

Because, in messing around with all these guys, I learned so many different techniques and positions and was able to try out so many different sexual experiments that led me to learn what I like, as well as what I most definitely don’t. Things that I never would’ve experienced if I had ended up with W from the jump. Or even if I had stayed with E. For example I would’ve never found out that I’m a squirter from some older gentleman, while strapped me spread-eagle to a bed and blindfolded, while he used his selection of “tools” Squirting is something, as much as I enjoy, I also find annoying because when I squirt now, I find I’m just thinking about cleaning up the mess instead of enjoying myself. Point is, every “partner” has brought their own style and tricks to the bedroom/couch/table/countertop/floor/shower etc. and I’ve taken the good away from each encounter, and left the bad kissers, tiny dicks, sloppy tongues or whatever behind.

So am I experienced? Yes. Am I willing to try new things? Of course. Should I write a book called Dating for Dummies? Heck no! As noted before, I know nothing about dating, having never been on a “date” before. I have guys over, we have sex, and I try to get them out ASAP. They NEVER spend the night, and it’s even better when they don’t stay around for small chit chat after we’re done. I try and get my point across by getting dressed pretty much as soon as I’m done, and shoo-ing them out as politely as possible. Hoping they’ll take the hint… which has been pretty successful so far.

So if you want a “How To” book from me, it would definitely not be one on dating. It would be more along the lines of “How to Master the One Night Stand.”


-The Weeknd/Wicked Games-

 

We Are Family, I Got All My Sisters With Me

When I was about 11 I came home from school one day and my mom told me to have a seat at the kitchen table. Immediately all the bad things I had done recently started running through my head based on her tone and I thought I was in big trouble.

Nothing could’ve prepared me for what happened instead. Without any warning or prep, my mom sat down and started the conversation with “You have another sister”.

Ummm yeah duh, I have TWO other sisters. I’m a middle child is what I’m thought. But then she continued… “Besides R and N you have another sister who’s now about 9 years old.”  Ahhhh say what? Now I’m lost. Your saying you’re not pregnant, and I have a sister who’s 9? Meaning in between my little sister N and I there’s another one? I’m beyond confused.

So my mom continued describing something like this…

When my mom was pregnant with me, my biological father had an affair and so shortly after I was born my parents got divorced (this part I knew) My mom was a single mom with two small children (R is 2.5 years older than myself) and during that time got pregnant while “dating” a guy. The guy didn’t want the baby, and my mom couldn’t bring herself to abort the child, but also knew she couldn’t give her an amazing quality of life since she was already struggling with R and I, so she put the baby up for adoption.

After that time she reconnected with the man who I now call dad (actual step-dad) whom she knew from high school, got married to him and had N, the girl I thought was my only little sister. I know it’s long and winded… but it’s a weird story and so it needs all those words or else your just like WTF? Which is how I felt at the table that day.

Anyways, apparently my new sister was at the age where she was asking about her birth mom and so her adoptive parents had been back in contact with mom, and now we were now going to be heading to the next province to be meeting her this summer.

Wow. That’s a lot to take in for a 11 year old. (and probably you as a reader sorry if I didn’t explain it well) But also admittedly pretty cool. Every kid’s always wanted to have, and then meet, their long-lost sibling, albeit normally at some summer camp or some other made for tv thing… but still, this was happening. It took a LONG while to absorb. Telling my friends was weird. I felt like I had to constantly stand up for my mom on the adoption issue, even though it was her choice, I still felt like people were judging her. I also felt weird but lucky, that in a way she had picked me. Twisted, I know. But I’m only 18 months older than my new sister K and so it totally could’ve been me in that situation right?

The time came for us to drive to meet her, and it felt even more surreal. We drove to the same city we’d go every summer to visit my grandparents when I was younger and just knowing she’d been there all along was kinda mind-blowing for lack of a better word.

My mom was SUPER nervous to say the least. And rightly so. She was going to meet a human she had given away. A child who called someone else mom. A person who wanted answers.

The initial few minutes were filled with your regular hellos and awkward hugs and then K’s adoptive mom pulled out stacks upon stacks of binders filled with pictures of K. Which we then sat and “browsed” through for almost an hour. Each picture had a story and a memory to go with it, which at 11 years old I didn’t really care about and just wanted to go play with the stacks of toys piled EVERYWHERE in the house.

K had had a full life thus far. Her adoptive parents had been unable to have children and so had given K anything her heart desired as their only child. They lived a very different lifestyle compared to how I was raised. Mine being you work for what you get, K’s being, you get whatever you want because you’re our little miracle child.

I’ll be honest, at first I was jealous, and thoughts like “this could’ve been me” floated through my head periodically. But those times have passed. I realize the struggle K must’ve gone through, thoughts of abandonment and possibly feeling unwanted. But at the time I was 11, and only saw material things and the sheer volume of them… and I wanted that.

K and I bonded the most out of us 4 sisters, since we were closest in age. We spent most of that visit in her pool, and playing with toys I had only dreamed of having. When it was time for us to leave, it was weird, but we exchanged emails and agreed to write and call often.

The calls were fairly rare, and the emails occasional. What do you say to your ‘new’ sister? But then a few months later, my parents announced that we were going to Disneyland!!!! What!!! Yes!!!! It would be my first time! Oh, and then they said that K was coming too… they wanted us all to have a chance to grow closer. Ummm ok? Whatever, kinda weird but I’m just excited to finally be going to Disneyland.

So, all 4 of us sisters and my parents set out to Disneyland. K had been before, multiple times, but for R, N, and myself, it was our first time, so we enjoyed it. We did the Universal Studio visit too, the whole nine yards. Of course K had so much more spending money compliments of her parents, and was constantly wanting to shop instead of ANYTHING else since she’d already done the rides “a million times each”, which was annoying, but we accommodated her and by the end of the trip, we had successfully not killed each other. Pretty good for knowing each other less than a year, and having to spend a family vacation together.

Throughout the next few summers, K would come visit us occasionally and I would go there sometimes, since we had connected the most. Yet over time, it became apparent that K was no longer interested in being a part of our lives, and it was awkward to be part of hers. Which is completely understandable.

She had her own family and friends in her own city and really didn’t need us. She had a whole different set of beliefs and lifestyle and she felt we didn’t mesh well together. So slowly over time, emails went unanswered, calls unreturned, and whatever bond there initially was, was stretched to the point of breaking.

The last I heard of my sister, she was on an extended trip she recently took to Indonesia this winter doing yoga on the beach and visiting ancient temples. She’s having fun and has found her inner peace.

Maybe growing up with her adoptive parents was the good for her soul. Because I know my “inner peace” is still eluding me.


-Sister Sledge/We Are Family-

There’s Such A Difference Between Us, And A Million Miles 

This morning I remembered about a time I was “in love” before W. Do I think you can love more than one person in your life? Yes, we are human and feel emotions for people. But, what I felt for J should probably be classified more as an infatuation or a fling, and because I was so young, I didn’t know any better so I definitely thought I was in love. Although I definitely doodled my name with his last name for a solid month… ah young “love”

After I graduated high school, I decided it was time to get away from life here and start exploring the world. Travel is a big deal to me. Expanding my mind and discovering other cultures and just having new experiences was important. I never wanted to be someone who stayed in the province I grew up in, never giving myself a chance to learn about the world. I had chosen that I would not be an ignorant person. So straight after I bought my car I started saving up for my “trip”.

I had decided I was going to go by myself to Africa for three months. I found an organization who needed support and would host me, and after saving another 6-7 grand (flights/shopping/safari/souvenirs) I set off to Namibia in January of 2006 to volunteer in an AIDS orphanage.

It completely changed my life. It was my first glimpse of true poverty and people in real need. This was the true definition of Ghetto. We commuted into the small community of Katatura in the capital of Windhoek daily and it was terrible and beautiful at the same time. But the children…. the children were utterly captivating. They loved life despite what they were going through, yes they didn’t know any different, but they found joy in the day-to-day regardless. My first tattoo was a line from a poem I wrote when I got home to commemorate my time there and the children I fell in love with. It’s written in Afrikaans and translated says “who my love dares”… and to me it means if you love something or someone you should do whatever it takes to boldly show it. Your love should dare you and push you deeper than you thought possible.

Anyways, J was one of the long term workers at the organization that hosted me. He had grown up in the community and had overcome all that life had thrown at him, only to return and help those in similar situations. Hot right? Right.

We didn’t really connect until a month into my trip, but then it was like a whirlwind. He was writing me love notes and throwing rocks at my window late at night so we could talk. Then sometimes at night we would sneak out to the field and spend hours talking  under the stars. Well talking and making out 🙂  It was actually really romantic thinking back. He was older then me and very convincing, and even though I wasn’t technically on vacation, I wasn’t at home in my regular environment either, so I figured I should let loose and went with it. Plus he was cute so that was a plus.

By the time April rolled around, J had convinced me that we were meant to be together, and that he would find a way to join me in Canada. My innocent 18 year old self totally hung on to each word he said. This man wrote me poems and songs for me which he serenaded me with on the front porch while strumming a guitar (dreamy hey) How could I possibly think anything else?

Well, after I returned home, the emails and even a few international phone calls went back and forth for probably 6-8 months… pretty good for a long distance “relationship” at 18 years old. But then…. things just petered out I guess? I’m not even sure what happened to be honest. Over 10 years has past and well… J obviously never made it here. I never went back, although I never said I would. But we both moved on with our lives. At least I did, I never found out what happened to J, and a quick social media search has turned up nothing. I’m realizing that although I’m sure I was heartbroken at the time, possibly even cried once or twice, it’s basically been inconsequential in the long-term of my life.

I barely even remember that it happened let alone how it ended.

And maybe if I’m lucky, I’ll be at a point in my life one day where I look back and see E that way. Where I barely remember that he happened. And hopefully I’ll also forget how it ended.


-Adele/Hello-

And You Can’t Stop Me From Falling Apart

I refuse to watch 13 Reasons Why. As someone who has attempted suicide myself, on more than one occasion, and obviously failed (self high-five), I don’t feel I need to know someone else’s reasons behind killing themselves, or whatever else happens on that show. Do I think it’s a good show for people to watch who have never experienced suicidal tendencies? Sure, maybe, I don’t know. But like I said, I won’t watch it, so I can’t advise.

My first attempt was when I was about 16 (I think… in around there). Looking back, my life was pretty good, so from all outward appearances there was nothing that would have given away my intentions.
I grew up in the suburbs, in a brand new house my mom designed and had built when I was 10 using the inheritance my dad got when his parents passed away within a year of each other. I was pretty much a straight A student for the most part until Gr. 12. I had a solid group of friends. I was involved in lots of activities, you know the standard boring stuff like band and *synchronized* swimming. I played b-ball in junior high and rugby throughout high school. I wasn’t a “trouble” kid, never even been sent to the principals office (unless the teacher needed an errand kid… than I was your girl) I wasn’t your emotional girly girl, my friends all came to me for advice, knowing I could be trusted to keep secrets as well as lead them in the general right direction. I’ve never been fired from a job since I first started working at 14.  I was/am fiscally responsible, and bought my first car (at the time a sweet black coupe Sunfire lol) at 16. Basically, I was your model goody-two-shoes citizen.

It would seem I had it all.

So why would someone who had it “so good” feel so desperate that they had to try to kill themselves. Good question. One that I can’t even explain well. It’s like you get to a point where you feel desperate. You feel like no matter what, no matter how hard you try or what you do, it won’t be good enough, or even better, it won’t matter. It comes from inside. It’s not necessarily because of a certain situation or because of something someone said to you, it comes from deep within. You feel like your drowning in yourself. You feel out of control. And as hard as you try to “think positive” or “look at the bright side” or whatever other ridiculous thing people tell you in that moment, the feeling is there. Deep down inside. So you stop telling them about your struggle. You say your fine. You act like your fine. You show no outward appearances of being in trouble. You try to maintain normality. Because you don’t need the words from people who don’t understand you, trying to “make things better” They don’t get that words won’t help. This is a feeling. An emotion. A confliction rising from places you didn’t know existed deep within yourself. Places you’ve tried to keep hidden. Because you are a happy person. Who doesn’t have 13 reasons to kill herself. A person who has a million reasons to live.
Yet, you just don’t want to.

So, one night at 16 years old while my parents were out, I very carefully and methodically downed an entire bottle of extra strength Advil, laid down. and went to sleep for what I hoped, in the moment, would be the last time.
Imagine my surprise and to be honest, hurt, confusion and annoyance when I woke up the next morning feeling nothing but a slight stomach ache. WTF? Seriously? How much does it take? So I got up and went to school as per usual. I hardly told anyone until now. Why admit failure at something as ridiculous as this right? I continued with my life as usual thinking back on that night often… than less as time went on.
Until about 3 years ago. Went the feelings came back again. Harder, and much more intense. But this time I was more “mature” about it, if that was possible. I had two kids looking up to me, so I at least went for help first.

I had recently left E, and was living with my parents again (full circle hey) and I knew I needed help, because those feelings of desperation were back. So one night after I put the kids to sleep I asked my parents if they minded watching the kids while I went out to the clinic, because I really needed to go. Like RIGHT NOW! So I went to the clinic… where the Dr was a douche.
I tried explaining why I was there, and how I was looking for anti depressants. Simple right? Give the depressed suicidal woman antidepressants and everything’s good. At least that how I thought it would go down. But nope. He kept asking why I felt I needed them (Ummmmmmmmm, I’m depressed? Idiot) and saying if I’m suicidal or even overly depressed, he wouldn’t be able to let me leave and would have to call it in to the hospital, and put me under an emergency watch.

So all I could think about was that I had already shared too much. I had come for help. And now you want to lock me in a ward somewhere? What about my kids? Nope. Nope nope nope a million times no. I did a hard 180 and back tracked on everything I had said to him and walked out the office ASAP. But as I drove home, the feelings crept back in. Deeper and more desperate than before. If a doctor couldn’t/wouldn’t help me, than what chance did I have? I felt I had done my best going about dealing with it the “proper way” by going to see a “medical professional” but left feeling more overwhelmed then I had felt an hour ago.

So when I pulled into the garage at my parents house, even though it wasn’t premeditated… I closed the overhead door, and just stayed. I had the car running and the windows down and I just sat there with my eyes closed. I briefly thought about my kids and how they would be fine with my parents, and I could at least enjoy my last moments relaxing with nothing going through my head but whatever songs were on the radio.
Music. One of the most important things in my life. Because it can connect you with/too so many things, but also it can disconnect you from life. Which is what I wanted right then. To forget life. And forget pain, and fear, and every other emotion. I wanted to just  “be” one last time. Until I’m not sure how much later, but my Dad walked out to the garage, saying he had heard the garage door, and wondering if I was ok/what I was doing out there.

No. No, I was not ok. I did not get the help I was looking for. And now you’ve interrupted my “master plan” to kill myself, so now what?
Well “now what” turned out to be a visit to a competent doctor the next day at the  urging of my parents. The new doctor worked with me, getting me the proper anti-depressants that would work with the seizure medication I’m on, as well as follow up calls and emails to ensure I was doing better. Which for the most part I was.

And I still kinda am. Although, upon reflection, I’ve noticed it’s definitely a S.A.D. thing. Which is not something I’m embarrassed about. Even as recently as this past winter, I’ve struggled with suicidal thoughts. Which is probably why I never felt this way while living in Africa. And although I’m not taking anti-depressants anymore, I deal with the emotional pull of the darkness inside myself during that time of year. Something I’m sure will probably happen this coming winter too.

Do I think I’ll try to kill myself again? Not really. But right now, I’m okay. I’m not depressed… for now. So I cannot say for sure it won’t happen again though. All I know is there are not 13 reasons for me. There is not even one. In my opinion, someone who is suicidal, is that way because nothing makes sense. The thoughts in their head are all “down” and “dark.” It’s definitely not a well written and organized 13 point plan/reasons. It’s just desperation and hopelessness.

Or just someone who has had enough. And I hate to be a downer, but sometimes there aren’t warning signs. I was very good at keeping it to myself, and being a “happy friendly carefree” 16 year-old, who looked like she had her shit together. I never cut myself, or had any other indication of other self harm when I went straight to downing those pills. I never gave anyone a heads up. I didn’t even write a suicide note. I wasn’t in it for the attention, I was trying to do it to be done with life. I didn’t give two shits what anyone else thought, then and still to this day that’s how I do life.

I have never had someone close to me commit suicide. And I’m truly sorry if you have. But to be honest, it’s not about what you could’ve done to help. Because depression comes from within. And needs to be solved from within. My medication helped me. No conversation with friends or family, although everyone is different. No amount of get togethers or going out helped me. Because the individual could just paste on a fake smile and then once they go home and are alone, the “dark” thoughts will be back, if they weren’t there the whole time anyways.

Depression is a medical condition that should be helped with medication.

It should not be judged or laughed at. It also should not be made to be explained by the inflicted. Because most times, it can’t be. You either are depressed or you are not. like I said before, nothing in the outer world “makes” you depressed.

For me it came from within. And I shouldn’t need 13 reasons why.


-Skillet/Open Wounds-