Category Archives: Uncategorized

Stop Dreaming!

Wow. What a difference a day makes. The guy I gushed about yesterday sent me a text message an hour ago saying he met someone else. This was Mr. Keen too.


Go figure.

I’m fine. Had my boo hoos and my wonderful daughter held on to my leg while I cursed him with bad words and tears and wouldn’t allow me to demean myself by answering him in a way that would hide how classy I am.

Anyway, I meant what I said yesterday about giving a nice guy a chance. They are out there. I just haven’t met them yet. For now it’s going to be casual dating and no more dreaming.

Peace and love.

2014 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,600 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.


I’m about to test the strengths I’ve learned these last few weeks/months/years.  I’ve planned a great adventure with my daughter which is totally out of my comfort zone.  One that will include a Greyhound bus full of strangers, bad food and poor sleep.  And then…

Destination:  West Edmonton Mall

We will be shopping pretty much non-stop for 3 days then head home again.  loveshoesWell, the girl will be shopping with her money, I will be the one behind her carrying her many purchases and stressing over how to save a nickel (could we have popcorn for supper?  I really don’t want those shoes.  Yes I do.  No I don’t.).

Does this trip fill me with anxiety?  Oh yes, you bet it does.  As a matter of fact today I had to drive to the airport where the bus depot is to purchase tickets and I felt so much panic as soon as I couldn’t see downtown anymore.  Will I get lost?  Will my bank card not work?  Maybe I don’t have any money.  Will my heart decide to stop beating?  Will there be an accident while I’m driving my son’s van?  Watch out for that old lady!!!!

Remember, this was just on the way to the bus station.

The original plan was for me to rent a car to get to Edmonton.  This wouldn’t work out because I don’t have a credit card and also because I would have to sell my body 541,000 times just to get the $1,000 I would need.  So Greyhound it is.  I’m relieved I’m not driving the 15 hour trip.  I would really be scared of getting horrorlost among other things too many to list here.  I’ve watched way too many movies where a car breaks down and weird-looking strangers make sure the passengers are never seen again.  The mom always gets killed first.

So once I conquer the bus and the inevitable motion sickness I’m prone to, we hit the hotel and then the mall.

The huge, incredible “mall”.   mall


This is bigger than anything in my city.  There aren’t just stores; there are amusement parks and restaurants and lots and lots of people.  Lots of them.

I want to do this though because this is the last year my last child is a child.  Next summer she will be an adult and making her own trips with her friends.  This way I get her all to myself for a few days with no computer in my face.  I’m really looking forward to it in spite of the gnawing in my stomach.  After all, I made it out of the bus station with a few wrong turns on the way back but made it home, unscathed, just the same.

I take heart in these small steps as they are leaps and bounds to what I could do 5 or 6 or 7 years ago.


Like the mall.


I Need Naps

This week I finally had the chance to do a decent grocery shop.  And I went with my girl, Carly.  We haven’t been shopping together in close to a year.

It seemed that I could never get the shopping quite right; Carly wanted “healthy” things.  Well, so do I but our versions of “healthy” are two different ideas.  I had to teach her about balance and budget.  Since she was complaining so much I made her come with me.

So there we were with a borrowed van at the store and a good wad of cash.  I needed prescriptions and headed to the pharmacy while sending her to the fruit and vegetable section.  While my prescriptions were getting filled we met up again and started cruising up and down the aisles. I don’t usually cruise but I had a list too.

We agreed on some things that didn’t have much to do with food.  The most challenging was a new razor.  Ours was gross already so we agreed to buy a new one.  I was checking out the ladies and Carly insisted we get a men’s razor style.  I wasn’t too sure about that until she found a weird shaped one.  She was reading the package and exclaimed “It has a battery!?”  That perked my interest and it was only $7 on sale, half price.  Carly said she didn’t think we should get it as we probably were too technically challenged to use it.  It had an attached trimmer for heaven’s sake.  That must explain the battery, right?

I ignored her and got the last 2.  She has no faith.

Then it was groceries…she read every label on every box or container of food and exclaiming in a horrified voice every time; “OMG the sodium! …the saturated fat!…the CARBS!” and would quickly put the item back on the shelf.  I would pick it back up again horrifiedand show her what we had to do to make a balanced meal.  She had to realize it was OKAY to have fat, sodium and carbs to a certain degree especially since my cart was full of fruit and veggies too.  We picked up whole grains as alternatives to what we would normally buy.  We also bought a little more organic fresh food as well.  It was all starting to come together.

I must say, shopping with her took twice as long (at least) and three times the cost.  I’m just lucky we  had the money for this trip.  I asked her if she saw how much it cost us and she said she did and was shocked at how much we have to pay to eat healthy.  I warned her that, on our normally very limited budget, this shopping trip would rarely be like this.

I’ll let you in on a little secret though…I did manage to sneak in my Cheez Whiz.  🙂

Boy, I had my exercise this week too.  I’ve been looking after my oldest granddaughter while my youngest granddaughter gets her eating habits in order.  I swear I’ve never been so tired.  It’s a really good tired though.  I go to bed before 11:00 (!!!) and get up for 8:00 am.  Amazing.  And she  has me running.  Running after her, ahead of her, beside her and with her.  In between we watch inane children shows that make me get ridiculous songs stuck in my head which have replaced the songs we played for my Dad while he was on his death-bed.  I don’t know which is worse.

We also nap.  Grandma needs her nap.IMG_0985

So a good week all around. Thank you to all who gave me their support the last couple of weeks.  I really appreciate it as it had to one of the worse times in my life.  I don’t feel as alone as I did.  I feel better being busy and productive.

Until next time….

The Best Traits

I’m sitting next to you
Watching you lie in that bed
holding you
Until you get to where you’re supposed to go
I hope you still feel my hand in yours
And know my heart is breaking
Because I will have to let it go

I’m remembering so many things
As tears fall from my eyes
Only the happy, the good memories
Have taken over my thoughts

Learning to fish and drive a car using our lamps as guides for parking.
The pride you never failed to have for each member of your family
And the love

The love

There’s a legend, I’m told
Of a grandfather leaving this earth
While his grandson is waiting to be born

So he may get his grandfather’s best traits
While they pass each other through the universe.

This could be why
My grandson is waiting so long to be born
He wants those traits so much from his great grandfather
And a lucky boy he’ll be

His gifts to him will be humility and pride
Kindness, love and a passion for sports ( Go HABS!)
A work ethic and time for family

I’ll have to let go of your hand soon I know Dad
So then I can hold a new life with
Your best traits


In the Beginning

I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was a little girl and fell in love with reading.  I wanted to read way before parents were allowed to teach their kids anything about it before kindergarten and even first grade.  My mom would read me my favourite books so much that I actually started to read a bit on my own.  Once I learned to read in school, though, there was no holding me back.  I remember driving with my parents and them asking me what a sign might say and I would patiently sound out each letter until the word seemed to appear in my head and burst out of my mouth.  Every time my family would cheer and applaud me for my efforts.

I would read to my little sister most nights, giving her the stories I heard and loved.  I would try to teach her to read while we played “Teacher”.

writngWriting came next and it seemed like a natural thing. I wrote plays for my family and friends to act in.  Quite elaborate ones too.  One of them I remember quite well because it was about a dragon (my dad) and the prince (my cousin, Freddy) having a battle over the princess, (my little sister, Colleen).  I was the director.  This all took place in the kitchen at our cottage at the beach.  The dragon kept blowing fire at the prince and I kept yelling at the prince to put out the fire.  Unfortunately, the prince got the bright idea to take a 5 gallon pail of water and throw it at the dragon, soaking everything in the kitchen.  My mom was not happy and there were no more plays inside anymore.  But I kept writing them.

I didn’t realize that I could write until 10th grade when our English teacher had us keep a journal which he read every night and marked or made comments.  One day he gave us starter lines for creative writing and one of them was the one I picked “As the clock ticked…”  Suddenly I had an incredible idea of the last seconds of a person’s life ticking away; someone on death row about to die for killing her husband.  I wrote pages and pages in the 20 minutes we were allowed to write.  When I handed it in I had such a thrill of excitement knowing that someone was going to read it and give me an honest opinion.  I knew it was good.

It was.  The teacher wrote several lines of positive comments and gave me an A+.  He also encouraged me to write more and try to find that burst of imagination and creativity more often.  He also told me that was one of the reasons for the journal.  Practicing my writing would only give me more of a voice and, by golly, it sure has.

I saw my niece last night and found out she’s been following my blog.  I always feel kind of weird when I find out someone I know reads all about what’s in my head and then that goes away almost right away.  I’m writing for me and for anyone who wants to read it.  She wants me to keep writing and that’s my intention.  It was great to  have feedback from her and I feel encouraged to keep up my once-a-week posts here.

One of these days I hope to make a living at this.  Wouldn’t that be something?  I want to take more creative writing courses and maybe get a novel out of this old noggin of mine.  That has always been my dream.

Google to the Rescue!

I subscribe to Plinky (, which gives prompts for writers/bloggers who are stuck or just want some practice with their writing.  I was really stuck tonight so, after several failed attempts to write SOMETHING, (Carlyandfood, mycathadseizuresthisweek) I checked out some of them.  The one I picked was “What was the last thing you searched for online?  Why were you looking for it?”olympic google

One of the things I was looking up on Google in preparation for my post tonight was Agoraphobia.  One of my blogging buddies, Kim LaRocque, over at writes about it quite a bit, both on her website and her Facebook page. Excellent site by the way.  I encourage you to check it out.

I wanted to find out what it means clinically, always believing I had the symptoms.  A partial definition from Wikipedia says agoraphobia:

is an anxiety disorder characterized by anxiety in situations where the sufferer perceives certain environments as dangerous or uncomfortable, often due to the environment’s vast openness or crowdedness. These situations include, but are not limited to, wide-open spaces, as well as uncontrollable social situations such as the possibility of being met in shopping malls, airports, and on bridges.

No, it just didn’t sound right.  I have had a few panic attacks but they’re not what’s described by Wikipedia. I’ve mentioned them in some of my past posts on this blog.  I fear going to new places for sure but that’s the fear of getting lost.  Which I do.  A lot.  Oh, I guess it’s true then that this can make me anxious, but I don’t think I get panic attacks per se.  Any panic attack I’ve had seems to be associated with bi-polar disorder more than anything else. It comes with paranoia and its grip on me and that makes things hard to understand or control.  I can agree, though,  I don’t like the idea of meeting anyone I know in public and avoid it desperately.  Mostly because of my hair.  I can’t wait for it to grow out. I don’t like crowds but don’t really get panicked over them.  At one time I did but not for years now so shopping at Superstore is a breeze.  I just don’t like them and try to stay away from them.

So I dug a little deeper and found the symptoms for Social Anxiety Disorder on the Canadian Mental Health Association’s (BC) website digging( seems to fit a whole lot better:

People with social anxiety disorder feel very nervous and uncomfortable in social situations like meeting new people. Or they might feel very anxious when they have to do something in front of other people, like talking in a meeting. Some people feel very anxious in both situations.

People with social anxiety disorder often feel like they will say or do the wrong thing. Or they might think that other people will look down on them and think poorly of them because they’re “strange” or “stupid.” It’s important to know that adults with social anxiety disorder recognize that they feel too anxious, but they may not be able to control it.

Some people may have a panic attack or feel some physical signs of anxiety when they’re facing a social situation. Common physical signs of anxiety include stomach aches, shallow breathing, sweating or feeling hot flashes, feeling like your heart is racing, feeling tightness in your chest, feeling tense and feeling shaky. 

Social anxiety disorder can have a very negative effect on your well-being and quality of life. The disorder can cause a lot of problems in your relationships with partners, family and friends. It can also seriously affect your school or work life. You may avoid certain careers or fields of study, avoid contributing your ideas, turn down promotions, drop out of school or take many days off because you feel so anxious.  Some people with social anxiety disorder fear one or just a few specific social situations. Others fear a wide range of social situations.

I highlighted the information which rang home to me.  It was incredible to see it all there in black and white, describing ME. I think a lot of people who’ve known me for most of my life will agree as well.  I can’t remember a time when I didn’t anxiety girlfeel like this, speak about myself like this, having some good days and some bad including when I was a child. I realize now the feeling of ugliness and worthlessness might not just be because of the abuse I survived but it may have lived within me before that time or manifested itself because of it.  I guess to some degree it could be both.  I doubt I’ll ever know the answer to that one.

It interferes with so much of my life including my family and that’s happening more and more lately.  In the past, anything social I had to attend I would long for a drink or would head to the food table, to take the edge off, to relax. I was invisible because I wanted to be?  Maybe. What the  hell happened to me?

Now I just don’t socialize very much.

I barely leave the apartment…I got out three times in almost 2 weeks and that was yesterday and today to buy food and last Sunday to take my cat to the emergency hospital.  It’s been like that always; invariably finding a reason not to go somewhere or putting it off for as long as possible.  I’ve lost friends, work friends and acquaintances and my kids think I’m lazy and unable to form complete sentences and say I’m “too sensitive”.

This is ridiculous. I know this is fixable.  Everything I’ve read assures me of this.  When I see Dr. G this Wednesday we can get a plan going with support and self-help material.  I just need the skills to become the person I was meant to be.  Better late than never.get out of jail

This has to be the best day for me to discover all this as I was getting pretty discouraged with my relationships with my kids. I’ve been having trouble being a mom to them in many ways, isolating myself from them too.  I’ve been too scared to open my mouth for fear of sounding like an idiot.  There I go.  See?

I actually feel better now, knowing that I’m not all that weird.  Apparently this is one of the most common fears in the phobia business.  So there will be lots of help out there.