Oh, here’s my blog.

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Up until a little over two years ago I had been living a life that, for the most part, didn’t feel entirely fulfilling on certain levels. Fulfilling in terms of what I know it was capable of becoming and how close I was to realising all the great things I wanted to do and accomplish. I felt like there were bigger things out there for me to discover but they appeared like mirages in daydreams and I could never distinguish exactly what they were.

Much of my life had felt that way and come thirty I guess I started to reflect on just how fragmented it really was. It became really apparent after high school. You know, the moment when you can no longer use the excuse of high school or being a teenager to justify why you’re still working at New York Fries (yes, New York Fries).  I used to be the type of person who could fall too easily into physically accepting complacency. Physically in the sense that once I’m there I don’t have much of an interest in doing what needs to be done in order to stimulate myself and escape. Emotionally I would suffer my life instead and convince myself that suffering was work in itself even though it was such a contradiction of what I truly wanted and expected of myself.

I was all over the place in college trying to find my calling. I was literally in post-secondary education for eight years and I certainly was NOT becoming a doctor to excuse it. In those eight years I took Advertising, Graphic Design, Web Design (night classes), Psych 101 (this one was at University), Bartending (space-filler), Small Business Management, and lastly Enterprise Network Specialist. Eighteen-thousand dollars in student debt later, I had graduated from two of those programs. In my first year of college I was often the youngest in class; by the time I left I was the same age as one of my teachers.

Meanwhile people I graduated high-school with were already getting married, had careers, children even and here I was living under the safety net of post-secondary education which made me feel better about myself. If I wasn’t well on may way into adulthood and all the regular responsibilities that came with it, at least I could explain it by saying I was still in school. “What are you taking now?” My answer was different almost every year. Life was still very much unanswered for me, unfortunately. Secretly, at that time and in many ways, I was quite envious of my peers and how focused, settled, and grown-up they seemed. Here I was supporting myself and my misdirected habit working as a supervisor at a grocery store. Overseeing and working with bag boys I may have once babysat.

Oh how I hated that aspect of my life.

In many ways, and now more than ever, I realise I wasn’t meant to have a structured and regimented life early on. Part of what makes me who I am today is due to difficulty, confusion, and misdirection in my past. I was never in the same place as some of my friends whose primary focus was to get into a cushy career, buy a house, and settle into the life of Ottawa, Ontario. I was still ready for many more adventures and perhaps in some ways I figured my meager grocery store job allowed for that kind of free-spiritedness. I knew it wasn’t a real job so I didn’t really have to be accountable to it. I had always had an urge to pack up my life in Ottawa and just get out of there. I’d had that urge since I turned 20. If I had been in a career, packing up and leaving would have been very difficult not to mention frightening. If it weren’t for my complete loss over what the hell to do with my life I would have never had the experience of fine tuning so many of my interests in such a short period of time.

Finally, at almost 28 years old, I finished my final year of post-secondary education after two years of configuring IP addresses, encrypting servers, pinging things and began my first “big-girl” job working for an environmental compliance company. I had my very own desk, my very own work load that I was responsible for. I was learning things – and it wasn’t new codes for strange vegetables. It was chemistry, science, engineering, electronics. I got to travel to California on business tripsgot a promotion … “big-girl” stuff. Girl, you’ll be a woman, soon.

For the first time in my life I was being stimulated at work in the type of way that my mind really needed in order to flourish. Not only that, but for the first time in a job I could use many aspects of what I had been going to school for all those years. I think now that job was what I needed to tell myself that things were going to be okay and really believe in what I was saying.

I had finally emerged from a life filled with foolish excuses to one that I needed to be responsible for in more serious ways. You can only convince yourself for so long that the reason why you’re in your seventh post-secondary program is because you love learning and that your grocery store job at twenty-seven years old is so rewarding.

Lesson #1: Denial is still and lie in Wordplay

It was in that job that I got engaged, turned thirty, got dis-engaged, and left it to move to Vancouver alone. With cats. And guts. The cycle of uncertainty and fear starts up again only this time, just like after every other time before it,  I feel so much more armed against whatever comes because of the places I’m leaving behind. Like a mental evolution.

I had first come to this realisation the year I turned seventeen and was working at New York Fries at a shopping mall. I tell you, there’s nothing like getting fired from a fast food joint (yes, fired from a fast food joint) to make you feel really shitty about yourself but to also give you a brief moment of thought that says: It can’t get any worse than this. Even though realistically it can get much worse, it feels almost that bad when you suffer the shame of being fired from a job that you always thought you were better than.

Lesson #2: You’re never better than a job that can make you worse in one sentence.

 

NYF2


So I’ve been shamed and humbled and confused. I still become humbled and get confused but there’s no shame coming from putting myself down so much and spending so much time being a martyr.

I’ve gone through quite a bit over these last two years in Vancouver. The stories are within the pages of my blog. Some aren’t ready to emerge into the light of day yet, if ever. But, I think I mean it when I say that currently, life is really good. I have a wonderfully rewarding, yet emotionally taxing job with the Provincial Government. I embrace the challenges, hurt over the circumstances, occasionally grieve the workload and yet I couldn’t be happier right now – unless of course John Mayer rang my doorbell – but at the end of the day I go home and don’t mind knowing that the next morning I have to do it all over again.

Do you know what that means to me!?

Everything.

In addition to this I’m going through a new cycle this time. One that feels very certain and one that I’m impassioned with. It’s something that I know I must do and now I’ve got the maturity, the strength, the experience, the organisation, and focus I need to be able to bring this to life.

Perhaps that’s why I haven’t blogged much lately. Other things have become more important than Dear Diary-ing my existence to the World Wide Web. I have a bigger target market now, and that’s the Universe. We have some business to figure out and I am about to propose a big life change to it and request unhindered success.

You’ll have to stand by for I don’t intend to throw in the towel yet. I’ve found my calling. My joie de vivre. It took me this long but it’s what I believe I’m meant to do.

More on it later – when I have something substantial to report. In the meantime you’ll have to listen to the hold music…

Tomorrow for Sunday Jammin’ Music though.

If there’s one thing I’ll never stop doing even in the face of a disinterest in blogging for a period of time … is jamming.

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3 Responses to Oh, here’s my blog.

  1. Nicole says:

    oh? Can’t wait for the next announcement!

  2. c'est moi says:

    “Emotionally I would suffer my life instead and convince myself that suffering was work in itself even though it was such a contradiction of what I truly wanted and expected of myself.”

    Very good.

  3. Mike says:

    You know, I told you before that I was such a big fan of your writing… yet still, you never cease to amaze me.

    Andrea, it takes a stength that most people can’t even comprehend to do what you did… and then tell the world about it so freely.

    I rarely have the time to log in and check out your blogs; I guess as we get older, time passes a lot faster than we’d like. However, when I -do- get the opportunity to take a peek at sasr… It puts a smile on my face every time.

    Keep it up!

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