It Was Less Than Ideal, But Then We Found Something New

For some reason, or a million of them, this year has felt like hot molasses with no spoon. But, as we move towards the winding up of this year’s clock, I’m finding little beautiful things that make my heart happy.

A friend sent me this, and it’s reminded me of this very discovery.

So, to buck the trend of 2016, I thought I’d list the incredible things I have managed to find in a year that has been less than ideal:

  1. The Gilmore Girls Revival. I cried for the first ten minutes of the first episode. The good cry, like when you meet someone, you haven’t seen in years, at the airport arrivals area.
  2. There’s a beautiful tree outside my bedroom window. It’s lost all its leaves, for no apparent reason. A lot of trees around our neighbourhood have…which is worrying. There is, however, now a clear view to somewhere I wanted to be able to see, but never could. We get the vision we want, eventually.
  3. Today, I watched my kid be proud of something she has worked so hard for. It’s been a less than ideal year for her, for us. It’s been…there have been gaps in our days that used to be filled with something hilarious. We’ve had less to laugh at, but we have not forgotten to laugh at ourselves, so that’s okay.
  4. Rediscovering my ability to be abruptly kind. That sounds like an oxymoron, but if you ask anyone who knows me, I am good in a crisis. I am not particularly maternal, and I’ve softened over the years. Getting back to the part of me who gets to the point has been a weird revelation. I was missing the point, for a long time there.
  5. That little Rolodex of mine has grown this year, and not just been dug into. Expanding that has had to be a priority this year, and I hope it keeps growing next year.
  6. Figuring out and finding the humanity within someone who I dislike. Feels like a mean task to even write that, but it’s something I’ve had to do. Learning about agendas, understanding motives and trying to find something good in even the most awful scenarios or situations…has been hard. But I’m trying, and that has to count for something, right?
  7. I’ve turned my back on things that do not feed me, or respect me. Hard, because I always – so desperately – want to please people. Learning how to not instantly do that has been really, really onerous to navigate.
  8. The acceptance that, at some point, I will have to do that again, and it won’t be pleasant. It’s a constantly nurtured item, not a kneejerk reaction. The more you learn to draw the lines of your life, the better your pencil work gets.
  9. Flurrying around and through life’s demands, but there’s a simple home truth that I get to have in my life every day – a foundation of love, that functions as a unit. We are a trio of fluidity and focus.
  10. Noticing the creativity that gets poured into even the most seemingly simple of things. Take a little time to take notice of it, and you will find it. There’s a person’s mind and motivation beneath there.
  11. This is super lame, but I’ve always wanted to own a coatstand, since I moved out of home, which happened long before you even knew what the difference between 3G and WiFi was. I’ve never bought one, because the expense was just too much, and I always put it off to the One Day List. Today, thanks to an incredible sale, I bought one.

We need to hold these moments close to us, as we wander into the wilds of a new year, soon. Just hold them, because our moments are always gone too soon.



A very special playlist.


Growing up, there were a variety of songs that stuck with me, that I hang on to, as they remind me of my folks. Specifically, though, I have a strong memory of why Vanessa Williams’ Save the Best for Last will always remind me of my mom.

But I’m not here to talk about that. I’m here to talk about the songs that have woven themselves into my life with my daughter. Each of these ones have memories attached to them, and I love them for the way that I can, on any bad day, hit play on them and they will instantly bring a smile to her little face. Here are some of them:

Katy Perry’s Hot ‘n Cold.  Many, many years ago (feels like an entirely different lifetime ago), I got dumped. A friend of mine suggested this song to me as “therapeutic” and I adopted it as my “gotta do some housework and feel chipper” song. It, very quickly, took on a whole new meaning for me, as my kid and I would dance around the house, with our own specially engineered dance moves, and sing it at the top of our voices. It is now, and forever, the song that brought a smile to our faces, on a bad day.

Three Little Birds by Bob Marley. This one dates back to when she was an infant. I will admit, I was one of those “rock the baby to sleep, do whatever it takes, even if it takes an hour” type of moms. I did not let her “cry it out”; “self soothe” or anything like that. I was a ferociously devoted co-sleeper too, and, honestly, still am. I’d have her sleep next to me any day. Anyone who knows me, knows that I’m not exactly a great singer *understatement* and she, once, lifted her arm out of her swaddled blanket and clapped it over my mouth when I attempted to sing her a lullaby once. But there was always one song she’d let me sing, and this was it.

Another Bob Marley tune, Buffalo Soldier, was something she heard at playschool, and came home singing one night. I treasure the video I have of her, singing this like she was made for it.

When she was about three (which, guys, is the best-most-difficult-continuous-conversation-and-questions age), she decided she’d like to be a dancer. Again, I have a little home video of her singing this and waving her hands around in the air like she just didn’t care. Heh.

More recently, she had an awful day at school earlier this year. When she got home, I tucked her into my bed and spun up a few tunes that I thought would cheer her up. The one she loved the most that day? Katy Perry’s Firework. This is the song I will sing to her, every day, for the rest of her life, whenever she needs it.

And, I have left a few off this playlist but, I’ll end it off with the silliest song we enjoy. It’s during this song that we come up with the very funniest mondegreens and end up flailing about the place in giggles (ridiculous Canadian enunciation included).

Sweet child, I love the soundtrack to our life. You’re the best song that ever played.

A note to myself.

Today, I uncovered some things. Today, I realised I have a private battle with a few things I need to face. No, screw that, CONQUER.

Anyway, I wrote this little note to myself. I refuse to dissolve into a sweaty panic over this. I absolutely refuse.

1. You have the power to do this, and do it well.

2. You have the knowledge to make things happen, and you really need to trust yourself on this one.

3. You have to be disciplined to be kind. That may not always make sense to you, and it’s flipping hard but, it’s true.

4. You are way luckier than you have ever been, right now.

5. You have the power to make choices and take control. Make them, take it.

6. Own it, feel it and believe it.

7. This is what life is. There are no easy exit routes or sideways aversions. This is life at 31, and it’s yours. Isn’t that brilliant?

8. You have more choices than you’ve ever dreamt of. Amazing fact, hey?

9. You have the ability to work very hard. Work very hard. You know, best of all, the immense satisfaction you feel from working very hard.

10. Don’t be so afraid of speaking your truth. It’s hard for you, I know. But, seriously, people love you anyway and because of it.

11. Enjoy the little moments, you know the ones. Savour the smiles. Throw away the frowns.

12. Breathe and keep moving.

For this, I’ll need a Theme Song:

(and I don’t care if anyone thinks it’s lame).

Truth is, this video actually tells the story of my life as I see it right now. Honestly, no video has ever, ever summed up my life EVER. And this one does. I resolve to listen to this song every single day whilst I work away on this little battle.