Finding role models in the most unexpected places.

It should be no surprise to anyone that I am addicted to Pinterest.  Wether it be decorating my dream house, collecting ideas for a dream wedding or finding sayings that soothe my soul; it seems that if I am awake, I’m pinning.

Recently, I have seen a few pins that say “You become like the five people you spend the most time with, so chose wisely”.  It’s not a new sentiment, I know I have heard it before.  But lately, it’s really making me think.  I have taken a step back and really looked at some of the people that I hold dear, and how they make me feel.  This really hit home for me on Saturday morning.

On Saturday morning, I had a friend over for breakfast.  She has moved to Toronto and it has been way longer since I had seen her than I would like to admit.  However, even though years have past and lifetimes have happened since I saw her last, we sat on my balcony and talked for hours, as if I had just seen her last week.  When she left, I felt as though a small piece of my self had returned.  It also makes me think that people need to understand how lucky I am to have met the incredible people I get to call my friends.

Let’s start briefly with the ones I am related to by blood.  And I mean brief because I am sure that, very shortly, they will get an entire post of their own.

I have four cousins I wouldn’t trade for the world.  Now, in total I actually have 12 cousins (and that doesn’t count the 10 second cousins that are still close family), but these four really stand out for me.  There is my second half, who thinks the exact same and I do, and is completely the white to my black.  The warden, who always keeps me straight and will always “mother” me and let me know when she thinks I’m being ridiculous (but I need that).  My friendly abuser, who always makes fun of me and calls me names, and I to him, but at the same time, I know will always have my back.  And last but not least, my hero.  The kid who has been through hell and back, and will always be an inspiration to me to look my fears and obstacles in the eye and then spit in their face.  I am so very thankful that I was graced with these people in my family, it only means that they have to put up with me and there is no escape for them.

The following will be spoke of in short paragraphs, only so you, the reader, doesn’t get insanely bored.

The “Selfie Queen”.  This girls takes the greatest looking selfies I have ever seen, but it’s so much more than that.  It’s so much more than her infectious laugh and ever smiling face.  It’s so much more than her constant encouragement and love.  It’s what I see in those selfies.  It’s the fact that she is never shy or embarrassed by the way she looks.  Now, disclaimer, she is really gorgeous.  Honetsly beautiful, in a paper bag or an evening gown, doesn’t matter, she is just a natural beauty.  But for me it’s those photos.  Wouldn’t matter if she were 100 pounds of 300 pounds, no makeup, professionally done makeup or just woke up with the worst hangover and racoon eyes known to man.  There will be a selfie and she will be smiling and she will not hesitate to post it online for all the world to see.  It’s her total confidence and light that I adore and envy.

The “Southern Belle”.  Oh yes.  Always laughing, always singing, it’s like knowing the fairy that lives in your garden and there is something about her that is pure magic.  She makes me see that people can not only have joy, but can really be joy.  I really can’t say enough about her, and yet here I sit, with no words.  She is a force, she lights not only the room, but the whole building and I am so fortunate that our paths have crossed.

The “Cupcake Diva”.  Not only am I in complete awe of where she has gotten herself, fought tooth and nail and worked her hiney off to build an empire of cupcakes and whoopy cakes; but she was the one person who single handedly let me know it was okay for me to be me.  No matter what that looked like.  She introduced me to punk rock music, purple hair, and tattoos.  She shows me daily that it doesn’t matter how many tattoos you have, what music you listen to, what you eat, what clothes you wear or music you listen to, you are okay as you.  Even better, you are great, and there will always be someone who loves you.  She is an absolute force to be reckoned with and I am so incredibly proud to call her my friend.

The “Mother”.  She scolds me, doesn’t like anyone I date and won’t give me an inch.  She also brings me cans of peas (because she knows I love them) and worries herself sick over me.  She can make it to Kingston from the GTA in about 45 minutes and would be here in the blink of an eye if I ever really needed her to be.  Usually a phone call where she tells me how ridiculous I am being solves the issue.

Last, but not least, “The Sister Friend”.  We all have one, that “friend” who is so much more.  So much more than a friend, so much more than family.  That one person who really sets your soul straight.  Who completely understands where you are coming from all the time, even if the things you say would sound horrible to other people.  If I had to chose one person to emulate myself after, it would be her.  She is creative and loving, gentle and kind.  She is the girl that would give you her last dollar without even thinking of it and never expects anything in return.  She is one of those truly beautiful people, inside and out.  She has so much love to give and spreads it so freely, it’s really a gift.

These are not the only people I hold close to my heart, I could write pages and pages about the incredible people I know.  The women who keep my connection to my childhood self and love the 80’s as much as I do.  The ones who had children surrounded by tragedy just out of high school and have over come it all to become unbelievably strong, successful woman and mothers that I could only hope to be like one day.  The women who had horrible childhoods that they fight with daily, and still manage to give love and wear smiles that I know at times are a struggle.  I have bonds with them all, a love of old movies, or Michael Jackson and the muppets.  There is a part of my heart that connects me to the people who have crossed my path and I am grateful that I have met them.

I am glad to envy these people.  I am  blessed to be able to look up to them.  I am fortunate that these are the people that have been given to me to show me the way and that I might be able to model myself after.




I deleted all my “friends”

I have moments of clear as mud (in)sanity and do a massive clear out of Facebook.  I can go from 180 friends to 80 in the blink of an eye.  People have commented that they wish they could be as cold and calculated as I am about clearing out their lists.  What no one seems to understand is why/how I get to that point.

If you have ever fallen victim to one of my clear outs, please do not feel it’s because of some cold, sinister plot and you just “didn’t make the cut”.  If you have seen the status update about me cleaning house and made some comment about how you “made the cut again”, please know how close I was to deleting Facebook completely.

By the end of this post I hope that you will understand what is actually happening when I seemingly delete people out of my life.  Let us begin.

Recently, I have run into some people that I used to ‘know’.  They used to be on my Facebook, but at some point have been deleted.  I used to work with them, or went to school with them, or at some point saw them fairly regularly in a social setting.  Then my life fell apart and everything changed.

I was drowning and lonely.  I had 200 ‘friends’ and was never more alone.  My heart was broken in so many ways, by so many people and I decided to do something about it.  I removed everyone from my Facebook that I felt wasn’t there for me.  I removed everyone that made me feel like they didn’t really want me around in the first place.  I urge you to not be offended, and to continue reading.  This is not what you think, I promise.

I really was at the point where I would have deleted my account completely.  It felt like everyone was too busy to include me, or just didn’t want to.  I started to feel like there were all of these people who had access to my life, my photos, to me, and only used it for entertainment purposes.  Now, having said that.  I couldn’t delete my account.  Not because I am addicted to Facebook, but because it keeps me in touch with family and friends that live across Canada.  I love to see their photos and know what’s going on in their lives.  It was also the only connection that I felt like I had with other people.

Recently, a few things have occurred to me.  People are busy.  Maybe it’s not that they don’t want me around, but it’s not always easy to fit people in when you work, have families and other friends.  It’s hard to fit in your 34 year old single friend.  There’s no kids to play with your kids, no significant other to keep your significant other entertained.  It’s an awkward pair off.  This is not a woe is me, this is a realization.  People lead really busy lives, and once you have fallen out of the regular routine with them, it’s incredibly difficult to get back into it.

I have started to add people back.  Maybe I don’t see them all the time, that’s ok.  I can wait.  I’m just thankful to have people in my life that are happy to see me when they do bump into me, and are willing to add me back as a ‘friend’ and not begrudge me for deleting them in the first place.

All I ask is that when you have a little time and are heading down to market, out to a patio or just want to have a cup of tea at home.  Remember me.  I am happy to run errands, hang out at the park with your kids, or anything that you might want a tag-along for.  I know that I have failed as a friend, but I am making amends and working on a better me.  Some things just take time.