Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Just Rambling ....

Today I’ll start off by saying; I’m not really sure where this entry will go. I say this because most of my blogs have gone in a different direction than originally thought.

Last night I had a conversation my dad regarding my lack of memories of ages 12 – 15 years of age. I really only know things happened, but I don’t actually remember them. For example, I know my aunt died of Leukemia and my cousin was killed in a car accident, but I don’t remember the funerals or my reactions to these events.

Apparently, my aunt died only 6 weeks after my cousin was killed and my mom underwent her second round of chemotherapy during all this. This of course could explain why I don’t have memories attached to these events; with the entire trauma going on all at once, I imagine I was very overwhelmed being only 13 years old, according to my dad’s timeline. It still frustrates me though; I want to remember no matter how traumatic. I don’t remember anything at all, not even the friends I had and what we did for fun. I don’t remember school either, I know which teachers I had, because I have pictures, but even those pictures don’t spark any recollection.

Dad told me last night, when I was 12 years old; our family went on a trip to California to see my mother’s family in San Diego, and Riverside. I have very spotted memories of this trip; I guess we drove down from Calgary, AB down through Utah and over to Oregon, then down the coast of California. I remember going to one of my relatives home and playing billiards with my uncle and swimming in their outdoor pool. I remember there was a heat wave going on and the temperature was 115 degrees Fahrenheit. The pool was the only thing to cool me off. I remember I spent hours in it just sitting the water being too exhausted from the heat to really swim. My sisters were too young, by my parent’s standards, to not be supervised by the adults who were quite content to stay inside under the air conditioning. We also went to Laguna Beach that trip. This I have proof of. I have a picture of myself and my littlest sister sitting in the water letting the waves come up over us; it looks like we’re both happy and screaming about it. This is strange to me though, because I am deathly afraid of large bodies of water where I cannot see the bottom, also of sharks. So the fact I am sitting in the Pacific Ocean and having what seems to be fun is a bit perplexing.

I have bits and pieces regarding the summer of age 14. I remember I went to a summer camp with Young Women's and all the girls I went to school with were there. We went to the Kananaskis Country and camped by a river in tents. Now, I am by no means an outdoors kind of girl, so camping in a tent in the middle of nowhere was never fun of me. I remember I had brought all my makeup, hair products, and smelly stuff with me. Now pay attention, I’m in the wilderness with all the animals and critters that come along with this environment, so smelly stuff, not the smartest thing to bring with me.

Long story short, a lovely black bear decided to come for a visit to our camp. He proceeded to rampage through all our tents and food cupboards while we were on our hike. We come back to this scene of horror and discover he has bitten through my bag, ripped open all my smelly stuff and strewn this all over our tent and made quite the mess. So we had to then stay in the camp kitchen on site, where while I am trying to go to sleep a mouse runs across my face and down my chest. Screaming, of course, I jump up and wake up everyone else. I do not sleep that night or for the rest of the trip in fear of a re occurrence of previous events.

Needless to say I do not like camping. Trauma … trauma … trauma. It seems to follow me around as if I’m its target. I can admit I should not have brought all that smelly stuff with me, but was the bear really necessary??

Any way, that's all for now. Although, maybe more later today as I'm really bored and have lots going on in my mind.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

He Really Can Spark My Memories

So last night I was listening to Andrew McMahon of Something Corporate and Jack's Mannequin on KROCK2 Hack'd and that boy just absolutely tore my heart out. Most of the songs he played brought back so many memories of growing up and having music in the house at any given moment. When he played 'America' by Simon and Garfunkel, I cried. Simon and Garfunkel were my mother's favorite group. I remember listening to the Album 'Bridge over Troubled Water' and falling in love with their sound and lyrics. Then Andrew played 'God Only Knows' by The Beach Boys and explained how that record, "Pet Sound's" changed his life. Our house was full of The Beach Boys, my mother being a California Girl; I have a hard time hearing them as well. That song is so beautiful and sweet it would melt any girls’ heart.

Then he made me laugh by saying how boring he was and I was thinking hardly. I thought he was absolutely entertaining and genuine, I'm glad he was having fun too. I wonder if he recorded this show before he got sick or after. I just posted that question on the 'The Messengers' forum, so we'll see.

Any way, it's really interesting to me how easily I can relate to this guy and not even know him on a personal level.

That's all for now.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Random Thoughts .....

So I'm sitting here at work and completely bored out of my tree.

Why not continue my story I thought to myself, so here it goes.... I was reading an interview Hearts and Sleeves did with Andrew and was nicely surprised by some of the things he said. Firstly, they (something corporate) fund all their own shows while touring. They are not tied to any 'political' corporations, hence the ironic band name. I thought this was quite fascinating and very true to his form. He really doesn't like any one having control over his craft, and why should he. It makes me wonder how he's really handling this battle with Cancer; I know from my experience, it can be extremely frustrating purely because of the loss of control you can feel. He seems to be pretty strong and even tempered, but there have to be moments when he just wants to scream. I hope he has understanding family and friends, more so I hope they understand when he goes quite and introspective.

My mother seemed to shut herself out of the world some days, I noticed it because it was all I was doing. I remember turning quiet and contemplative myself and staying there. Even now I love being on my own and away from the constant noise of others. I sometimes wonder if I've become shy or if I'm just unwilling to be social. I feel I really don't need the company of others and this is taken in negative ways, like I've gone depressed or something, but that isn't it, I just don't want to force a conversation about nothing important. The weather is not a fascinating conversation piece for me.

Sometimes, I wish I could write all this down in a poetic way. I just remembered I have once, it's called 'my life compared to the river', I'll have to see if I can find it somewhere in my collection of stuff. It's mostly likely in my journals from when I was younger; I wrote it when I was only 18 years old. (Sorry that bit was me thinking out loud.)

Any way, I remember sitting beside a river at a time when it felt as if the world was crashing down around me. The river was rushing over the rocks and broken down trees and then calmed almost immediately after into a still pool and then continued on its way. It was a strange analogy of me, how in life there are uncontrollable rushing times and then in a blink you are calm and still, a plateau if you will. I love these moments when things are still but I was know there is something huge on the horizon, some major conflict whether internal or external. These moments I cherished because it seems I don't get very many of them. Such a strange feeling, to look back and see a mountain range, full of peaks and valleys.

As I look forward, I am blinded by the sun and I can't see what's ahead. I would love to see just a little, a few steps ahead so I could prepare, but alas it doesn't work that way. Blind into the future, only to learn the same lessons over again, or brand new ones. I'm not sure which is scarier. At least if it's something familiar I'll have a better idea of what not to do. I guess you don't progress if you just make the same bad decisions over and over again. What a strange tangent this is, I started talking about how Andrew must be feeling and ended up here at what I've been through so far in my short life. It's crazy, when I take the time to write it all in point form; it seems to be far too much for such a short amount of time.

Here's a quick run down with ages, if I can remember. I'm not really positive on this time line and the order, but here goes:

  • 11 years old - Mom diagnosed with breast cancer,
  • 13 years old - Aunt died of leukemia,
  • 14 years old - Cousin killed in car accident, collision with a drunk driver,
  • 15 years old - Best friend killed in car accident, collision with drunk driver,
    16 years old - Mother dies of Cancer after 5 year battle,
  • 17 years old - Father remarried to Wicked Witch of the West,
  • 18 years old - Father finally divorces above mentioned witch, news given to me on my birthday,
  • 20 years old - I get married to boy I meet in a bar after knowing him 4 months and file for divorce after 7 months of marriage disaster in December,
  • 21 years old - have a baby girl from above marriage, Kyra Janae, and meet future husband number two,
  • 22 years old - have baby boy, Riley David, with above mentioned future husband and marry husband number two,
  • 23 years old - file for divorce from husband number two in December.
  • 24 years old - finally feel free of all bad decisions and circumstances and officially start my single life.

Hence why I feel all used up in my short life span. My father has remarried again, but this time he chose a really great woman. She doesn't try to erase my mother from my memory, nor did she clean out our house of all remaining remnants of her. She just tries to be my friend, and for that effort she is rewarded with my friendship. She can sometimes be too honest, but only because sees me with outside eyes, which are much clearer than anyone within my family. My father is happy again and for that I am happy for him.

As for me, I think I may just be too hard to handle for any man, my impatience continually gets the best of me and my stubbornness always seems to win. The simply fact that time on my own is my favorite, may also be my downfall. All I can truly say, if there is a even tempered man who can dodge the objections I will throw at him, and soften my hard edges, then that is the man for whom I am longing for. I am not looking for him; he will need to find me. He will have the strength of character to sweep me off my feet even though I am kicking and screaming. Once he calms me down, I will give him my heart forever; and I will feel complete and whole again. He will help me understand the world I live in and make it better and I will see through his eyes what I've been missing all this time.

What a wonderful dream... this is my only wish for my self and I don't think it's too much to ask.

Monday, July 18, 2005

A Thought Gone Wild ....

Well this is my "first attempt" at blogging. Firstly, what a strange name choice for basically online journaling. I guess I'm just reaching out in to the vastness of the electronic world. I actually got the idea to start my own blog from Josh Partington of Something Corporate and Firecape. For anyone who doesn't know these bands - you should - they are both awesome. Unfortunately for Josh he comes in a very close second to my inspiration - Andrew McMahon of Something Corporate and Jacks Mannequin - again, if you don't know these bands - you should. Andrew is the lead vocalist of Something Corporate and Jacks Mannequin. His lyrics inspire me to look deeper and examine my reactions to the situations I have found myself in either by my own choice or by 'fortunate circumstance' - hence the blog title. It's very strange how this all came about; I stumbled across Something Corporate on an Internet radio site - idobi.com.

Anyway, they've only been in my CD collection for 3 1/2 years. I bought 'North' first and fell in love with that tenor voice mixed with the sweet sounds of an acoustic piano, amazing guitar riffs and the strong bass lines. When I first heard the piano, I was pleasantly shocked. It didn't sound like anything I had heard before which is why I loved it so much. Then the lyrics started to become clear, those words went deep and emotions I had been very successful in numbing came back to life. I felt a rush, no a surge that completely over took me and I cried. I cried for 3 very long hours. Truthfully, I don't even remember which song it was that started the waterfall that day, but I haven't been able to re-close up the dam. He has a tattoo on his wrist that states - 'The River is Everywhere.' It's from a book which I will look up later. This statement reminds of the day and every day since then. I'm not saying I've cried every day since, but the emotions are very close to the surface and are very hard to control.

Within two weeks I bought 'Leaving Through the Window' and all hell broke loose, the rains came down again and this time it flooded all the valleys and crashed through every possible obstacle. I was now face to face with all my demons, skeletons, and hidden books of despair. I was standing over this great lake it had created and was being pushed in head first. On the way down I accepted this fate and took a deep breathe and was immediately consumed by anger, hurt, and ultimately sadness for all the time and energy spent holding back these feelings.
I guess I should let you in on what happened to produce such immense feelings. When I was 11 years old, my parents came home from the doctor's office, sat my sisters and I down in the living room and told us our mother had been diagnosed with breast cancer and that she was going in to surgery in 3 days to have her left breast removed and she would be starting chemotherapy 2 days after. My father had taken the load of telling us and my sweet mother sat there as strong as she could be, her face blank and looking down. I remember this because I had never seen her in state before. She always seemed happy even when you knew she wasn't.

Anyway, she had the surgery and we thought everything went well, the doctors were beyond optimistic. She started the chemo as scheduled and proceeded to become weak, tried, and eventually started to lose her hair. She didn't let this get her down; she was still upbeat and happy to have a second chance. Then, a year later in the winter, she slipped on an ice patch outside our house and falling she bruised her ribs. My father took her back to the hospital; they took x-rays and found it ... Everywhere. It was in all major organs except her heart and her lungs, her doctor hung his head as he broke this news to her and my father.

This time at 12 years old, having been through this before, I thought cancer is not the enemy; we've done this before we can do it again. I asked when she was going back for surgery and was blown away by my fathers answer - we're not - it's already to far gone. As I sat there and tried to understand, I felt them coming burning behind my eyes and making my sinuses hurt. I forced them back to their hiding place and resolved I would not let this happen. We had done this before and we could do it again, if only they would fight. My mother in her sweet way took me in her arms as a fought her and held me until there was no fight left in me and I cried for her. She said she would try to be as strong as she could for us.

After that day, the feelings were officially turned off, disconnected completely and I was expecting the last bill at any moment. I watched her struggled to continue normal life, she still did the laundry, the ironing, the cleaning, cooking, baking, and all the other mom stuff housewives do. Gradually and consistently, the medication began to slow her down; she started taking naps in the afternoon. This progressed until she could hardly get out of bed. It was always worse after her treatments which she stayed over night for. I could never quite sleep those nights; I remember being 13 and being so tired. Then the addition happened, my father received a call from one of my uncles, my aunt had been diagnosed with leukemia. She was pretty far gone by the time they had figured out why she had been so tried and couldn't keep the colds away in the summer heat. She started treatments quickly and lost her battle after only 8 months.

This brought me back to reality, my reality the one I had been pushing farther and farther away. It came rushing back and hit me straight in the heart and I fell into the deepest hole I could find and stayed there, hiding from the world, my family, my friends, and truly the one person I should have been clinging to - my mother. I was going to lose her; she was not going to get better. So, I cut her off, I severed my heart from hers and became cold and numb to all feeling and emotion which could be described as caring. It would be easier this way ... when she leaves. These were the thoughts coursing though my veins as I watched my mother slowing die, disintegrate in to skin and bones, become the shell in which she would evaporate from up to the heavens and leave us behind. I had accepted this outcome when no one else had; everyone thought it was far too early to lose hope. I hadn't lost hope though, I had been taught by my parents that there was life after death and as long as I good I would see her again. However, this was faulty in its entirety because I am not and never will be perfect. Therefore, in my 14 year old mind, how could I ever live up to that? I felt punished by God for being the imperfect soul I was, he had abandoned me in the one time I needed him the most and he taking away my only real connection to him. How could a loving God, Heavenly Father do this? These were the subject of many questions I had that only he could answer and if he was real and in charge I wanted to ask him these questions face to face and I would wait until he called me home. In the meantime, I would close myself down, until that fateful day when I brought home a seemingly innocent CD home - 'North by Something Corporate'.