On a day such as this, I reflect.
Over the last few days I have been thinking of all that has happened since my last birthday...this has been one of the most eventful, life changing years of my life.
Perhaps surprising to you though, not the most difficult.
I say that because what happened this past year was very public. I put myself in the spotlight both by choosing to speak to the media and by choosing to blog my experiences. I never once felt alone. Knowing others were in the same situation or worse situations, made everything that was happening seem more "normal" and acceptable. It was okay to feel what I did. It was okay to act the way I was acting. It was okay to be falling apart. More than okay, it was expected and encouraged in order for healing to occur.
By dealing with this so publically and surrounding myself with others in similar situations or others who really understood me and how and why I was acting and dealing the way I was, I felt supported. I felt loved. I felt cared for.
I grew up a lot in the past year, was tested and pushed a lot in the past year, and struggled a lot in the past year.
But I never ever felt alone. Or that the weight of the world was resting soley on my shoulders. Other times in my life have been more difficult.
I learned a lot in the past year, about my life, about my marriage, my friendships, and myself.
So, in the spirit of lighter, happier blogposts, (at least for today anyway), I thought I'd share abit about myself. A lot of you are new here in the last year, many of you I've never even met. So here's a glimpse into who I am, other than "the girl who blogged about the tornado".
1. I am a very picky eater.
2. My favourite course is dessert.
3. I bake and sell cheesecakes.
4. I do not drink coffee or tea at all, but am addicted to coca-cola.
5. I wear very little makeup, basically because I have no idea what I'm doing.
6. I have a slight addiction to kitchenware. Those who have moved me in the past year will tell you I need an intervention.
7. I loooooooooooove Tim McGraw. I last saw him in concert in the summer of 2010 in London. What a great night.
8. I faint when I am pregnant. A lot. When I was pregnant with Makenna I had to quit work at 16 weeks because of it.
9. No, I am not pregnant.
10. I love antiquing, yard sales and second hand stores. The thrill of the hunt. It pains me, greatly, to pay full retail price for anything.
11. I cannot handle the sight or thought of elderly men that are sad, crying or alone. I tear up immediately.
12. I am developing an obsession with repurposing furniture. Thank you pinterest.
13. Before the tornado, I was terrified of tornadoes. Now, honestly...not so much.
14. I do not enjoy driving in the dark. Especially when it's raining.
15. Just a couple weeks ago I drove on the 401 for the first time in my life. I've been a passenger a million times, but never the driver. Strike it off the Bucket List.
16. There is a long history of mental illness, addictions and schizophrenia in my family.
17. I played trombone from grades 6-10. or 11. I can't remember now. I had the same music teacher the entire time. I do remember that.
18. I am extremely competitive. I played baseball for many years. It is my most favourite sport. In highschool I was also on the track and rugby teams.
19. I broke my tailbone playing rugby. The next day the Columbine Massacre occured. I watched it for hours while laying on the couch at Jeff's parents house with the broken tailbone. The tailbone still bothers me all these years later.
20. Jeff and I have been together since 1998.
21. I love public speaking.
22. I cry every time I watch Toy Story 3. And Beaches. And Grumpy Old Men. (see # 11)
23. I can eat an entire bag of potato chips in one sitting. And will.
24. I hate red wine.
25. And bubblegum. and peppermint anything.
26. I love all things internet. I believe social networking is a powerful tool for connecting, connecting and the sharing of information and resources.
27. I love learning about my family history, and Jeff's. Jeff's grandpa is turning 90 this year and I could listen to him talk about the old days for hours.
28. Some of my most treasured possessions include old handwritten recipes from my ancestors, kitchen tools from my grandparents' farm and a set of china dishes my Grandpa gave my mom when she moved out.
29. Makenna was born in Stratford with the help of a doctor, after a labour that lasted 3 days. Jack was born in Clinton with a midwife after a labour that lasted 10 hours.
30. I cannot stand that scraping sound cutlery makes on plates. Its like nails on a chalkboard to me.
31. I had my ears pierced as a child, but they have long since grown in. I couldn't wear earrings at my brother's wedding because try as I might, I couldn't force them through.
32. I do not wear high heels. Ever.
32 facts for 32 candles. Jeff, Makenna and Jack all celebrated their last birthdays on Wellington Street; I am the only one whose birthday wasn't missed on Park Street this year.
This year, as I reflect, I am humbled by all that has happened...and grateful, just to be here, to still be who I am, and to have experienced so much positive.
For the record...I do like chocolate cake. :)
homemade Triscuit bites
2 hours ago