Friday, May 31, 2013

You Break The Spell, Or Make The Fall Harder

Today I met a man who made me think about how much we bitch unnecessarily.

At the top of the 94 stairs I try to go up and down most days during my long walks with Daisy in High Park, I was in some pain and wondering if it's a bad idea to keep taking those stairs - I have a problem with my lungs that upcoming tests will (hopefully) diagnose and so I have difficulty breathing, especially when exercise is involved. In spite of these lung problems, I'm putting in a conscious effort to get healthier and hopefully improve some of my other non-fixable conditions. I'm full of 'em.

Stairs of ill repute.

I went up those stairs today at the end of my walk, and this older man came up not long after me. As we stood there, huffing and puffing and laughing at ourselves a bit, I explained how I was slightly worried that it was dangerous for me to push it.

He said that he recently had heart valve surgery, and taking these stairs and walking like I do are what made him healthy again, and so he continues to do it. Even when it's difficult.

As I walked down those stairs that I often loathe, I thought that maybe I shouldn't overthink the breathing problems or pain. While I don't believe that whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger, when it comes to things like exercise I'm sure it actually does.

So maybe instead of whining about it, I'll just take those damn stairs and high five the dog after. Because if that man doesn't bitch, I shouldn't either.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

I Have Only Two Emotions, Careful Fear & Dead Devotion

For as long as I've been aware of things "they" say, the idea of people changing has always been a big debate. And the majority of the public seems to believe that people don't change - even so far as to say they can't.

I figured I was overdue for this rant to say that I disagree - change isn't only possible, it's likely.

To an extent.


Experience and a lifetime of over-analyzing everything has taught me that the core of a person doesn't change. Who we are, the very basic parts of us, will always be the same. That's our makeup. But circumstance and the ability to tweak our own thought processes means that we are able to change quite a bit of ourselves. Sometimes with intention, sometimes without it.

Knowing this, and truly believing it, has been the root of many huge decisions for me. It's why I often give people, situations and relationships multiple chances, and hope that others do the same for me. As I've changed a lot in many key ways while staying myself, it's important to recognize that others can do the same. That's what I believe.

In the interest of disclosure, I admit that doing this and living my life that way has caused a great deal of pain at times. That's due to people whose changes were negative, or those who just changed in a different direction than I did. And from sometimes hoping for changes that never came at all. But I do it willingly, to eliminate the "what if's" that can make us all crazy. Sometimes it's worth it, and maybe that's enough.

So for those those that are set in their beliefs that people are incapable of change, you may need to open your eyes a bit more. Chances are, you aren't the same as you once were either.

Agree or disagree?


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

And My Favourite Guitar Was Between Us To Hold

When last week got a little stressful and went a little bad, my plans completely changed and I ended up back in St. Catharines again (thanks to my lovely Leah).

Because of that, I had the chance to finally see Hayden live - he headlined a fundraiser at the Ravine Estate Winery in Niagara-On-The-Lake.



Needless to say, I went completely fangirl.


He played a lot of the (fantastic) new album, but threw in a few older ones as well.

I think hardcore fans are always happy when Trees Lounge makes an appearance.


When they did the encore, he finished with the song that made the masses reminisce. Even those who didn't follow his albums past Everything I Long For would know this one far too well.


I got it on video. Excuse the shakiness, but sometimes a girl's gotta sway.



And after that, the fangirl mode went to the next level and I managed to meet and get a photo with one of my favourite musicians.

An amazing way to turn my weekend around.


(Huge thanks to Cait and Nick for making that happen - everyone else, go listen to Nick's band, Serena Pryne and The Mandevilles, and come see 'em next Wednesday the 29th at the Mojo Lounge in Toronto. Ok? Ok.)

Friday, May 10, 2013

Memories Like Fingerprints Are Slowly Raising

Yesterday I promised that I would post a video today, and so I will. And the best part for you guys? I'm not in it!

If you follow me on Instagram, you saw the photo of a turtle I posted. I named it Cloris Leachman and made a video of the turtle's fast-paced adventures. They lead crazy lives, if you didn't know.

So try not to get confused by the plot twists and action - I did my best to keep up with Cloris. (And please, don't mind the crappy quality. These things happen with turtle videos.)




Tuesday, May 7, 2013

It's A Treacherous Road With A Desolate View, There's Distant Lights But They're Far & Few

In the spirit of sharing music, which I'm a huge fan of, I've decided to share even more with you guys. While I like to review albums and bands, who's to say that they have to be new? It's great to re-visit past favourites or introduce something that others may not have heard before. So expect more of it.

And to kick it off, let's discuss my love for Beck's album Sea Change.



If you're anything like me, you likely still know every damn word to Beck's "Loser". I'm not ashamed of it. I used to listen to him on my swing and sing along, especially to "Beer Can". But when I was introduced to his 2002 album, Sea Change last year... I was not expecting what I heard. I believe my reaction was something along the lines of "This is Beck?! What the hell happened to him?" 

Beck's got emotions, guys. And he's got chops, musically and lyrically.

Even if you dislike all of the albums he put out prior to Sea Change, I still suggest you listen to this one. Once, twice, maybe three times before it sinks in. He got rid of the two turntables, and sang into that microphone - and a mellow, folk-y Beck is a fantastic Beck.

So have a listen and sway along to some great folkin' tunes.


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Now You Stand Reborn Before Us All

There's a popular saying that I'm sure you've heard, and it's never really left me:

"Do one thing every day that scares you."

In general, I think it's a fantastic idea. There's nothing more liberating or freeing than facing your fears; that single act can evolve us and make us stronger. Trust me... at one point in time I was scared of everything, probably even you. Especially you.


But for me and people like me, it's a little bit different. It's not quite so simple and straightforward. Due to the ever-looming anxiety disorder, normal, everyday acts become needlessly frightening. So when I think about doing "one thing every day that scares me", I know that I already am. Constantly.

I may get an anxiety attack every time I leave my apartment, but I still need to walk my dog. Still need to go to meetings, be social, get the hell out and be a (mostly) functioning adult. Save for maybe one or two people, phone calls cause attacks. So do new situations, going to new places, and sometimes even the simple act of just waking up in the morning. Most daily activities cause some form of anxiety attack, and that's just life. They're unavoidable.

The severity of each attack varies, and so does the frequency. It's always different, and can be dependent on what else is going on in my life. But no matter what, it's an intrusive pain in the ass... and scary. Yes, scary. 

While I've been making an attempt to face my real fears lately (heights, you're next!), I've realized that this entire time I've been doing many things every single day that scare the hell out of me.

And so I will continue to, even if they never get better.



Are you doing something every day that scares you?





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