life, Uncategorized

Stop ‘just’ing your passion

For as long as I can remember, I have loved to write. Even as a very small girl, I loved nothing more than receiving a brand new notebook and pen so that I could spend my days scribbling. My mom used to laugh because most little girls wanted barbies or other typical toys, but not me, I wanted one of those fancy pens that you got from nice offices or speciality stationary stores. Give me a pen that would run smoothly across the page and not clump ink … SWOOON!

Despite my early passion, my stories were not the most riveting back then, let’s just say I’ve come a long way. They were all the same, usually starring a young princess named Christine (coincidence?) with SOFT, FLOWING red hair, and TANNED skin.

Now, if you know me personally, you know how comical that is. There is nothing soft about my hair, I could legitimately fashion it into a spear and stab someone if needed. My mother lovingly described it as having the texture of ‘steel wool’, it is not exactly nice to snuggle with nor does it ‘flow’ anywhere. And the closest I have ever gotten to a tan was when … well, never. I’ve never even come close. But hey, I was only 7. And a girl can dream, can’t she?

My stories always had a dad (the king), a sibling (although I was Dad’s favorite), and we lived in a marvelous palace … talk about using creativity to work through your abandonment and ‘only child’ issues.

Over the years my writing thankfully transitioned beyond ‘The Chronicles of Princess Christine’ to include a little more variety, and then to the dark, melancholic prose that only a teenage girl can pull off. No matter the age or stage of life, I was writing. I even remember my friends asking me to help them in English class whenever they felt stumped or overwhelmed. It is fair to mention that I was not the best student (read: barely scraped by), so to be the kid who others were coming to for help was a real source of pride for me.

There is no doubt about it, the written word has always been ‘my jam’.

Now the odd thing is, it wasn’t until just last year, when I became a published author, that I actually considered myself ‘a writer’. Even though I had been writing since I was old enough to hold a pen, loved it with my entire being, and was pretty good at it, I always thought of it as ‘just’ a hobby. ‘Just’ something I enjoyed doing in my free time. I thought that to be ‘a writer’, you had to have gone to school for a degree, have a job for which you get paid for writing, or have been published.

I’ve been giving this some thought lately and I’ve got to say … what a crock of shit. Why do we do that? Why do we ‘just’ our passions? Why do we insist on downplaying our talents unless there is a degree or a paycheck associated with them?

I am no more a writer now than I was two years ago before I had been published.

I am a writer because I write. Bottom line.

Obviously there are limits and some things do require a level of training. I can’t go around calling myself a massage therapist just because I enjoy rubbing oil on people and soothing tired muscles, even if I am darn good at it. That would be reckless and quite frankly, a little bit weird.

What I am talking about is how we minimize our gifts and passions. About how we constantly determine the value of our talents on how much money or status it brings in.

Is it nice to make money doing something we love? Of course. Is it validating to have a piece of paper recognizing hard work, effort, and skill? Yes. But do those things determine our talent or worth? No.

So next time you are talking about your passion, drop the ‘just’ in front of it.

Wear the title with pride.

You don’t ‘just play around with paint’. You are a goddamned painter!

You don’t ‘just enjoy photography in your free time’. You are a mother freaking photographer!

And if your passion does require some training or education in order to wear the title or expand on your gift … do it!

Stop hiding. Stop downplaying. Stop devaluing yourself. And stop making excuses.

You are worth it!

Go get’em, tiger.

~Christine (mother freaking writer since birth)

life, motherhood

My little piece of mom shame

Oooooh, boy! This blog is already not easy to write (You know it is going to be hard when the first five words give you grief).

But, I NEED to write this blog. I need to write it for me, and all of the other mamas in similar positions. I am tired of feeling ashamed. Shame is something that I have spoken about on stage. About how it tricks us, lies to us, and how the best way to silence shame is to SPEAK it (thank you, Brene Brown). So, in an effort to kick my shame to the curb, here goes nothing ….

My kids don’t live with me. There, I said it.

They live full time with their father and I see them every second weekend and half of all holidays.

Even writing it makes me queasy.

Like most moms, I love nothing more than to gush and brag about my kids to coworkers or acquaintances but whenever the topic of where my children live comes up, it hits me like a punch to the gut. And I tend to avoid the subject at all costs.

It happens more than you might think, usually coming up around schooling …

What grades are your kids in? Oh, that’s nice! What school do they go to?

That’s when I start nervously rambling. “They actually go to school in Castlegar, they live with their Dad.” (note: Castlegar is four hours away from my home in Kelowna, BC)

And cue the inquisitive head tilt, “Ohhhhhh …” in a slightly higher than average pitch. You can literally feel their curiosity.

And of course they are curious. I don’t blame them. In all honesty, it is a bit different than what people are used to. Although the idea of ‘normal’ within a family construct is thankfully broadening, it is still fairly uncommon for children of separated families to not reside with their mother, at least half of the time … unless there is something wrong.

Why don’t the kids live with her? Did she lose custody? Did she not want them? Did they not want to live with her?

Now whether those questions are actually what people are wondering when it comes up, I don’t know? But what I DO know is that the reason I avoid these conversations or worry about judgements is because I judge myself.

I grapple daily with whether I made the right decision or not. I constantly struggle with guilt and wonder how my children will view my choices later. And there is a huge part of me that questions if I am a good mother or not.

The irony is, if I were a dad, this would not be an issue. Not for society and not for me. Sure, I would miss my kids terribly, but I would see them every second weekend and get pats on the back for doing so. I would likely be praised for my devotion to fatherhood, and receive support and empathy when telling people about my parenting arrangement.

But I am not a dad. I am a mama. And kids need their mama.

Right?

Well, of course. But here is the thing, my kids still have a mama. I might be 4 hours away but we have a great relationship, we speak every day, and I am there when they need me. I get the phone calls about school stuff, the midday texts with questions or stories, and the early morning skypes to show off their birthday haul or what the Easter bunny brought.

I think I will always worry if we made the right choice, if we could or should have done it differently, or if my boys will resent me at the end of it all. And the thing is, they might. But that risk would also be there if we remained a nuclear family too. Maybe more so if that nuclear family was an unhappy one.

In the coming years, I know my kids will likely look back on their childhood and have feedback that I might find hard to hear. Most kids do. But I hope that it is less about which loving home they lived in as children, and more about how I was always nagging them to get off their phones and go outside, or that time I tried to give them a haircut during a pandemic quarantine.

I trust that my kids know how much I love and miss them, that they feel heard, and that they feel comfortable talking with me about anything (including this) at any time.

For now, I am going to try to shelve the self-judgement, and the shame. I have better things to do with all of that energy, such as put it towards my kids. And I’m not going to avoid the questions or the topic anymore. I feel confident that my kids are in a great situation. They have three parents that adore them, two safe and loving homes, and extended families and friends to support them. Has it been perfect? No. But perfect doesn’t exist. Not in nuclear families, or blended families, or even in separated families where the kids primarily live with mama.

life, Uncategorized

Overcoming Myself

So I was recently asked to speak at a women’s conference. Now when I say I was asked to speak … I mean on stage, for almost an hour, all by myself … in front of 200 women (and women can be judgy!).

I know, I know. What the hell was I thinking?!

And here is the real kicker, saying I was asked isn’t entirely accurate. I actually offered to do this. You see, I just helped a friend organize her very first women’s conference. I have always been a sucker for a good event but this one was AMAZING! It was inspirational, it was moving, it was uplifting. Women danced, cried, and laughed. And when it was done, I said “Gee, that was cool. I think I want to speak next year!”

After all, I have always dreamed of public speaking. Now, I am known to be a bit impulsive. I tend to jump into things, guns a’blazing, without a lot of thought. But, this was going to be a LONG way down the road (a whole year! That’s a long time for someone with ADD!) so it didn’t really feel like a big deal. I mean, why the hell not, right?! I had lots of time to figure it out and more importantly, lots of time to bail if it got too scary.

So when my friend called me and said “Let’s do another event! Do you think you will be ready to speak in a few months, rather then next year?” …. shit got real. All of a sudden, this very far off thing that I would have plenty of time to bail on … was right around the corner. And all of a sudden I had to get very serious about this public speaking dream I had.

The whole concept of me speaking at an event isn’t totally uncanny. I mean, let’s face it, for those of you that know me, I always have LOTS to say. In fact, it can be difficult to shut me up. But … what the heck would I even talk about?!

Now initially, I had planned to talk about overcoming fears. After all, I was about to overcome a few of them with this whole public speaking thing. The big one being fear of rejection. But then something else came to mind – the topic of accomplishment or success.

A bit of an odd topic perhaps as I am certainly not the most accomplished individual in my peer group. At least not by traditional definitions. And I am certainly not claiming to be an expert on success/achievements. Lord knows I have a long way to go before I can start advising people on anything other than how to make darn good nachos or how to binge-watch the entire first season of the Mindy Project on Netflix in record time.

BUT there have been times in my life that I have been darn near unstoppable. I have set my eye on a goal and let NOTHING stand in my way. It’s like I suddenly hit the ‘Christine sweet spot’. And then, of course, there have been times when no matter what I did, I just couldn’t seem to find my way around hurdles, muster up the motivation, etc.

So, over the last little bit, I have been paying attention and examining what things I do that facilitate my seemingly unstoppable successful moments … and what things I do that have me running into the same brick wall over and over again.

And what have I discovered? What is the recipe for my my ‘sweet spot’? Well, the first thing I realized is … there is a big difference between determination and desire.

When I look back on the goals that I have accomplished in my life, they all have one thing in common – I was bloody determined that nothing was going to stand in my way. Not money. Not people. Not circumstance. Nothing. There really wasn’t even a question of ‘if’ I was going to attain my goal. There was no other option.

Whereas, there have been times in my life that I have not been successful. Where no matter what I have tried, I just couldn’t get on top of things. The reason being? I only ‘kind of wanted’ to achieve whatever the goal was … I wasn’t determined.

For example … I want six-pack abs. I would love to be able strut my stuff in a bikini and hear people gasp over the washboard that is my stomach. How bad do I want it? Well according to how often I eat nachos and watch Netflix … not that badly. You see, I come up with excuses, injuries … all sorts of bullshit that prevent me from achieving my 6-pack goal. Because the bottom line is, I have not made up my mind to do it. I’m just not that into it. Let’s just say it’s in the ‘wouldn’t that be nice’ category.

So what’s my point? Well, for me, realizing the difference between determination and desire allowed me to let go of some of the shame and guilt that I was attaching to some of these ‘failures’. And now, the first thing I do when writing down goals, creating a vision board, etc., is ask myself “Is this something I want? Or is this something I WANT?!” When I am honest with myself, I can either move forward guns a’blazin’, or I can take a look at what might be getting in my way. Which brings me to step 2 in ‘Christine’s recipe for success’ …..

You gotta unpack your luggage. Here’s the deal, sometimes what is holding us back from going after a goal isn’t a lack of dedication or resolve. Sometimes it is good old fashioned self-sabotage. Maybe we think we don’t deserve good things. Maybe we have a fear of failure or success. Maybe we think we aren’t smart/talented/attractive enough. Whatever it is, it is a bunch of b.s. We all have these sorts of messages bumping around in our heads (usually from childhood), and they prevent us from going after and achieving our goals. And just like the pile of laundry currently taking over my couch … ignoring it won’t make it go away. You have to deal with it.

How you deal with it is up to you, try journaling, go see a counselor, talk to friends … maybe even try interpretive dance! Just don’t (for the love of Gawd), avoid these things. I’ve said it before and I will say it again, trying to avoid crappy thought patterns or feelings is just like trying to avoid the border patrol while entering another country. First of all, good luck. Second of all, when they do catch you (and they will!), it is going to hurt so much more. Approaching these things head on is so much better. So unpack the crap, figure out where it originated, deal with it, and leave it in the dust where it belongs so that you can move forward with your goals. Which brings me to my next tidbit …

The power of visualization. Now this one is a big one for me because it helps me in two areas – getting very clear about what it is I am after, and getting my brain in ‘the zone’. One of my favorite speakers of all time (Mel Robbins. She is amazing!) brilliantly stated “In order to create what you want, you have to be able to state what you want.” Basically, you need to get specific. The more specific and detailed you are about your goal, the more likely you are to be able to achieve it. Now I have found this to be so true, and it is particularly important when dealing with broader goals such as ‘I want to be healthier’ or ‘I want to be a better mom’. It is pretty hard to achieve something if you aren’t even sure what it looks like or you have no idea where to start. My favorite visualization technique (also courtesy of Mel) that I use to get around that sort of thing is to work backwards. For example, if I visualize myself at a 10/10 in the ‘parenting department’, what does that look like? Well, for me, I see someone who has an unplugged mom/kid date once a week. I see someone who eats family meals together, who is involved in their kids schooling/activities, etc.

Now I have something to work with! My goal is more defined and I have some steps that I can actually take to help achieve it (plan an outing with my son, call and make an appointment to talk to his teacher, and get the whole family involved in a meal plan/dinner schedule.)

The other beautiful thing about visualization is, the more time we take to imagine ourselves where we want to be, the more our brain gets in the zone to actually make it happen. There is lots of research that says, when we visualize doing something, it activates the same areas of the brain as if we were actually doing it so in essence … visualization is as good as practice!

BUT, as hunky-dory as this all sounds, there is a big possibility that we will hit roadblocks when going after a goal. Which leads right into one of the most important pieces of all ..

FAILURE – it’s going to happen. At least sometimes. One of the biggest reasons people don’t succeed is that they give up when they first meet failure. They throw in the towel and say things like ‘It wasn’t meant to be.” or “I’m not talented/smart/good enough” etc.

What a load of crap.

Almost every wildly successful person in the world failed multiple times before reaching success. Steven Spielberg was rejected from film school 3 times. Oprah was told she didn’t have a future in television. Micheal Jordan didn’t make his high school basketball team. Imagine if they had all given up when they first tasted failure?! And I get it, it can be hard to wrap our heads around examples like that. I mean, come on, it’s Oprah! But we are surrounded by countless ‘real life’ stories like that too. Ask your family, ask your friends. I guarantee you that the people you respect most in the world, have failed. Probably a lot. So, get cozy with failure. Get okay with the idea. Replace the word with learning. And for the love of all that is good in the world, don’t give up.

Oh yea, and don’t forget to count your successes too. Sometimes we get so caught up on the big end goal that we lose sight of the small wins along the way. It really is about baby steps and each step we take, no matter how small it seems, is a step closer to our goal.

Which brings me to my last key ingredient(s) – accountability and empathy. Here is the deal – we are responsible for our lives. No one else. Every decision we make either adds or takes away from our dreams and our happiness. But we’re also human. We are going to mess up. We are going to make mistakes. We are going to falter. And that is okay. It is important to be kind, loving, and forgiving towards ourselves , while also taking ownership for where we are at and where we want to go. It is a bit of a balancing act between offering ourselves a little grace … but still holding ourselves accountable for what we want in our lives. After all, the only person responsible for our happiness, is us.

So …

Define your goal – get clear about what it is you want.

Unpack your luggage – stop lugging that stuff around. Get help if you need to.

Use visualization – not only to help you get clear but to help train your brain.

Get cozy with failure – it is learning.

Celebrate the successes – Rome wasn’t built in a day, baby.

Be accountable – but gentle.

And work effing hard – no one said it would easy.

But it is worth it. I truly believe that when we are willing to put in the work, we can accomplish anything we put our minds too.

There you have it. Christine’s recipe for success. If you want my recipe for nachos I am willing to share that too. They really are the best.

In the meantime, I’m going to go visualize myself giving a speech …. alone, on stage, in front of 200 women.

Something tells me I am going to have to unpack some luggage first.

life, Uncategorized

Adventures in dating – Part 1

Coming into the dating scene after being in a longterm relationship can be daunting to say the least. But doing so when you are a single mom raising two kids and holding down a full time job makes it that much more difficult. First of all, things have changed. Everything is online now and as nice as it is to have a bigger pool … it’s easy to get confused. Between Tinder, texting, Facebook, WhatsApp, and all the dating sites, I need a planner just to keep everyone straight. Nothing is worse than asking a guy how his day off with his kids went only to find that you’ve gotten him mixed up with the kidless chef who just told you last night that he was working a double. And all because one is Neil and one is Neal. I mean, seriously!

Also, my priorities are different now. (Thankfully.) I don’t have time for crap. And I certainly don’t have time for another person who needs looking after. I am finding myself way less attracted to the ‘leader of the pack’ type (although those guys are still kinda hot), and way more attracted to someone who uses full sentences, has a job with benefits, and who doesn’t have a criminal record.

For the most part, my whole online experience hasn’t been all bad. I’ve actually met some cool people, a few of whom I hope to keep as friends if nothing else. But I have had a few experiences that have been questionable to say the least. These experiences have left me scratching my head, wondering where on earth these guys are getting their ideas from. So, I’ve taken the liberty of coming up with a list of tips for guys to use when approaching a girl online. You know, cause I’m helpful …

Lesson # 1 – As a general rule, it isn’t advised to ask a girl if you can ‘set up a play date’ or use any other cutesy terms referencing sex. It’s just weird. And it’s probably not going to get you laid. In fact, don’t ask us for sex at all. I get it, you want to get some action. We do too. But it’s more appealing when you don’t act like a horny desperado. Play a little hard to get.

Lesson # 2 – use complete words, sentences, and proper grammar. We find it impressive when you appear to be both, eloquent and intelligent! “Ur prolly even hawter in person” isn’t a proper compliment. I’m sorry, but if you can’t take the time to spell out ‘probably’ (or you don’t know how to), you’re out of the running.

Lesson # 3 – don’t send a picture of yourself flexing in front of the bathroom mirror in your underwear. Unless of course, either your body or your bathroom are seriously impressive. As in, you either look like a Greek god or you’ve just freshly tiled your bathroom and done an exceptional job on the grout. If neither of those apply, well, maybe hold off on the weird bathroom boner pics. Sorry to be blunt but your beer gut, crappy college tattoos, or mediocre bathroom decor are neither endearing or appealing. At least not until we actually like you a little bit.

Lesson #4 – and gentlemen, this is a big one … forget the dick pics. If you really want to send me a picture of a body part, send me a picture of your full set of healthy teeth! Don’t get me wrong, I’m super stoked that you have a penis (Kudos!), but what I really want is to know that you look after your basic health, can cook more than Kraft dinner, and to be honest … I kind of want to see the inside of your medicine cabinet so that I know what I’m working with here.

Can we snapchat that, please?

life

Running towards rejection

Disclaimer – I had, in my opinion, a bit of an abnormal, normal childhood. It certainly wasn’t terrible by any means … I don’t want to give anyone the wrong idea … but there were definitely some aspects of it that were unique. Now whether these stories of my childhood and youth are worth telling, well that’s a matter of opinion I suppose, but I figured I would give it a go here. So grab a glass of wine, maybe two, and enjoy. We’ll call this Chapter 1.


My father’s name was Delbert. Not a great name if you ask me, I would have liked my father to have a cooler name … but, what are ya going to do?!

His name is one of the handful of things I know about him. Like a really small handful. Among the others – he worked in construction, had a dog named Pierre, a son that I will call Sven (needed to follow Delbert with something with a little more flair), and was predeceased by his parents.

I learned most of this from his obituary which my mother found online when she googled his name nearly a year after his death.

My father was, more or less, completely absent from my life. I’m sure you had gathered that already.

I say ‘more or less’ because I did meet him a few times throughout my childhood and I even have some memories of him … he wore brown snap-up shirts, called me ‘hun’, bought me a life-size barbie head that I could paint make-up on, and had oreo ice-cream sandwiches in his freezer that he was gracious enough to share.

It seems Delbert was not so much terrible man as he was a self-preserving man who had zero interest in being a father to me.

Although that definitely stung a bit as I was growing up (Still does if I’m being honest. I was cute as a button, who wouldn’t want me?!), I think the part that bothers me the most is that Delbert kept me a secret from everyone in his life.

Now when I say secret, I mean top secret. This guy went through 28 years of his life hiding the fact that he had a daughter. From everybody. (Gotta kind of respect his determination and can-do attitude, I suppose). Actually, in all reality, I came into the world completely hidden on both sides. Even my mother hid her pregnant belly behind baggy sweaters and a haze of cigarette smoke.

Perhaps I was the product of an affair, perhaps it was that Delbert was as old as the hills when I was conceived, I’m not exactly sure what went down, but all I know is that neither of my parents were too stoked to be expecting a child. So much so that they planned on no one ever finding out.

So after a top-secret pregnancy, I spent my first few weeks of life in foster care, awaiting my adoption, until my mother had a change of heart. (No surprise there, like I said, I was freaking adorable).

Delbert, however, never did have a change of heart and our relationship was nothing more than those few visits, and some birthday cards signed ‘Del’.

So as you can imagine, when I found out he had died I was filled a variety of emotions – sadness for the relationship we never had, anger for how I had been treated, and excitement … this was my chance! My chance to connect with the family I’d been robbed of. To be honest, I’d kind of always been waiting for this. If the bugger wanted to keep me a secret in life, not much I could do about it. But fat chance stopping me when you’re dead, bucko!

Now despite how that last sentence comes across, I’ve always had a ‘Pollyanna’ type view of the world and I guess I had kind of imagined that after the initial shock of everything subsided, that my new-found fam would be pretty stoked to have me. I figured we would have an awkward first meeting and then develop some sort of relationship based on the old ‘God works in mysterious ways’ or ‘hey, this is weird. Our dad is kind of a jerk, eh?!’  …  You know, the usual things that you might discuss over a demolished turkey and some empty pie plates.

Well, turns out, that wasn’t how it all went down.

There was no conversation over turkey. No awkward meeting. No bonding over our anger. Not even anything cool or dramatic like what you might see on ‘Days Of Our Lives’ or ‘General Hospital’.

There was nothing but a letter from my Dad’s estate lawyer saying that everyone was very shocked to hear about me and did not wish to communicate. Ever.

To make things slightly more interesting (and I guess this part does kind of have a bit of soap opera drama to it.), he also said that I wasn’t necessarily missing out, that my half-brother is a ‘weird guy’  and ‘not someone he would want to meet in a dark alley’.

Ummm, what?!

Okay, not only was that super anticlimactic but I had waited years for this! I had fantasized about what this little interaction would look like … and getting a vague rejection letter implying that my bro is a deranged criminal wasn’t it!

Screw that crap!

I’m a freaking positive Polly-Anna and there is no way this was how this story was ending.

Sure maybe he was a little rough around the edges but maybe he was just like the tough-as-nails biker type that was surly and terrifying but once you got to know him he’s just a big ball of gush. You know, like I’d have to tell my boyfriends “Don’t mind my brother, it took us years to find each other and he is just very protective of me.” And he’d say things like ‘If you hurt her I’ll kill you and they’ll never find the body.” …. and then we would all laugh and laugh together.

I was sure, with time, he would come around. After all, how could he not be curious?!

Well, I’d love to be able to tell you that that is the way it all worked out. I wish I could say that curiosity got the better of my surly (but gooey on the inside) brother and that we are now working on developing some sort of relationship.  I’d love to tell you that I’ve received answers and closure or even just a few simple things like a couple of photos and some medical history. But I can’t tell you any of that. I am still sitting here with a bunch of questions and a fair share of abandonment issues.

Anticlimactic, right?!

Anyway, I guess what I’ve come to realize is that sometimes in life, you don’t get the answers you want. Things don’t always wrap up nicely like they do at the end of a tv show, or have the dramatic flair of a soap opera episode, where you may find out that you have a sibling that you didn’t know about …. but you also find out that they are the town’s renowned neurosurgeon and heir to an empire!

Sometimes, in real life, you just end up with uninterested, uninvolved fathers … and brothers who follow suit.

And that’s okay. I’ve made it this far without them; I’ll be just fine going forward.

And who knows what the future holds. Perhaps my dad’s family will reach out some day, but I won’t be running across that meadow with arms outstretched for someone sprinting the other way.

Besides, I’ve got my own family now. And I’ve got my friends. And wine. And chocolate. And writing.

 

life

Your 30′s – prepare for extra fluff, a deeper appreciation of wine and naps, and Julio.

So, I have recently signed on to co-author a book with a Publishing Group that supports aspiring writers. This is an amazing opportunity and I am so excited about it however, whenever I sit down to write my piece … I get the biggest case of writer’s block ever. I think that I am just feeling a little overwhelmed with the subject matter so, in an effort to keep my creative juices flowing, yet take the pressure off a little bit, I decided to take a break and write about something a little fluffier … being in my 30′s.

Now I suppose one of the first things I have to say about being in my mid-30′s is that it is indeed fluffier. It seems as though I instantly gained 10 lbs the second I hit 35. Now 10 lbs isn’t a huge deal and to be honest, I’m not too bothered by it (another change I’ve noticed in my mid-thirties is I am waaaay more confident now than I was when I was 25 and everything was firmer). I am, however, a little shocked at how sudden the 10 lbs piled on. It is seriously as if my body woke up one morning and said “Well, we’re 35 now, no need for a waist anymore!”  

Like what the heck?! I barely had a waist as it was! That 10 lbs couldn’t have made it’s way to my boobs?!

(Sigh, silly thirties). Now one could say that these extra few pounds might have less to do with age and more to with the fact that I drink a LOT more wine than I ever have before but … I’m not one to worry myself over unimportant details.

But let’s take a moment to talk about wine. I love my vino. I mean, who doesn’t?! But I have noticed that my relationship with this sweet nectar has changed now that I’m rocking my 30′s …

In my 20′s, it was all about finding the sweetest, cheapest bottle of Gewurztraminer in order to get tipsy with my friends. If the Gewurtz was syrupy enough that I could choke it down, cheap enough that I could afford it, but still made me look like a grown up (cause wine is how adults party), then I was a happy camper! Not anymore. Now I love the flavour of full bodied reds, or dry whites. I’m even okay with spending more than $15 on a bottle! I sip and savour and use terms like ‘fruit forward’ and ‘peppery finish’! I’m not 100% sure what these terms mean, just things I’ve picked up while wine-tasting cause that’s another grown up thing I do now! Gone are the days of clubbing with my friends til 4 am, now it’s getting day-drunk at wineries and napping by 4 pm!

But don’t get too excited, although one can still party like a rockstar in their 30′s (assuming the party is over at 9), be prepared that you will need A LOT more recovery time.  I just don’t have the same kind of energy I did 10 years ago, and I certainly don’t recover as well. Gawd forbid if I do stay up a little to late with my girlfriends drinking wine … what used to be a couple hours of recovery is now a couple of days! No joke.

Same goes for injuries, bending the wrong way in yoga takes me right out now. Gone are the days of ‘walking it off’, the 30′s makes you a straight up wimp! Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Ah, who am I kidding? I’m not straining any muscles exercising, it’s putting on socks that’s the real issue. Or trying to get at those hard to reach places with my razor.

Which brings me to the last tidbit that I will share with you … when approaching your mid 30′s, prepare to block off large amounts of time for personal grooming.

Seriously, the amount of hours I spend on waxing, plucking, and shaving is uncanny! I’m Scottish so I was already a hairy girl but now … yeesh, it’s like I’m turning into a Yeti!

Okay, maybe not that bad but my leg hair is definitely trying to slowly make it’s way up to meet my lady bits and I do have a chin hair that I’ve affectionately named ‘Julio’.

On that note, it’s time for me for to go pour myself a glass of full-bodied red and lock myself in the bathroom for a few hours … dealing with this jungle takes commitment.and a little buzz. giphy