A decade in review: Moves, heartaches and turmoil

The decade isn’t over yet.


Nothing starts at 0. It starts at 1.

So the decade didn’t really start until 2001. But I’ve been inspired by Leah’s blog posts lately and she recently did a decade in review.

Thus, I’m doing a partial decade in review . A look at the first nine years of this decade in an effort to forge the path for 2010.

After all, we don’t know where we’re going unless we remember where we’ve been.

I was living in Kamloops, B.C., and content in a very boring relationship. I had a breast reduction. While on short-term leave for the surgery, I learned my boss was disparaging me to the rest of the newsroom.

I walked into my editor’s office and quit my job, knowing I had another one at the daily newspaper in Kamloops. It was very empowering. And the very boring relationship continued.

I faced tremendous life-changing events. I was out of sports writing, with my contract for the Daily renewed but for news reporting. I covered two murders and the premier’s DUI all in the first two days on the job.

When I stood outside the scene of a murder-suicide placing bets with the other reporters on how long it would take for the coroner to remove the bodies, I knew it was time to end it. But how?

Weeks later, while I was chasing Jennifer Lopez around the city during her time on the set for An Unfinished Life, I took a call from Martin Hudson, who wanted me to come to Calgary and work for Sun Sports.

Bye, Kamloops. Hellooooo, Calgary.

The very boring relationship ended and I entered a deep, deep depression and ballooning up to 200 lbs.

I learned that making it to the big time is not all it’s cracked up to be. I was pinned to the agate desk, I wasn’t writing … and I knew I was a better writer than most of the guys on staff.

I welcomed my best friend into my life, adopting an idiot hairbag, named Shep. He is simply the best symbol of love and adoration I have ever had in my life. He makes me a better person by having him in my life.

Badlands 057

I met a boy. And he kissed me in ways that I could feel it in my toes.

I had my heart broken. Yeah, by the aforementioned boy, but not just. First, his girlfriend didn’t take too kindly to him seeing me. Whoopsie.

Second, I got laid off by Sun Media — second in horrifying only to the day I learned of my father’s malignant tumour, subsequent illness and ultimately death in 1996.

I was lost. I had no identity. I had defined myself by my work as a sports writer. People liked me because that’s what I did. And because of who I knew.

I stumbled. I drank. I lashed out. I drank some more.

I entered the world of communications. Ugh.

I wandered aimlessly through life, changing jobs and entering the world of media relations. It was otherwise uneventful.

My mother and I fought over the way my first boyfriend treated me. She denies it happened. When I told her I didn’t think I had anyone in whom I could confide, she heard ‘you were a bad mother.’

In therapy, I learned I can’t fix her. I can only handle her when she gets that way … in a better manner than I had in the past.

We still don’t speak often … just special occasions. It’s trying sometimes, knowing I can’t turn to my mother in times of crisis. But that’s how life has to be.

I took on a new path of discovery. Counselling taught me my heart had not healed from getting laid off. Therapy taught me I make rash, impulsive decisions because of one decision that was taken away from me.

My therapist challenged me to find the creative outlets I lost when I was pushed out of journalism.

I’ve taken more pictures, rediscovering my passion for photography — one that was lost when I was constantly berated to shoot more by a former editor, even though we had photographers on staff.

I’ve started writing more.

And I changed jobs. One where I’m not faced with people doing the job I used to so love, reminding me of what I don’t have anymore. One where I write. One where I have some autonomy.

One where I’m learning to assert my control where necessary — not all the time.

And one which I’m able to leave at the end of the day and focus on me and my time.

I challenge myself to learn more … to read, to write, to shoot.

And to love.

To open myself up to loving me more. And maybe you, too.


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