Oh hey, what are the haps?

11 Jan

The haps? I will TELL you the haps:

1) I’m in the midst of transitioning into a new job. A big girl job, guys. This process has been taking up a great deal of my time.

2) I’m breaking up with Boyfriend. What? BAM! Welcome back! It’s a long story, one that will probably end up making its way into being my next post, but let’s just say that it’s time (and that it has been time for a while). I’ll get back to you once I work up the courage to take the little bag of his things that I’ve been carrying around with me for DAYS over to his place and get this over with (dammitfuckIhatethisshit).

3) I’ve been having nightmares! Absolutely horrible ones! Every! Single! Night!

For the pas two weeks!

Exclamation points aside, I honestly have no idea what’s going on. Each night it’s a different dream but it’s always horrifying enough that I end up wrenching myself awake just to get away from it. And then, naturally, I can’t fall back to sleep because I’m stricken with terror.

Needless to say that after two weeks of this, I’m really tired. Does anyone have experience with this sort of thing? Any suggestions? I’m getting desperate. And cranky.

4) Uuhhhhg…

5) I miss you? I miss you and I think you’re wonderful and think it’s finally safe to say that I am, in fact, back.

Hi.

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Pretty much my mental capacity in general right now

2 Nov

A Facebook chat between friend JP and I:

Me: UHG. I just threw up EVERYWHERE.

JP: WHAT? Are you serious??

Me: Oh wait, my bad. I totally meant “sneezed”.

JP: Woman, those are two VERY different things.

I think it’s time to (finally) catch up on some sleep.

On an unrelated note: OHAIGUYZ

The true spirit of the season

11 Oct

It’s Thanksgiving up here in the Great White North and while most of the nation seemed to deem yesterday as a more appropriate time to gobble some gobbler, my family prefers to follow tradition and actually observe eating turkey as an expression of gratitude on the day properly alloted by our government.

Also, we totally didn’t bother to do our grocery shopping until last night.

Whatever.

As I type, I’m sitting in my newly constructed workspace (it’s a fancy vintage chair that my mom had forgotten that she owned and a folding TV table. I set it up in front on my window though so I’ve got a nice view, if nothing else. Anything is better then working hunched over my laptop on my bed all the time) salivating at the smells that are beginning to waft up the stairs and doing a damn fine job of avoiding people for a while.

See, holidays at our house seem to serve one main purpose: to force us to do all the things we should be doing all the time, but aren’t. Things like spending time with the family, counting our blessings, cleaning the house, etc.

Saturday and Sunday were the very definitions of chaos. You’d think that we would learn to start keeping some kind of regular cleaning schedule after EVERY major holiday that has rolled around during which we nearly destroy the house and each other trying to get it ready before the guest show up. We are a family of epic procrastinators. It is a problem.

So there has been some scrapping and a lot of time wasted. Mom’s been a bit weepy since Youngest Brother unceremoniously informed her that he would not, in fact, be coming home this weekend (6 months and counting, yo). I got into a big nasty fight with Boyfriend on Saturday night. Dad’s pretending this isn’t a holiday at all and Mom and I have been glaring in the general direction of Middle Brother’s bedroom where he and his new girlfriend (whom he took the liberty of inviting over for a WEEK without consulting any of us) have been since last night. They’re awake, they’re just playing video games and watching movies and not interacting with the family.

On Thanksgiving.

At 5pm.

Nice.

But it’s not all bad. In fact, for all of my griping, this has been a pretty decent holiday weekend. For starters, it’s three days long, which is always a bonus. For all the chaos, there has been much sleeping and chillaxing. I’ve enjoyed the nice weather with my dog and eaten like calories don’t count. Mom made me coffee with Bailey’s so I’m feelin’ pretty good. My mom is pretty wicked.

All things considered, I’m pretty happy.

I’m employed, I have a place to live and my family, for all of our aimless rage, ain’t half bad.

I’m pretty lucky.

So today, I’m going to put my regular sassy, bitchy self under the bed for a while and do what you’re supposed to do on Thanksgiving: count my blessings and get inordinately pissed.

Happy Turkey Day, everyone!

Not dead (yet)

27 Sep

Hello all you beautiful people.

So, I’m pretty much the worst blogger ever, aren’t I?

After a number of quasi-concerned comments (including a karmatic presumption of untimely demise from our friend, Jess ofAlone… With Cats. I believe I made up the word karmatic, and I did so to describe how fitting her presumption was considering that I did the same thing to her way back when. Consider us even, for now).

As per my subject line, I am in fact still very much alive (albeit more so in body than in spirit at the moment). And yet I have been exceptionally negligent with my bloggy duties, and for that I felt I should take a moment to apologize (especially seeing as, despite my prolonged absence, my views appear to rising. I’m not really sure what that’s all about but that thanks to you dedicated readers for continuing to stop by. I guess I’m better at this when I’m not really trying. At all.)

I truly did not expect to stay away as long as I have. To make matters worse, this past month has been full of all of the sort of life moments that beg to be blogged about. Never before have I felt like I’ve needed this community and this outlet as much as I have in the last few weeks, and naturally, I’ve hardly had a free moment to type up even a few stray thoughts.

My life, for lack of a more appropriate choice of terms, blew up this month. Shit met fan, the days were dark, etc. But things are slowly starting to look up and hopefully once September, like the house guest that has long since over stayed its welcome and finally starts to come to the awkward realization that no one likes it anymore, finally takes its leave, I will be back.

Not that I haven’t been known to be an epic flake, but I swear this time is different.

I miss this place and I miss you guys. I have so much to tell and so much to write.

So I just wanted to let you know that I’ll be back soon.

Love and hugs and junk,
Jam

BlissDom Canada and the issue of being an anona-blogger

2 Sep

Now that September is officially upon us, essentially making the proximity of autumn all but impossible to ignore, I finally feel that is safe to start talking about autumn-y things without having to face the wrath of people who seem to take personal offence to the very idea that summer might actually be over. You know, the ones that like to yell things like, “IT’S STILL SUMMER! DON’T TALK ABOUT FALL YOU’LL JINX/KILL US ALL”.

In caps lock no less!

Of course, the only autumn-y thing I actually want to talk about right now is BlissDom Canada and I’ve actually been talking about it all summer anyway so I’m not really sure why I decided that September (and by proxy, near-autumn) was the appropriate time to start blogging about it but HEY, I never claimed to make sense.

Deal with it.

Please?

Anyway, BlissDom.

If you’re registered to attend then you’ve no doubt received the super exciting agenda that was just sent out. And if you’re registered to attend and also happen to be something like me (although hopefully not too much like me. I wouldn’t wish that upon anyone), then you got RIDICULOUSLY GIDDY before even opening the e-mail containing the super exciting agenda. Because between the changing of the seasons and the release of the agenda, there is one fact that simply cannot be denied – BlissDom Canada: IT IS COMING.

It’s also going to be WICKED AMAZING, so I guess there are two facts that simply cannot be denied.

Third fact? I’m going.

Now that summer is essentially over, it seems so much closer (which, heyo, it is) but also a lot more real. October felt so ridiculously far away a month ago and now I’m all OMG, I’ve got less than two months to prepare! Should I stay in the hotel or not? What should I wear? Should I have a strategy? Are the mommy-bloggers going to like me??.

But probably my biggest dilemma so far is thus – I, as the Jam that you all know and tolerate, am an anona-blogger. My identity is a secret and it’s a secret for specific reasons:

1) To protect the identities of the people in my life, especially those whose stories end up on this blog (positive or negative); and,
2) To be able to have an outlet through which to express myself without having to worry about how my thoughts/opinions/general life choices as expressed on this blog will impact my personal/professional life.

I’m fairly certain that this is the same deal for most anona-bloggers out there. For the most part, cavorting about the blogosphere (and Twittisphere!) by the name of Jam has been working out pretty well for me.

The only exception would be situations like the one I’m facing with BlissDom.

It’s similar to the time that Boyfriend and I went on vacation in Washington D.C. Being so painfully close to Virginia, I was incredibly tempted to send dear Megan (of Best of Fates fame) a message and see if she was up for an IRL meet ‘n greet.

Then I chickened out. I chickened out and looking back on it, I regret it (although there’s nothing to say that Megan wouldn’t have been incredibly weirded out and she might have even refused to ever speak with me again and that would have been both embarrassing and devastating all at the same time. Hell, she’s probably weirded out right now! I’m sorry, Megan! Please don’t give me the ol’ unfollow-block!)

I’ve often wondered how I would go about cultivating friendships I might make through this blog in the real world. Now that I’ve gotten to know some of you as well as I have, I’ve realized that these relationships are important to me and I’d like to be able to do things like meet with people and hang out and all that fun stuff that friends do. The idea of letting some people know who I am doesn’t seem quite as daunting as it once did.

But what makes BlissDom different from simply blurring the line with my blog and Twitter friends is that there will be the issue of having both identities in one place, trying to meet people and get up to general tomfoolery all without giving away who Jam is.

I feel kind of like a super hero, minus the super part.

My mild mannered alter-ego is going as the sassy young professional that she is. She is using this as an opportunity to learn and grow and network (and maybe also get up to some general tomfoolery. We ARE the same person after all). She’s not about to let everyone know that along with being an ambitious young woman that takes her career very seriously, she’s also an angsty 20sb, anonymously drabbling her way through a quarter-life crisis. AT THE SAME TIME.

Truth be told, Jam might be spending the whole conference locked in the hotel room closet without so much as the luxury of being able to order from room service.

I don’t know how big of a deal this will be (how many of you, dear readers, are actually going to BlissDom Canada anyway?), but it does raise a lot of questions about how anona-bloggers are supposed to go about making any real and lasting connections without sacrificing the things we choose to stay anonymous for. Is it even possible? I’d like to think that it is. Hell, I’m sure there are a lot of them that do it now! Hence me reaching out now.

So I want to hear from you, dear reader – Are you an anonymous blogger or do you at least keep a somewhat significant chunk of your personal identity a secret when you blog? If so, do you go to blogger conferences and events? How do you manage to marry your real life with your virtual one?

Do you think it’s possible?

Are you in the same boat as me?

Even if you’re not, share your thoughts! Let’s hash this thing out.

Wherein I over-analyze my general lack of purpose in life

1 Sep

Yesterday I tweeted today about a blog that I happen to stalk secretly called Sea of Shoes. It’s written by an exceptionally stylish teenager (I think she’s 18. Maybe 19? Aw fuckit) named Jane. Jane is a lover of fashion and other beautiful things and does a outstanding job at capturing the people, places and things that she loves in photos. Often her posts contain little by way of writing but the image-heavy way she opts to express her passion tells you everything you need to know. The blog is beautiful and inspiring, much like the author.

It also makes me feel somewhat inadequate, and I will tell you why.

I kind of wish there was something in my life that I was THAT passionate about. Sometimes I want for that spark that would lead me to something that I could feel satisfied and content in devoting my time, maybe my life, to exploring and cultivating a fine taste for. It must feel so liberating to be able to have some sort of thing in your life that you can create worlds around and chart paths from. I don’t have anything like that.

Is that weird?

Don’t get me wrong, there are things in my life that I would definitely say that I’m passionate about, but there’s no one all-encompassing thing. I lack… purpose? That’s why the universe was granted a blog about a 20-something wannabe professional angsting her way through a quarter-life crisis instead of something a little more specific.

Sorry about that by the way.

All of this having been rambled, I’ve never really considered this a bad thing. I mean, let’s be real – for the most part I’ll fight the idea of being labelled or pigeon-holed based on my interests.

Just because I like dogs does not make me a crazy dog lady! GEEZE!

Still, as I get older, I’m starting to notice that a lot of people seem to be settling into their thing and sometimes I wonder if I’m missing out due to my inability to commit to any one thing.

Holy damn, I’m just rambling here.

Your thoughts – I’d like to hear them

Kids Help Phone (no fancy subject line needed)

26 Aug

It’s always interesting when something totally unexpected pops up and steals your attention. This article by Andrea Gordon in yesterday’s Toronto Star about Kids Help Phone was one of those things. To be honest, I clicked on the link by accident (I actually meant to click on an article about beer. Go figure).After reading it, I decided my sloppy clicking must have happened for a reason, hence me writing this post.

For those of you that don’t know (this may be most of my American readers, unless I’m mistaken in my belief that this is a Canadian organization. I’d be happy to know that I’m wrong!) KPH is a telephone (and now also online) counselling service for youth 8-20 years of age that need someone to talk to. This incredibly admirable organization runs on donations and the fully qualified counsellors take approximately 210,000 calls a year from young people in varying degrees of distress.

I never made use of their services growing up, but looking back, I definitely should have. It was not for lack of knowing about the organization or what its purpose was; I’m fairly certain KHP has been around almost as long as I have been and to this day you find the phone number plastered across the packaging of daily consumable products aimed at kids like breakfast cereal and candy.

My reasons for never making the call were for the same misconceptions cited in Gordon’s article – I didn’t feel that my “issues” were ever important enough. I wasn’t facing abuse or molestation. I didn’t hurt myself or find myself having suicidal thoughts.

But there were times that I was unhappy and scared. I was bullied in grade school and suppressed a lot of negative feelings stemming from my parents’ divorce. I struggled with having to grow up way too fast and with constant guilt trips from my biological father. In my late teens and early 20s, when I felt like I had lost control of everything else in my life, I focused on the one thing in my life that I could control: eating. I lost both weight and years to anorexia, a battle that left more than its fair share of scar that still ache to this day. And yet I still never once thought that any of this was reason to call that hotline.

It wasn’t until my second year of university when I was finally dragging myself out of a terrible relationship that I finally realized I needed help. I only saw my therapist for two months and for the most part, all he did was listen and occasionally as a few difficult questions, but the healing was transformative. I left my final session wondering what had taken me so damn long.

It wasn’t like I didn’t have anyone to talk to. My mother has always been my rock. To this day, I tell her way more than most people probably ever dream of telling their parents. But at the time there were some things I didn’t want to tell her.

Even kids that have amazing relationships with their parents still have their own reasons for holding back. For me, it was guilt. I knew that my mom was going through a lot of shit – the divorce, being a single mom raising three kids on social services and trying to help us each through our turbulent adolescent years while trying to start her life over again. Middle Brother was going through a million phases at once and Youngest Brother was indeed young enough that she needed all the help she could get raising him.

I didn’t feel it was fair to her to pile more garbage on her plate when she was already at the end of her rope as it was.

If had understood then that KHP was also for kids like me, I would have been all over that shit.

Which is why I’m making this post now.

I know that the Kids Help Phone demographic aren’t the ones reading my blog, but I do know that I have a lot of parents or people with children in their lives that do. I know that no parent likes the thought that maybe one day their child would want or need to seek the council of someone that isn’t them. But take it from me, it happens.

KPH is safe, free and confidential. There’s no waiting for appointments or stigma and kids can call whenever they feel they need it.

I don’t even know how you would begin having this conversation but I think it would be nothing but a good thing if each kid was made to understand that, even though they can always talk to mom and dad if they have a problem, there are still other options for the times they. I would love to see this promoted in schools. I would love for more kids out there to know that they aren’t as alone as they think they are.