Wednesday, December 10, 2014

To Me, On Being 23

You are 23. You started from the bottom now you're...here. 

This is the age where people expect you to have your shit together, and yet, you feel as though you have none of the resources required to do so. You have suddenly become really bad at making decisions. You are officially too old to be on your parents health coverage, so you're not even allowed to get violently ill. You are floating in the desolate inbetween- a page ripped straight out of the 'The Lovely Bones'; too old to find staying out all night at your local tavern appealing, yet too young to settle into the mundane patriarchy of society. Your liver has taken a year long sabbatical. 

You are finished college and are working full time but your life is at a stand-still. You have no idea how to pay your own taxes. You wonder if anyone actually knows how to pay their own taxes. The student loan in your pocket is weighing you down like an anvil, holding you back from purchasing all of the clothes from Forever21. It's not fair. You are fresh to the career world yet you still say things like, 'I think it's time I retired,' like you've earned it, or, 'I'm just going to work from home.' You are on your 3rd vehicle. 

Welcome to your freshman year of adulthood. You can finally relate to Blink 182's 'What's My Age Again?' because nobody likes you when you're 23. Seriously. You're constantly frustrated because your parents don't understand you, and you can't relate to your teenage nephews who seemingly became way cooler than you. They don't want to borrow your game boy advance or watch videos of your cat doing nothing. Your niece believes you are 13 because you are not tall enough to be a grown-up. Life is hard. 

A vast majority of your friends now have houses, are planning weddings, and are popping out children. You scroll through your Facebook newsfeed and contemplate whether or not you should upload another photo of your cat or, better idea, adopt ANOTHER cat, then decide against it. Your mind often wanders back to your high school career; your glory days. Your hilarious and witty banter in the English classroom and your certificate for best supporting actress in theater. Your bedtime is now either 7:00pm or 3:00am. You eat a lot of fast food because you have too many bad hair days to get real groceries. You're permanently tired, even if you have done nothing, and you convince yourself it is because you have contracted some strange disease from a public toilet seat and refuse to be tested. You will die alone. 

Your favorite nights are spent one on one with your cat, drinking wine and reading poetry, or occasionally, inviting your best friend over to drink wine with you and yell at your computer screen for various unknown reasons. Teen angst is no longer an excuse. You have not been a teenager for 300 years. Your life is less of a Nicolas Sparks movie and more of a Hey Arnold episode. 

When asked what you enjoy doing by your peers you scrunch up your face and mumble something about couch naps. You are single and being pushed into the dating pool (which you come to realize is very shallow), and find it exhausting to introduce yourself to random strangers over cheap glasses of cab sav. When someone suggests your tempestuous attitude may be linked with your single status, you throw a 'Live, Laugh, Love' poster at their face. You say mature things like, 'If you don't want to date me, that's fine. But you're wrong and I hate you.' You then realize you felt more mature and in control at 20. People expected less and so you delivered more.  

The only advice you are ever offered is to 'embrace it, enjoy it, these are the best years of your life!' You kindly thank them and retreat to your hole in the sofa. BUT (and yes, there is a but) there will be days where 23 isn't so bad. Days when people's expectations are so dangerously low that you surprise them, even make them proud, days when your hair is shiny and your eyebrows are on point, days where you are thankful you can still sleep in without the wailing of a child or the snore of a husband, and best of all: the days when you look in the mirror and actually enjoy being 23.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Happy Holidays!

 It's December; a month full of Christmas music and movies, snow storms and hot chocolate. 
One year ago around this time I adopted my little fur baby, Toby, from our local SPCA. Winter can be a hard time of year for me, and I am thankful for this (not so) little one, who makes sure I never sleep alone, keeps me on my toes, and endures my relentless and somewhat uncomfortable photo shoot sessions. 
Toby has such a large personality that he is a constant source of laughter, and I can't help but want to document his daily life.

Happy Holidays! 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Grand Pixie

I, in my 23 years of life (not including a strange mushroom cut I bore when I was in 5th grade) have never had short hair. At the beginning of summer a very important relationship was ending and many changes were occurring in my life, and I thought a haircut was just the thing. I opted for an inverted bob, which I adored. It was the first time I had ever left a hairstylists chair feeling confident and loving what I saw. A couple of weeks ago, I was itching for a trim and instead of waiting for my usual hairstylist (who was fully booked) I went to someone unfamiliar and unfortunately ended up with what was (in my opinion) the worst haircut I had ever seen. I may have over dramatized a little bit but I was still very unhappy. A friend of mine graciously offered to fix it for me, but said the only direction we could go was shorter. I was devastated. I ended up with a pixie cut, which was so much better than the strange beehive/grandmother do that I had the day before, but I am still having a very difficult time adjusting to short hair. I am in the process of growing out my pixie, which has been kind to me in many ways, but I have been warned of the awkward stages I am about to endure. 
Bring on the change of seasons and copious amounts of hats! 

Thanks to my friend Robyn, who took some lovely photos to help boost my pixie confidence.

"Be easy. Take your time. You are coming home to yourself." 

Friday, July 25, 2014

My Weight Gain Struggle

I had no intentions of writing this post. Once the idea came, I wrestled with it for a few days, asking myself if it would be beneficial to anyone (including myself), or necessary; but after the 90 millionth "eat a burger" comment I received today, I decided that it was. 
I am not an avid blogger, but I have been a member of the blogging community for a few years. I frequently fashion blogged while I was living in Montreal, but chose not to share with my friends and family because I was insecure. Truthfully I genuinely enjoyed the hobby, but completely stopped altogether because of the issue I am about to address. 

Bear with me, I have always been a thin framed girl. At my heaviest in 2011 while living in Montreal, I weighed 120lbs. For me that was a tad beyond my comfort zone, which was my own problem because I ate like 3 packages of Smarties a day. In high school I fluctuated between 105-110lbs (my comfort zone) although I wore an XXL large grey sweater practically every day so you probably didn't even notice. 

Over the last year I have drastically and very quickly dropped over 30lbs unintentionally. Seeing yourself in the mirror every day it is often hard to make the comparison or see a difference. It wasn't until I started visiting home and seeing the worried looks on the faces of my friends and families that I started to realize it was a problem.
Over the last six months it has caused me an uncomfortable amount of anxiety to visit home or go out in public because I assumed people were judging me. There were numerous times where I would post a photo of myself to Facebook and immediately take it down.  

I understood that my loved ones were genuinely concerned. Also I understood that others were concerned purely for the sake of gossip.

Many of my clients started referring to me only as "that skinny girl" or "the toothpick". 
I have been accused on numerous occasions of being anorexic or bulimic, and had people watch me after meals to make sure I didn't make a trip to the bathroom. 
If I had a dollar for every time I have been told to "eat a burger" or asked, "do you eat anything?" I would be as rich as J.K Rowling. 
One of the most frustrating parts about this is that I genuinely love food. I have a passion for cooking and trying different recipes, I love restaurants, and have never looked at the calorie intake on the back of anything. 
The first doctor visit I made to discuss the issue he told me that "I was lucky to be so thin" and to stop complaining, shoved some depression pills down my throat and sent me on my merry way. (These made me lose more weight, by the way.) I have had several blood tests done hoping that it was a thyroid issue, an iron issue, a SOMETHING issue just so I could give people a diagnosis and quiet the noise. 

Last week I weighed myself soaking wet from the shower and was under 90lbs. My immune system is low, I have very little energy and chronic fatigue. I also realize that being this thin at 23 can cause fertility issues, osteoporosis, and is not easy on your organs. I am going to be seeing a nutritionalist and working on trumping the anxiety issues.  

I have recently been told that I am "unattractively thin", "grossly underweight" and that I "used to be pretty." As a girl who has struggled with self-esteem and body image issues her entire life to begin with, there are days when it is difficult for me to leave the house. How can I like what I see when I am made aware that other people do not? 
I am not fishing for any kind of sympathy or compliments, and this was a difficult post for me to write. I am merely suggesting that a little compassion goes a long way. Telling a skinny person any of the above things is on the same level as telling someone who is overweight that they are fat. It's kind of rude. And believe me, we are aware, we don't need you to let us know. We appreciate your concern, but tread lightly my friends, because sometimes (like in my case) we are not in control of it. 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

A New Little Home

At the beginning of April I moved into a new apartment. 
To say it was a big deal would be an understatement. I wasn't moving to a new city or away from my friends, but I was going to be living alone for the first time without roommates or relationships, and fully responsible for myself and a little furry cat. I was fortunate enough to have great friends and family who helped fill my space and make sure that I was going to be comfortable and content. 

I have been in my humble little home for just over three weeks now, and it is already very special to me. It is full of natural light, old charm, and cozy when it rains. I decided not to have a television and significantly cut back on my computer time, and I find that I am going to bed much earlier and reading more- two things I had desperately been wanting to do. I am looking forward to adding more of myself to this place over time, and doing a few touch ups and small renovations. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Stir Crazy

Every year when winter hits us, I start to go stir crazy. By this time, I have usually lost my mind. This winter is no different, I find myself wanting to sleep in later and having to drag myself out of bed for work each day.
I am so thankful for loved ones, friends, little critters, bad reality television, wine and warm winter sheets. I have distracted myself a fair bit with random spurts of yoga, get-togethers, hair appointments, writing, and a trip to the mall here and there to satisfy my lust for material objects.

My latest excursion was guilt-free as it was a gift. I purchased a new faux-leather black bag from H&M, an ACO wrist watch, and a funky pair of springtime patterned pants.
(ps. I find that the photos my handsome cat jumps into unexpectedly end up being my favorites!)