Anxious.

In a turn of events that no one could’ve ever seen coming, my three week old nephew is being air-lifted to Children’s Hospital tonight.

In a matter of three hours the diagnosis went from ‘oh it’s just a cough’ to ‘we don’t have the ability to treat him at this hospital and we need him to be around specialists that can treat this condition’.

He’s three weeks old.

So small. So helpless. So powerless.

This is just… worst nightmare scenario right here. And no one can do anything about it.

What a week

I’m really not sure where the past week of my life went. Actually, I do know. I’ve been pulling double duty and work due to the shit show that happened in Texas and my coworkers being off-the-map for several days. Luckily the clients were understanding of the fact that our Texas crew was unavailable and I don’t have a biochemistry degree like each of them have. We made due.

Speaking of what happened in Texas – holy shit balls. I feel so deeply for everyone who’s had their lives turned upside down by the aftermath of that winter storm. It’s going to cost hundreds of millions (if not billions) of dollars and take years to recover from that storm. A storm which I think pointed out a fatal flaw in Texas infrastructure in that, it’s not prepared for weather fluctuations. Luckily, for each of my coworkers on our Texas crew, they’re relatively well-off (financially speaking). I can’t imagine what people are going through who live pay cheque to pay cheque. This must be their worst nightmare come to fruition.

I know there are a few people who read this blog who are from Texas. I hope that you’re safe, warm and staying as sane as possible amidst the cleanup from this winter-storm.

Some days

Some days I wander around this earth waiting for the rug to be pulled from beneath my feet. Some days all I do is wait for the other shoe to drop. Some days, I say. Some days.

There are days when I am confident, when not a thing in this world can touch me. There are days when the smile on my face is genuine. There are days when I don’t have to worry. There are days.

These days I worry a lot. These days I’m sad a lot. These days I’m very lonely. These days I don’t know what to do. These days I’m afraid to be honest with people because everyone always says ‘Oh but you have so much’. It’s true, I do have a lot in my life. Things don’t always equal fulfillment, though. Things are just things. Fulfillment comes from within. These days…

One day I’ll figure out what exactly it is that I am chasing. One day I’ll feel as though I finally fit in this world, somewhere. One day I’ll have all of the answers. One day.

Until then, I don’t have the answers… just a lot of questions.

Dreaming of Travel

I would love to get on a plane right now.

I would love to go somewhere. Anywhere. A new place. A familiar place. I just need a change of pace for a few days. Wouldn’t that be nice? I think that would be nice.

Sometimes I think I should just get in my car and go. Then I realize there’s not really anywhere to go. There are so many reasons why I can’t go, not the least of which being massive anxiety about being around strangers right now. So I just sit here, looking out my window at the planes landing and I dream. I dream of a day that I can go somewhere. I dream of a day that I can be the girl on that plane, headed somewhere for fun, or for business, or just to go.

As much as I love winter, it’s so long. I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned that in posts the past two years… probably in February back then as well. COVID has somehow made this winter seem so much longer. While I would normally escape somehow, some way, as I have the past two winters for a weekend or two, that’s not really an option right now. It’s just me and my thoughts here for the foreseeable future.

If COVID weren’t holding me back, here’s where I’d go:

  • Vancouver
  • Montreal
  • Niagara Falls
  • Denmark
  • Las Vegas
  • Bahamas

If COVID and money weren’t holding me back, here’s where I’d go;

  • The Maldives
  • The Seychelles
  • Australia
  • Patagonia
  • Kenya
  • South Africa
  • Egypt
  • Morocco
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Japan
  • France
  • Monaco
  • Indonesia

Well, if I am being totally honest, I just want to see the whole world. If it were safe and I had the money to do so, I would get on a plane tomorrow and go anywhere. I’d go everywhere. I’d love to be the writer behind one of those ‘Around the world’ blogs, sharing people and culture and stories I’ve discovered along the way. What a cool career that would be.

Alone on Valentine’s Day

Who’s with me? Are you alone on Valentine’s Day? I feel like we should form a club.

What are you doing to show yourself self-love for the day of love?

I haven’t purchased any gifts for myself, despite my poll asking people for motivation to do so. I couldn’t justify the price tag. That being said, I might buy myself something small tomorrow. Also, a ghost from my past sent me a small surprise, which was very thoughtful.

And if you do have someone to spend Valentine’s Day, treat them well. Remind them how much you love them not just with your words but with your actions.

People want to feel loved.

And if you’re one of those people who says ‘I don’t need no stupid holiday to tell someone I love them’, maybe you don’t… but do it anyway.

Be safe. Stay Healthy.

Fun things to do during a Polar Vortex

The polar vortex is a large area of low pressure and cold air surrounding both of the Earth’s poles. It ALWAYS exists near the poles, but weakens in summer and strengthens in winter. The term “vortex” refers to the counter-clockwise flow of air that helps keep the colder air near the Poles.

Translation: Canada is very, very cold. Very cold. Cold. Cold. Cold. I cannot type cold enough to explain how cold it’s been lately.

As a Canadian, cold weather isn’t something that shocks me. We’re basically groomed to grow up tolerating cold when we live in this country. It comes with the territory… literally. The polar vortex, though… it’s a different kind of cold. This special weather occasion only happens every few years and my, my, my is it ever cold.

Presently, at my house, it’s -39 degrees Celsius(translates to -38 degrees Fahrenheit). Overnight we’re supposed to drop down to -49 degrees Celsius (translates to -56 degrees Fahrenheit). In case I haven’t said it enough yet, it’s really fucking cold right now.

We’ve been dealing with this weather about a week now. Temperatures aren’t supposed to warm until Sunday/Monday of next week, so we have at least four more days until we get tolerable cold (-15 degrees Celsius/5 degrees Fahrenheit). Being well used to this weather at this point, I’ve compiled a list of fun things to do during a polar vortex…

  1. Play a rousing game of ‘will my car start today?’
  2. Play a rousing game of ‘why is my garage door frozen shut?’
  3. Play a rousing game of ‘why is my front door frozen shut?’
  4. Stay inside.
  5. Seriously, going outside is painful. The air… it hurts your face. You get this overwhelming urge to keep your eyes closed because it’s so damn cold, it hurts your eyes.
  6. If you do go outside, watch your eyelashes freeze together and become icicles. Pretend you’re a Yeti and start grunting a lot. Partially out of grumpiness for the cold, partially because it’s hard to do anything but grunt when you’re so cold and struggling to breathe.
  7. Put on your best parka, go outside and flash your hands towards frozen objects whilst singing ‘Let it Go’ at the top of your lungs. If anyone bothers you, tell them you’re practicing for your future as Queen Elsa.
  8. Move to Bermuda.
  9. If moving to Bermuda isn’t an option for you, going for a ride on a polar bear is always fun. Though you’ll have to ensure it’s quick ride as if you’re outside for more than five minutes in this weather, you could very well wind up with frost bite
  10. Drive to Starbucks and get a Frappucino (provided the answer to #1 was yes) because what sounds better than a frozen drink when it’s -39 outside?

If all else fails, complain to the internet about the cold. Because they’ll feel for you.

In the words of the Mighty, Might Covers… “I said BRRRRRR, it’s cold in here”.

PPP Rules and Stipulations

If you’re reading this and you know the ins-and-outs of the PPP program in the United States.

What were the rules towards qualifications?
It was for small businesses right?
Did you have to have a certain amount of employees to take part?
Were there any stipulations about businesses having to be a part of an industry direction affected by COVID? (Like personal services) Or could a business have been from any industry?

Also, did I read it right that businesses approved could have their loans forgiven if they could prove they paid 60% or more to payroll?

I’m asking because it’s recently come to light that a lot of exceptionally wealthy influencers, who’s businesses exist only on social media, managed to take PPP Loans last year. Did they discover a legal loophole in the system?

Influencers often set up LLC’s for their YouTube channels and Instagram pages as a means to be able to write off expenses – like clothes shopping – as business expenses. If they’re the sole employee of their LLC, technically speaking they could have taken the $50,000 they got in PPP, paid themselves as their only employee, and the loan will be completely forgiven because they paid payroll with it. Or could they potentially have to pay it back?

Essentially, for Influencers (people who make 6 and 7 figures already and exist in a digital sphere that wasn’t affected by COVID at all), the PPP was just free money in their pocket?

I’m just really curious about how this system worked. If they made $800,000 in 2019 and their income stayed the same, or grew in 2020 thanks to the pandemic, would they have to pay it back?

Thanks to anyone who’s able to help with clarification!

Culmination of scattered thoughts

I laid awake most of last night.

I’ve been doing that a lot lately, actually.

I try to sleep. I’ve tried things that could help me sleep and they never do. So I just… lay there. I lay there and I think. Usually I think about my life choices.

What did I do wrong? How do I dig myself out of this? Why do I lack so much confidence? Why am I never good enough for those dreams which I aspire to? Is it all in my head, or am I actually as bad as I think I am?

As with everything in life, I really don’t have the answers… just a lot of questions.

Why does it seem like no matter how many strides forward I take, I am still lost? Will I ever truly feel as though I’ve found my way?

Lately my anxiety has been spiking at absolutely random moments. Today I was watching a video of a puppy who’d just finished eating dinner and he picked up his bowl and walked it around the house. That made me so anxious that I crawled into bed and laid there in the dark to calm down. What is it about the dog that made me anxious? I can’t tell you. I can’t tell you why anything is making me anxious lately. I can tell you that it sucks big time. I wish I knew how to fix my anxiety. Actually, I wish I knew how to not get anxious in the first place.

A girl can dream. Except I won’t because I’ll likely lay awake all night again…

More life lessons from me

I should make this a series.

When you hear ‘this call is being recorded’, make sure that you remember to hang up when a call has ended. There are so many recording features in our day-to-day lives that we can often ignore/forget about them. Most businesses that offer any form of customer service use them. If you call banks, stores, doctors, etc… they all have them. If you’re making a call that’s being recorded, don’t forget to hang up.

Legally, any company that uses a recording software is required to acknowledge you’re being record. Something people don’t realize though (and this is a tangent), is that you’re also legally allowed to say you do not wish to be recorded and they have to stop the recording before the call proceeds.

Anyways, a good rule for life is to always hang up your calls. This is ESPECIALLY true when you’re on a call that’s being recorded. If you don’t hang up a call that’s being recorded, you will be continuously recorded for the remainder of time taken for you to figure out you need to hang up.

A STORY TO PAIR WITH THIS LESSON

On Tuesday I had another call with the man who thinks Canadians have polar bears for pets (you can read it here, if you’d like). Our company uses a call recording software so that we can refer back to the calls and not have to frantically type meeting minutes during.

Anyways, for those of you not familiar with how this type of recording software works, it’s essentially like having a third person on the line. The ‘third person’ is the recorder. However, because it’s software and not a person, it doesn’t know to hang up when I hang up. So, when I left the meeting at 41:03 and he didn’t, he was recorded for another hour and twelve minutes.

You best believe I was listening to that.

In the hour and twelve minutes he continued to record, he continued to be at his computer. His wife came in shortly after I hung up and started asking him about me. He referred to me as ‘a hardass’ and ‘just another stupid Canadian’. He said he’d have the deal wrapped by Friday.

He won’t.

He and his wife proceeded to argue about why he needs to deal with me at all, which turned into an argument about how the dog was barking because he never takes the dog outside and she always has to do it. Then he turned on a meditation session and proceeded to listen to it, followed by calling one of his coworkers.

I will spare you the details of what happened in the remaining hour.

By the end of the recording, one hour and twelve minutes after I hung up, there was a loud ‘Shit. Fuck. Shit. Shit. Shit. Seriously? It’s been recording this whole fucking time?’ Then he hung up.

Suffice to say, when a call is over… hang up. Don’t be ‘that guy’.