Thursday, August 21, 2014

Some Fun Things

Sometimes in life you need to have some fun.

This past weekend (belated, but never forgotten) I was able to celebrate my 8-year anniversary with le man.  We spent a fantastic weekend together.  He handled Day 1 - dinner out to a great little Italian Restaurant and movie - Guardians of the Galaxy.  Hilarious!  If you've seen it, you know that most commonly, everyone's favourite line is "I am Groot." 

If you haven't seen the movie yet, I'll not spoil why this is the running funny line from the movie.  I will tell you that inflection is everything.

Also - the soundtrack from the movie is quite genius!  Definitely looking for it when/if it gets released.  I'm "old-school".  I don't subscribe to iTunes.  Give me the CD any time. 

Day 2 of our celebration, thanks to a fantastic Groupon, meant we spend the afternoon in Toronto, on the water, sailing on the Tall Ship Kajama.  10 points to the person that pronounces the ship name correctly!  Although it was raining, the ship still sails...just like anyone sailing any ship anywhere.  It was really neat, a wonderful way to spend an afternoon and let us see some cool things from Lake Ontario. 

After we gained our sea legs and made port, we dined at The Keg.  Day 2 was completed on Groupon deals, and gift cards, so total out-of-pocket costs was gas to get us to and from Toronto.  Glorious!

Day 3 of our celebration was spent picking veg from our garden (6 cucumbers, a quart basket of beans, 35 peas, 3 rows of carrots and 3 rows of radishes.  The carrots and radishes picked amounted to estimated grocery store bunches equaling 16 carrot bunches and 8 radish bunches.  And we aren't even half way through yet.  This is the third weekend we've picked and our bounty flows over!  Great meals have been shared with family to date, straight from our own garden.  What a lovely, local, totally "organic" way to feed those we love!  After this task was complete, we debated the finer points of a few other items we wanted to accomplish - picking up 2 items that were ready at the mall, enjoying a meal there while we "touristed" our mall, and then returning to our humble abode for a binge of Game of Thrones watching. (I've almost completed Season 3 so don't spoil it for me!)

It was a fabulous weekend filled with conversation, experience, nourishment and laughter. 

Today is now 2 weeks before I leave on my "trip of a lifetime" voyage.  Le Man, not being an immediate member, is staying here while I gallivant overseas some of my family members.   Fun will be had.  Sites will be seen.  Experiences will be experienced.  Pictures will be taken.  My cup runneth over. 

I'll drop another clue to my trip for you all.  The place I'm visiting is steeped in family history and tradition.  Many of you may find that parts of your own ancestry originated from this island.

Have you guessed yet?

If not, there will be at least one more post with a clue in it. 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Laugh Often, Love Much

In a moment of time when the person that brought so much laughter to the world departs, it reminds us of all of the moments we have yet to spend with our own loved ones.

Depression is a nasty, consuming beast, much like a real life version of The Dark, by Robert Munsch.

A children's book written about this Dark, that can be a perfect comparison to Depression.  Though putting the Dark into all kinds of things, and scaring away works in the book, doing that in real life is a daily, often minute-by-minute struggle for a human being.

Celebrity status does not automatically excuse the person for real, human, emotional struggle.  All celebrity status does is put that person under a judgmental microscope allowing all manner of random, unknown people to pass opinion upon the person.

Below was something that has crossed my facebook a time or two.  Whether written by Brad Pitt about Angelina Jolie, or someone else, or even still, perhaps a beautifully written, fakes Brad Pitt letter, the message is that depression can hit anyone and we can be present when we are with those we cherish, so perhaps, we can help that person:
“My wife got sick. She was constantly nervous because of problems at work, personal life, her failures and children. She lost 30 pounds and weighed about 90 pounds. She got very skinny and was constantly crying. She was not a happy woman. She had suffered from continuing headaches, heart pain and jammed nerves in her back and ribs. She did not sleep well, falling asleep only in the mornings and got tired very quickly during the day. Our relationship was on the verge of a break up. Her beauty was leaving her somewhere, she had bags under her eyes, she was poking her head, and stopped taking care of herself. She refused to shoot the films and rejected any role. I lost hope and thought that we’ll get divorced soon… But then I decided to act. After all I’ve got the most beautiful woman on earth. She is the idol of more than half of men and women on earth, and I was the one allowed to fall asleep next to her and to hug her. I began to shower her with flowers, kisses and compliments. I surprised and pleased her every minute. I gave her a lot of gifts and lived just for her. I spoke in public only about her. I incorporated all themes in her direction. I praised her in front of her own and our mutual friends. You won’t believe it, but she blossomed. She became better. She gained weight, was no longer nervous and loved me even more than ever. I had no clue that she CAN love that much.
And then I realized one thing: the woman is the reflection of her man.
If you love her to the point of madness, she will become it.
Brad Pitt

This is not a post to explain depression, debate depression and its status as disease, mental illness, or something to "learn to get over" and "buck up" from.  This is a post to remind you to put down the cyberspace.  Stop living in facebook, twitter, instagram, even the blogosphere, and start to live in your own life.  Depression does not discriminate.  It does not choose you by colour, gender, ethnicity, height, weight, hair colour, eye colour, who you like/love/lust, who you don't, who you hate or love, who you are or are not friends with, who you speak to or don't.  It is not a racist, or any other negative -ist word you can think of.  It is real, regardless of your choice to believe it or not.

At times in everyone life a round with depression will strike.  If we recognize it as such, or not, we all will go through a period at some point.  Whether when we were young, teenaged, young adult, professional, middle aged, senior, octogenarian, or older, at some point it will affect you.  Just like love will affect you. 

Robin Williams made so many of us laugh.  Today, depression wears his face, and because of it has taken his body from earth.  (I am not going to debate your thoughts on God in this post either.  I respect all persons opinions, however, this is not a debate I will tolerate on this blog.)  Other celebrities have passed away.  Lauren Bacall being most recent - having passed the day after Robin Williams.  Countless others will pass as well.  It is the circle we are all signed up for.  We are born, and then we spend the remaining time we have physically on Earth literally growing older.  At some point that growing older is complete and we call it death.  The day we cease to exist, interact with others, speak, breathe, think, have blood pumping around our body. 

Today I wanted to make mention of this here, because this is my online journal and I can do that in this space. 

Depression exists.  It is as individual as we are unique. 

Today I want to remind you to reach out to your friends and family and check in with them.  Tell them you love them, if you do.  Listen with passion.  Speak with passion.  2 ears remind us to listen twice as often as we speak.  Learn the difference between listening and hearing.  Employ that difference. 

For those of you struggling with depression, work hard on telling the truth.  When asked how you are doing, do not give a "party line" and say fine when you are not.  You've trained your loved ones to take you at face value.  Explain what you are feeling.  People do love you in your life, whether you see it and feel it or not.  It takes courage to be truthful. 

20 seconds is all you need.  Benjamin Mee - character in I Bought a Zoo explains the 20 seconds thing.  To those who have friends that feel down, and won't talk about it, keep in touch with them.  Eventually they will find trust in you enough to open up about it, or will take you up on the offer of help.  Keep offering.

To my readers, thank you for reading and being here.  If any of you are feeling or know that you are in a depressed state, please reach out to someone and talk about it.  It is a step to help you heal the dark within.  Love to you all.