In summation

2011 is nearly done. 3 more sleeps until 2012, and the time seems right for rememberances. The year is winding down at work. I am one of three people here today and tomorrow. Manning the silent phones, as it were. I’m taking this time to get myself sorted professionally, emotionally and mentally to start a new job early in the new year. So it seems fitting to take a few moments to look back.

2011 started with a bang – right to my immune system. We returned from our annual trip to France, me looking like an extra from 28 Days Later. Winter turned to spring, racing past birthdays and anniversaries, into summer. And a glorious summer it was. Freyja and I spent nearly every day out in the back yard, gardening, puttering and enjoying each other’s company.

Then came fall, and the return to “work”. As in, paid, in an office, away from home. People had been warning me to prepare myself for the shift, and how. The first week I was back, we received an announcement that our entire division was Workforce Adjusted. Almost 60 people. Can you imagine? The retention exercises dragged out through the fall, while we shuffled feet, paper and dealt with sagging morale. Countless hours at the gym, taking long lunches, and enjoying the company of my dearest friends while we still worked in the same postal code. Not being retained, I went to interview after interview, balancing positivism with realism, until finally an offer came before Christmas.

December brought a trip to Chicago, long awaited and not nearly long enough. Too much eating, just a bit of shopping, and hours of sightseeing by foot. Chicago, I love you and will be back.

And now, the sun king has died and is resurrecting. The days grow infintessimally longer, though we are still plunged in the dark during the commutes to and from. Christmas has come and gone and was a breathless, magical delight that left Freyja speechless and our cat gripped by what can only be an allergy to pine sap in her ears.

2012 brings new work, a new hobby in the form of group leading for the Running Room, new creative projects, new challenges with our beloved toddler still in the throes of “no!” and “mommy go!”, and the ever anticipated return of spring with biking and gardening beginning to occupy my imagination. No doubt there will be new trips, new adventures, new discoveries, new hopes and new heartbreaks.

Good-bye, Comfort Zone.

Stretching is Good by Indexed

October? Intense. Seriously.

The Run for the Cure was a grand day out. The weather was less than inviting, though, so Marc opted to stay home with Freyja instead of subjecting ¬†all of us to a pissed-off toddler in a jogging stroller. Instead of my husband, I ran with a dear friend, a neighbour, and a friend’s 8-year-old son. We nattered away, whiling away the kilometres. It was pretty awesome, and something else. I’m not sure how to identify it, but it was a powerful moment. Running across the finish line was momentuous. Walking away from the finish line, I felt a sudden, profound ache for my mom but also incredible pride and satisfaction. I’ve been working towards this since July, and to finally do it was empowering.

And now, 5 days later, it feels like my heart has been through a bit of a wringer. Preferred Status? Check. Shared Services Canada? Why not. I am trying to embrace change, celebrate chaos and maintain optimism in the face of rapid changes and massive uncertainly but the effort can be a bit draining. It’s just work, this I know, and yet my usual detachment is lacking. Ultimately, I know I’ll land on my feet, but the process is driving me a bit nuts. In the meantime, I am trying to remind myself to stay out of the magic’s way and let the Universe turn me in the direction I most need to go.

Namaste, or something.

40 minutes later

In a nutshell, the Army Run was awesome. The two ladies I ran with are awesome. The day was gorgeous, sunny and not to warm. There were tonnes of people along the route. There was a soldier running alongside us in full gear – boots, helmet, rucksack. It was inspiring, joyful, and in retrospect, not nearly as hard or terrifying as I thought it might be.

So, I’m signed up for another, at the end of October, following the Run for the Cure. It’s a somewhat expensive new addiction, but seeing as how I have a job for the moment, why should I treat myself a little?

As an added bit of motivation, I’ve added a page with my results. High falutin’, I know, but hopefully it’ll keep me on track and inspired by my own progress.

Tonight, tomorrow

So, as it turns out, I will be doing the Army Run. Thanks to one of my beloved’s co-workers, I will be running a 5k in the morning. It’s all very last minute, so the terror perhaps hasn’t had time to set in. Thankfully, I am going with a pair of incredible women, otherwise I would’ve talked myself out of this enterprise hours ago.

More tomorrow, a post-race post-mortem, if you will.


The Ides of September

The beginning of September is rough around here. The 4th was my mom’s birthday. The 10th, the five-year anniversary of her passing. Tomorrow afternoon, my colleagues and I find out which side of the “we have twice as many of you as we need” line we will come down on. I figure as long as I avoid the Senate, I should be fine.

But, on the upside, last week I biked to work twice and made it to the gym once. Tonight was running night and I breezed through it and felt as though I could’ve done a whole other set. The Run for the Cure is getting close enough to taste, and I find that I am getting excited contemplating what I’ll do next. Plan another 5k run? Register for the 10k clinic? Both? Something else entirely?

I’m accepting the fact all this running and biking will not transform my body into the human equivalent of a whippet. The next step will be sorting out my diet – not helped by the daily tea time at work featuring various cookies and goodies! – but there’s time for that. In the meantime, I’m cruising Ben Does Life, and dreaming about totalling my bike in a injury-free fashion thereby justifying the purchase of a new, lighter, sleeker model.


Tomorrow I head back to work. By work, I mean, back to my office job. It’s been nearly two years since I left. I wasn’t sure I would last more than six months on maternity leave, and now I can’t imagine ever going back. And yet here I am.

It feels like time though, perhaps in part due to the “back-to-schoolness” of the season. Also, due in no small part to the fact that Freyja is thriving in daycare. It was clearly time for her to have the pleasure of friends, she natters about them constantly. And finally, while she doesn’t need me less, she does need me differently. Less acutely. Less immediately.

I am pretty sure Freyja is weaning, also adding to the bittersweetness of the here-and-now. While two years was our breastfeeding goal, ultimately we respect our daughter’s own rhythm. It has been a gently, gradual process, with Freyja leading the way. Now that we are nearing the end, I feel a mixture of sadness and a sense of freedom (hello, caffeine!).

In a few short hours, the next part of our life begins. Returning to work, being surplus, handing over daycare duties to Marc (along with the car), and relying on my own horsepower to get me to the office will all mix into a potent brew to make the finale of 2011 an interesting journey. No matter what happens. Or how it all ends.

Over and out for now.