The one about not giving a f*ck

(if you don’t like swear words, do not read)

I recently purchased the book “The subtle art of not giving a F*ck” by Mark Manson. This is not intended to be a book review, but damn… I can’t help it!

give a fuck

I’m a knowledge whore, a book slut and I find myself reading about 5 books at a time ALL THE TIME and always wonder “will I ever make it through each book”. DAMN!  Reading one a time can’t be THAT difficult!  They are always science and training based.  I do not read novels.  I want to learn when I read and I have a very hard time sinking into any type of self help book.  Life isn’t and cannot be THAT perfect when it comes to the information a self help book shares.  Plus, reading them made me feel like a bag of shit.  Like, if I couldn’t change my way of thinking then I was an idiot.  There was something wrong with me.  I would be a failure because I wasn’t writing down 3 things a day I was thankful for.  I couldn’t talk about how amazing I was or how I appreciated every inch of Me.  I wasn’t pooping out unicorns and rainbows!

Then I finally decided “fuck it”. I’m gonna buy “The subtle art of not giving a f*ck”

I realize that life is going to suck a lot mixed in with some laughs. I guess I was curious and since I say f*uck a lot I figured “why the fuck not” right?  It would just be another book added to my collection.

I am currently deep into the mindset of “I cannot worry about that person or that circumstance”. If the person or situation makes me feel like a bag of shit than GOODBYE!  I have enough negative feelings and thoughts after my husband died and grief is a complete mindfuck that the LAST thing I am allowing myself to do is be involved with people or situations that encourage feelings of “feeling like a bag of shit”.  It is time to find things that make me laugh, experiences that bring out positive feelings that could cover the negative feelings, even for a little bit.  I just want to fucking laugh!

I got only a few pages in and I realized “I’m gonna love this fucking book”. It was speaking my language!  11 pages into the book a sentence came up stating “suffering through your fears and anxieties is what allows you to build courage and perseverance”.

HOLY SHIT

Suffering…fears….anxieties…. check…check…check. Keep reading!

On page 4 it reads “…this fixation on the positive—on what’s better, what’s superior—only serves to remind us over and over again of what we are not, of what we lack, of what we should have been but failed to be”.

Ya, screw you positive attitude! Stop messing with my mind and telling me I should be perfect and my life is amazing and I should be so thankful for what I have.  What the fuck is wrong with me thinking that the glass is half empty.  I have a very limited amount of fucks to give, just as the book states.  Why the hell should I waste those fucks on stupid shit?  The stupid shit that makes me feel bad or worse than I already do?  Those people that make me feel like a loaded bag of poo poo or make me dive deep into my insecurities?  “If you go around giving a fuck about everything and everyone without conscious thought or choice—well, then you’re going to get fucked”.

EXACTLY!

Life is SO SHORT! We all have to realize that the fucks you give may be a complete waste of time.

“…the people who hand out fucks like ice cream at a goddamn summer camp is that they don’t have anything more fuck-worthy to dedicate their fucks to. What does this mean?  Trivial shit.  Its trivial shit you are handing out your fucks to. (Dead TV remote batteries, stuck in traffic, someone disagreeing with your belief) You may not have anything important to worry about.

IS IT REALLY THAT IMPORTANT?

Find something meaningful or your fucks will be “given to meaningless and frivolous causes”.

The book states it’s about “helping you think a little bit more clearly about what you’re choosing to find important in life and what you’re choosing to find unimportant.”

The book continues to push you into avenues where you:  Turn your pain into a tool.  Turn trauma into power and your problems into slightly better problems.

A guide to suffering and how to do it better. To lose and let go!

Damn straight.

When you give better fucks, you get better problems. And when you get better problems you get a better life.  So from someone who hates self help books and thinks they do nothing but make you feel totally inadequate, I must say this was an enjoyable and easy book to read.

I am the glass is half empty person but I feel that is the best way to move through life. I do not expect everything to be perfect.  I do not expect things to go my way and life can be difficult.  I am not setting myself up for disappointment; I’m improving my armor for survival!

I know there is always room for improvement. I will always want to be better and improve in things I do, to learn more, to search for higher accomplishments.  I will fail and keep failing but I will figure out a way to start again and figure shit out. For me, it’s just super easy now to say “fuck it” without the guilt angel sitting on my shoulder.  She can fuck right off!

For some, this attitude may seem rude or selfish but that is simply because they don’t understand my fucks. I find it freeing and a huge sense of relief when you don’t spend your day worrying about what others think or trying to keep up to everyone else around you.

I call it SURVIVAL!

Follow your own footsteps. Lead your own path.  The people that truly understand will be right along side you laughing all the way.

 

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The one about Owning your Sh*t

balloon-one

Well life can sure be a can of shitballs eh!

Stress, work, think, sleep, stress, drive, think, sleep, ugh, depressed, laugh….

Seriously, how smoothly is life supposed to roll anyways?

I have finally come to a point where it’s time to OWN THAT SHIT. Own the crappy path life has handed to me.  And I will trudge along not expecting anything more.

Life is not all about rainbows, unicorns and balloons.

Life can suck, life can throw nothing but shit at you and will test you to your final limit. But why, at times, is this a bad thing?  How can we turn a mishmash of shitballs into a ride on a magical motherfucking unicorn with rainbows shooting out our ass?

We OWN IT! That’s right….we OWN our shit and OWN it well!

I believe there is a difference between acceptance and owning it. Acceptance feels, to me, like a last resort.  Like you are being dragged through the mud and your only option is to just take it.

Owning is a completely different level of “I got this shit”. It’s above and beyond acceptance.  It’s more like a sense of appreciation or clarity.  Not so much as “not giving a shit” but more of a “oh well….oh look …. Shiny” squirrel kinda thing.  It just doesn’t matter.

If I don’t own the mishmash of shitballs I’m in, I will never find happiness again.

Death brings life to little things. Death brings life to what truly matters.

So it’s time to OWN YOUR SHIT!

I have become an open book of self awareness and will poke fun at myself any chance I get.

I OWN that I am a bit weird and crazy. Laughter is the best medicine.  Make me laugh and you have won my heart!

I OWN that life isn’t all rainbows, unicorns and balloons. I will deal with the shit and wonder why we are all so quick to numb anything negative.  Let yourself cry!  I OWN my fucking tears!

I OWN that I may never be truly happy again and I may live the rest of my life alone but I will strive to laugh and watch “Friends” episodes with my boys as long as possible and my new “boyfriend” will always have room in my bed. His name is “Netflix”.

I OWN that I am not your “typical” female. I talk about shit, burping and farts but everyone does it!

I OWN that I do my own thing at my own time. You may call this selfish, I call it protection.

I OWN that I am part redneck, politically incorrect and not very lady like. But I love lipgloss so that must make me part woman.

I OWN that I have a potty mouth but only because I am emphasizing the important shit.

Life can suck. Life can be depressing and sad and full of turmoil but for me, I will OWN each and every emotion and squash it like a little bitch.

Bring it on….I’m ready

Now OWN your shit….and smile.

 

 

 

 

The one about the Christmas letter

It’s that magical time of year when children write letters to Santa with enthusiasm and hope. I decided to write my own letter to someone with magic behind them but a different name.

I thought “wouldn’t it be cool if adults did the same thing”.  If they could find that magic and write a letter to their spouse for them to open on Christmas morning.  A love letter… a Christmas letter.  I challenge you to do the same.

My dearest husband,

You have given me so many years of happiness, love, inspiration, laughter and I feel like I have fallen short in telling you how important you are in my life.

I’m not much of a talker and I don’t share my feelings but putting them down on paper gives me a sense of relief.  So I will share the magic you have shared with me.

You probably don’t know that every second of my day I think of you. From when I open my eyes once I awake to the moment I fall asleep at night.  Crazy how one person can play such a huge roll in your life.

I think of little things…the shape of your fingers and hands and how mine fit so well inside. The shape of your finger nails.  From the hair on your arms and the lines on your face, the way you walk or how your tongue slips out your mouth when you are in deep concentration.  How you are able to role your tongue and flare your nostrils.  Every time you catch me staring at you, you flare your nostrils with a toothless grin.  Then follow that up with a head turn and a loud “what?”  My response is a laugh and “you’re so sexy”.  Your head tilt, sigh and the all too common eye roll happens every time.

Your witty one liners and your sound effects. No one can “crack a whip” quite like you.  It made me so happy when I could make you laugh as usually you are the one laughing AT me.  We really are one person…so much alike and could never imagine one without the other. There are so many things I want to say to you.  So many things….

Why have we spent so much time not telling each other “I love you”. With all those silly little things people deal with each day, they get in the way of just stopping and holding tight with a hug.  You don’t know that I keep your cologne in the fridge so it will last through the years…I smell it every day.  It puts a knot in my throat because it brings so many thoughts of you.  I miss your smell so this is a comfort to me.  It is like I’m actually hugging you in real life, like you are right in front of me.

It’s crazy to think that it’s been a while since we’ve seen each other in person, a little over a year. What hurts the most is knowing  I’ll never see you again in my lifetime.  I know I’ll never touch you or hug you but as I remember the magic you once gave me, I will do my best to think of that when I am at my deepest level of sadness.  I have so much regret and anger but there is so much to live for and in a way, I will try to find the life you lost when you died and add it to what I have left in myself.

How can I feel so alone and have so much love in my heart? I guess that is the magic you left me. I don’t love you like I used to…I love you more.  In death, I have been shown true love.  I have been shown deep, unending love that rips me apart.  It does exist.  I just wish you still did.

I will continue to honor you and your name until my last breath on earth.

Merry Christmas to you, Peter

May you and your dad stay out of Santas way as he is flying high and always keep your stick on the ice!

The one about the girl in the shower

naked-silhouette-alphabet-22

There is always that dreaded dream that you are stuck in public naked with no where to hide. Your bare ass and vijayjay hanging out for the world to see…You can only cover up so much with two hands.

Being stripped of everything you have that protects you. Probably the most vulnerable feeling there is.

But on the other hand, that feeling of vulnerability helps to prove what is important, makes you appreciate the freedom of truths and allows you to work on correcting the shit-show. Being naked without even caring.  Who wouldn’t want that?

I live with a strong attitude of “I don’t care what people think of me. This is me, this is what you get”.  I think this allows me to survive during a time where surviving seems almost impossible.  I don’t care what my hair looks like.  I don’t care if you think I’m a little weird.  I will talk about shit, farting and laugh about the forgetfulness of vagina and armpit shaving.  I want my boys to grow up and fall in love with a girl who doesn’t need to wear makeup or care if her “butt looks fat in these jeans”.  Honestly… a girl who can fart in the shower with you….that girl isn’t hiding a thing!  That smell ain’t going no-where!

I may not worry about what others think of me but I always had that fear of ‘being naked”, the fear of being vulnerable, or not being good enough. And I now feel like the person I once was has died…it’s the sequel now playing out, with some strange character I know nothing about.  But in some weird way, death doesn’t just show you all the regrets you have in a life, it also forces you to look for ways to change, to “get naked” and accept feeling vulnerable.  It shows you how to live!

This isn’t an article about a “love yourself” mantra because lets face it, it’s not that easy. It’s bullshit!  And I have every right to say that life sucks.  It’s hurting and it’s sad and it would be so much easier to throw in the towel but what I do recognize in all of this heaviness is I want to encourage others that so much time is wasted on stupid meaningless shit, your sink full of dishes, your concern with butt size, a flat stomach, the score of a meaningless sporting game, the heaping pile of laundry.

Stupid things that take precious time away from living!

I know that I have a shitload of work to do in order to accept the path my life has taken, to smile with purpose and to laugh off those naked dreams.

Part of me once was that girl in the shower…The second part of me had the fear of failing, not being good enough, of “being naked”. I never knew how much that second ½ held me back until now.

To the females reading, I hope you all want to be the girl in the shower.

To the males reading, don’t hold your breath. Breathe it in and hug her tight!

The one about signs

You can’t always write about topics that will peak the interest of readers but I am hoping that most will take an interest in this one. Usually I like to use humor to state a point or to make others laugh because we all know we need a bit more laughter in our world.

These words do not contain much laughter but rather a little reminder and a kick in the butt of something important.

Recently I have been touched by stories of individuals making an effort in understanding the signs of a heart attack. Most may get sick of me pushing my message but I will continue my march towards further education and awareness in hopes of creating a bigger impact on many individuals who shared the same mindset as I did in the past.

The “it won’t happen to me” mindset.

I wanted to share some valuable information regarding the signs my husband experienced before he passed away of a heart attack and dive deep into a bit more details. Did my husband experience multiple symptoms?  Yes he did.

Prior to any of this happening we both had the “it won’t happen to me” mentality. I believe most of us deal with the same mindset and are frightened of the “what if”.  We may also feel like it simply isn’t a big deal.

Please read and understand clearly what my husband experienced so you can be fully aware.

UNUSUAL FATIGUE

Let me stress…. UNUSUAL! The level of fatigue my husband experienced was completely out of character for him.  As his fatigue would increase, his level of physical activity would decrease.  In my eyes, his fatigue was due to lack of activity but the lack of activity was due to fatigue.  There was never a question of “why”.

This is such an important point to consider. If you know of someone who is dealing with a level of fatigue that is completely inappropriate for their character please recognize the possibility that something isn’t quite right.  Finding my husband napping in the middle of the day wasn’t normal.  Or him missing out on our annual Halloween trick-or-treating because he was “too tired” to even walk with his kids just seemed like an excuse to stay home.  If you feel something just isn’t right, you may be right.  This is where the change of mindset comes in.

HEARTBURN/INDIGESTION

My husband was never one who would experience heartburn and to this day I do not recall him suffering from much of it other than the morning he passed away. It was brought on by physical activity and I will never forget the discomfort in his voice when he asked for Rolaids in the middle of the night.  Because I had always considered him fit and healthy, in my sleepiness I never thought the worst.  Even though in my professional career, it was hammered home to me that heartburn may be a sign of a heart attack, I never thought it would hit my family.

SLEEP DISTURBANCES

Would I ever think this is a sign? Probably not but Peter regularly was awakened early in the morning or throughout the night unable to sleep.  How would we process this?  Lack of activity = less sleep.  Lack of activity = increased fatigue.  Increased fatigue = lack of activity (but we never asked “why?”)

All we thought was…It would never happen to us!

SHORTNESS OF BREATH

I will never forget our last mountain bike ride together or our last run. He physically could not keep up.  That last mountain bike ride had him complaining that his chest hurt once we returned home.  He showered and immediately feel asleep on the couch.

Our last run together had him turn around and head home only a couple km into the run as I continued on. How did we process this?  Lack of activity = hard workout.  Hard workout = chest discomfort.  Chest discomfort = lack of activity.

It would never happen to us!

It all looks so crystal clear now.

The one about vagina shorts

I have an odd question. Am I the only one who thinks the world of workout shorts have a length problem?

Workout gear is a top money maker. Hey, I am not going to lie…I would follow Nike to the ends of the earth in their running shoes.  I love “workout” gear but that is also my comfort zone.

But I think that is the key word here…. Comfortable!

Am I wrong in thinking that some female shorts… are simply TOO SHORT!  Am I the only one who feels there needs to be some level of appropriate length in shorts while you are training?

Hey, wear what you want, when you want but “working out” has a level of bendiness and knowing that your shorts are SHORTER than your vagina lips is kind of a problem! I like to squat, roll, lunge, push.  Hey, some kettlebell moves ask for some serious spread.  Throw in some Brettzels and 90/90’s, FRC, pikes, pigeons…you get the picture.  There needs to be some sort of reasonable coverage, does there not?

What if you missed a shave? Is there a chance of a bit too much popping out?

As my good friend Cubo’s says “they have tights underneath them, it’s all good” SAY WHAT?  That is a clear sign that those are too damn short if they need another layer underneath them.

When I walk into a sports store to purchase a pair of shorts and the majority of the time I have to shop in the mens section, I think there needs to be some sort of change (come on Nike…..)

My response to their comment of “the womens section is over there” is very simple. “I don’t wear Vagina shorts”.  That seems to shut them up or give them a pause of heavy thought.

If I have to pick my shorts out of my vagina while I’m working out….how great of a workout is that? (and the perfect reason why Thongs are for feet)

(the photo tells the story)

vagina shorts photo

The only eyes right now who see this peach are mine…and that is when I’m shaving it!

#stopthevaginashorts

#midthighalltheway

The one about being Strong

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference”

Accepting the things I cannot change is what I am fighting with. I am not even ready to accept the shit I am trudging through right now but I have no choice. Tomorrow, August 3 will be 9 months of hell and I am starting to figure some shit out.  I haven’t experienced any serenity of acceptance or courage to change and I definitely do not have any wisdom to know where the hell my life is going during this completely different path but I do understand some of the reasons why I am doing what I am doing.

During all of this I have heard the phrase “you are so strong”. I honestly don’t know how to take that phrase.  I certainly am not strong and do not feel strong.  No one sees me in my true self at home and I have no desire to do so as it is my place of healing.  It is where I allow myself to lose control and deal with the grief.  Telling me that I am strong feels like an untrue statement.  It feels so far from the truth.

But I can honestly say I know one statement that is true. One that may offend others but I have no care in the world if that happens as right now, I will do whatever I can to allow me to open my eyes for another day.

I do not feel strong. I do not feel the word STRONG represents how I am feeling BUT I know what I am ……..

I. AM. NOT. A. PUSSY

I will force myself to get through what I need to because I am not a pussy (Another day without him).

I will dig deep every day to get through a work day because I am not a pussy (I need to make others better).

I will make my children laugh and give them the best childhood possible because I am not a pussy (I cannot let them down again).

I will take care of myself physically because I am not a pussy (If my husband can no longer run, I will run for him).

I will wipe myself up after every shitty moment because I am not a pussy (embracing the tears).

I will share my weakest moments to help others because I am not a pussy (Learn from my mistakes).

I will open my heart in writing when I cannot do it in person because I am not a pussy (Ignore what I write, or not…it’s your choice).

I will never be strong. I will never accept my husbands death.  I will never have enough courage to face my future alone.  I will never have the wisdom to know what I need to know but I do know that I am not a pussy and as harsh as that sounds, right now it’s the one thing helping me face the days ahead.

Sometimes a negative term can bring positive outcomes.  Embrace it and roll with it and wear it on a tshirt! #notapussy

 

The one about the throat punch

You know… learning is the bread and butter of life. As the saying goes “the more you know, the more you know there is to know”.

Two amazing men I am lucky to call friends go to great lengths hosting the Okanagan strength & conditioning conference each year. Greg Dumanoir and Christopher Martin Collins, thank you for your hard work and dedication to our industry.  This year I spent an eye opening session with Sol Orwell.  If you don’t know much about him, search him up… just do it.

It was geared toward business and marketing but for me it was a throat punch moment from Sol that woke me up and made me think about where the hell my life is headed.

throat punch keep calm

One of his questions was “Who the hell are you?” and he followed that up with “and who are you to someone else?”   (Well Sol, I’m the stunned blonde sitting at the table about to cry…seriously, it was a bad morning)

Ummm….I have no fucking clue! (Yup, exact thoughts)

I couldn’t think of one word that described me. I couldn’t think of anything that described my personality or what I thought others saw of me.  (Ok, maybe NOW the words loud, bossy and squirrelly come to mind but 20/20 hindsight)  It was a light bulb moment for me because it made me realize that I need to get my shit together and I need to figure out the direction my future is going after my husband died.

A question so simple: “Who the hell are you?”  And I couldn’t answer it.  That was the first time since my husband died that I had an “ah huh” moment.  Finding the answer wasn’t the focus for me, it was realizing that I COULDN’T answer it.  It was realizing that I wasn’t in a good place mentally.

All I could see in myself was “something” taking up space. There was no value to “me”.  I was just doing my best to make it through each day.

Not a good space to be in.

So if I asked you “who the hell are you and how do YOU think people see you”. Could you answer that question?

What motivates you? The passion, the dedication, the focus of your goals, can you honestly say you are doing what needs to be done to make steps in achieving your goals?

One word came to my mind when I thought about how I wanted people to think of me.

F U N

That was it! I couldn’t come up with anything else.

I’m just a bucket of “ffff” right now. There is no part of “un” popping out of me but Sol Orwell made me realize that the “un” was missing and what I thought was the “un” was no way NEAR the real “un” that I wanted.

It was listening to Sol that made me think about my future in a positive way.  The passion I had for my career had slightly popped back and showed its face.  I knew I wanted to reach people in a light hearted, fun way and I loved to write.  I want to educate but in a way that is silly and strikes the cord of the average person.  There are too many smart people out there that educate the masses on strength & conditioning.  I want to be that person who educates the masses on the shitshow, amazeballs, hilarious, fun, thought provoking madness mixed in with a bit of strength & conditioning.  It does exist!  I want to be smart but stupid-sexy amazeballs funny. (I’m stretching it with sexy, aren’t I?)

That was when I sat down and started writing and it seemed effortless.

Would I be able to write something that made people think? Could I write something that made people laugh?  Could I write something that made people say “wtf, ok I’m going to do that”.

Could I throat punch a shitload of people without actually punching them?

So I guess for you reading this, my question is what is stopping you? Do you want to be stronger?  Do you want to run a ½ marathon?  Do you want to simply be healthier?  Do you want to start some crazy activity that challenges you to face your fears?

(No, I will not face my fear of heights…. The bus. Stops. There.)

But for you, why not just do it!

Why not?

Take this as your throat punch. Being who you want to be starts with YOU and you are the only one that can get you there.

I have lots to work on but I am grateful for the throat punch from Sol Orwell.

throat punch drawing

 

The one about Tights

I have never liked tights and I have never worn tights. I have always been a short or track pant girl and always felt that wearing tights was like being naked.  It just wasn’t me.  My husband would always ask why and the closest thing to tights he would see me in was my layer of riding shorts during mountain biking to help protect the v-jayjay.  Those are the farthest from sexy you can get but he absolutely loved them.  The poor guy never had a chance of seeing his wife in a pair of lulus.  It just wasn’t going to happen!

Then came along a life altering situation that made me think heavily about many things that I once thought were important and others that I used to dislike. It seemed a change was coming!

I bought my first pair of tights!

Not lulus and not a stupidly priced pair of comfy ass huggers but a cheap and surprisingly comfortable pair of tights from Target. I had that “why the fuck not” thought process.  Why had I never wore a pair even in my own home with my husband allowed to oogle my ass and stop wishing I would just buy a pair.  Now, don’t get me wrong, my ass isn’t anything to write home about but to him it was a prize and that is an important piece of the puzzle of marriage.

Previously, to me, his thought process was stupid and as if he would see me, his wife, in a pair of tights. I might as well just hang my ass out.  Isn’t that what wearing a pair of tights feels like?  Well, that was my thought process.

But then someone dies and you start to think. “Really?  WTF?”

He never had a chance to see me in a pair of tights!

When I think about it now, it doesn’t seem like such a big deal. Who gives a shit!

I wonder how many other people lose out on sharing something between the people they love because of silly feelings of inadequacies, or that it’s stupid or simply feeling “uncomfortable”.

Life is too short!

I now own four pair of tights.

Today I wore tights

Sharing is caring

I have been eagerly awaiting the finishing product that has been created with the help of Sproing Creative to help create more awareness for heart health. The Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona will be including some information for our awareness video in the coming week and then it becomes “Go time”!

Peters Story not only includes an educational video, it includes a website. A website that helps to educate the general public and gives an avenue of healing.  A forum for individuals who have lost a loved one, as interaction with people who are going through the same process as you may give some sense of healing.  It is impossible for me to accept the fact that I have to live the rest of my days alone and without the person I loved and married.  Life seems meaningless and unbearable when I think about what has been lost.  But in the next breath I understand how precious life is and how much I love my family and our two boys and I know there needs to be something that can steer us along in a positive direction as we grieve.

It is this sadness that many others can truly understand.

The individual who has lost a loved one and is struggling to make it through each day, it is you I am reaching out to.

I am asking you to share your stories to help others heal! I am asking you to be involved in something that can also help YOU heal and make each breath you take a bit more bearable.  I am also looking for stories of survival.  From individuals who have experienced a heart attack or stroke and have been so lucky to have survived.  These stories of survival will help encourage and motivate others to take charge of their health.

This website is for awareness, help and healing…. Nothing more!

In my attempt to #sharePetersstory I am hoping to create heart health awareness especially in the population who thinks they are bullet proof, the ones that think it won’t happen to them! And in the same breath I know how much the ones left behind need help and avenues to heal.

heart

I know I cannot do it alone! I need help and interaction with others who have experienced the same thing.  Help create a community of strength and courage!

If you are willing to be involved in sharing your story please contact cattconditioning@gmail.com

#sharePetersStory