February 3, 1993

It didn’t take long but I hate myself again. 

                                             lol. Nice that I can laugh at such statements now.

I don’t want my picture in the yearbook and I’m definitely not going to Grad Ball. I wish I hadn’t put my baby picture in the yearbook. I won’t write my grand blurb and I regret buying the yearbook. I don’t want to go to Cegep next year. I just want to be invisible. I want to die. I hate my life, I hate myself, I hate everything about me. I wish I could escape.

                                     Indeed, I did not go to Grad Ball or to my graduation ceremony. This is a minor example of several events (or non-events) in my life that I’m tempted to regret, but realize I cannot. The truth is, if I had gone to Grad Ball, I would not have enjoyed myself. I had no friends, not because no one liked me, but because I liked no one, least of all myself. At that time in my life I would have been miserable at such an event. It would have only served as another opportunity for me to beat myself up for my shortcomings. I can look back and interpret this so-called missed milestone as a failure, but if I had gone, it would have been an even worse failure because I would have been angry and disappointed with the way I’d interacted (or not interacted) with others.

I can think of many other missed opportunities such as this in my life. Things that might have been, but could not have been, because of who I was at the time they occurred. I often find myself frustrated with where I am in my life, and wish I’d taken action on certain things earlier, as I often feel as though I’m about a decade behind where I should be, or where most people are. A lot of the socializing that most people accomplished in their teens, I did in my twenties. Much of the growing up the typical person does in their twenties, I did in my thirties. Same with my career (both the one I get paid for, and the one I don’t). Yet I cannot blame myself for this slow growth, because I simply didn’t have the capacity to do more earlier, as I was busy working through other struggles. I’m still working through things, as no doubt we all are, and there’s no point in admonishing myself for this. I’m on my own path, no one else’s, and that’s fine. Besides, there are other ways in which I’m ahead of the curve, compared to my peers, so if I’m going to play the “grass is always greener” game, I need to acknowledge how green my own grass is once in a while.


December 10, 1992

I can’t wait ’till x-mas vacation. Only 6 more school days.

                         I still count down to vacay.

Isn’t it strange how I can only fantasize in the privacy of my own house (usually my room, sometimes TV room) when there’s no one else around? It’s like I’m afraid the people around me will read my thoughts.

                       I wasn’t talking about erotic fantasies or anything. Just regular melancholy wishing.

Once again I’m in Whitmore’s class, supposed to be writing an essay due Monday that I haven’t even started yet. I never write in my diary anymore. I only write on papers and insert them in. I should really rewrite the shorter ones or this diary won’t be able to close. I’m gonna have so much to do this x-mas vacation. I have so much to do before x-mas vac. In my last class I had the hiccups mondo time and now my stomach is grumbling an 8.5 on the Richter scale. STAR TREK TNG was one of my fave episodes last night – the one about the time loop thing. So cool! As usual Data saves the day. I’ve been thinking about a STAR TREK show that my bro and I invented. It will be called STAR TREK: THE CONTINUING MISSION. Cool, eh?

                      Yeah, super cool bro. And why did I continuously all caps ‘Star Trek’ in this entry? 

AAAAAGGG my stomach hurts! I’ve gotta buy a couple candy grams. I complain about it but I like receiving them, it’s a good feeling to know that people care enough about you to send you a 35¢ candy cane via homeroom mail. Sounds cheesy, and I guess it is. I don’t even like candy canes! I’m getting three as far as I know, so I’ll put them on the tree! Our tree’s nice I think. I did most of the decorating. I wish I had a gift exchange to do (not school wise of course). Mom’s doing one at work, the lunch table people are doing one. Keith’s doing one (even though it is class room wise) I wanna give and get. Oh well I guess I’ll just have to wait ’till x-mas. I just heard someone say that candy grams are not a measure of popularity. Of course they are! Everything in school is either a measure of popularity or academic achievement (both very unjustly weighed). I’m pathetic. I just realized I’m truly the queen of pathetic. I have no life outside of Star Trek, school, and drawing, ya know? I’ll never make it after school. I’ll never be independent. Most of all I’ll never be famous or meet my crush. I might as well face it, I’ll never meet him. Never in all my life will I ever know him. Never. I’m pathetically pitiful. I’m sitting here, writing to myself, supposed to be writing something I don’t get, and I’m not, and will never be, even significant enough to be counted as a statistic. I don’t matter at all. None of my dreams will ever come true. I’ll die young and loveless and pathetic. Life is just a bunch of lies. We lie to our friends, family, peers, authority figures, those over who we have authority, our environment, even ourselves. I’m a fake, do I know anyone who isn’t a fake? How could I know? Only the bad fakes are revealed to me. With all this, I still go on. Why do I go on? To spare grief to those I love? Why bother? I’m not sparing it, just delaying it. So I can see how the world turns out? Partly, but who cares how it will turn out once I’m dead? So I don’t miss out on all the things I want see and do? Partly, but I’ll never do them anyway, I’ll just give myself more grief. Then why do I keep on living? Fear, that’s why. Because I’m afraid. Not afraid to die, but afraid to live but also afraid not to live. I’m afraid I’ll lose the only thing I ever really had. I’m afraid to end my life, because after I turn over that point there is no turning back, no remedy for the situation. Of course once I’m dead I’ll never know the difference anyway but as I’m alive, I’m too scared to take that chance. Well, I seem to have run out of space, so I’ll reread this now and surprise myself with my own insight and realisticness. 


November 10, 1992

2:30 – 3:00 – take shower, blah, blah, blah
3:00 – 4:00 – watch Joan Rivers show
4:00 – 5:00 – watch taped next Generation episode
5:00 – find paper with group story I started writing; wait for inspiration
6:00 – 7:00 – have supper, tell mom about homework, get help with it
7:00 – 9:30 – watch TV
9:30 – do homework, go to bed
Research Winona Ryder
note: put gym stuff in bag
put chocolate bar in fridge, eat it while watching TV
be depressed…

                                                  I wrote all that while at school and stuck the loose leaf into my diary when I got home. It’s interesting to see that my obsession with planning my life and tracking my time began early. I recently wrote a blog post about my tracking obsession, which I believed was a new passion but I guess I’ve always been this way. I’m rather amused to see that watching the Joan Rivers show was such a priority, and I have no idea why I felt the need to research Winona Ryder, nor how I intended to do so before the advent of the internet. I also got a good chuckle out of the last line: “be depressed”. Even then I had a sense of humour about my melancholy proclivities. 

                                             And then I go on and on about my “love” for my celebrity crush. Hilariously though, I conclude with this:

If, when I’m older, I read this and it seems stupid and like a dumb crush (supposing I’m over him), I’m sorry but I really do love him. If I still love him, please excuse my saving anything so realistic.

                                         So amused by my teenaged “love”, and yet surprising self-awareness about how ridiculous it was.

God I’m depressed. If I can’t have what I really want (job wise) like in my fantasies then I want to illustrate books, and write them eventually. I would really like to write Ranmadia. Please, Nic, write it over the summer, it must be done before we forget the story.

                                        Oh, this is sad. I don’t know what I was referring to with the job that I really wanted, but even my backup plan of illustrating and writing books did not come to pass. And no, I never did write Ranmadia. It was a story my brother and I had come up with together. He narrated the story, and I responded with what the protagonist did. My brother was already GMing table-top role-playing games with his friends by this point so that’s basically what this story was, an RPG without the dice. I felt like it was such a good story, and I was so desperate to get it down on paper, and yet I never did. And now I don’t remember it at all.

Sigh, sigh, sigh, sigh, sigh
To do over long weekend:
Watch Beauty and the Beast
Watch taped episodes of Young Indy
Do all homework (yeah right) no really
Paint Ranmadia thing
Draw those pictures from magazines
I hate my life and self

                                     Geez, kid, you’re such a downer!


Staring out the window

Feeling oppressed by the confines of your office on a beautiful day? The solution is simply to stare out the window longingly, dreaming of the weekend, which will come and go too soon, without having been fully enjoyed, as you were still stressed out about that big project that’s due on Monday. All of this longing and regret is best done in a floral pattern, as it will further emphasize how far away from nature you are, in your office on the 23rd floor. Unless of course your office is in the basement, or in a cubicle somewhere, and you don’t even have a window to stare out of, in which case, maybe an animal print will serve you best, to remind you that truly, you are caged, and will never again be free.


Riding the Elevator

A good way to avoid going back to your desk after the unbridled freedom of a long lunch hour is to repeatedly ride the elevator up and down, silently evaluating the decisions that brought you to this point in life. Do so in style with a printed, peter pan collared top, and sleek black trousers. A pop of hot pink in the form of a kicky heel will remind you that you are capable of making good decisions sometimes.


Get in shape gurl!

My boyfriend’s answer to everything is to work out more. Insomnia? Work out. Depression? Work out. Creative block? Work out. Lethargy? Work out. Boredom? Work out. Annoyed with your significant other? Work the fuck out. You know what though? He’s not wrong.

I’ve mused before about my apathy, wondering if it’s a lack of motivation or lack of energy. I’ve never been athletic and as a kid, I was embarrassed about my lack of coordination and decided I hated sports because I wasn’t good at them. I figured it was simply my lot in life to be a couch potato and never really questioned it.


Now I know that sports can be fun if one is allowed to play at one’s own pace. I’ve also gotten over the assumption that sports must be competitive. I dislike competition because I find it detracts from the fun of games, and ultimately leads to anger and resentment. As an adult, I’ve discovered that there are plenty of cooperative versions of sports/physical games.

As I was nearing my thirties I began to take my health more seriously. As happens to us all, I found that my metabolism was not what it once was, and I started half-heartedly working out. First I worked out at home with the Wii fit, but that eventually got boring. Then I started going to a gym, but this was tough because as an introvert, having a lot of people around me can be annoying. It’s also difficult to work at your own pace when you keep having to stop to wait for bros to be done sweating all over the machines you want to use. Sometimes I’d go to the gym with friends and I found this to be entirely counterproductive. Working out with friends is really just half-assing a physical activity while gossiping about life. Unsurprisingly, I need to be alone to work out. As I was approaching my forties I got to the point where I was financially capable of buying a property big enough to accommodate a home gym, and this space has been a revelation. I use FitnessBlender as my personal trainer and work at my own pace, doing the easy, or hard, versions of exercises depending on my energy levels at the time.


I don’t know if I can blame my anemia or my laziness, but unlike the promises of every exercise enthusiast, it doesn’t really get easier over time, or at least it hasn’t for me. I haven’t seen any improvements in my strength, flexibility, or agility, but that’s ok because I’m not trying to be Ronda Rousey, I’m just trying to be me. I work out for my health, and I don’t just mean the physical.

About a year ago I started taking walks during my lunch hours. I’ve found that this not only helps me stay in shape, it’s invaluable in terms of maintaining my sanity. I have no idea how I managed my stress before I implemented this ritual into my routine. My office recently moved into an upscale suburban neighbourhood, and while I miss the convenience of being downtown, and close to the underground city, which was great for continuing my walks even in harsh weather, I really appreciate the slightly more rural environment. It’s nice to be surrounded by trees and impressive architecture. It helps to clear my head and reinvigorate my creative juices (studies have shown a link between walking and creativity), and my ability to tolerate interaction with human beings for another four hours before I get to go home.

And when I do get home I work out some more. Usually, after a long day of sitting on my ass at the office, I’m too tired to work out, but I force myself to do it anyway because I know once I get going I’ll get an endorphin rush and enjoy it. Working out is like taking a bath when you’re a kid. You try to avoid it at all costs but once you’re in the water you never want to get out. Ok, maybe working out isn’t always like that. Sometimes I’m in agony, counting down the seconds until my virtual trainers announce workout complete, but other times working out is simultaneously fun, relaxing, and energizing.

I’ve also gotten into hiking recently, which is surprising to anyone who knows me because I’m stereotyped as hating nature but it turns out that all that advice about getting out in nature to de-stress is fairly accurate. It’s very calming to be in the woods, and even though I need to go through an entire box of tissues during any given hike, it’s worth it for the way I feel afterward. I’m not one to use the term “spiritual”, because I believe it’s just a froo-froo way of saying “mentally fortifying”, but for all the hippies out there, yes, communing with nature is a spiritual experience. Even more so in the winter, for a snow enthusiast such as myself. I can think of nothing more beautiful than the twisted branches of a leafless tree covered in snow.


In the end, my boyfriend is right about exercise. It pretty much is a cure-all. Recently my father’s doctor told him that his health wasn’t doing so great and since he was already eating his prescribed diet the only thing left to do was to exercise. I work in a healthcare-related field so I know that most people will try literally anything before turning to exercise. So I was proud of my dad when he actually started working out and managed to successfully improve his health. A lot of people complain that they don’t have enough time to work out, but I would encourage them to make the time. You don’t need to be a professional athlete to reap the benefits of exercise, and it doesn’t take much. Just a half-hour a day is enough. I know it can be difficult to find the motivation, especially if you suffer from depression. But by integrating regular workouts into your routine, your bouts of depression may be less frequent and less severe. But don’t take my word for it! The science bears this out. I don’t really have any advice on how you can get yourself out of bed and on a walk when you’re depressed, but maybe you can ask a trusted friend to literally drag you out. A depression buddy, if you will.

Exercise is also good for anxiety. I got nervous recently when my boyfriend suggested some friends join us on a hike because I jumped to the conclusion that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with a normal person’s pace, but that’s probably a hang-up of mine rather than a real problem. And the best way to overcome that fear is to go on said hike.


As long as I’m having fun it doesn’t matter if I’m keeping up with the Joneses. In spite of all my progress over the years, I’m still not athletic but as we age we realize that our lives don’t exist for the entertainment of others. When I first tried yoga nearly twenty years ago I was nervous about doing the poses wrong and felt embarrassed about my incompetence. Now I know that no one is looking at me because they’re all too worried about their own form. And even if they are looking at me, who cares? I’m doing it for me, not them.