• The Big One The Big One

    The Big One

The Big One

Last year on this day I turned on my computer, swallowed my fear, and went back to work. It’s been a whole year. I made it. Yesterday we had a bit of a shitstorm and my boss said to me, “Carrie, I love you. I mean I f*cking love you. If you try to go somewhere and take a different job I will hunt you down, put you in handcuffs and drag you back to the office.” Some people might think that’s a little over the top, but not me. Instead of swallowing fear, today I swallowed a lump in my throat. It feels good to be appreciated, not just for what you can do but for who you are as a person. What a difference a year makes. Four years ago I could barely walk or string a sentence together. My brain was scrambled eggs. I slept a lot. I wondered if I’d ever work again, at least at the job I loved and had been so successful at for more than a decade. I tried not to think about it. I haven’t written very much here this year. All of my energy has gone into learning how to do my job again with a brain that is different than it once was, giving it everything it needs to rewire and recharge. It’s taken every bit of energy I have. Am I doing the right thing? The answer comes when I imagine myself without this hysterically productive thing that has given me such a sense of accomplishment, especially this year. For now, yes. I can’t even believe I’m doing it.

By |September 19th, 2017|Life, Writings|4 Comments
  • Summer Summer

    Summer

Summer

When I think of summer I think of riding my bike in flip flops, or maybe bare feet. Summer is when my skin turns brown; the hair on my arms golden, barely there. It’s the season of no comb. Summer is the sound of boats racing in the harbor down the street. It’s the cross breeze cooling things down around five and the sky staying lit past eight while kids zoom by on their skateboards until the very last minute. It’s slurping popsicles before they melt. Summer means warm breezes, trips to the beach and bitching at each other trying to find a parking spot in a lot that’s been jammed since early morning. “Screw this let’s just go home. No way we’ve been looking for half an hour. Wait, there’s one!” Summer is watching all the flowers I planted in spring bloom and grow, being able to give them a cool drink at the end of a hot day. Reading a book in a quiet space created by me. Seeing my neighbors barbecuing next door and all of us waving at each other with big grins. “Can I interest you in some green onions? Sure, trade you for some rosemary!” Usually there is a trip to my parents’ farm and maybe a camping trip to the lake like when we were kids. Summer in Canada is something I look forward to all year long. New kittens in the barn. How many? What color? How long until they run towards me instead of away? Green grass and green trees and green everything. That sweet smell in the air. What is it? We always say we’re going to figure it out, but never do. It’s just […]

By |September 10th, 2015|Life, Writings|9 Comments
  • Corkscrew yourself Corkscrew yourself

    Corkscrew yourself

Corkscrew yourself

Chris took that crazy picture of me two months after the last stroke. Some people might be embarrassed have it out there, but I’m not. It marked the first time I was able to put all my weight on my left leg, even though I hit the pavement right after. Plus I love that Frankie is in it, always standing guard. Little things like opening a bottle of water or getting the fitted sheets around the corners of the bed have gotten easier for me. Small victories. Ones I still shake my head at if I stop and think about them, which I try not to do too much. Last week I decided to nut up and try Pilates. I think most of the people who read here (all 20 of you) know I used to love Pilates and practice regularly. Welp, here is a summary of how it went down: What’s a corkscrew again? Wait, I used to be able to do a corkscrew. Flailing 5 minute breaks every 5 minutes. Where are my abdominal walls? What are abdominal walls? Do I still have abdominal walls? You zip up from the belly button to the spine, lady. Oh, you already are. The real kicker came when I tried to put my weight on my right arm and thread the needle. All that happened was a bunch of shaking and me collapsing on the mat. Humility 1, Carrie 0. When it was over I was dripping in sweat from beginner moves. Actually, I was dripping in sweat after 3 minutes and just maintained a steady stream throughout. My legs felt like rubber. I was bewildered. Beginner moves weren’t a struggle for me even when I […]

  • You spin me right round like a record You spin me right round like a record

    You spin me right round like a record

You spin me right round like a record

Last week a couple of people emailed to see if I was okay because I haven’t posted in over a month. First, I just want to say thanks. That meant a lot to me. Interestingly, I caught myself hesitating before saying I was okay; like if I said it I might jinx myself. I spent most of the summer screwing around (see posts immediately previous to this, but mostly instagram because I didn’t update here all that much) and thinking about what I should do with my life. All in all it was pretty good. I’m pretty sure I said that before, but it’s worth mentioning again because my short-term memory is sometimes nil and who knows what I’ll remember when I’m thumbing back through these posts someday. A few days ago, actually I think a bit more but ta-da can’t remember exactly, I had another stroke. I’m not going to lie, I spent most of yesterday crying in bed. I feel bad for myself. I’m dizzy. I can’t ride my bike. Shit, I can’t even walk all that well although Chris keeps telling me I’m doing great. My right side is really weak. I woke up this morning (thank God) with my hand and foot curled in the vulture grip. Fuck. I HATE THIS. Why me? Why again? But then I think why not me? What exempts me from having a terrible thing happen to me? Nothing, I guess. All that work I put in, what a steep and scary climb it was and I didn’t even make the 2 year mark. I keep thinking about my doctor telling me my risk for reoccurrence and worse is in the 90th percentile in the next 5 years.  I’m not even at year […]

By |October 1st, 2014|Life|31 Comments
  • It’s like it was waiting for me It’s like it was waiting for me

    It’s like it was waiting for me

It’s like it was waiting for me

Chris and I were looking for a parking spot at the farmer’s market when I saw this rad van. We got out just across from it and he snapped a picture of me. When we walked away I said, “It’s like it was waiting for me.” Yesterday I was feeling a little discouraged. After last week’s stellar sales on eBay things had hit a lull. I feel like I’m so close to the end of shedding old things and just want it to be over. Is it gone yet? Isn’t that the way it is though? We want something, don’t immediately get it and feel like giving up. This thought came to me as I was getting ready for bed last night. On a whim around 7 o’clock I decided to go back in the closet for a final sweep to see if anything else could go. I’m not sure if  it was the pile of laundry waiting to be put away or the heavy feeling of still too much, but suddenly I saw that space with a set of fresh eyes and ended up with a new pile of stuff to sell. Good things, hard to get rid of things that made me uncomfortable, queasy frankly, even though I know it’s the right thing to do. And then when I came out of the closet, several of the items that had been sitting on eBay sold. It was a telling moment. It’s all about timing. I feel like I’m being stripped of a lot of things that used to define me. Underneath I can feel my old self, my true self, emerging again. I want it to be now. But maybe the stripping isn’t done yet; […]

  • It puts the culottes in the basket It puts the culottes in the basket

    It puts the culottes in the basket

It puts the culottes in the basket

All hell broke loose in here the other day when I decided to get a bag of clothes together for Goodwill and instead managed to fill an entire closet full of things to sell or give away. We’re talking the good stuff: Jen’s Pirate Booty, Free People, MOTHER and even Isabel Marant. I’m nervous, but it feels good. Between last summer and December I cut my closet in half. A LOT of stuff went out the door and I haven’t missed a single piece. In the past calendar year I haven’t replaced much either. I’ve enjoyed living with less. It feels kind of weird, but mostly awesome, to not constantly think about what I’m going to buy next. The clothes I’ve kept get worn much more than before. My favorites are still my favorites and that’s been a great learning experience. I have enough. I’m happy with what I have. I am enough. I’m learning I live in patterns. When I’m nervous or stressed, I sometimes anesthetize myself with things. Buying them makes me feel like I can take care of myself, having them makes me feel safe, like a cushion. Holding myself accountable to only replace things that have worn out or are out of style has been a great exercise. Getting rid of things I don’t wear anymore and not replacing them with anything has pushed me outside my comfort zone. Developing that discipline has been painful at times, but really rewarding. I see things more clearly. I’m a more content person. The other day I took it to the garage where there are a couple of rubbermaids filled with old stuff I’ve slowly been getting rid of. Losing parts of my memory […]

  • Don’t Give In To The Hype Don’t Give In To The Hype

    Don’t Give In To The Hype

Don’t Give In To The Hype

For a recent project I’ve been calling investment banks talking to associates and analysts. Why is she doing this, you ask yourself? Believe me I’ve been asking myself the same question, but it’s really made me think. ————————- Last week I was at the beach practicing earthing on my lunch break. Standing ankle deep in the ocean, I remembered a dream I’d had the night before. Chris and I were driving down a dirt road in Australia. Outside my passenger window, alongside the road, was a narrow waterway kind of like a river with the most crystal clear, blue water. Inside the water were sharks, lots of sharks. I screamed SHARKS! and he tried to get a look by craning over into my seat. Ahead was a driveway leading to someone’s garage. Being Chris, he pulled in and parked illegally while I (being me) repeatedly told him we should not be parking in someone else’s driveway. He thought he’d seen some sharks swimming around their house and wanted to get a quick look, so we hopped out of the vehicle. Sure enough there were sharks turning over and over in the water – almost showing off – white bellies in the sun, fins up, fins down, googly eyes, swimming in these super narrow channels all around the house. Scared to death, I couldn’t figure out what I was doing near the edge and why all these people?! If you’ve seen JAWS you know why. It was the longest dream of my life spent sidled up against a house watching sharks up close and personal in the cleanest water I’ve ever seen. ————————- The conversations I’ve been having with these analysts and associates have produced a […]