Friday, September 18, 2009

At Last: The Final 25 Things You Never Knew You Wanted To Know About Me

76. I wear size 9 ½ or 10 shoes, depending on the make of shoe and the time of day.

77. I’m unfortunately ill-equipped to tackle much of today’s technology. I’m ok at transferring photos onto my computer (after making copious, step-by-step notes on how to do it); I can play CDs, DVDs and movies on VHS tapes; I’ve been known to download tunes onto my iPod; and I’ve figured out my fancy-dancy clock radio/alarm clock combination on my nightable. But much beyond that I’m embarrassingly an old woman, reliant on the good graces of either my husband or my teenage nephews when they come for their annual visit from Vancouver.

78. I have wanted to adopt a child(ren) since I was about 15 years old…long before I knew we would have fertility issues.

79. I can type (or keyboard, to use modern lingo…I think) at about 105 words per minutes. I was the fastest typist in my grade 10 typing class, at 66 words per minute; but I recently clocked myself again using some internet-based testing process, and I’ve improved my wpm significantly in the past couple of decades. I think that my grade 10 typing class was the most useful course in all of my education.

80. Of all of the thousands of books I have read and loved, the Bible is the one book that, to me, endures.

81. My cat sleeps with me every night, stretched along my side in the crook of my arm, and resting her head on my shoulder. We share each other’s warmth…and she gets a good whiff of my armpit – not sure how she stands its ripeness at day’s end.

82. I had the longest ear lobes in my grade 10 class.  I blame my parents.

83. I love hanging out with my five-year-old – I truly enjoy his company. Is this normal? We talk about lots of stuff that I would have thought too complicated for a five-year-old’s developing brain, and he frequently surprises me with his insight into a situation or person. I genuinely enjoy his personality and our way of relating. Besides, he calls me beautiful and notices every time I wear a new shirt or change my hair style - what's not to like about that??

84. Having overcome significant marital issues with my husband and being in a really good place with him now, I find myself feeling a lot of compassion when I see other couples who are hurting. I seem to be able to intuit (is this a word?) very quickly people who are struggling in their relationship. It’s not an easy place to be.

85. I like the idea of gardening but I must confess that, on a day-to-day basis, I’m just not that great at getting out there and weeding it. Places to go, people to see, babies to kiss…

86. My younger sister having breast cancer has had a profound effect on me. She is just now finishing the last of her post-surgery chemo treatments and I think that her ending will be my beginning. In the past six months since her diagnosis, I have been so focused on her that I have ignored the processing that I need yet to do; perhaps being able to relax a bit now from all of the worrying and care-giving will enable me to work through what I need to work through.

87. Though I had a hard time adjusting to life back in my province of birth when we moved back in 2005, I must say that it’s nice to be around more family, to be taken out for dinner on a fairly regular basis by my parents, to invite family over to my house, even to go to family gatherings once in a while.

88. I can’t figure out if I’m an extrovert or an introvert...and it irritates me. I’ve taken all of the Myers-Briggs stuff several times in my adult life and I’ve been both – never too far from the midline, but definitely on both sides of it. I love hanging out with people and definitely need a social life and close friends around me; I also love chatting with and bouncing ideas around with my hubbie. And – I also love being by myself, hanging out on my own, going to see a movie or something by myself, reading a good book all alone in the house, etc. I enjoy my own company for the most part. In fact, as much as I need and enjoy my friends, I equally need and enjoy time on my own. Someday I’d love to be able to label myself as one or the other – to feel a bit boxed in perhaps. Odd, in a way, to want to be labeled – what does that say about me?

89. Things that I like about myself include: I’m usually (definitely not always!) fairly intelligent and can readily apply myself to academics or debate; I'm loyal; I am a good mother – I think I understand my child well and am willing to make (not just talk about) hard sacrifices to enable him to be raised well; I’m becoming someone who’s a more compassionate and understanding wife; I’ve come to appreciate my intuitive side, which I’ve learned increasingly to trust over the years; I’m compassionate to someone who’s hurting; I can be very passionate about things that are important to me; I'm good with kids and they generally like me; I love animals and am kind to them; I’m more of a thinker than a doer (I both like and dislike this about myself so you’ll see it again below).

90. Things that I don’t like about myself include: I am often very determined about what I think is right, to the detriment of another person’s viewpoint mattering - I can be a bit of a bull in a china shop; my ability to debate and communicate my point of view on any given topic can be off-putting to the person I’m relating to and can leave them feeling intimidated; though I have an easy time committing to things, I have a much harder time finishing them, particularly if they’re long or drawn-out tasks or if I lose interest; I don't like being overweight or the issues that leave me wanting to fill my needs with food; I’m more of a thinker than a doer at times; I can be competitive in an overly aggressive way if I’m passionate about something or even just challenged by someone; I can be very impatient when my focus is interupted.

91. Until about five years ago, I didn’t know the difference between Atlantic Canada and The Maritimes. It was around the same time that I learned the distinction between England and the U.K. How embarrassing. There better be good curriculum available for the Geography courses I’m going to teach my son as part of our home school experience! I suck at history, too. I’m not sure, actually, what I will be able to teach him beyond kindergarten.

92. I can’t bend my toes…a genetic trait I inherited from my father. Other than him, I’ve never met anyone else who can’t bend their toes…though I acknowledge that it’s generally not the first topic of conversation that comes up.

93. I don’t own a blackberry – in fact, I still use a good, old-fashioned day timer that I carry around with me when I’m not at home. My life is to be found in that ‘little black book.’

94. I do own a cell phone, though, and use it frequently.

95. I have a recurring dream of someday sitting in our family room on a Friday night, watching a movie and eating popcorn and laughing and enjoying the company of my husband and all three of our children (two of whom we don’t know yet).

96. I am a pen thief and usually hoard a minimum of five or six in my purse. I can’t seem to do with less. I am in fear of not having a pen available to me. I also carry about a very small, black, lined, journal-like book in my purse, and the book is full of important bits of trivia as well as jotted phrases and observations that are intended to help me write my future novel.

97. Which brings me to a dream for my future: I would love to write a novel some day. I have no idea what it would be about or even if I could do it, but that’s a dream of mine.

98. When I was fifteen and in Mr. Pauls’ high school math class, he kept me after class and told me (as he had done publicly during the class) that I was no longer allowed to ask the question ‘why.’ Now, years later, listening to my son ask that same question about three or four dozen times a day, I finally understand Mr. Pauls’ level of desperation.

99. I believe that after I die, I’m going to spend eternity in heaven with God. Some days, this sounds really good. Other days, it scares me, mostly because of the people I love that I will leave behind.

100. When I get to heaven, I have a list of questions that I’d like to ask God. Things I wish I could have figured out while I was alive but couldn’t.

101. My last point: Though I am glad that this list is now complete, I have enjoyed the writing of it more than I thought I would when I started. Perhaps someday I’ll add to it and dig deeper into myself. But for now, I’m done.

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