Thursday, February 26, 2009

I Can't Hate

Looking back on my life, I have come to the conclusion that I can't hate anyone. I can dislike, I can be indifferent, I can love, I can like, but I cannot hate.

Having said that, I have come close at times. I can safely say there have been two people in my life who have hurt me so deeply that it has taken me years to heal. Almond being one of them. And my first ever, best friend, being the other.

My first best friend, let's call her, Vivi. We met in kindergarten, and we instantly bonded. I moved away when I was in grade 7. And I know, friends come and go. But she was my best friend, and I thought that our friendship was stronger than that. Of course, at that age, friends at school were everything. So we both made new "best friends" at our own schools, but were still each other's best friends.

I know, it's silly. Even at that age, I know that friends drift apart. That's normal. However, we still saw each other every Saturday at Chinese school, and we hung out at recess, as we usually did. Then, one day, she hung out with some other girls at recess. And then she started to sit with them. And not invite me.

I asked her if she was mad at me. At first she brushed off my questions, with answers, such as, "Well, I've hung out with you at recess since kindergarten, I wanted to meet other people." Which, made sense to me. But I was still hurt. Then, it became clear to me, that I just wasn't cool enough for her.

I was very, very sad. This loss of friendship broke my little heart. I had no idea what I did wrong. I tried talking to her at school. Calling her. Asking her what I did wrong so I could apologize, and we could be friends, again. I don't remember her giving me an explanation. She said she wasn't mad at me, but she just didn't want to be friends, anymore.

I remember feeling so lost without a best friend. Without someone to whom I can share my deepest secrets, and dreams with. I remember dreaming about it, for years afterwards. That she would ask me to be friends with her again. And I would always, always forgive her. And we would go on laughing and joking like nothing had come between us.

And if she were to ask me today, I'm sure I would say the same thing.

My second "break up" was with Almond. As you have probably read in my previous posts about him, he broke up with me without much of a reason, or explanation.

He sent me angry emails when I said I needed to be alone. His email to me the first Christmas after we broke up was horrible. I have never been able to read it again. But it was demeaning. It was a complete guilt trip. It was very, very cruel. And, it was way, way below the belt.

Keep in mind that he was the one who wanted to break up. Basically, he was frustrated that he didn't get much of a reaction from me. Apparently, I was supposed to fight for him to come back, and ask him to reconsider or beg him to stay, or something to that effect. Me trying to respect his decision and moving on, was not what he had expected.

Since our breakup, I have never said one hurtful thing to him. It wasn't until about 5 months ago, when we decided to communicate again, that I realized how much anger I was really keeping pent up inside. (This was shortly after Haagan Daz and I broke up). He canceled out on our meeting, and that was the moment I realized I was PISSED. Even after everything, he initiates a meeting and gets to make the call to cancel last minute?!?! No F*in way.

I penned out my anger in a very angry email addressed to him.

Addressing all the hurt that I had kept inside for the last two years. The time which I had tried to move on. Had tried to forget about all the hurt. Had tried to stop hoping that things between us would (maybe, by some miracle) go back to how it was before. That I would be able to feel that way about someone else.

I lashed out in my writing at how immature he was. How much hurt he caused me. I was angry that during out time together, I tried to reach out to him but he bottled things up and let things explode without ever trying to talk to me about it. I lashed out at how he was immature, whiny and depressing, and I still tried my best to cheer him up, and loved him all the same. Thinking and believing we would get through this because we loved each other.

I bitched about how even after our break up, I was still a friend to him, when he had no one else to turn to, because I genuinely cared about him, but partly why he was being my friend, was so that he could "see if things were going somewhere."

I bitched at how he would seem like a lost puppy one minute, saying that he knew it was unfair to ask me to wait until he was ready for a relationship. That I was the best thing that happened t him, and I was so important to him, but he had NO F*KN idea when he was ready for a relationship again. Then a month later his FB profile is plastered with him a new GF.

It made me so angry!

And I wrote it all out in the email to him. Bitching my heart out. Pouring out the anger that I had kept inside because I DIDN'T WANT TO HATE HIM, or hurt him. And now I wanted to hurt him. I wanted hurt him as much as he hurt me. Wanted to see how he lost someone so great because he was a moron and idiot. The anger I first felt almost 2 years ago, were flooding back to me in that email.

I sent the email to my one of my firlfriends. Then, I saved it. I knew I was in no condition to send something to Almond. And I went to sleep.

I looked at the email a couple days later, after I had calmed down.

And I realized that my email, sounded a lot like the one he sent me 3 Christmases ago.

It was angry. It was blaming. It was immature. But most of all it was hurtful.

And I realized, that no matter how angry I felt at the moment. No matter how hurt I was, that he could still stir up so many emotions after this long. I realized, I didn't want to hurt him the way he hurt me. I don't want to hit below the belt. I didn't want to hate him. I just so desperately wanted to move on. And I just wanted to know why it was so hard.

Even now. I find it hard to completely trust anyone. But I also know these things take time. I am more careful with my heart, and want to be careful that I don't guard it so much that I don't give other's a chance to see it.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Very Different

LeBlanc is very different from any of the guys I've dated before. Tres different from Almond, and that was one of the things that drew me to him. And the fact that I was at a point in my life where I thought that I should stop thinking so much, and just enjoy it!

I feel very comfortable with LeBlanc. He knows that I get grouchy when I'm hungry. Or how I ramble on incoherently when I first wake up. That I prefer staying in than going out. That I can eat as fast as him, though not as much. That my sarcasm can match his. That I can burn frozen dinner, but also be able to roast an entire chicken. hehe.

We didn't realize before, but we have very similar interests and outlooks on life. He's also the oldest of three siblings, and when I met his family over dinner a few weeks ago, his little brother was so happy to see him. They didn't stop talking and it reminded of me and my sisters. It was absolutely adorable :) We both love food, and he is not afraid to try anything new.

When he came over for the first time, I was so flustered, I burnt the frozen dumplings I was cooking for him. So, he thought that I couldn't cook. But he was sweet about it.

LeBlanc: Des, you look flustered.
me: Well, I kinda burnt the frozen dumplings.

(Parts of them were actually black. I had made dumplings millions of times before this, mind you.)

LeBlanc: Oh, that's ok. That's how I like my dumplings.
me: You like them burnt?

LeBlanc: Exactly. Perfect burntness.

Maybe that's why he always offers to cook. Until I made him dinner on Valentine's Day. I am proud to say I roasted an entire chicken. Roasted chicken and potatoes with garlic and rosemary. Very yummy. And easy.

LeBlanc got us tickets to see the musical - The Sound of Music. A little bit into the show, I turn to ask LeBlanc something. And I notice he starting to doze... I poke him. He dozes in random parts - the boring parts, he assures me. And I prod and kick him when I notice it. I felt a little bad that he was missing out, or maybe he wasn't enjoying it.

At the end of the night, I ask him.

me: Did you have fun tonight? I feel kinda bad. I feel like you wasted your money because you were asleep. Or bored.
LeBlanc: Des, I think I got a good amount of musical tonight. I don't enjoy them as much as you, but I think that I was awake for the most enjoyable parts.
So I optimized my awake time.
me: And the parts you were sleeping?

LeBlanc: They weren't that interesting. To me. Talking bores me. But the set was awesome!!!

(Note: If you bring a guy to a musical, make sure it has an awesome set, it will distract them from the boring bits.)

LeBlanc: Besides, I had great company. It was a great atmosphere. Great music. Singing, dancing. It was a pretty fun Valentine's Day, if you ask me. Don't feel bad, Des. I have a short attention span. I'm glad you liked the musical.

Things with LeBlanc are going well. I'm pretty content right now. Who would have thunk LeBlanc would be such a sweetheart? I certainly didn't think so when he was making fun of me non-stop when we first traveled together. Boys.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Thoughts at the Mall

Being in my mid-twenties, sometimes I get hit with the "Wow, I’m an adult" feeling. The feeling that I am no longer carefree and na├»ve. Little things, such as, having to apply eye cream at night, or realizing my metabolism has slowed down. To bigger things, such as having responsibilities to myself, my family and my friends. If I make a mistake, it's up to me to fix it.

Sometimes, I want to go back to those times where I didn't have to be as responsible, those teenager years. I usually smarten up pretty quickly, and instead of yearning for my youth, I am grateful for some of the wisdom I have acquired over the years.

Take last Friday, for instance. I spent a good 3 hours in the mall while waiting to meet up for dinner with a friend. In those god-for-saken 3 hours, I got tired of roaming the stores (shopping is more fun with people), and sat down to read my finance book, "She Laughed all the way to the Bank."

Surrounding me were a bunch of teenagers. Girls with tight clothes with TNA labels, giggling and flirting with the boys. Guys with baggy pants, only about 5 sizes too big for them held up by belts to their knees, trying to be all "cool". All texting on their Blackberries and rifling through their Lululemon bags. They took pictures of themselves, sitting in each other laps, with their digital cameras and complained about homework and working.

You know, back when I was in middle school and high school, these were probably the cool kids. Popular kids. The kids with friends who hung out in crowds by the entrance to cafeteria. Whereas me and my friends hung out in the library. Doing our homework.

I still don't have a Blackberry, though I do have a super cute Nokia (which I got for $0). I still haven't bought an article of clothing from TNA. Or Lululemon. (Though I have been tempted to on a couple occasions. Then reality slaps me - a tank top for $54?! Puh-lease!!) And, yet, I'm probably the one with the income to do so (compared to teenagers who probably earn minimum wage).

But the difference (well, one of them) between those girls (who represent what I wanted to be back when I was a teenager) and present me, is that, I realized my mom was right when she said that your friends won't care about what you wear. In high school and middle school, when all the cool kids had their brand name clothes, and cool accessories - it's part of what made them fit in. And, now, I don't need that. At all. I prefer to spend my money elsewhere. On things that make me feel good, not on proving myself to someone else.

Then, I feel so glad that that part of my life is in the past. That I am now wiser, and realize how silly I used to be when I had those moments to want to fit in with crowds of people who weren't even interested in me. And, I am very thankful for the wisdom my parents tried to pass on to me about making friends. You only need a couple good ones. And those good ones, could care less about how you look.

Now, applying eye cream doesn't seem so bad :)

TNA. Completely overrated.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

When Life Gets Busy

OK. So maybe I was a little too ambitious in my last post of starting two other blogs. haha.

One step at a time, Des.

However, I was definitely serious about taking my finances more seriously and arming myself with knowledge of budgeting and money stuff.

When my real life gets busy, my virtual life is a little bit neglected. And it's not that I don't think about writing, it's just that it never gets done.

However, let's start off with some personal finance.

So, I've been working for the past 7 months or so. After working for 6 months, I saved enough to clear my student debt (about $8000 - so, it's quite small). Then, I realized that my bank balance was pretty much right back where I started before I started my job.

I had about $10,000 sitting in a GIC ever since I started university since I had earned money through a part time job that I had been saving for university. However, I was fortunate enough to get some scholarships to supplement my tuition. Along with working every four months through co-op, I was able to leave my GIC alone.

After traveling, my checking account was pretty much gone, and I borrowed some money from my sister until my first pay check came.

I guess, what really surprised me was that I really didn't know where my money had gone in the last 6 months. I sat down to tally my major purchases and expenses, and it really hit me hard that it was definitely a lot easier to earn money than to save it.

My net income is a little over $2500 a month, plus an initial signing bonus.

Major expenses in the past 6 months:
$8000 Student loans
$1000 New mattress and bed frame
$1100 2 visits to IKEA for small furniture and house hold items (at that time, I only had 1 fork and 1 spoon as utensils)
$2600 Rent for 6 months
$700 Transportation for 6 months
$400 Visit to Ottawa including airfare, a new leather jacket, spending there
$220 Used furniture
$600 groceries (estimated $100 a month)
$120 Sport team league fees
$100 Wedding gift
$50 Beach weekend

Misc --> Eating out, movies, shopping for work clothes


So, this is one of the motivations behind me wanting to track my finances. I don't regret my decisions on my spending. I guess, it just would've been nice to know at the time, how I was spending my money. A lot of it is start up - such as the furniture and house hold stuff. Now I am not that surprised that after I paid of my loans, there isn't much left.

More to come :) and wish me luck.