Thursday, June 22, 2017

Schools out for summer!

I previously wrote that my son, Philip was finishing school for the summer and the last couple of months were tumultuous for us. This year was another lesson for us on just how mean some people can actually be to a child and we can now all take a break to enjoy the reprieve the summer has to offer!

We are hopeful that come September, we will have a more successful school year for us. For now, we can rejoice that we made it! Yahoooo!

To celebrate this joyous occasion, after saying our good-byes to the after school program monitors, we went to our local mall and had frozen yogurt for supper! We had several different kinds. I had mango, chocolate, strawberry and honey. We even got to choose a variety of toppings! Here's to healthy eating...NOT!

Summer here we come and this only means that we are getting that much closer to Halloween! BRING IT ON!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Rediscovering old items

Hello everyone! For those of you who have been following my lifestyle change, I lost a little over 30 pounds since last summer! For those of you who are unaware, last year, I gained a ton of weight. I was unhealthy and after seeing a photo of myself, I decided it was time for a positive change!

I do not believe in fad diets. I do not believe in starving myself to look a certain way. I do believe in eating right and exercise and I have been doing just that.

Despite feeling a little down earlier this month, I decided to focus on the positive so I donated clothes that no longer fit me to goodwill and I started wearing my clothes differently.

One of the things I started doing was tucking my shirt in and I also started wearing tighter fitting clothes. This is something I have not done in years, in fact, before I got pregnant! I now feel confident and beautiful. I noticed that I have my hour glass figure back.

Making this lifestyle change, made me appreciate my body more. I stopped hating it. It is not because I am a lot slimmer than I was before. I thought being thin would make me feel better but it is the exercise and eating healthy that did it for me. Don't get me wrong, I still enjoy junk food! I live in Montreal and know where all the good poutine places are! I do eat burgers too, I just don't eat that stuff every day. I actually look forward to my workouts and I feel better.

 To me, I was always a petite woman and this is the Sylvie I remember;  The healthy little short girl who dangles her feet when she sits down. It is nice to feel more like myself again.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

The Bog Of Eternal Stench

I recently got a new Pop figure to add to my Labyrinth collection, considering Jareth was lonely. I got Hoggle! I remember the first scene with him in the movie,he was peeing in the fountain and then he started "dusting" faeries! I really do like this character and am so happy to have him as an addition to my collection.

I swear, I have no clue where I am going to put all these damned things!

Monday, June 12, 2017

The Pit In The Pendulum

I have two posts in my drafts folder waiting to be published and I hesitate. I think they suck. I was supposed to go to the Goth picnic this weekend but I didn't. I wanted to go but then I started thinking all these negative things. Most of them were about me.

I didn't want to write about this but I think I must. After all, very recently I wrote about depression. The one thing I kept out is the fact that I am going through this right now. I didn't want to write about it but I think I should because I think some friends not only need a reason why I have been distant but because I feel like I should speak openly about it. I recently wrote that I didn't want to live in a world where everyone pretended to be happy all the time, and well, right now, I could be a little happier!

I feel kinda crummy too because I made plans with some people and didn't follow through. It's hard to get out of bed in the morning (ok, I always have trouble getting out of bed any morning but it is especially hard these days) and I think it is important to talk about depression due to the stigma behind it. This is why I am getting personal here!  It is just hard to find motivation to do anything but I am strong. Seriously, I am not going to let this get to me. Ain't nobody got time for that! I am very productive at work, I manage to keep my house clean, I have been going for long walks at night because despite feeling shitty, I am a fighter. Even if it means sleeping more and taking more breaks. Living in a messy house is only going to make me feel worse. Not exercising or eating crap food is only going to make me feel bad for all that weight gain since recently, I lost a lot of weight and am quite happy with the results. I started this positive lifestyle change by eating healthy and exercise, I am not going to let it slide. Not for this.

There are reasons for why I feel like shit  but I cannot list them here as they don't only involve me, they involve my son. As vague as I can be, I want to take a moment to speak to the parents of school aged children. The ones with kids who may have had some sort of difficulty. I am in that boat. I refuse to go into details and they are probably not serious but I am in the process of getting it all sorted out. It has been a battle and at least I am getting to the bottom of it.

A couple of years ago, a friend on Facebook shared a page that struck a chord with me. This little boy in the US has (I believe autism) and when his mother asked him who he would like to invite to his birthday party, he said no one. He had no friends. His mother created a Facebook page for his family called Colin's friends. The point of the page was for people to leave him positive words. Well, word did get out and people from all over the world "liked" the page.  In the end, people wanted to mail cards and the mom set up a PO box for him. He had no idea this was happening and you can imagine his surprise on his birthday when he received loads upon loads of birthday cards! I even mailed the kid one! I sort of stuck around on the page over the years and I got the privilege to see this young boy grow up (and learn that he is a fellow Whovian no less!) with his younger sister, Ella. 

There is a point to all of this and I am speaking to the parents who are in a similar situation as I am. You see,  his mother wrote something over the weekend that struck a chord with me and since she wrote it so eloquently, I would like you to read it too. I needed to read this. I realized that I wasn't alone and I hope this can offer you the same comfort it has for me:

"Tomorrow is Ella's last full day of school, then she has two half days, and then she's done. This hasn't been a particularly tough school year, but I'm still ready for it to be over. I do remember the years, however, where the countdown to the end of the year felt like life or death. Those years when the kids, and the school, and every adult that dealt with Colin all seemed to be fed up with him, and all I wanted is a day where I didn't have to sit in fear that I'd get a phone call, or an email, or have to go down to the school. I just wanted Colin to learn, and instead we learned just how cruel people can be when they think you are different. To all the parents of kids who are being bullied, or excluded, or are seen as "different", try to relax this summer. You've done a good job this year, being your child's champion, even when it doesn't feel like it. Your kid has the right to an equal education, and a safe place to get that in. Being "different" doesn't negate that. Here's to a peaceful summer to us all."

We have 10 more days until school is out. Not counting the weekend, he has 8 more days and I will be perfectly honest, I can't wait.  The past two months took it's toll on me and while I do not wish to give too many details online, let's just say I am so grateful for an understanding husband and a wonderful, sweet little puppy. She is on my lap right now as I am typing this. I swear, puppies are the best anti depressant in the world! 
To all parents out there in the same shitty situation as I am, I salute you. Hang in there, we are almost done! We can do this! I am sure, like me, there were times you wished you could have done enough or you imagined handling situations differently or what more you could have done, please remember, YOU are enough. I know how hard it is and sometimes we wonder whether or not we did the right thing. The fact that we worry about such things is what makes us GREAT parents. Remember to smile and enjoy your child too because I bet in 10 years from now, we are only going to remember the hugs, joy and laughter.  Those are the things worth fighting for and holding onto.

My antidepressants!

Friday, June 9, 2017

Thoughts on cemetery etiquette and dog walking

Yes, I am going there and going to write about cemetery etiquette because unfortunately, common courtesy isn't so common! We all know to be respectful, not leave trash/cigarette butts behind, not vandalize, not damage headstones (those things are bloody expensive!) and to please watch where we walk because you may not notice but you can possibly walk on someone's headstone. I often take pictures of cemeteries because I personally think they are beautiful and want to share some of that beauty. Perhaps to some, that very act can be considered an act of disrespect?

A most of you read, I recently adopted a puppy! She is a grey and white chihuahua and we named her Storm. She is now 3 months old. I also recently taught her to walk on a leash and have been out with her every night! In fact, this evening, I took her to my local cemetery! While I was walking with her, I thought whether or not I was doing would be appropriate. After all, I am the type of person that scoffs at inappropriate behavior, especially in cemeteries and I began to question whether or not I was being respectful myself. Could walking my dog in the cemetery be considered disrespectful? As a result, I decided to continue with my stroll but made sure stay on the main road and not venture on the grass. This way, there would be no chance that my dog would do her business on someone's tombstone. For the record, I purchased this little capsule that you can tie on the least. Inside the capsule, there's spare bags to pick up your dogs "presents." I did not allow Storm to run free. It is a cemetery, not my back yard or dog park! In addition, if I did encounter a funeral procession (which is highly likely late in the evening but you never know!) I would have turned around or went down a different path. My pup loves meeting people and can get excited. She doesn't bark but would try to chase after them. I discourage her from jumping on other people, especially strangers but it is hard to control such behavior surrounded by a large group of people.It is better to not take any chances. Not everyone is a dog lover and while I personally would love to be greeted by a cute puppy when I am mourning the death of a loved one, not everyone is like me!

 Turns out, there was a news broadcast about people walking dogs in cemeteries and acting inappropriately!

 I like to think the majority of us goths know better than some of these people! 

Considering I mentioned my dog, and cemeteries, I took some pictures while I was out. Enjoy!

P.S. its hard to get photos while walking with a Puppy on a leash but meh...I just want to show off the view and my dog!

Come on! Let's go

Monday, June 5, 2017

Mental health week

"You, there on the bridge
Where've you been, what's your name?
And you, there on the wall
Where will you go to, once you fall?
You, lost at sea
Do you need me, do you need directions?
Hey, put down the gun
What are you thinking?
You were someone's son..."
Voltaire, Feathery Wings

According to the Internet, Mental Health week is next week (or is it the first week of May?) How come there is no set date on this? Just like mental health issues, even the cause to spread awareness behind it gets muddled along the way! This only further proves that I MUST write about this because this is something that should never be muddled along the way!  I am no stranger to mental health. I attempted suicide as a teenager and I still have scars on my body because I used to harm myself. As a result, I try not to look back at my youth often because it makes me really sad. I love being me and it hurts me that there was a time in my life when I was so self destructive.

My neighbor downstairs was mentally ill and this caused some issues for us. I was annoyed at him over his behavior, especially when he took his delusions out on my son (who was a toddler at that time) by yelling obscenities at us through the walls because he was convinced we were spying on him via electronic devices. I suspect the noise from my kid playing/using his toys was what caused the delusions. Considering my apartment is on two floors, I changed the upstairs office into a play area for my son and moved all our bookcases downstairs. This way, most of the time, we stayed upstairs with the kid except on weekends when we were home. Very recently, the gentleman moved out and I was reassured that he is in a better place where hopefully he is getting the help he needs. It just baffles me that it took this long for him to get help.He was hospitalized on numerous occasions.

Originally, I was going to write a lengthy post about my views on the popular Netflix series, 13 Reasons Why and how this show worries me. While the show does an excellent job with portraying bullying/cyber bullying, slut shaming, rape, the context of this young girl taking her own life as means for revenge is what bothers me. Suicide is a permanent decision and you will not be around to see the effects it has on other people. I am not a professional but I don't think the show  portrays the psychology behind suicide correctly (or if at all) and it just shows this young girl going through one horrific event after the other. That is not a message I am comfortable with young people receiving but I think it can be used as a tool for discussion with young adults. It was a reminder to what I was feeling at the time I made attempts at ending my own life and enticed me to have an age appropriate discussion with my six year old about bullying.

In Canada, thanks to our free healthcare system, people can get help but there are often long waiting lists associated with this. Thankfully, my insurance coverage I have through my work covers a portion of this but for some people, this may not be enough.

As a result, I personally feel that there are minimal resources for the mentally ill. My own personal experiences as well as the situation with my neighbor proves that.  The Government needs to do something. Unfortunately, people who severely need help are falling through the cracks.

Life was hard for me as a teenager and it seems not much has changed from the late nineties. In fact, with the Internet and with cyber bullying on the rise, children don't have the reprieve I did when I was in school.

So yes, let's do have a conversation about mental illness. Let's use this popular Netflix show to start a conversation with the young adults in our lives. Let's help them find 13 Reasons Why NOT To do it! Let's break down some barriers, if not for ourselves but for our children. Parents, let's speak up because as much as schools claim to have an anti-bullying policy, we need to work with them. We need to put more pressure on the schools and Government to deal with mental illness or at least have more resources for children who do have problems (be it ADD/ADHD, depression, dyslexia, anxiety, etc) because the regular school system lacks funding. I have experienced this first hand. We need to stop putting people into convenient little boxes. These are complex human beings. More and more nowadays these illnesses are prevalent but there is little help for them. Public school is catered towards children who are "normal" and special needs kids are falling through the cracks. If our kids can't attend public school, homeschooling is nearly impossible here, then there should be resources to better help these kids. After all, isn't it our basic human right as Canadians that every child should be entitled to a free education?

If you come across this post because you are depressed and need help, please do not give up on life. I am by far a licensed mental health professional but having personally came out of a very negative place in my life, I can tell you that life is worth living. Please call your local suicide prevention help line. Don't give up.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Dog walking 101

How naïve I was to think that a puppy would automatically know how to walk on a leash! After severely coaxing the poor thing, I decided to go on Youtube and learned how to train a dog to walk on a leash. For those curious, here is the link to the Youtube video:

After using the methods in the video, voila! My puppy is now going on walks with me.She pulls and tugs but one step at a time!

If we were to give out "Goth points" I think I should earn at least 100 of them considering I walk my dog while wearing my corset coat, coffin purse, at night, while listening to Bauhaus. I also like to think my dog looks like a bat!

So without further adieu, here are some cute photos of my puppy, Storm, as well as my badly shot video of me taking her for a walk. I apologize the bad footage. It is hard to hold a leash  while using my phone to film the whole process!

Life has been great. I have been pretty stressed over some personal things at the moment but it is therapeutic to be greeted by a very excited, happy puppy when I come home every day.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Mourning the loss of a pet and new beginnings

“He held her and rocked her, believing, rightly or wrongly, that Ellie wept for the very intractability of death, its imperviousness to argument or to a little girl’s tears; that she wept over its cruel unpredictability; and that she wept because of the human being’s wonderful, deadly ability to translate symbols into conclusions that were either fine and noble or blackly terrifying. If all those animals had died and been buried, then Church could die
(any time!)
and be buried; and if that could happen to Church, it could happen to her mother, her father, her baby brother. To herself. Death was a vague idea; the Pet Sematary was real. In the texture of those rude markers were truths which even a child’s hands could feel.”
― Stephen King,
Pet Sematary

Being a goth blog, I think it is quite appropriate to write about death without worrying about my readers becoming squeamish over the subject! As most of you have read on this blog, last December, my beloved cat Pippin passed away. It was a week before Christmas and it broke our hearts. Obviously, my six year old took it very hard. It was hard to tell Philip the bad news the next morning (he passed away at night), especially since I was up most of the night myself in tears. I still remember how he cried on my shoulder and how much it hurt me that I had to be the one to break his heart. I had to be stoic but inside, I was screaming. I knew he needed me to be strong because this is the first time where Philip was old enough to comprehend the concept of death. When he was a toddler, our other cats passed away. It was sad and tragic but he didn't quite understand. This time, he did but he wanted me to bring Pippin back and I had to explain, that I cannot do such a thing. It was hard to watch him understand the finality of it all and all I can do is help him through it as best I could while I too was in shock and disbelief.

In true Pippin fashion, he passed away a week before Christmas. Imagine how devastating it would be for us if he passed on during Christmas? Again, in true Pippin fashion, he waited for me to leave to go to my office party. He knew that watching him die would be too much for me to bear. He passed on quietly on my chair.

I remember allowing my son watch me grieve. I thought it was important for him to see me cry and to allow him to comfort me. I think Pippin would have wanted me to use his death as a teaching tool so I did. I took it as an opportunity to let Philip do the comforting and I thought since I am his mother and always the strong one, it was important for him to see me vulnerable. That he wasn't the only one affected by the cat being gone. It was nice being comforted but I bet it made him feel good to be able to make me feel better. I wanted to also teach him that it was NORMAL to be in mourning because in today's world, the concept of sadness, loss, and grief is often swept under the rug. It is not a dirty secret! Mourning is healthy. In a way, mourning our cat brought us closer together because I remember how we would often wipe away our own tears in order to console the other.

I remember being contacted by the school for his behavior. He started acting up in class. It was hard to tell a grieving child that while he is hurting inside over a loss of a pet is OK, it is not acceptable to do certain things.

I would often listen to his Pippin stories and smile at them. That cat was with me for a long time. Philip knew him all his life and I realized that he wasn't only important to me, he was to everyone else in my family. It made me happy  to realize that he didn't just touch my life in a positive way but he touched others as well. In fact, many family members and friends shared their favourite Pippin stories with me!

I encouraged Philip to talk about this at school. He came home and told me that his best friend was able to offer him some comfort. Apparently, his best friend's bird died and he understood how Philip felt. That was important to me because he was learning to reach out to his peers. I knew that his friends are important to him and it was reassuring that he was getting comfort from his best friend.

The winter came and went. By spring, the pain subsided and I was able to share some of my Pippin stories with Philip without completely breaking down. I told him what the cat was like as a kitten (this was before Philip was even thought of) and showed him some old photos. It was the first time we were able to talk about the cat without choking up. Philip admitted that he was still sad over Pippin dying and I took it as a great teaching tool as a way to show him what death really is. I told him that the cat was still alive in our memories. We can look back at all the good times we had with him and smile. It is OK to be sad sometimes and miss him but knowing what the type of friend Pippin was, he wouldn't want us to be sad about him all the time. He would want us to remember him and be grateful for all the good times he gave us. He would want us to be happy because all his life, he did everything to make us feel that way.  It doesn't mean that someone, (pets included) is gone that they are truly gone. You cannot erase that person completely, especially when they meant so much to you. They can still be alive in our memories.

Many people don't get grief. They don't get that when someone important to you dies, you can't just pick up the pieces and get on with your life. You hold onto something they gave you. I don't want to live in a world where we pretend to be happy all the time because they world isn't like that. Nothing is black and white. I think it is important to talk about death, to talk about the happy memories because that is where the healing begins. I think it is healthy to remember people (and pets!) that helped shaped our lives. I think it is healthy to cry and miss that person but most importantly, it is important that to remember the good times and not just the act of dying. The Death Tarot card symbolizes re-birth. All good things must come to an end but with everything ending, there are new beginnings. Seeing that Philip accepted that the cat would want us to be happy and no longer feels ashamed with sharing memories of him, I felt like it was appropriate to have a new beginning in our family. We adopted our dog, Storm. No, she will never take Pippin's place but she is around to give us new memories while we honor Pippin's. She has brought so much happiness in this short time. It is OK to look back but it is also important to look at the days ahead. Pippin would have wanted it that way.

“May be she’ll learn something about what death really is, which is where the pain stops and the good memories begin. Not the end of life but the end of pain.”
― Stephen King,
Pet Sematary

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Rumours of a Forever Knight movie

Growing up in the nineties, I would sometimes watch  a Canadian TV show called Forever Knight. The premise of the TV show was about an 800 year old vampire who was trying to redeem himself by working the night shift in Toronto, Ontario as a homicide detective.

I was pleasantly surprised to hear rumblings of a movie based off of this TV show!

Cos-player, Zack Taylor is rumoured to star as the main character, Nick Knight.


It is nice to see the return of REAL vampires in pop culture and the sparkly variety are being forgotten.

And for those curious, here is the Youtube opening for the TV show and yes, I have also seen full episodes available to watch!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

A storm and a burnt marshmallow

Sometime ago, the husband and I made a very personal decision to not have any more children. I was OK with that because I have my hands full with Philip but part of me was also saddened by it. I felt like I missed out a lot because I didn't have a natural birth and I was unable to breastfeed. Another reason for this difficult choice was the fact that it was a miracle that my son as well as myself survived child birth and I don't want to risk putting my health, as well as any future child's health in jeopardy. It was a heart wrenching decision to make but today, I am content with having one child.

Last December, my cat Pippin died. He was my best friend and it hit me hard. Even today, I don't want another cat because I feel that it will only take Pippin's place. I am just not ready.

I wanted a dog for a very long time and even made adopting one part of my personal goals this year. I did this because I felt like it was time. My son is old enough where he wouldn't mishandle a fragile puppy. I want to take care of something and while I may not have a human baby to take care of, I can at least take care of the furry kind instead. This will be my new "baby"

The week before I decided to adopt, I was a bundle of nerves. What if the dog isn't trained? Do I crate train? What if the dog doesn't like the crate and I bought one for nothing? What do I need to buy? I wanted to get everything settled before I brought the dog home. I read a lot about puppy training and got so excited.

So without further Storm!

**Harry Potter must not go to Hogwarts this year! I think I should have named her Dobby, of well too late! **

*We named her Storm due to her grey and white colour . She is a purebred Chihuahua. and a very sweet, smart Pup*

She is only 2 months old and it is a new adventure for us. Especially for my husband. You see, I call Jay a Stick In The Mud. The perfect way to describe him is to compare him to a burnt marshmallow. In fact, this is one of the many reasons why I fell for him. He can have a rough exterior but deep down inside, he is all gooey and a big mush. Jay is NOT a dog person. In fact, when I first met him in high school, I had a German shepherd/husky mix. We disliked each other and whenever I would run into him while walking my dog (our folks live in walking distance from each other) I would purposely go near him, just to watch him squirm and cross the street!  Obviously, a smaller breed is preferable for us.

Jay made it adamantly clear that if we were to get a dog, it would be mine and Philip's. He would make sure it had food and water but he wouldn't feel any affection for it because he hates dogs. I smiled and knew deep down, there was a very strong possibility that he would change his mind.

I thought it would take several days, maybe weeks before Jay got attached. It took only 2 hours. You see, we kept Storm downstairs as it is safer for her and it gives the cat, Merry time to adjust since she can stay upstairs. The first night for a new puppy who has recently been taken away from her parents and siblings can be very daunting. She cried and whined. Jay was the one who went down there, after exclaiming that he couldn't believe that he got attached to MY fucking dog no less! He slept on the couch with the dog curled up on his chest.

Life is good and I am looking forward to training her. The three of us are super happy. The cat on the other hand, is unsure but she is used to other animals. We will give her time and plenty of affection too. She too will come around. One burnt marshmallow at a time!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Wish list purchase

Earlier this year, I wrote my wishlist and here I am with an update! Yahoo! While, I am still waiting to lose a couple of more pounds before I buy clothes, I decided to purchase this little item....drum roll.....................

Insert Link from The Legend Of Zelda's  "get item sound" here:
(and yes, I went and geeked out by referencing videogames on a goth blog)

I wanted a coffin bag since I was about 16 years old. It is about time I got one!

This is my "haha! I got my coffin bag look...hmmpf!! look". The little batty hand sanitizer holder that you see dangling here sends his regards. Let's call him squirt.     
.... and because it is finally warm enough to wear my beloved kick ass coat, I should just show off the back lacing corset here.

For the record, this coat used to never zip up on me. Thanks to my weight loss goals, it zips perfectly! On the other hand, I wish the corset was tighter but I am happy that I can finally zip this sucker up so one step at a time, right?

 What I like most about this bag (which is by Dysfunctional Doll for those interested and no this is not a sponsored post, I am just happy I got a cool bag!) is it's versatility. I can wear it as a backpack but I also got a spare strap to wear it as a regular purse. It is very cute and I am over the moon! Squee! So happy!

Syl's 2017 wishlist:
-Buy a pair of Winklepickers
-Buy a coffin purse/backpack
 Buy more dresses
-Buy a bikini

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The Ultra Rare Pop Figure

At my local mall, there is a Hello Kitty store that sells all sorts of items that range from animé merchandise, to stuffed animals to Funko Pop figures. My family and I obviously frequent this retailer quite often!

The other day, as I ventured into that store, the girl working there was opening a new shipment of Pop Figures and some of them were from the movie, The Nightmare Before Christmas. They received Jack and Nightshade Sally (I already own) but I noticed that they also received a special edition "Pumpkin King" one. I was told that figures like these are sold exclusively to small retailers and you will never find them at a big name store. They are also pretty rare. This was double the cost of a normal Pop figure but I had to bring him home with me! He is just too cute and is keeping the others company!
Pumpkin King!!!!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

How to calm a nervous cat and other things

I have not been posting as much as I like but I have not really been inspired to write about anything. I still have not really bought any new clothes to show off (whole weight loss thing and self imposed shopping ban) but I am awaiting for some new accessories to arrive so there should be something soon. I have not really been inspired to post anything goth related either. If I did, I would just be regurgitating what others (myself included) have said. Health wise, I am doing much better. I was looking forward to this weekend as it is Easter. Unlike last year, I will not be hosting Easter dinner and do not plan to do anything with my family (aside from my mom's taxes, good times) I just took it easy and enjoyed the milder temperatures outdoors.

All week, we noticed that our cat Merry was hiding a lot. We noticed her bowls were being emptied and we had to refill her water dish. I am reassured that she is eating and drinking but she is skittish. She has always been a skittish cat but she was acting more nervous than usual. We finally connected the dots as to why she was acting this way: Last weekend, we purchased a new bed for Philip. Incidentally, have I told you how much I hate Ikea? The crowds of people, the long lineups, getting a huge ass heavy box in and out of a car in the rain? Not to mention a bored kid who drove me up the wall?

 This is how we got the box in the car. Good thing we have two cars!!!

When we FINALLY brought the box home, Jay takes it out of the car but the box got wet from the rain... part of the items fell out in our driveway! Luckily nothing got damaged and we were able to retrieve all the pieces. Anyways, there is a point to all this and as to why Merry was upset. You see, the cat sleeps with Philip and the new bed obviously didn't sit well with her. I finally found Merry from her hiding place, picked her up (odd she hates being picked up but she let me carry her this time) and I put her on Philip's bed. He was sound asleep and didn't notice. I pet the cat to reassure her that it was OK. It was her bed too and she didn't need to stop sleeping with him at night. She settled down, all curled up in a little ball, next to Philip. I checked on her later and she wasn't there but that's ok. Philip moves around a lot in his sleep and probably kicked her off the bed! She seems much better today. Jay found a play list on Youtube that is supposed to calm cats. The last few times we played it, it worked! I know it sounds silly but cats are fickle creatures.The play list depressed the fuck out of me and I had to get Jay to turn it off but Merry ventured out of her hiding place and was sociable. I think we will put this on when we leave! We are planning on adopting a dog in the near future. Another change for the kitty so this play list is going to come in handy!

Merry curled up in a ball on her favourite chair

I have been feeling a little down. My cat Pippin passed on in December and we miss him very much. I cannot get another cat as it is too soon for me. I think a dog, something that I can walk and take with me to places will do me a world of good. Merry is more Philip's cat and I need a pet of my own. Perhaps one day, I will get another cat but for the time being, I cannot replace Pippin.

The calming cat video is below but  here is the link:

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Weight loss update and a thank you

I discovered recently that I lost 30 pounds. This was accomplished by lots of hard work and tears. It is not an easy journey but it is worthwhile. There are times I would get frustrated because I am not a patient person and the scale wasn't moving fast enough for my liking.  I like to think that not only my accomplishment was a result of my hard work, it was thanks to some of you. Many readers like yourselves (as well as people I know in real life) have offered me kind words and commented on how great I look. As a result, so many people were encouraged to start their own lifestyle change and are taking better care of themselves. This motivates me to keep exercising and eating healthier because I don't want to let anyone down!

 Once I reach my ideal weight (remember, I am being followed by a doctor, I still have some more pounds to lose) I don't think I will ever go back to my bad habits. My father passed away when I was still quite young due to some poor lifestyle decisions he made. By the way I was going, I could have ended up the same way and I want to live a long time for my son. I experienced such loss and tragedy at a young age, I should know better!

As much as I tried to embrace my body and be positive about it, I didn't find myself to be attractive. I really wish I could see through the eyes of those who tell me that I am beautiful because for a long time, I was never able to see myself that way. By working out and eating healthy, I am learning to love and appreciate my body more. In fact, this motivated me to get help with my chronic migraines. I am on a preventive and they are much less frequent than they used to be. I have gotten my life back in so many ways. I never expected such positive results!

Photo on the left taken July 2016 (168 pounds), photo on the right taken April 2017(138 pounds) - I am almost at my BMI!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

How to not lose yourself in motherhood

In my last post, I wrote about my personal experiences about losing myself in motherhood. Today, I would like to give some examples on how you can rediscover your identity too. This worked for me and helped me get back into goth. Here are some serious questions I asked myself and some things I did:

What are YOUR interests?
This was the first question I asked myself. What do I like? What did I like before I had a baby? I made a list. One of the first thing I put on that list was music, reading, writing, art,taking long walks, and video games. I then made a list of my favourite bands. For me, I laughed because I realized that the majority of my favourite bands were from my Goth days! Which leads to...

Find time to pursue these interests
I also realized that I have not made much time to pursue my personal interests and made it a point to find some time each day for this.  I know it can be hard, especially when you are busy, or in my case, sleep deprived from having a baby but I managed. Even if it meant 15 minutes a day! One of the things I did, whenever we had nice weather, I would put my son in a stroller, put on my headphones and go for a long walk. My little one enjoyed all the new sights (and often fell asleep in his stroller) and I got to listen to my music! I would sometimes walk to the local mall and meet a friend at Starbucks for coffee. It got me out of the house, I was able to have an adult conversation with someone (who doesn't have kids so it was nice to talk about other things) AND I got coffee AND  I got to listen to Bauhaus too! Win! Win!

An old pic of us at the cemetery. Posted with the bat's permission, of course!

Time away
One of the best things I could ever do for myself is leave my kid with my husband so I can go out. Sometimes this means doing groceries in peace, sometimes it means seeing a friend, or going swimming alone or going to a club. Having a kid around me constantly takes a lot of energy. It is nice to be by myself, alone in my thoughts without someone interrupting me 50000 times! I felt guilty at first but when I realized how much better I was when I came back from these excursions, the guilt went away.

What can I do now to make me happier?
Sometimes, it is something simple like changing hair color. Sometimes you may want to make a career change. I noticed for myself personally, I am a people pleaser. I am very concerned over the wellbeing of those closest to me that I sometimes forego my own wellbeing. It is very important to realize in the moment that yes, take that 5 minutes out to put on makeup or do your hair or do something that makes you happy. So I decided, despite not being a morning person, let the husband watch the kid while I did my hair and makeup. Listening to music is easy. I can blare it in my car.

 What are my goals?
Some of them can be losing that pregnancy weight, sometimes it is buying those pair of boots we want. I made some goals for this year, which I have posted over here. Some of them are items I want to purchase, some of them are things I want to do for myself.

How can the world benefit from these goals?
I like to think on a global scale. I don't mean to sound egotistical or anything. I like to give back. For me doing this was expressing myself through writing. I think having some form of a creative outlet is important. For me, blogging helped. I felt like there were many parents who were in my shoes and I felt like it was important at that time to say "hey, you can be goth and have kids too, its ok."

In fact, I came up with the name "Little Corp Goth Girl" because at that time, I toned down a lot more in my work clothes (that ship has sailed since I have been at the same place for several years now) and I have a very young-at-heart personality. Hence the Little Girl in my title. In addition, in real life, I am pretty short so it was a perfect play on words that not only suits my personality, it suited my blogs purpose. Sometimes, I think of changing the name but I got attached to it.

Another thing that some of my blog posts (as well as those around me that I see in real life) motivated people to lose weight. So many people have commented on how great I look now that I have lost weight that I didn't wait to give them advice. I told them what I did, willingly. In fact, a lot of people are apparently inspired by this and it is nice to know that I am encouraging people to eat better and make some positive lifestyle changes for themselves. I never expected these results but it is nice nonetheless to have inspired people and to have received so much positive feedback. Thank you!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Losing oneself in motherhood

I have seen it happen to many parents I know. They were cool people but then they had a kid. It seems like their whole personality turned into becoming a mom. Don't get me wrong, motherhood is one of the best things that could ever happen to me but it is very easy to get lost in it. I know this from personal experience.

You see, I started to lose myself after my wedding. My marriage didn't start off on good footing.To make a long story short, my husband decided to estrange himself from most of his family. I was hit with the baby bug before I even met my husband and I wanted to start trying right away. I waited a little more after my wedding because I stopped smoking and wanted to get my shit in order. In my mind, getting my shit in order also meant completely changing who I was because I wanted to be a mom. I ditched all my goth clothes because I stupidly felt like I needed to grow up. I had to be a mom now and that meant not dressing cool anymore. It meant it was my time to settle down. I had to fit into this little mold and be, well normal.

I had trouble conceiving and my pregnancy for my son was a difficult one. I had this huge ass chip on my shoulder because I gave up all the things I loved. I became a shell of who I was because I wanted to get pregnant and I couldn't! I almost lost my son (as well as my own life) in child birth.  A couple of months after he was born, my son had to have surgery for Pyloric Stenosis. I was going through post postpartum depression through all this too. Somehow, I survived.To this day, I have no idea how I kept my sanity but I did!

With all this in mind, you can imagine why and how I completely lost myself into motherhood. I felt like a loser mom and wanted to do everything right. Up until then, although this was never the case, I really felt like I failed as a mother. I am sure most women have their stories too. Maybe it is something similar to mine or maybe it's not. I think we put so much pressure on ourselves to be a great mom its crazy. We do it because we love our kids or maybe some of us do it because we had shitty mothers and don't want to make the same mistakes twice?

 Before and after shots. Funny that I look younger in the after shot, eh?

When I lost myself, I never cared much about fashion.I bought what was on sale. I stopped colouring my hair. I stopped doing anything for myself! My whole life was wrapped around my baby. I hung out with other moms and joined all these on-line Mommy groups. The very women I used to spend my life rolling my eyes at and avoiding like the plague became my group of friends. It was all so fake.

I also hated the snarkiness, the back-stabbing and the whole sancti-mommy bullshit behind it all. You were judged for the things you did or didn't do. Everyone bragged about how great their kids were and it became a competition on whose kid would do this or that before the other kid. It was like these babies milestones weren't their own but reflected on the mother's parenting style. It wasn't about the kid, it was about the mom. It was very narcissistic. I didn't fit in at all. I didn't like the music they listened to, I didn't play their stupid mommy wars, and I didn't want to dress like they did.

I remember when my kid started daycare. Where I am from, we get a year off for maternity leave so my son was almost a year old when I went back to work. It was around this time that  I started to let go of all the crazy things I did.  I stopped talking to those other moms and realized that a lot of my coworkers were parents themselves. A lot of them have older kids. I reached out to them for advice and it was less judgmental and more...well...real. I slowly got my head out of my ass and I started to change. I realized that there was more to me than just being a mom. Yes, I have an adorable little boy but what about me? Aside from motherhood, what defines me? Sometimes being a parent means that you should find time for you. I started wondering on what exactly made me unique. What did I enjoy doing besides taking care of a young child? My child's milestones, while they deserved to be celebrated, should be celebrated for my child, not because I am some wonderful super mom.  I am not trying to imply that I neglect my kid in anyway or to imply that he is unimportant.. He always comes first but I realized that it was OK for me to go out by myself, it was OK for me to take a break and to remember who that crazy girl I was before I even thought about conceiving.

The way I see it, one day, this cute little baby is going to grow up, have a life of his/her own then what are you going to do? It is important to have your own personal interests. It makes you less boring to your kids. My husband plays D&D twice a month. He shows our son how to play too. I took him to the Goth picnic last summer, we visit cemeteries together and my kid asks for certain bands to listen to while I drive him to school. His friends tell me that I am a cool mom because I dress cool and like videogames! You can be a mom and have outside interests too and even incorporate them into your family life. The point of all this is to please don't make the same mistake I did. Don't be THAT mom. Trust me. I love being a mom but I also love being Sylvie too.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Inspirational sites and why I dislike how-to guides

I remember when I came back to goth and would scour the Internet for inspiration. I came across many "How To Guides' or many lists on "what every goth should have in their wardrobe" sort of articles and videos. I remember remarking on the sheer volume alone of these posts and wondered why so many people even bother publishing such content. This is a personal preference but wouldn't a how to guide or even educating people on how to build a basic goth wardrobe kinda counterproductive? Isn't the point of goth to be individuals and not some carbon copy of someone else's point of view? Isn't it illogical to point out that a good starting point for any goth wardrobe is black jeans, a t-shirt, and boots? I mean... well...yeah...DUH!

I get it to a certain extent. This can come in handy for any new comer. For an Elder Goth like me, whom I like to think I have a pretty good knowledge on the subculture and knows how to dress goth, well, I used some of the advice for inspiration. I didn't bother so much with the how to guides, mind you but I love looking at people's outfits. I still do to this day. I admit, I even love clothing hauls on Youtube because I like seeing shit other people got! I like seeing how other's mix-match their clothes, what accessories they use and how. Sometimes, I get inspired to do my own thing. Sometimes, I may think something looks cool but decide it isn't for me. I never used these as means to mirror what these people were wearing, I just used it for my OWN ideas. There are many youtubers or bloggers that I simply ADORE but I wouldn't want to dress like they do. That's just me.

There are a few downsides to these guides/outfit posts unfortunately:

Some of us are afraid that looking goth is the only part of being goth. I admit, sometimes, I am afraid of this happening too but I think if people are genuinely interested in something, it tends to stick around. Or if they are like me it goes away but comes back! For me personally, when I was a teenager, I was labeled a Goth without knowing exactly what a Goth was. I got curious and decided to participate in the subculture for the hell of it and I got hooked!

It can be over-done. How many how to guides and wardrobe essential articles do we need? How many more subsets do we need? (Nu-Goth, Pastel Goth, etc.) No wonder some of us are afraid that goth is becoming simply a fashion without anything else to supplement it. In my opinion, if it means anything, it kinda takes away from the fun experimental years. You know, like some of us had a Mall Goth phase? I used to do my makeup like The Crow and even used Halloween makeup! I laugh at it now and to be honest, I have some pretty fond memories, embarrassing, yes, but they are fond memories nonetheless. In fact, I sometimes even regret throwing away the old photographs! I like to think that by experimenting with clothes, I learned about what worked for me and what didn't. Back when I was younger, I went out to clubs and saw what other people were wearing. I got my inspiration from there - which leads to, outfit posts can be a great source for those who are not as fortunate as I was to grow up in the city!

When I came back to goth in my early thirties, I made a few embarrassing mistakes. What looked good on my twenty year old self (before baby weight no less) did not necessarily look good in my thirty year old post baby body. I also work in an office. I want people to take me seriously. It is kinda hard for people to do so when I look like a 16 year old! I wanted something office friendly but showed my Goth side. I don't work in a conservative environment and the first blog that really spoke to me was Meagan's, from Coffin Kitsch. She helped me in those early years because a lot of her clothing is so beautiful and elegant. She reflects a lot on the style I wanted to portray at that time. She was a lifesaver and a huge inspiration for me. I was used to super toned down corporate (black dress pants, nice top, pointy boots was my go to look) and now I had a chance to up it a little. Meagan's blog helped me "up" it without risking any workplace infractions. Don't get me wrong, there were other corp goth blogs around at that time but personally, while they were inspirational, I found them too conservative for my office environment.

I think the Internet can be a good thing - to a certain point. As much as I make fun of Health, Pastel, Nu Goth, I think perhaps, I shouldn't be so closed minded about these styles and just take a peek at what they are wearing. Perhaps I can do something fun and creative on my own by taking their inspiration?

I am by no means trying to imply that Goth is simply a style. We have a very rich heritage that I whole heatedly embrace. I love the music, I love visiting cemeteries and I love to read. I think it is equally important to participate in the movement as well as to dress the part - something, thanks to my chronic migraines, I have not had the chance to do much of in the past. I am hopeful this will soon change!

I guess what I am trying to say, just like when I came back to Goth in my early thirties, I will soon be in the process of rebuilding my wardrobe all thanks to my weight loss goals! Luckily for me, many items can be altered to fit my new body size but I do plan on buying AND DIYing some new items too. Some of the fashion sites (re: nu-goth) that I often scoffed at are inspiring me to push myself a little further and to be more creative with my own personal style. Perhaps I can find some inspiration there? I think we should be using these as inspiration rather the be-all end-all Uber Goth look and do what everyone else is doing. Thanks but no thanks, I don't need anymore advice on how to create a fishnet shirt out of an old pair of tights and I don't want Siouxsie makeup either. Show me YOUR style! What makes YOU goth?

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Do you want to build a snowman?

Yes, I just went there and quoted Frozen in my title. I used to love that movie and now I hate it with a passion. My kid decided at one point that it was his most favorite movie and we watched it ALL THE TIME. Sometimes, twice in a row and more if we would have let him! If I hear Let It Go, I am going to scream. In fact, I prefer this version, instead:

If you watched this parody, you would know that it's about a student that is tired of studying for finals! Instead of "Let It Go" Elsa is singing "Fuck It All" and I highly recommend you give the video a go! I am not a student but Philip is in grade one and is already being tested, each week. There are times I feel like this for him, especially when we have to study together.

Humor aside, this is not going to be a goth sort of post but more of a really happy update. In my last post , I expressed my frustrations with my migraines and how I totally flipped out in the Doctor's office at my local walk-in clinic. As a result, I was put on a preventative, an anti-depressant for my migraines.Well, my prescription was for a couple of days as the doctor gave me a small dose, I might have to get something stronger or stay on the small dose, it all depends on my body. These pills can hit you like a tonne of bricks and a little over a week later, it is only now where I am able to handle them! I had to go back to the clinic and requested that they do NOT increase my dosage but to renew my prescription because they appear to be working. Although, she was not the same doctor that originally prescribed me the anti depressants (she wasn't on duty), the current doctor remembered me because I go there all the time! Despite having to go through my whole spiel all over again (I conveniently left out the no drinking coffee suggestion from the previous doctor) and she was very sympathetic. I expressed my concerns that (a) I did not have a family doctor but I am on a waiting list, (b) I knew about how taking an anti depressant all along would help but originally, I didn't feel comfortable taking that route as I wanted to explore other treatments beforehand (logging food, physio, chiropractor, etc) but they did not help. Lastly,  I felt like I had to go into the clinic begging for drugs and this really bothered me because I am so frustrated with being in this situation. These migraines are really affecting my quality of life and that I get over 15 of them a month. She not only reassured me that she never got the impression that I was begging for drugs, she happily refilled my prescription, she gave me her blessing AND she took me as one of her patients. I see her in May for an actual appointment. I was so happy, I hugged her! I finally have a family doctor out of all this mess!

Adding a cute bat photo, there goth points!

Today was a very mild day. We were hit by a huge ass snowstorm earlier this week and got dumped on by 40 cm of snow. Schools never shut down here and I had to take a day off work last Wednesday because Philip had a snow day! Normally, these huge changes in weather causes a migraine and guess what? NO MIGRAINE. I did get a headache when we were hit by the snowstorm but for the first time ever, Tylenol worked! Normally, I would be on my ass! I did get a migraine on Friday but that was because I caught the flu and throwing up triggered one. Normally, when there is such a huge change in weather, I would get a migraine but today I didn't! Not even a headache!I would have been stuck nursing a migraine and feeling guilty because I wasn't able to play with my kid. Not only did I go to the clinic, I cleaned, I did laundry, and I built a snowman in my backyard with Philip! You should have seen his face, he was so happy!

Afterwards, I did some more chores around the house then went for an hour long walk!

It has been a long time that I was this active and it feels great! Told ya, I was going to force-choke this year into submission!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Goals for 2017 revisited

Earlier in January, I wrote what my personal goals were and I thought I should touch base because there has been some progress! Yipee!

(1) Get a less expensive place. Well after giving notice that we wish to no longer renew our lease, we were able to renegotiate our current lease. This is extremely rare but I guess we are well liked as tenants. Plus, we are permitted to have a dog. I once wrote about some particularly difficult neighbor who lives downstairs. He is moving. All around, this is incentive enough to stay.

 (2) Save Money.  The reduction in rent will allow us to save some funds.

(3) Continue to invest in my health. This is going well. I lost almost 30 pounds! I am eating better and rarely got sick this year.  I had a cold that didn't turn into anything serious and the flu. Considering I just wrote all this down, let's hope I didn't jinx myself and I get sick in a couple of days!
As for migraines, this is where it gets sort of interesting. In my province, there's a shortage of family doctors and considering I do not have any life threatening health problems, I have been on a waiting list for a year. As a result, I have been going to the walk-in clinic for the renewal of my pain meds. Excedrin and Advil don't work for my migraines. 

Despite the significant weight loss, after going to physiotherapy, a chiropractor (made my migraines worse) and massage therapy, as well as logging the food I eat, I realized my triggers were things I could not control. I live in Canada. We get all four seasons here and obviously this causes a change in my barometric pressure. This is a huge trigger for me. I know in a couple of weeks, with spring on its way, I am going to have my ass handed to me with these flipping migraines. In fact, a couple of weeks ago, I came home from work in tears because I had a daily migraine for over two weeks. 

I went back to the walk-in clinic as I have a pretty extensive file there and thought it would be the best place for me to go and to be honest, I was a complete basket case in the doctors office! I totally dumped on the poor woman. She asked me if I was depressed and my response was perfect "wouldn't you be depressed if you were in constant pain all the time?"  and I totally had a melt down in her office!It takes a lot for to cry, especially in front of a stranger but I did.

The doctor tried to play devil's advocate and suggest certain foods (IE, coffee and chocolate) could be triggers and how I should avoid them.I totally flipped the fuck out. I am tired of this bullshit. I KNOW what my triggers are! Seriously. I cut down on chocolate and I only drink 1 to 2 cups of coffee a day (sometimes 3). 

Food  doesn't trigger migraines (aside from alcohol but if I stay hydrated, I am usually OK) In fact, coffee actually seems to help me with my migraines. Looking back, I was so strung out by finally letting my guard down, finally accepting how bad my situation is that I was reminded of a Gilmore Girls episode and most probably pulled the same stunt as this the moment she told me to stop drinking coffee:

Yes, I cried and told her that I loved coffee too...oh boy!

Needless to say, she put me on something that could potentially prevent migraines. I am taking an anti depressant. So maybe going ape shit worked in my favour? I know someone who is taking an anti depressant for migraines and she rarely gets them now. I am hoping this works for me. It also apparently helps people with anxiety so I am hoping to hit three birds (migraines, depression AND anxiety) with one stone.

The medication I am on is a very low dose. They are starting me off small because it hits your body hard. I take it at night. It knocks me out and I have a hard time (worse than usual) getting out of bed. It has been a couple of days and I am getting used to them. I go back on the weekend for a stronger prescription. It is sad that I had to resort to becoming a basket case in order to get help (and having my "headaches" taken seriously) but I am thankful that (a) the nice young men in white coats didn't come to take me away and (b) my migraines will be reduced and I can have a "normal" life.

(4) Get some mad DIY skills . I am still working on this. My goal is to lose more weight and DIY some new clothes. I do plan on re-decorating my home so stay tuned!

5) Give myself some credit for my accomplishments. This has been working out for me!

(6) Continue being the best Mom I can be and continue to give myself some down time. Yes, ALL parents deserve a break. Parenting is not for the weak!

(7)Adopt a dog  - I wrote back in January that I wasn't sure the landlady would permit a dog. I got permission!

8) Finally get something published the traditional route. Although I am going about this very slowly, I have something on the back burner.

(9) Invest in better quality makeup. Thanks to my saving money goal, I have only been buying makeup when I run out. I have not needed to replenish anything yet but when I do, I have this in mind!

(10) De-clutter and be more sustainable. Despite not moving, I have so much shit I want to get rid of! So far, my little one donated a huge garbage bag full of toys to charity! The added bonus, he felt good being able to give away toys he no longer plays with to children who don't have many things. It is amazing the amount of junk we keep. 3 huge bags have went into the recycling. These unfortunately couldn't be donated. A lot of it was old art projects from daycare (I kept most of them) and a lot of it was old children's books that had pages missing. Got to love the toddler years, eh? I felt like recycling them isn't as bad as filling up a landfill somewhere! As a result, I only managed to throw out one big garbage bag. In my original post from last January, I wrote that I wanted to continue being sustainable  and I am so happy I am able to reach this goal. 

And because I had fun finding silly memes to entertain you's another one for good measure. I am going to get off the internet now..I promise!

What are your goals?


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