Suzy Snapper
Thursday, March 30, 2006
Crazy Times
I had truly intended to come back to the blogging world last week, but between more wedding preparations, family drama and a heavy workload, time has not been on my side. I want to apologize though to my friends here that have been such a great source of support, and while I may sound like a broken record, I will catch up after the wedding and stop being such a neglectful friend. Your friendship is so appreciated, and believe me, I think about you all often.

First the work situation, or lack thereof. Nothing has been said. I have been given no outward sign that my contract will be renewed or will expire on May 1. I did speak to my boss, and he just gave a wave of the hand and said 'You don't need to worry about it.' Nice thought but it doesn't pay my bills. So I am in a little bit of a rock and hard place. There is so much I dislike about the structure of this place, and the direction, but at the same time, there is even more that I like. The hours are long, the recognition could be better but there is just something that I really enjoy about the place. Having said that though, I have begun sending out my resume and casually looking.

Last night, I received a call from a recruiter regarding a Contract Administrator/Procurement Analyst job at a megafirm downtown. The job is very intriguing and has a tie in to the Olympics in 2010. So keep your fingers crossed next Monday at 4:30pm as I have my interview.

Last Thursday, there was a little more family drama that we would like to see. My niece's mother-in-law, Judy was visiting them from Alberta. It was her 50th birthday on Thursday and she was playing with the grandbubs when the phone rang. Her house in Alberta burned to the ground. It would seem that her sons, in haste to get to work, forgot to turn off the stove as they left. The house was a century-old farmhouse, with sawdust insulation. It was the perfect feed for a fire, and the house went up in no time. Unfortunately, they lost their dog, Reno. Reno was an 18 year old poodle, blind and deaf and well, I can only hope he went peacefully. For about 4 hours, there was confusion over whether the boys were at work or trapped in the house - which made for a highly emotional and scary day.

Judy had no insurance, unfortunately. The airlines were a great difficulty to deal with, as there is no discount offered on one-way emergency tickets. She had to pay full fare to get home, on top of not even knowing what she was coming home to. My heart goes out to her, but I am heartened by the fact that their small town in Alberta is a strong community and they have rallied around her as only small towns can.

I am feeling better healthwise than I have in ages. The pain in my knee is now all but gone. I realized today for the first time in about 9 months, while walking down the stairs I was not even conscious of how my knee felt.

The wedding is 9 days away and preparations are going well, but are time consuming. I will be throwing a shower on Sunday and am buried in the set up for that. I am working on my speech now, which is slowly coming together. I thought it would be easier than it is, but it's hard to string together something that doesn't consist of a litany of inside jokes. Even still, things are falling into place, and I am very excited. Leigh has been such a great bride-to-be as well. She's 28 weeks into her pregnancy, and while stressed with the arrangements, is looking good and barely breaking a sweat.

The Dude. Well, friendship fits us nicely. Actually, it's more than relief that we were able to but the uncomfortable awkwardness behind us. He has been much more of a treat to be around, and I don't find myself bristling at each comment. It's good.

A couple of new travel goals though. I want to go to the Concours D'Elegance in Pebble Beach in August. And the historic racecar trials in Monterrey. Hopefully, it will work out and I'll get a visit in with my San Franciscan friend (Hi T!). Unfortunately, it's the same weekend as the Maritime Festival in my neighbourhood so it's going to be a tough call.

And I nearly forgot. I begin my next course in Photography next Wednesday. It will be fantastic to be able to get out and use my camera again. Been far too long!

On that note, though, I must run again. No rest for the wicked!
Thursday, March 23, 2006
The Knee
Guess I should have mentioned that in my haste to update this morning.

Well, pretty good actually. I still have considerable swelling but my range of motion is back. I can walk without a limp - unless I'm tired, and can even balance on one leg and ride the exercise bike for up to 30 minutes. There are some difficulties with stairs, but I'm assured it will come back soon.

A month to the day after the surgery (Tuesday), I went to the driving range and hit 3 golf balls. The original injury occurred on my first time ever golfing and it was important to me to get over the fear. I went with The Dude and while he fired off his bucket of balls right to the back fence, my goal was much simpler. Just swing the club, follow through and prove to myself I won't injure myself any more. I had cleared it with the physiotherapist the day before, that at this point, my biggest hindrance is in my mind. Did it hurt? Unfortunately, yes. That's why I only hit 3, but next time, I'm going to hit 4.

I have also signed up for the Sun Run on April 23. It's 10km and another friend and I will walk it. She had her knee surgery on March 14, and is recovering now. We have made a pact to show up, participate and walk the route. If we finish it, fantastic, but if we don't, we will have at least tried.

For the past 8 months, I had become less and less mobile. It had gotten to the point that I couldn't even go to the grocery store without pain pills. Now, the pain is much's a healing pain and now I have regained my motivation and energy. I don't want to stay still, and in fact, have become much more active than I have in years. I have been exercising daily. It's funny how true it is that you don't miss what you've got until it's gone.
When breaking up isn't hard to do
I know I'm remiss in blogging (thanks, Lever!) but it has been a whirlwind with the wedding coming up. I am so thankful that my friend is not a Bridezilla, but even so, there are a multitude of details. Every minute seems to be filled.

Not to mention in two weeks, I will be winging my way to one of the most beautiful places on earth and let loose with my camera. Tofino. Check it out if you get the chance.

The Dude and I had a major heart-to-heart. We spilled it all out and looked at the pieces and realized where everything started to tumble was when we tried to build a relationship out of too-solid a friendship. We both enjoy each other's company tremendously, but attraction is just simply not there. I kept trying to see it and kept thinking maybe it grows on you. He was doing the same thing. We were forcing something that wasn't really there.

Thankfully, we have been able to salvage our friendship and be able to have a good laugh. After we had finished talking, I felt like a big weight had been lifted off my shoulders and there was a big sense of relief. That must be indicative of something!

So, yesterday, we were back to kibbitzing all day, laughing and joking and last night, back to the hour phonecall before bed. Friendship - way more important and I'm glad it could still be maintained.
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Touching Base
I have returned to work, and thus far have a job. It seems positive enough, and while there are still some serious long term issues, for now and at least until May 1, it is stable. I have asked for a status after that, but have been unable to get a clear answer other than 'Don't'll work out'. I am not sure if I should be happy about that or not, but for now, I will concentrate on healing and worry about the job situation later. I have a paycheque for the next 6 weeks and will be in a better position at that point to make decisions.

The knee is improving daily. From long walks up to an hour and riding the exercise bike I am finding each day is a little bit better. It's funny...I never really liked exercise before but once the option of mobility was taken away, I missed it dearly. You really don't know what you've got 'til it's gone.

Gearing up for my friend's wedding in 3 weeks. The goal is to be a non-limping Maid of Honour. I tried on the dress over the weekend and with minor alterations, all will be good. Her dress is phenomenal as well, and given that she is now 24 weeks along in her pregnancy, she is positively glowing. It will be a wonderful event, on a beach about 6 hours away from here. They have been fortunate enough to have about 50 people be able to join us. But now, with only 3 weeks left, the time crunch has arrived and it has been busy, to say the least.

Lastly, the Dude. There has been a heart-to-heart. He had some concerns, and well, so did I. While my guard is not completely back down, suffice to say, the song is still playing. Time will tell.
Friday, March 10, 2006
The Good and The Bad
I feel like I'm starting to emerge from the dark tunnel of the past couple weeks. It definitely has been a lot more challenging than I expected, and has left a few marks. Some will rectify themselves, some will not.

The knee is feeling a lot better. I have started riding an exercise bike and can do so for 20 minutes, which is an incredible accomplishment. And yesterday, I walked for a full hour inside the mall just to test things out. It it still swollen and a little painful, but I can walk without a limp if I concentrate.

The cold has morphed into a deep seal bark. Expected, considering most of my colds settle in my chest. It's improving daily though.

Do I have a job? I don't know right now. My boss has been less than forthcoming. I have not heard a peep from him since I told him I would be away. I was supposed to be off until March 15 but have decided to go back on Monday. Two days early. However, my contingency plans are in place. I have begun researching job opportunities, reconnecting with my contacts and am actively looking for a new job. It may not be immediate but if I go in Monday, and find it not to my liking, I am now ready to leave.

Unfortunately, there has been a casualty though. It would seem The Dude was not up to the task of being there for me when I needed it. He started out sweet enough, but then midway through, developed an A-hole complex. Ripping me apart for not resting enough - even though he wasn't willing to help. While I don't mind the odd chiding, it quickly progressed to downright rudeness. In a typical turtle fashion, he began starting his sentences with 'Well, I'm not a nice guy, you know...'

It's fairly evident to me that he's trying to pull back. Whether it's me or him, I don't need that and have decided it's not worth it. I miss his friendship but he's not willing to put it out there, and I'm not going to grovel for it either.

Last night was the final straw for me. We had planned for him to come over and help me with a couple things I was unable to do, then go for dinner. I received a call late afternoon that he had decided to go out with another mutual friend of ours. I don't appreciate that kind of thing, and I let him know. I'm past this whole gameplaying stuff. Either you can treat me respectfully, or you don't need to be in my life.

And on that note, it's off to physiotherapy for me!
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Still finding it a hard struggle in the recovery cycle.

I saw the surgeon again on Tuesday, and the man dismissed every complaint and concern that I had. I told him I couldn't stand up properly nor walk, and even the mere thought of a shower scared me because I was so unstable. He told me I was fine and signed the order for the return to work.

I thought, he's a smart man. Must be me. Suck it up, and get on with it.

So I went to work yesterday. It was an unmitigated disaster. I couldn't get up the stairs to get to my desk, and once I finally did, was scared to move again lest I fall. The swelling was intense and the pain absolutely insane. The subsequent drive home was terrifying. I came into a corner a wee bit too fast and found I did not have the reflexes to hit the brakes to slow down. It came extremely close to me going into the ditch - the same ditch several people have died in car accidents over the years. By the time I got home, I was a basket case and worse yet, felt like a failure. The doctor said I'd be fine, right? Well then, I must be...keep pushing.

On top of it all, I have developed a chest infection from the anaesthetic. Apparently, a common reaction but not fun. I sound very rough and can't stop coughing.

So today, I decided to take one more day of recovery and go see my own doctor. She was shocked that the surgeon would have signed me off, but then again, it made sense. Looks good on his record...another successful surgery with a return to work 1 week following. Whether it was true or not, it was no flaw on his record now that I was off his books.

She has ordered me off work until March 15. It is a high possibility I will lose my job over this, and I am trying not to let that get me. On one hand, I have some serious issues with this job and don't see it as my long term career - but I would rather leave on my own terms and I am not quite ready to do that.

Now I sit here and try to craft a letter to my bosses to give them an opportunity to have me work from home. I don't know if it will work, but it puts the ball in their court. If they chose no longer to require my services, at least I will know that I have given them the option.

If only I could stop feeling so sick about this whole mess, I'd be fine.

Vancouver, British Columbia
A patriotic Canadian full of visions of a better Canada, random thoughts and a lot of hot air. Who am I? A struggling writer and photographer trapped in a corporate buyer's body. Steel shopping by day, and freeflowing prose by night. One day I hope to have the nights become my days, but am intimidated by the sheer amount of people who share my dream. So I read. A lot. I learn. A lot. I push myself. A lot. The world is a small place, and getting smaller every day. I'm proud to have friends in every corner of the earth, and abide by the old adage that there are no strangers, only friends we haven't met yet.
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