I’m angry

I am angry that dress codes exist.

I’m angry that someone’s religion trumps a woman’s right to decide how she uses her body and what she does or does not put in it.

I’m angry that I get a sick feeling when I have to walk past a group of men.

I’m angry that little girls are told to be modest and that taking pride in their body and displaying it will be too tempting to a man. Girls, you are not the problem and don’t ever let anyone tell you that you are.

I’m angry that most men will never, ever understand how degrading it is to be cat-called or leered at.

I’m angry that a woman is a slut if she sleeps with a man/men outside of a relationship.

I’m angry about slut-shaming in general; why are you forcing your insecurity on others?

I’m angry that Hobby Lobby was taken seriously at all. I’m furious that it passed.

I’m angry that women get asked, “What were you wearing?” after they were raped.

I’m angry that someone I know was touched without her permission on public transit.

I’m angry that someone I know was raped by a friend of a friend on the way home from a party. I’m angry that she didn’t report it.

I’m angry that ANYONE feels entitled to a woman’s body in any way, shape, or form. She is not yours to tell how to dress, how to smile, what shape her body should be, what she can and cannot put in her body, how to use it or not use it.

I’m angry that I feel the need to change my outfit because it’s a bit too sexy or that I’m showing a lot of skin.

I’m angry that when I am mad or upset it’s akin to being crazy or hysterical. Dramatic, sure. Crazy I am not.

I’m angry that women are taught to be uncomfortable in their skin.

I’m angry that I don’t feel safe taking transit at night time because I’m a woman.

I’m angry that if I assert myself and say no that I’m a bitch.

I’m mostly angry because I don’t know how to change any of it. Be the change you want to see in the world, but how? I’m angry because I feel helpless.

 

My First Ever Mixed CD

In 2000, one did not just go to Youtube and listen to whatever the hell they wanted. They had to buy the CD/tape cassette or wait for the radio/Much Music/MTV to play it. Very few people had dedicated internet, and even fewer people had CD burners. Napster was on the scene, but a lot of the material was corrupt, and most people still had their internet packages in minutes. Downloading a song could take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, so it was a giant pain in the ass to download music. Times were tough in the year 2000.

Never the less, it was new and shiny and I had to have my very own mixed CD.

So I paid some guy that I chatted with on ICQ’s Random Chat (who just happened to go to my school) to make me a mixed CD. It cost me $15, or about the same as a new CD, which seemed fair.

My first ever mixed CD is a gem. There is no rhyme or reason to the tracks, I just liked them, and they made me happy. What I do know is that track #6 is a huge mystery, because I’d never heard that song and my best guess is that it was mislabeled in Napster as the song I actually wanted, and said dude was not a music aficionado.  Track #7 is a warbled version of Gob’s Paint It Black.

Here we go:

Track 1 – Why Do You Build Me Up – The Foundations

I think There’s Something About Mary came out that year and after that everyone knew the words, I recall singing it with many friends on many occasions.

Track 2 – Yellow Submarine – The Beatles

My childhood pal Sean (a huge Beatles fan) and I used to go to the swimming pool a lot, and we would curl the yellow floating mats and pretend we were in a boat and sing, “WE ALL LIVE IN A YELLOW SUBMARINE!” We thought we were the coolest. PS- Sean, I miss you. You were the first person who ever embraced my weirdness; together we weren’t weird.

Track 3 – So Happy Together – The Turtles

It was just a great song. I still love it. It’s one of those songs that reflects my life.

Track 4 – Flagpole Sitta – Harvey Danger

PARANOIA! PARANOIA! EVERYBODY’S COMING TO GET ME! This song is so satisfying to yell-sing, especially so when you are 14 years old and SO misunderstood! *cue eye rolls* Oh Rochele….

Track 5 – Ariel vs. Lotus – Limblifter

I’m not sure what happened. I’d never heard this track before it ended up on my CD, and I definitely wanted to ask for at least $1 back.

Track 6 – Come On and Love Me – Lenny Kravitz

Okay, I just had to Shazam this, 14 years later. I am 102% I didn’t ask for this to be on my CD, either. It’s a terrible song. Skip.

Track 7 – Paint It Black – Gob

I loved the original Rolling Stones song, but suffered through this one because my dumb 14-year-old friends couldn’t see the forest for the trees, and this was better than not playing this song for them at all.

Track 8 – Clumsy – Our Lady Peace

I was a tad depressed at 14. I didn’t feel like I fit in, and this song seemed to fit.

Track 9 – Always Look on the Bright Side of Life – Monty Python

For my 14th birthday, my stepdad bought me tickets to go see Eric Idle Performs Monty Python and it was a far cry from what I actually wanted. I had never watched Monty Python, and this seemed dumb and obscure. My mom was recovering from surgery and had to cancel my birthday party, and couldn’t get out of bed that day and I ended up taking care of my baby sister, and cried myself to sleep that night. My stepdad knocked on my door and sat on my bed and tried to explain that of all people, he knew that I would love Monty Python if I just gave it a chance. The following month, we went to the show together and I cried again, but mostly because it was the funniest show I’d ever been to. They closed with this song.

Track 10 – Here Comes the Sun – The Beatles

I listened to this song when I had bad days, it helped.

Track 11 – If You Want to Be Happy – Jimmy Soul

This song used to make me laugh, and reaffirmed that if I was going to awkward and gangly forever, I could always fall back on cooking. Somehow I knew even that I’d be a great cook. Recently, a friend told my husband that I must be difficult to live with and he said, “Yeah, but her cooking makes it worth it.” Listen to the song, you’ll get it.

Track 12 – Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen) aka The Sunscreen Song – Baz Luhrman

The first life advice that I ever bothered to pay attention to. And you know what? All of this rings true as an adult. 14-year-old me was nostalgic for something that hadn’t happened yet.

Track 13 – She Lies To Me – 54-40

54-40 used to be Vancouver’s house band. What is wrong with me? I’m not supposed to be happy all the time, but I’m willing to bet it doesn’t matter yet…. for some reason, I was always waiting for the bottom to drop out. I guess it had a few times. My home life wasn’t stellar, and I was used to not asking for things and going without. By the time I was 14, I was going to school with kids who lived in multimillion dollar homes and with kids who lived in co-ops and reservations. High school was a weird place, home was a weird place, and I never quite felt at ease anywhere. The idea of having someone lie to you to protect you was oddly appealing to me.

And… that’s the end of this disc. In 2000, it was hard to tell when you had too much data for a disc. Sometimes songs would just drop off or the disc wouldn’t burn. I can think of a dozen more songs that I probably wanted on this disc, and I know I had alternates picked out in case a certain song wasn’t available. Either way, here is some insight into 14-year-old Rochele. Until I map out the next disc….

Enjoy.

A day in the life of Rochele

5:50am – The alarm goes off. Hit snooze. Cat creeps up to my face and plops herself on top of my chest and purrs.

6:00am – The alarm goes off again and I leave it and listen to whatever the next few songs are. Obligatory morning cuddles with husband and cat.

6:15am- Get up. Check phone for Snapchats, texts, and notifications. The shit people send me in the middle of the night is priceless.

6:20-7:15am – Have shower. Blow dry hair. Drink coffee, and blueberry-spinach smoothie. Makeup. Pick an outfit. Iron. Obsess about shoes. Stumble downstairs and gather lunch, phone, and whatever else I need for the day.

7:20-8:00am – Drive to work. Play the $1000 Minute on Virgin Radio. Listen to The Shore’s Test Drive song of the day. Curse the slow drivers. Curse the drivers who shouldn’t be in the HOV lane. Be smug about police pulling people over for traffic violations.

8:00am – Arrive at work. Make coffee. Unload dishwasher(s). Check messages. Ask boss about his itinerary for the day. Check email. Greet staff as they arrive.

8:30-4:30pm – Work. Answer phones. Filing. Prep for meetings. Email. Troubleshooting Microsoft Office. Fix paper jams. Smile at everyone. Send important emails. Scan. Work on contracts. Set-up presentations for architects.  Go for a walk down to the waterfront at lunch time. Be the shining light at the office. Twitter. Facebook.

4:30- 5:30pm – Drive home. Phone mom, use blue tooth. Curse the sound quality of my blue tooth. Curse the slow drivers. Curse the busses. Curse people driving in the HOV lane that shouldn’t be. Yell obscenities at other drivers who cannot hear me. Apologize to mom for horrid attitude while driving home.

5:30-6:00pm – Arrive home. Feed cat. Take off clothes. Lay in bed naked. Contemplate what to make for dinner. Contemplate just staying in bed for the rest of the night.

6:00-7:00pm – Get up. Change into t-shirt, hoodie, and pajama pants. Put hair into a messy bun or ponytail. Make dinner. Listen to The Peak. Sing. Tweet. Do dishes. Step on cat 10 times.

7:00-7:30pm – Eat dinner. Chat with husband about day. Whine about being tired. Talk about how I should do homework, opt to watch TV instead.

7:30-8:30pm – Watch Parks and Rec, space show, OR several episodes of Whose Line Is It Anyway. Leave husband to watch multiple episodes of Income Property, shake head at his blatant man crush on Scott McGilvery.

8:30-10:00pm – Hang out in the Girl Room. Listen to Songza playlists. Paint nails. Tell the cat she’s so pretty. Chat with friends on Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp, and text. Think about the next day’s outfit. Do a dry run of said outfit. Instagram said outfit, maybe.

10:00-10:20pm – Charge phone in the Girl Room and activate night mode. Tell the cat it’s bedtime. Tell the husband it is bedtime. Set-up coffee maker. Make sure all food is put away. Take off clothes beside the bed, leave them there. Get into bed.

10:20-10:45pm – Attempt to minimize the ritual bedtime chat. Get frustrated that husband stops talking and falls asleep immediately after telling me he’s not tired yet. Cat plops herself on top of me and purrs her little face off for what seems like 20 minutes.

10:45-11:15pm – Lay in bed listening to 10,000 thoughts. Try to think about something quiet and calm. Eventually lose myself in a thought and drift to sleep.

2:30-3:00 – Awake. Husband is taking up 2/3 of the bed and is serial cuddling again. Cat is still on top of me. Too hot. Thirsty. Have to pee. Know that ignoring all of these things means not sleeping. Get up. Pee. Drink water. Come back to bed. Push cat out-of-the-way and ask husband to move over. Ask husband to move over some more. Give up. Get back into bed. Lose myself in counting to 100, drift back to sleep.

3:45am – Neighbour with obnoxiously loud truck drives by, wakes me up.

4:15am – Awake. Annoyed. Still an hour and half to sleep. Fall back asleep.

5:45am – Awake. Tempted to just get up, but bed so warm. Fall back asleep.

5:50am – The alarm goes off. Feel like a zombie. Press snooze.

You Shouldn’t Need A Reason For Not Having Kids

Rochele:

THANK YOU! This says it all.
“If someone says they don’t want kids, there is a good chance that there is a reason why that you are not entitled to or need to know. Because that reason is likely not something the woman enjoys discussing.”

Originally posted on Thought Catalog:

I wore a maxi dress to work today. The frequency in which I wear dresses to work is about once per month. I am more of a jeans and blouse kind of girl. So on the spontaneous day that I wear a dress like I did today, people notice and sometimes talk about it in the same way they might if I showed up with a tattoo on my face. Most days I don’t mind this. Today was not one of those days.

It was mid-morning and I was chatting with a coworker about my decision to go to 7/11 last night for a glazed doughnut (or two) at 11:00 p.m. I ate the doughnuts right before bed (I had had a day, okay?) and this morning when I woke up the first thing I saw was my crumpled up 7/11 doughnut wrapper on my nightstand staring at me, shaming…

View original 1,487 more words

I miss you

I should be doing homework and studying for my midterm, but all I can think about is you. I miss you. I’ve thought about you a lot lately. I derailed on Bell’s Let’s Talk Day. I almost couldn’t read people’s words about how they struggled, because you couldn’t champion those demons. Things were so rapid and complicated for you; you didn’t even get the chance to realize what was happening.

I see your face in the crowds. My heart misfires and then I remember that you’re not here any more. That moment when reality hits is always a quiet one.

I saw The Killers in Las Vegas, it was a warm night and they played When You Were Young and I felt your presence. I fought a lump in my throat through the whole song. I could hear your voice in my head singing so loud and so clear, my skin felt prickly. Were you watching me in that space and time?

A year and two days ago you walked away from a place of fear and darkness and went home to God. I wouldn’t find out for another three days because it took that long to positively identify you. I remember the moment so vividly when I got the call and the moments that followed. What makes me so sad is that I can’t clearly remember the last time that I saw you, and I know it had been a long time.

I miss you.

Let’s talk about “love”

“I love you.” It’s serious business to tell someone that, or in my own opinion, it should be the most meaningful thing that you ever say to someone.

When I love someone, I love them for life. Part of me will always love them, so when I say it, it’s sacred and we’re bonded, whether the other person wants that or not. Even when a person leaves my life, whether they’ve gone home to God, or I’ve pushed them out the door, or whether they’ve gone of their own accord; part of me will always love them. I don’t stop loving people. Prime example of this? My former step dad- I despise him, but a part of me will always love him.

I don’t give those words to people very often, because those words are for life. I’ve often faltered in the way that I love people, and I’m hesitant to say it sometimes because once it’s out there, it is a lot of pain and heartbreak when I don’t own up to responsibility of the words. It’s not automatically reciprocal, and I won’t say it unless I mean it. I LIKE a lot of things, and I adore a lot of people, but I love a select few.

There are four Greek words for love and they have their own distinct meaning: agápeérosphilía, and storgē. My understanding of these words is limited, but I will do my best to explain them.

  • agápethe unconditional love, the affectionate love; this love gives and expects nothing in return
  • éros –  is passionate and intense love, and the appreciation of beauty from within a person, but does not always have to be physical
  • philía – is affectionate regard or friendship, this love has give and take, and is mostly the love I feel for other people. This love requires virtue, equality and familiarity
  • storgē – is natural affection, and is almost exclusively reserved to describe affectionate love between family members

I spend a lot of time thinking about love, and it’s good to know that the love I feel for a select few is not the same kind of love across the board. I still think each kind of love has a weighty implication that I will not take lightly or use in a casual sense. Love means different things, and yet in English it is all lumped under the title of “Love.” Without much diversification, to express that we feel something greater than to like or adore something, we default to love. Love is a sacred word, and yet it gets thrown out there so often. I agree that when you love someone, you should love freely and with reckless abandon, but I feel as though we’re careless in the way we use it. I apologize in advance for rolling my eyes every time I hear it, but its meaning is weakened each time it’s used without your full intention behind it, and pretty soon it won’t mean much at all.

HOARDER

The first step to overcoming a problem is admitting that you have one, right? See my Instagram account for my nail polish and makeup collection at home.

And now I bring you to the contents of my drawers at work. Let’s go through this, shall we?

Should I be ashamed?

Should I be ashamed?

  • Mr. Sketch Scented Markers
  • SPF 15 Sunscreen (you know, for when I eat lunch in the park in the summer)
  • THREE sticks of antiperspirant
  • TWO tubes of toothpaste
  • Toothbrush
  • TWO cartridges of floss (apparently I am dedicated to my oral hygiene)
  • Floss threaders for flossing under my permanent retainer, SO SHEXY!
  • Foot powder
  • FIVE tubes of lotion
  • Hairbrush
  • Nail strengthener
  • Nail file
  • Nail whitening pencil
  • Nail brush
  • Fully stocked makeup bag
  • iPhone charging cable
  • ereader charging cable
  • Vicks Vapor Inhaler
  • Eleventy billion bobby pins
  • Cotton pads
  • TWO glass cleaning cloths
  • TWELVE pencils
  • THREE bottles of essential oil
  • Paper coaster
  • Perfume sample
  • Thumb drive with all my personal secrets
  • EIGHT different kinds of tea
  • EmergenC vitamin drink packets
  • Granola
  • Bikini bottoms
  • Jawbreakers
  • Mints
  • Stamps
  • PAPER

It took me five years to accumulate this amount of crap at work. I think it’s safe to say that I’m prepared for pretty much anything and I have no excuses for ever looking like a train wreck at work, and yet sometimes I still do.  I can justify everything in my drawers except the bikini bottoms. I’m not sure why those are here and why they aren’t at home with their compadres. MYSTERIES! Also, send help. I need to do something about this.

Songs for September 25, 2013

I felt like putting a playlist together of what I’m listening to aujourd’hui. Listen on youtube here

Grouplove – Ways to Go
Franz Ferdinand – The Universe Expanded
HAIM – The Wire
Death Cab for Cutie – Lack of Colour
Beck – I Won’t Be Long
Mother Mother – Dread in My Heart
Fleet Foxes – Blue Spotted Tail
Big Wreck – Albatross
Neko Case – Night Still Comes
The Dudes – Good Intentions
City and Colour – The Golden State
Royal Canoe – Exodus of the Year
Airborne Toxic Event – Changing
Dragonette – Easy

Pep talk to myself

Cheer the fuck up, Rochele.

There is so much to be grateful for. You are pursuing your dreams. You are in school, doing something that you are good at, and working towards a career that you will enjoy. You are going to achieve what you’ve always set out to do. You will see the world and have adventures. 

You have a solid set of friends and family that inexplicably love you no matter what and check in when you’ve been out of their lives for too long. You are well loved, girly. These people know your faults and love you just the same. These people stick up for you when you can’t or won’t stick up for yourself. 

Despite your flaws and misgivings, you are a good person. You own up to your mistakes and you actively try to do good in the world. Forgiveness doesn’t always come easily when someone knocks you down, but you’re working on that, too. You regularly stand up for people and you have integrity.

Your vision for your future has derailed a little bit, but ultimately you know you are on a path to sorting it out. 

So cheer up, Rochele. You have a lot going for you. 

Lost. AGAIN.

Navigation is not one of my strong points.

I am chronically lost. I can’t read a map. Unless I can see the North Shore mountains or it’s sunrise/sunset, I have no idea what direction I’m facing. Ditto for map reading. I even manage to get lost using a GPS. Trust me, this is the ultimate failure and I feel really shitty about myself when it happens. It happens frequently.

Last night I got lost on campus. I was exhausted and overwhelmed, and there seemed to be no one around to help me find my way. Panic set in and I started walking and ended up in a place that I didn’t recognize at all. I felt tears welling up, and I felt so stupid for getting lost again and even dumber for crying about it. Why do I always do this? I look at a map, and then I get disoriented. Every. Single. Time.

I walked around for 30 minutes. I eventually found a path that I recognized from last semester and thank god I parked in the same parking lot that I always do. I had briefly considered parking somewhere else. I got in my car and felt really pathetic. I’ve spent a lot of time at this campus, I should know my way around by now, but I don’t.

One of my biggest fears is getting irretrievably lost.

- R