I have a new going blog called The Plaid is Mine!
This blog has been an absolute pleasure to work on, but now that I’ve graduated I have to move on to different things.
I hope you’ll follow me there!
All of my love,
I have a new going blog called The Plaid is Mine!
This blog has been an absolute pleasure to work on, but now that I’ve graduated I have to move on to different things.
I hope you’ll follow me there!
All of my love,
Jamilyn and I have been together for a little while now, because of the nature of our relationship (LDR) we will spend 3 weeks apart and then up to 3 weeks together.
This creates a bit of a strange dynamic.
We’ve fantasized about what it would be like to live in the same city. I told her I’d come to her house and throw rocks at her window.
We could hang out whenever we wanted to but still have our space when we needed it.
However, that isn’t the case and probably never will be. When I visit or when she visits me we spend all of our time together, for better or worse tensions can rise.
Like every other couple, we have had some pretty ridiculous fights.
Jamilyn is an only child and I’m the oldest of 4 kids, so our ideas of “sharing” vary greatly.
Here are some of the ridiculous things we’ve fought about.
K, so my girlfriend and I love snacking. It’s not exactly a healthy habit, but its one that we both share.
The chips fight first began when she accused me of eating “too many” (she says “NO, ALL”) chips from the bag.
She accused me of this a few times before she decided that we would get separate chips. She would get a bag and I would get a bag. She refuses to share these chips.
She literally won’t even share one chip with me OR when she does she literally finds the smallest chip in the bag.
It still drives me nuts – THEY’RE JUST CHIPS FFS! But, I can respect that she hates sharing so now I just quietly steal a few chips while she’s at work just to be spiteful.
2. Her laptop
“You know those people that walk into a room and immediately act way too comfortable – that’s the way you treat my laptop.” – Jamilyn
Jamilyn has a job (unlike her unemployed loser girlfriend who steals her chips) so when she’s gone to work and I’m visiting, I use her laptop.
(I mean, we do use *my* Netflix.)
Edit: No we effing don’t. We use MY Netflix most of the time until it starts to mess up. Also, I had Netflix first. She used MINE first. – Jamilyn
One time I downloaded Hola Unblocker (to watch Murrican netflix) while she was at work and she was miffed.
She said that she knew it came from a place of love, but to never ever download anything onto her laptop without her around again.
I do understand where she’s coming from, so I haven’t downloaded anything onto her laptop since then (I get her back with the chips).
Dating Jamilyn is sort of like dating a cat, and I mean that in both the sweetest and non-furry way possible.
If I’m on my phone, she starts cuddling me and begging for my attention.
If I want to kiss her and she’s not in the mood, she will go sit on the end of the bed and tell me to stop.
I’m a very affectionate person and Jamilyn is sometimes affectionate and other times she wants me to leave her completely alone.
It’s not even like she’s mad at me or annoyed (or so she says) but she just doesn’t feel affectionate on that particular day.
After crying a few times and questioning whether or not she really loved me (I’m a little dramatic) I’m trying to adjust and not take it personally because she is absolutely entitled to do whatever she wants with herself and her body.
I have nothing but respect and love for her, so I have to shift my attitude.
4. Helping out with chores
This one is ridiculous only because of how the fight plays out between us.
Jamilyn absolutely hates when I help with cooking and cleaning, she wants to do it by herself.
I feel incredibly guilty and weirdly oppressive if I do not help her with the cooking/cleaning.
It took me weeks to convince her to let me do at least the dishes (because she’s really slow at doing them).
She likes doing things in a particular way and I only get in the way when I try to help.
I’m trying to just sit quietly and let her take care of me, because I know its important for her to do things in her way.
It just kills me.
5. Who gets to wear the plaid
I love plaid.
The first time I met Jamilyn, I’m pretty sure I was rocking a plaid shirt.
When the City & Colour concert I had bought tickets for way back in December (I was hopeful and it paid off) came around, Jamilyn messaged me:
And so began the plaid debate, I tried to wear mine on the trip down to Toronto and she said to me “If you put that on I swear to god I am not sitting with you” with mock rage. I decided against wearing the plaid.
It seems that the concert has awoken in her a sense of hipsterdom that had lain dormant and now her plaid shirt seems to be her favourite, much to my rustic Canadiana style’s dismay.
I personally think plaid is my thing, but if she wants to wear it occasionally I guess that’s okay.
All joking aside, we’ve disagreed over many many things and I’m sure we will disagree about many more.
We’ve argued about more serious things as well, like jealousy and trust issues.
Fighting is awkward and painful, but its an inevitable part of welcoming another person into your life.
Jamilyn and I had a lengthy discussion about arguing the other night. She told me that it was okay, as long as our fighting did not turn toxic and malicious.
It may piss me off that she’s anti-sharing and pro-hogging the plaid, but I love her more than I’ve ever loved anyone and she keeps me honest.
Even when we fight, there is still nowhere else in the world I’d rather be.
Do you have any ridiculous fighting stories? Share them in the comments 🙂
As far as I know, I’ve graduated from Glendon. I mean, I got invited to convocation and I haven’t heard anything suggesting that I’ve done anything but graduate – but I won’t feel 100% confident until I receive absolute confirmation that I have finished this degree.
I left Toronto 3 weeks(?) ago.
In that time I took a test for a job that I do not have the skills for and did not pass this test.
I went back down to the city for the first time as a tourist – going to the ACC for a City & Colour concert and the ROM (first time going to the ROM since elementary school and its after I left the city).
I had an interesting Mother’s Day.
I became really stressed out about finding a job.
I realised that there are no jobs that even require a uni degree anywhere I want to live.
I cried over how my degree has done nothing for me other than make me eligible for positions that high school graduates can get.
I cried some more over being a loser and taking 5 years to do a general BA.
I cried over: “Of course your degree is useless – I told you years ago that you should change programs and you *refused* to listen to me”. (Not the support I was looking for).
I have since become hell bent on getting a job with either Parks Canada or Ontario Parks.
I love being outside.
I loved interpreting to people where I used to work.
I love teaching people but I don’t want to be a teacher (right now).
I am resolute to find a job where my university degree will serve me and I refuse to have spent 5 years studying Canada for nothing.
In the meantime, I’m going to have to find some kind of job so I can start paying back the insane debt I’ve wracked up over the last 5 years but I’m enjoying bumming around Western Ontario and hiding out at my girlfriend’s house.
PS: This is just a sassy post, there are plenty of good things going on right now, there will be another update soon.
A Tribe Called Red just put out their video for “Sisters” and I felt inspired (/I’m feeling like Creator wanted me) to write about my Métis sister Tera Beaulieu.
Graduating from York University’s Psychology BA Honours in 2007, she went on to do her Masters in Psychology at the University of Toronto.
Tera is now in the final stretch of her academic path, working on her PhD in Clinical/Counselling Psychology at U of T since 2010 and her area of research is on the role of Métis traditional knowledge in addressing the life transition needs of urban Métis homeless people.
She was the recipient of the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship, awarded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. (This means she is both incredibly smart and hardworking).
She is the recipient of the 2014 Minaake Award for Leadership presented by the Native Women’s Resource Centre of Toronto.
She has also been an Infinite Reach Facilitator at University of Toronto for the last 3 years and that is how I had the pleasure of meeting her.
Through her work as an Infinite Reach Facilitator and as the Women’s Representative, MNO Toronto and York Region Métis Council she has carved out a place for Métis people living in Toronto and provided many of the city’s Métis folks the space to self declare and to own their identities.
She did all of this while navigating through her own Métis identity.
She is in the process of submitting her nomination to be President of the Toronto & York Region Métis Council (so if you can vote in the Toronto council elections, you should DEFINITELY vote for her, they will be held in June).
**JUST A REMINDER: SHE IS STILL WORKING ON HER PHD WHILE DOING ALL OF THIS AND MORE**
Tera is Thunder clan, which is unsurprising to those of us who have the privilege of knowing her, because she is absolutely a force of nature.
A proud Métis woman, her grandfather was born in St Laurent, Manitoba and he served in the Canadian Forces. Her father was born in B.C. and Tera has always called Toronto home.
I had a chat with Tera about her identity, how it defines her and also what she hopes to accomplish in the future:
Does your identity as a Métis woman impact your studies?
Did/do you struggle with identifying as Métis?
My identity as a Metis woman has significantly evolved over time. My family often made references to being “Native” or having “Indian blood” when I was a child, but I didn’t understand this or know how to make sense of it for most of my childhood and adolescence. Over time I learned of our ancestry as Metis, and began to research and look into our history in my early adulthood. Being comfortable with identifying as Metis was a long process that involved much reflection and healing. I spent a lot of time reflecting on whether I was entitled to identify as Metis, given that I didn’t grow up in the culture, and thinking about my responsibility to my community and culture if I took up the identity of being Aboriginal. As I began to immerse myself in the culture and become more active with the community, identifying as Metis became an important way for me to honour my Metis ancestors and positively contribute to our community.
Have you found strength in identifying as Métis?
I have found strength in identifying as Metis but it has not come without its challenges. I had a particularly difficult experience as an undergraduate student prior to identifying as Metis, but knowing of my ancestry. When I inquired about learning about traditional ways of healing and attending ceremony in the city, my professor at that time was very non-supportive and I experienced a great deal of shame. While she likely was trying to protect Indigenous culture and healing practices, for a young person who was struggling to make sense of their Indigenous identity, her response was quite damaging. I later realized that as a result of that experience, I suppressed my interest and connection with Aboriginal culture and felt unworthy of inquiring about and participating in the community. I can remember the first time that I publicly identified as Metis as a graduate student: my heart was pumping, I was sweating, almost waiting for someone to scream out at me “Liar! Imposter! We know the truth!!” To my surprise, my supervisor and fellow students were incredibly supportive and encouraged me to continue identifying and following this path of healing and reflection. As a result of identifying as Metis, becoming connected and integrated with the community and culture, I have experienced, and continue to experience, a great deal of healing, nurturance and support.
What has been a teaching you’ve received that has inspired you or helped you on your path?
Goodness, there are so many. I would say that one teaching that always sticks with me is a teaching about the infinity symbol. In describing how the infinity symbol represents the coming together of the First Peoples and European settlers, and how their intermarriage and children eventually evolved into the Metis Nation, an Elder reminded me that when you untwist the infinity, it forms a circle, highlighting our relationships with our First Nations and Inuit relatives. That’s been particularly important for me as I’ve engaged in work with the Aboriginal community of Toronto, remembering that while we are distinct Nations of people, we are all related.
Were you always planning to do a PhD?
No! I had no idea that I would end up in graduate school. I knew in early adolescence that I wanted to study psychology and help people. How I was going to get there, I had no idea. I have been incredibly fortunate and blessed to have had the opportunity to attend school and gain as much knowledge as I have. As much as I have enjoyed it, I am definitely looking forward to finishing though!
What has been your proudest moment?
The word proudest or pride is tough for me – I’ve always been taught to remain humble and remember that you are just one small piece of Creator’s big picture. I will say that one of the most humbling and honouring experiences that I have ever had was when I was presented with my first Eagle feather. To be recognized by our community for the work that I have engaged in was pretty unbelievable, as my life has been so transformed for the better as a result of doing this work. I carry that experience very close to my heart and spirit as I continue to walk the path that I’m on.
What advice would you give young Métis students considering university?
ARE YOU READY TO GET SOME HONESTY THROWN AT YOU!?!
Education is great.
Education is wonderful.
Education leads to the world being awesome.
This will not be a post of me ragging on Post-Secondary Education or its merits, but it will be one where I talk about why you shouldn’t go to university/college.
There are bad reasons for going to university/college.
I don’t want anyone to repeat the mistakes I’ve made and I want you to carefully consider your path before you embark on it.
REASONS TO NOT GO TO UNIVERSITY:
1) Because your parents want you to
This is the #1 reason because it is absolutely, positively, without a doubt the WORST reason to go to university.
Here’s a little secret from one sort of grown up to a sort of growing up person: DON’T LISTEN TO ANYTHING YOUR PARENTS SAY.
K, I don’t really mean that, sometimes they can have good advice (and don’t take this as an excuse to be a jerk and skip out on stuff like cleaning your room or being a nice person) but what I do mean is DO NOT GO TO UNIVERSITY BECAUSE ITS SOMETHING YOUR PARENTS WANT FOR YOU.
YOU ARE NOT YOUR PARENTS AND BEING THEIR CHILD DOES NOT MAKE YOU THEIR PROPERTY OR AN EXTENSION OF THEIR SUCCESS/FAILURE AS HUMAN BEINGS.
YOU ARE A SENTIENT BEING, CAPABLE OF GREAT THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS.
We all want our parents to be proud of us (often especially if we feel like they don’t care about us) but spending thousands of dollars to do something you don’t really like is NOT a good idea.
University and/or College are places of learning, places of growth and places of knowledge.
If you’re there for anything other than yourself – it will strain not only your mental and physical health, but also your relationship with your parents.
Even if you never tell them that you’re only doing it for them, you will grow to resent them, resent university and resent yourself for listening.
Listen to your heart and follow YOUR dreams.
You’re 18, if you want to spend 2 or 3 years trying the whole singing thing – DO IT!
If you want to head out to Australia and work on a dive boat – do it! (I have a buddy who did).
It’s YOUR life and when your parents are gone, will you be proud of what you’ve done for yourself? Or will you still regret listening to them?
PS. Don’t believe the crap they say when they tell you “If you don’t go now, you’ll never go.” People go back to school ALL THE TIME! It’s absolutely manageable, it’ll be a bit tougher if you go when you’re older – but if you aren’t ready right now it’ll feel impossible.
2) Because you want to escape
Let’s say you have an awful home life (I feel you).
Let’s say you’re gay and you want to run away (I feel you).
Let’s say you’re bored of your little town and you’re dying for a new experience.
Let’s say high school sucked, the people sucked and you want to run away.
UNIVERSITY AND COLLEGE ARE NOT PLACES TO RUN AWAY TO.
I went to university when I was 17 because my choices were stay home and work or go to university.
I absolutely HATED being at home.
I had a countdown to the day I was leaving home starting at 389 days.
I used to plan out how to run away and get away with it, but I was always too scared to do it.
Between cutting myself in places no one could see and starving myself on and off – I was a total disaster literally dying to escape.
I should not have used university as my escape, I should have done Katimavik like my best friend did and found myself that way.
DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT IF YOU WANT TO ESCAPE!
University is full of pressures and if you’re trying to run away from one stressful situation – diving into another is not very smart.
You’ll have friends who go away to school, if they aren’t living in res – go move in with them!
Get a crappy job!
Flip burgers and hang out with your friends for a while, until you get sick of it and then call up OSAP and get some of that cash money and go to school.
It’s OK to do that.
You’ll have to be brave to follow a different path, but it won’t be as painful as everyone says it is.
3) Because you think it’ll be one big party
Will you party in university?
Will you party too much?
(If you’re an irresponsible dill hole like me)
Will it negatively affect your grades?
If you’re only there to party, will you actually even want to go to class or are you spending thousands of dollars to act out every scene of every stupid American movie you saw about college?
You know the answer to this.
Like I said previously, if you’re not ready for the commitment and the responsibility of university or college yet, DON’T GO.
You will waste your money and you will be unhappy – that’s a guarantee.
You aren’t avoiding life, you’re LIVING IT RIGHT NOW.
HIGH SCHOOL IS LIFE.
WORKING IS LIFE.
WORKING A “BAD” (no such thing) JOB IS LIFE!
YOU ARE ALIVE AND YOU ARE LIVING.
4) Because you are unsure of what you want
Don’t waste your money.
You can do other things to find out your passions, but spending a few grand at school is a bad idea.
The best way to motivate yourself for school is to do something you really hate for a while.
5) Because you are smart
My buddy and I were the two “smart” kids in our high school.
Guess who struggled the most with university, its pressures and our health?
You know the answer to that one.
Don’t go to university because you’re the smart kid and university is what smart kids do.
At this point, you’re probably thinking:
Damn Krista, you just listed a whole bunch of reasons why I SHOULDN’T go to school, so why should I go to school?
Here are my reasons to go to university/college:
GO TO UNIVERSITY BECAUSE YOU LOVE LEARNING!
GO TO UNIVERSITY BECAUSE YOU WANT TO BE A DOCTOR/LAWYER/TEACHER/PROFESSOR/ASTRONAUT!
GO TO UNIVERSITY BECAUSE YOU’VE ALWAYS DREAMED OF IT!
GO TO UNIVERSITY BECAUSE YOU’RE READY TO TAKE ON THE RESPONSIBILITY OF SCHOOL!
GO TO UNIVERSITY BECAUSE YOU ARE EXCITED ABOUT LEARNING!
I would love to go back to school NOW with the knowledge I have of myself.
I have not been the most successful student and its because I didn’t use university as well as I could have.
You are paying for the service and for the knowledge.
You wouldn’t buy something you don’t want to use, so don’t.
Wait until you’re ready, it’ll be worth it!
I’m breaking up with you.
You are a beautiful city and it has been a privilege to live in you for the past 5 years, however sadly our love affair is drawing to a close.
When I was 17 years old you seduced me with your bright lights, diverse population and delicious food.
I was mesmerized by your beautiful little bilingual campus – it echoed of home while I had the world at my doorstep.
This little campus, tucked away in the Northern part of the city has been my home base for the past 5 years.
Glendon provided me a safe haven to let my rainbow flag fly and become the person I am today.
It introduced me to some of my best friends and some beautiful people who have fallen out of my life as the years have gone by.
Glendon’s students elected me time and time again for various positions and entrusted me with the opportunity to travel across the city and province to represent them.
Glendon’s employers hired me which allowed me to be fed and gave me the opportunity to share my love for this pretty little campus.
Oh Glendon, I’ve also loved you dearly.
However, our long time together is coming to an end. I’ve changed and you haven’t.
It’s come to a point where we just want different things in life.
I am sad. We have really great memories together.
I will always remember hanging out in the park behind the AGO on lazy summer afternoons.
And turning 19 and celebrating it in the village.
Hanging out at my friends’ houses at College and Bathurst.
Late night street meat and shawarma.
Sushi… pizza… real Italian food…!
Staying up all night for Nuit Blanche.
Heading down to hang out in front of the ACC to watch the Leafs play their final game of the playoffs with a bunch of Glendonites and 2000 other fans.
Then there are hundreds of events which I don’t have pictures of:
– riding the TTC at ungodly hours
– going to the AGO
– PATIOS ❤
– seeing movies at the TIFF Bell lightbox
– playing Cards Against Humanity at Snakes and Lattes
– nights out in the village
– going to Starbucks (those are actually pretty rare outside of Toronto)
– spending Canada Day on the beach
– the Distillery District
– checking out HotDocs
– treks out to Etobicoke
– walking around Little Italy
– strolling around Kensington
– taking my little brother to the Army Surplus store…
I love you and I would not trade my experience of living in this city for anything.
It was an excellent place to come of age and discover myself.
You gave me opportunities that were unique only to you and I’m proud to have lived in the largest city in Canada.
No matter where I go next, your cityscape has been inscribed in my memory.
I started off not even knowing how to pay for the bus and now I’m comfortable heading anywhere in the city. It was quite the learning curve, but now I feel comfortable using public transit anywhere in the world.
Toronto you have shown me a lot of love over the past 5 years and its not you, its me.
I’m homesick for quiet nights, I miss bonfires and the silence of a small town.
I miss the fresh air.
I’m weary of the TTC.
I’m fed up with your mayor.
And most importantly, I’m ready for some new adventures.
Toronto, I will always love you – I’m just no longer *in love* with you.
With all of my love,
“Dating in the gay world is like finding a job, you either have to do it on the internet or get referred” (need source).
I used to be a jerk about online dating.
“I’d never do that!”
“Looking online for a date is for sad old people.”
“I want an *authentic* connection with someone.”
I had a bit of a pattern of dating my friends’ lesbian/bi friends.
And by “a pattern” I mean literally everyone I dated (aside from my first girlfriend) was a friends’ gay friend.
“OMG Krista! You’d really love [insert name here]! She’s really pretty and she’s GAY… well sort of gay, she likes girls and you like girls! So YAY DATE!”
And to be honest my criteria (up until recently) was:
Is she pretty?
Is she gay/bi/queer?
If both of those were met (or at least the gay/queer/bi part) I would date the girl.
It would without fail lead to these horrendously drawn out relationships or pointless flings that would always inevitably fail miserably or be super awkward or both.
And then when my last long term relationship failed (as it was inevitably going to) I decided it was time I tried something different.
I created two profiles, one with OkCupid and another with Plenty of Fish.
I would troll through the endless feeds of women and gave out my number a bunch of times and added a few of them on Facebook.
We’d text for a day or two and it would fizzle into nothing.
At one point I’d even asked two best friends out, which was really really awkward and I just decided to ignore it and stop talking to both of them.
One of the advantages of online dating is that, while yes there is someone on the other side of the screen, if it fizzles out you don’t have their best friend asking “Oh, what happened?? I thought you two would be SO great together.” There’s no awkward connection between you and your ex-situation.
After a few weeks of being on these websites I considered giving up. It was boring, time consuming and it made me feel shallow.
I won’t pretend online dating isn’t shallow, it absolutely is.
You’re scrolling through pictures and talking to the people you find attractive.
I was scrolling and scrolling, I had deleted my OkCupid and was debating deleting POF.
And then I stumbled across this ridiculously hot girl.
“Oooh, she’s in Early Childhood Education… that means she likes kids!”
“She likes HISTORY?! I’m a huge History nerd!”
“Her dad owns a music store? And SHE SINGS!?”
“Holy crap, she’s so pretty… why is she online?”
And that’s when I decided to message her.
Through some divine miracle in the exact second I sent my message, she messaged me.
Because this is my blog and I want to share the story of our first date, I’m going to segway slightly off topic to talk about it.
I was heading home for Thanksgiving and I went to Collingwood. Jamilyn decided she wanted to meet up with me sooner than we initially planned so she drove all the way over to see me.
I had told her before I met her that so long as we clicked in real life, I really wanted to make her my girlfriend (talk about pressure Batman).
We grabbed coffee. She absolutely hated hers (because she hates coffee) and I burned the sh*t out of my tongue and tried in vain to hide it.
After we left the coffee shop and then we awkwardly walked around the waterfront in Collingwood.
I was trying to find a semi secluded place to kiss all up on her beautiful face, I failed and we settled on a picnic table.
She sat down on the opposite side of the table from me, nerves combined with poor judgement led me to devise a pretty terrible plan that would lead me to sit next to her.
In this terrible plan, I decided to show her a video on my phone because she said she liked YouTube. Since I was so nervous, the only video I could think to show was True Facts About Ducks because we watched it during D Frosh training and I had told her about Frosh week.
Somehow that and showing her my drag performance gave her enough confidence to sing for me.
After she was done singing all I could say was:
“I really want to kiss you right now”.
She smiled at me and shrugged then the rest is history. (See people, consent *is* sexy).
We’ve been dating for a while now and I honestly think she is the best thing that has ever happened to me.
We’re both weirdos in the exact same way. We have similar values and want the same things in life.
I don’t have to hide anything from her and she loves me exactly as I am, flaws and all.
She is everything I’ve ever wanted in a partner and I don’t think I would have found her if it weren’t for the internet.
Just a few tips for dating online:
– Always meet up in a public place.
– If the person seems sketchy you should definitely bail.
– Tell a friend that you’re going on a date and where you’ll be. Meet up somewhere you’re familiar with.
– Have fun!
– Don’t settle. The world is full of awesome people and you deserve happiness.
– Post cute pictures of yourself but include ones from different angles (people assume you aren’t so cute if your pictures are all from your good side).
– Check what kind of relationship they’re looking for. If you’re poly, you may want to look for other folks who are as well. I’m monogamous, so I made sure to only look for other women who felt the same way.
– Less is more. Don’t overshare, let people get to know you.
– Don’t lie. If you get into a serious relationship and then have to admit that you actually really hate Arcade Fire, it will be uncomfortable for everyone involved.
That’s about it!
If you’re single and looking, don’t limit yourself!
You could meet some awesome friends or maybe even find your soulmate.
Do you have any awkward or awesome online dating stories? Comment below!