there are a lot of perks that come with living where i live; i'm within walking distance from a major shopping centre, i have a killer roommate [not in the literal sense, of course], access to a gym and a pool, and, get this, a subway at the base of my building, so i can always 'eat fresh'.
the veggie sub lover in me used to frequent this particular subway three to four times a week, but recently stopped due to the overly rude man that was prone to serving me every time. [please note: this blog isn't about his bad attitude, but mine, as you will see below].
a few weeks a go, however, i had a sub craving that couldn't be satisfied by just any sandwich.
i go downstairs, and as expected, this particular sandwich artist was being ... himself. 'um hello? you are not ordering properly!" he kept saying over and over, after yelling at me because he didn't hear me say that i wanted a six inch sub and not a twelve. i kindly [at this point] told him that he didn't have to be rude to me, twice in fact, which just ended up making him more aggressive. after telling him i no longer wanted a sub, he mumbled something, and i, in response, ... called him an asshole - like to his face - and left his store for the last time.
for a minute, i felt proud. "i showed him", i thought. "yeah paula, STICK IT TO THE MAN. STICK IT TO THE SUBWAY MAN".
but then, minutes later, i felt like the asshole. a hungry, sub-less asshole.
this one moment alone sent me into deep reflection.
1) i obviously had/have some misplaced anger.
chances are, though he was rude, the subway man wasn't the root of my anger that day.
for the past two or three months, i've been harbouring bitterness towards people i felt abandoned by during one of the hardest seasons of my life.
my mom's been on quite the medical journey over the past year. i won't go into too much detail because it's her journey, but she got diagnosed with cancer a while back, had an operation, and recently spent six weeks undergoing treatment at princess margaret hospital in toronto.
let it be said that she displayed nothing but courage and optimism throughout this whole process, but admittedly, this was one of the scariest and loneliest seasons of my life. it should have never been about me, i know, but part of this was my journey, too, and i struggled through my part of it each and every day.
i struggled with the commute almost every night after work, wrestled with fear, felt loads of compassion for my mom and the other patients who did nothing but inspire me throughout this whole process, found myself missing my dad more than ever, and struggled through deep bouts of loneliness when my friends appeared to be nowhere in sight. if i'm being honest, i'm still carrying the latter, which still serves as a huge burden on my heart and shoulders to this day, but is something i am trying to work through even now as i type this.
2) i needed/need a healthy outlet.
believe it or not, i was having a hard time coming up with the words to express what i was going through to the point where i couldn't even bring myself to blog or journal, which is weird for me. so i found an alternative outlet: the gym.
i joined good life almost two weeks a go now and soon after realized that while working out has obvious physical benefits, the fact that it's helping me de-stress and relieve some anger is helping me even more. a few days a go, a certain song came on as i peddling away on the stationery bike, and tears started running down my cheeks. [if anyone asked, i planned on telling them that i was working out so hard that sweat was coming out of my eyes haha]. i got off that bike feeling ten pounds lighter [figuratively speaking, that is].
3) at the end of the day, life is a journey, and i'm grateful for the process.
i adopted the word 'ameliorate' as my word for 2014, which means, "to make something unsatisfactory better; to become better" and i am happy to report that i am making much progress with this. in the midst of working through some of my above issues, which is all part of becoming a better me, i've been doing a lot of reflecting about this past year alone, and choose to celebrate how far i've come and how better my life has been since i made some significant changes, and continue to.
i thank God that i'm not who i used to be, and for the hopes of being an even better me tomorrow.