Hello! I’m MHC & welcome to my weird & wonderful life!
To learn about me, click HERE.
To get in touch with me, click HERE.
To read my work at My Trending Stories, click HERE.
So, I did a thing.
Oops. Wrong thing. But I did that too. My best friend was talking to me & says “You’re not THAT much of a geek MHC.” My reply? “I am getting a Harry Potter fan tattoo on my arm right this second. I took an illustration from the book & got it permanently inked on my arm. I am that geeky.”
But we’re not talking about my nerdiness. I mean, we could, but we aren’t.
Back to the thing I did.
The process that was supposed to take three months took three weeks (well, two. I was off the floor for eight days). Apparently, during the CEO visit, my staff actually recommended that they just give me the reigns, as I had proven I cared about their best interest & wanted them to succeed. So, I’m on salary & I have two phones again (but I’ve asked for a new one, because look at this bitch)!
My life has never been easy. It’s always been an uphill battle. I didn’t have parents with money to bail me out or pay my tuition or a supportive partner or a family to back me up (although my brother is always there with moral support. He’s bad ass). I’ve always had my friends at my back, but everything I’ve ever acquired or achieved, I earned through hard work & getting back up when life kicked me in the dick. Everything that breaks my heart doesn’t break it anymore. I use it to drive me to get better. Go ahead, hurt me life. I will take all of that pain & heartache & use it as fuel to drive me, make me better, stronger, more capable. It drives me in the gym when I’m setting my first PR since my injury. It drives me when I’m running. It drives me when I’m working. I wake up every morning with the belief that I’m gonna punch life in the face…
…and I am so damn grateful for each setback.
Yup, you heard me. Everything that didn’t work out or hurt me taught me that I have a 100% success rate of surviving that & I know I can take that & become the most awesome woman I’ll ever be, someone I can be proud of. Someone my daughters can look up to. A woman of passion & conviction & who succeeeds at everything she sets her mind to. They watched me fall down & get back up over & over again. They know that when you don’t succeed, you get your ass up & get back in the damn ring. So, thank you life, for crushing my soul 100 times, because I built a better MHC from all of those things. A kinder, gentler, stronger, MHC.
I wrote something this week, but it has a password so only Erica can read it (she’s the only one who knows me well enough to guess the password). I’m not comfortable sharing it, but it’s basically about how what I thought would be my worst nightmare ended up being the fuel for my greatest success & how I know who I want to be, what I want, who it is that I want in my life (spoiler alert; Erica) & how much I learned about what I needed to change about my own insecurities to make things work for me. I hate writing words that no one will read, so this is the high level version of how I carefully built my life from the brink of disaster & I have almost everything I’ve ever wanted. I have the day job that I love & gives me the financial security I need (& I don’t work in a fucking Walmart), I’ve built a successful freelance career so I’m always writing and getting published somewhere. I’ve shed 17 inches and I’ve finally started succeeding at my new Crossfit gym because fuck arthritis & fuck injuries. My kids are happy. And WWE even booked my dream match (after ruining my life at Battleground) I’ve almost won at life bitches!
I got this far by never focusing on what I don’t have, but what I will have by working hard. Grateful for what I have & grinding for what I will have if I just keep my head up, work hard & never settle for less than the best I have in me to offer.
I apologize if I’m rambly af, but I think I’ve had like seven hours of sleep over the last five days. I’ve had several deadlines, so between that and my day job & my family & fitness & Pokemon Go, I think I may be dead & just not know it yet.
Well, as much of a vacation as I take. I’m heading for West London Crossfit the second I get off the plane. I brought my laptop to work on assignments & because I may be assigned stories to work on remotely. I’m using in flight wifi to respond to emails & I have two conference calls I need to be a part of, but hey, I AM ON VACATION!
I will also be doing fun stuff, as I’ll be spending the week with my best friend Melissa. For those of you who know me, I hate the act of travelling. I love going to new places, but I’d prefer a teleporter. As always, check out my Twitter feed for my travel adventures (and my day to day life, and anything that comes up, as by the time I would want to write personally, I’m generally dead on my feet and barely know what day it is). But that’s a good thing. I’m glad my professional writing is taking precedence over my personal ramblings. Besides, I have enough social media that my adventures are easily tracked & those who love me most could like, call me or text or send a carrier pigeon or visit me at work or bug me on FB or something. I once posted my address on the Internet like a dumbass. I am always easily found.
Speaking of writing, you should probably check this out;
(*is actually big deal. Please commence big dealing)
That’s right, I am currently freelancing with Sun Media, a division of Postmedia. No word on my story idea, but even if it doesn’t pan out, I got a foot in the door & an article published by a major newspaper company (& a photo I took!), which is pretty much all I’ve ever wanted in the history of forever. It wasn’t my finest work, but I took a risk & did something I’ve never done before & it paid off in spades. Because I was available on such short notice, I’m hoping I proved my commitment & this can turn into more opportunities. I’m so excited and happy that this is happening. All of my hard work is paying off. And I’m so very tired.
I may be sleep deprived, as my free daylight hours go to my family & crossfitting, so I write at night & you may be more likely to find me awake @ 2am than any other time (I invite all night owls to chat me up then, as you can keep me awake while I work hahaha), but it’s worth it. After years of hard work, sacrifices, I finally put it all together & I have built a life with almost everything I could have asked for to be truly happy. I am succeeding in my professional life more than I ever have before, both in wireless and more importantly, as a reporter. My kids are happy. I have time for fitness. I’m so proud that little setbacks don’t hold me back anymore & I can just keep on making things awesome. A little sleep deprivation is so fucking worth it.
So. Fucking. Worth it.
Hopefully, the next thing I get to share is that my story pitch was greenlit & I can send a link to a published work that is mine from initial pitch to printed byline. The thought makes me so damn happy. I just can’t show emotion. Just bleary eyed glee.
Let me tell you a story.
My best friend Melissa is my other half. She’s one of the most important adults in my life & I’ll be home with her soon for my annual visit, as I donated a week to bring my kids to see their dad (since he didn’t ask to see them & I’m basically handing them off & saying “THESE ARE YOURS. REMEMBER?”). We’ll have a great catch up (& I’m getting a HUGE tattoo. Like, HUGE).
I didn’t just pitch it. I started. I conducted interviews. I did research. I networked. I put my guts into this little idea that suddenly meant so much to me while also working on my next Edmonton Senior piece (also an idea I pitched.I love that my latest pieces are mine, from the initial idea to the finished product. If you want to read my latest article, click here). I asked friends & colleagues about interest. I drove Matty the Bastard nuts trying to come up with a place to shop it to (since my last pitch to a different paper didn’t pan out). But I go by a certain building every day & it was almost challenging me to take my writing career into my own hands. Finally, I said “Fuck it, go big or go home.”
After my disastrous first encounter with the Deputy Editor of the Journal (who thankfully has a sense of humour & finds my complete inability to make a good first impression funny), I decided to strike while my hilarious but awkward memory is fresh & put together an intelligent & well thought out pitch. He forgot to reply to that part of the email, which means that either;
a) it was fucking terrible
b) he is still mulling over it
c) it was so amazing that he died of joy that someone suggested it.
d) the next paragraph explains why it might have been forgotten.
But the bigger story is that he had another proposition. One that puts me right on the path to achieving everything I’ve wanted since I was eight. I don’t want to give too much away until it materializes, but stay tuned, because I may have epic news to share with you that I am so super stoked about that I just want to scream with giddy glee.
But of course, that’s not the only professional part of my life that’s taking off. My new job is fantastic. My staff is extremely talented, bright, funny & eager to learn to be the best possible sales people they can be. I don’t have to wear a terrible work shirt (even though I didn’t for the last week BECAUSE SOMEBODY STOLE IT FROM MY LOCKER). I remembered more than I thought I would, & I may be taking over the store faster than I thought. But my role as cell phone boss lady has been fantastic & I am so excited to work with this team & help them meet their goals.
I’m sorry if I’m being braggy, but I have worked hard. I didn’t sit complacent. I didn’t stab people in the back. I devoted my life to being a good mom, writer, friend, employee & woman & it’s paying off. So, I’m gonna enjoy it & work towards what comes next.
I’m so freaking excited to be moving forward. In this past month, I’ve taken my new position and I’m so excited to get started. I was under the impression that I’d be shadowing the manager for my probationary ninety days, but he’s made it clear that my new store will be “my baby” after two weeks, and a crash course in wireless leadership. That’s both awesome and frightening, but then I remind myself that they’re trusting me with this because I’ve proven that I can do it. My work history demonstrates that I can be a capable leader. So, it’s about calming the nerves, taking a deep breath and stepping up to the plate.
My writing career is booming too. My first article under my new editor was a success, which makes me happy. When I started with Great West Newspapers, I was afraid to pitch a story. I didn’t think I should. What do I know about Alberta and the lifestyles of people here? I accepted my assignments as they came and when a story idea that I carefully crafted was given to another writer, I wanted to give up. I felt like a fish out of water and maybe I’m not the talented journalist I always thought I was. But when I got the email that there was a change of the guard, I decided to suck it up and be brave. I came up with two ideas and pitched them both. My new editor replied with that both were good, but one was a better fit for the summer months. So, I got to work and when I got the email saying that there were no revisions necessary and it was being printed, I was elated! One of my pieces for My Trending Stories was very well received and I’ve mentioned it before, but the editor of a major Edmonton newspaper told me my blog was witty and clever and he couldn’t wait to read my published work. All of a sudden, I felt very much like the person I have worked my entire life to become. Pitching stories is such a huge part of what I do, so my lack of confidence, much like my lack of driving, has held me back.
Nothing holds me back anymore.
When the editor of a local newspaper set out a call for freelance writers, I brainstormed with a friend (who also happens to be as passionate about radio as I am about writing) and we came up with an idea that could be really interesting. I drew up a little proposal and explained why I thought readers would like it and sent it off. I haven’t heard back yet, which I’m taking as a positive sign. Had he hated it (or required more pictures of Spiderman), he would have just said so. But when some friends asked me about my idea, I told them, and as I was saying “You’ll think it’s silly…” they replied “That sounds really interesting!” I’ve booked interviews already. I’m so excited about how this is turning out. Maybe he won’t want to run with it. If not, I’ll finish it and sell it to another magazine here in YEG. Because why not? The more publications that print my work, the better it is for my career.
It’s a busy, beautiful life and I’m so grateful to be the one who gets to live it.
I think it’s time for me to admit that I do really stupid things.
I wouldn’t necessarily say stupid, but maybe “I have no chill” as the cool teenagers say.
Because my journalism career is picking up all kinds of steam, I decided to separate my personal social media from my professional one. I figured it might be better to separate my work from my social media, where I discuss super important things like crossfit, why I think running is stupid, and of course, the return of Seth Rollins and my childlike crush on Seth Rollins. It’s honestly really boring and why I have any followers, I will never know (speaking of which, follow me on Twitter and read about my boring life and teenybopper crush on Seth Rollins!)
So, I opened up this super cool professional Twitter account, which you can totally follow here if you want to read my latest articles! My next article should be up in the coming weeks, so I’m excited.
I’ve also been offered an opportunity to contribute to a new news and popular culture blog (check out my writer profile HERE). That’s kind of exciting. And one of my blog posts was extremely well received by readers, including some fitness writers! Not too bad for a story about a goose.
But the editor for some of the many newspapers I applied for jobs with read this blog and then told me he thought it was really good! Naturally, when responding to the compliment, I managed to do in a way that can only be classified as “completely awkward asshole.” That’s how I deal with compliments folks. Like an asshole. Of course, I DID make an impression, so next time there’s a posting at the Examiner, I can apply with “Hey, remember that time you complimented my work and I asked if you were being sarcastic like a douche? That was me, I swear I’m talented and have the education and portfolio to back it up. Please give me a job.” But it was such a big deal to me. Someone who’s body of work I admire and I hope will someday be my editor complimented this mishmash of thoughts. It was like a big sign that said “You are on the right track MHC.” This silly compliment made me so very proud & it took everything in me not to text everyone I know that the editor thinks I don’t suck. But most of the people in my life are sick of the play by play about my career, the stories I’m working on, the emails I’m sending, etc. I sometimes forget that this is actually only really important to me, and that the eye rolls I get are perfectly natural. I sometimes wonder if I’m the only person who gets this passionate about what they do and who they want to be.
That same night, another freelance opportunity presented itself and I applied. Then I sent a message on LinkedIn asking if there was more I could do to help with my application. That’s when I realized that while in my personal life, I have infinite patience, in my professional life, I have NONE. No chill ever. In my personal life, I am the giver of chances, I am the person who wants to offer love and forgiveness and the opportunity to prove that you can be the person you are capable of being if you would just try really hard to stop doing dumb ass shit (until I reach my limit, then you’re erased). I want my children to learn from my example; how to be healthy, mentally healthy, strong, brave, and determined. I give them chances to grow. I’m patient with them. I listen. But when it comes to my professional life, I become so impatient. Reply right now. Interview right now. Let’s get started. Let me write right now. The position I interviewed at Great West won’t even be available until the fall. So, here I am, trying super hard to be patient, because I’m starting to realize that my eager beaver ways might be putting off potential editors. While I think it would be awesome to have staff that wanted a job as much as I want one, maybe others disagree. So, I am going to try this patience thing. I’ve heard it works in some circles. I’ll wait the proper seven days and then call and follow up. Hopefully, I will get in and can proudly announce the next paper I’ll be writing for so my friends and family can all pretend to care and roll their eyes again. I’ll apply the patience that I give to those I love the most to the world I love the most and see if it pays off.
I’m just so excited. The more places I can published & the more time I can put in a newsroom, the closer I get to the thing I’ve worked my ENTIRE life for. And I get ahead of myself. And then I do and say stupid things which doesn’t help. Sometimes I swear I’m a cartoon character.
Since I started working with Great West Media last year, I have emailed the publisher once a week, every week. I have emailed him 66 times.
Yesterday, I took a trip to St. Albert to interview with him.
An opening arrived. He was very honest and said I was competing with people with 15 years editorial experience, but there are some positions opening up in the fall that I would be better suited for & this would be a preliminary interview. He liked my work. He admired my tenacity. Could I make it in two hours? Uhhhh…duh. Sure it was deadline day, and I had a sentence to add into my hiking piece. But I can’t turn down a chance to meet a publisher! So, I went on the epic road trip to St. Albert & made it in 1.5 hours, a new record for me. I didn’t even get lost. Baby Jesus was in my corner.
I think the interview went well. They asked about my adding some extra freelance work to the local paper on top of my current freelance work until I can take my road test & get a car. I’m already freelancing, why not?! It’s money in my pocket. It’s new & different subject matter (City Council writing was discussed) & I learn more and more about becoming a better reporter. It’s another step closer to the goal that I’ve worked so hard for & moved across the damn country for. One step closer.
Even if I just sell more stories until I can buy a car next year while I build my wireless career as the cell phone boss lady, it’ll be okay. I start my new job on 07/04 & I’m excited to get into my new store. And this meeting was productive. It’s one step closer…& more money. I put in the time, the effort & hard work & I got the meeting I’ve been gunning for. He didn’t have to do that, after all, he said himself that there were other candidates with more experience. But he read my work & it was damn good. And if I freelance with the newspaper, I’ll get some time in a newsroom & a chance to learn other styles of reporting. My new editor has been very hands on with my latest work. I’m soaking up the feedback like a sponge. Anything to learn and grow & become the best damn reporter I can be.
I don’t fear failure anymore. Mostly because I don’t really know what it is. If it didn’t work the first time, I believe in doubling down & trying again. Didn’t get the meeting? Try again. Want a better job? Take the road less travelled to get the interview. Nail it. Bad weekend for your diet? Eat better tomorrow. Was that WOD or run loaggy & crappy? Oh well, your time will improve tomorrow. This is the mantra that I have built my life around. There is no failure; only a setback in which I can then use to become the woman I’m supposed to be. Thanks for that kick in the nuts, I’ll just bounce back better.
Life is always about proving to yourself that you can be the best you that you can be, without hurting people or stepping on them on the way. You can always improve, grow, be better. If you want it badly enough, you’ll do it. I always remind myself that if former WWE champion Seth Rollins can rehab 10 hours a day & crossfit on one leg to get back to what he does best, I can get my ass to the gym. If I can be brave enough to move away from everyone I love to be a writer, I can learn to drive, freelance, take everything thrown at me until I get to where I need to be. I can be the best cell phone boss lady I can be and make my store successful. Why? Because I want it. That’s why.
Today I did a thing.
It’s not a super exciting thing, but for those who know me well, it’ll be a funny story. And you’ll probably giggle a bit.
In case you’re new to the wonderful world of ASH Multimedia, let me bring you up to speed. I used to be really fat. Now, I am 92lbs lighter (as I lost the last of that pesky 15lbs I gained during my commute from Hell) & I have 43lbs left to reach my goal weight. I’ve worked super hard to get healthy. Part of that includes running. I effing HATE running. I have dedicated many a blog post to my hatred of running. But, combined with Crossfit, it helps me reach my goals. I want to be healthy, in shape, set a good example for my girls. But running is still stupid.
Every other day, I go for my morning run around the lake near my house. But I never actually make it because the harbingers of doom are always hanging out. You know, GEESE.
Again, if you’re new, let me catch you up; geese are the absolute fucking worst. WORST. They’re evil & scary & will likely murder me. If you follow me on Instagram, you will have watched my epic boss battle with Satan’s unholy army (which can be found here & here). You can actually pinpoint on my Runkeeper Go maps EXACTLY when I encountered these evil creatures because it’s where I turn around in terror.
This might seem like a stupid story, mostly because it totally is. But it’s fun & not everything needs to be some metaphor for some deeper lesson. I wanted to reach my little goal more than I wanted to be afraid of the goose. So I was. By achieving this mini goal, it helps me stay on course to achieve my next fitness goal (regain all of my crossfit strength & set a back squat PR# of 150 by year’s end). Every time I achieve a little goal, I can accomplish more until my fitness goals are about getting stronger & maintaining & not losing weight. It’ll be nice. But to do that, sometimes I’ve gotta do unpleasant things, like risk being murdered by geese…
Do you know how much easier it is to go to your job when you know you only have to go 11 more times?!
Seriously. Super awesome. I’m like “let’s hit this target guys so I can get out of here!” I MAY be excited to start my new job. I am so grateful for the opportunities that this gig has afforded me, but it’s time to move on and I’m REALLY excited to move on. Haha. However, this is not my old universe, so I’ll have to remember some very important managerial rules;
I’m just utterly in love with my life right now. I have the wireless career plan that I had worked so hard at Target to build (and then ended) back on track. I am part of a company that has a culture and people that I love. I’m part of an organization that I respect and admire and I want to build a long term career with (if a long term journalism job doesn’t ever pan out). But while right now it’s the Dave & MHC show, once I prove myself, it’ll be my store, my team. I get to cultivate people & help them reach their goals! I’m freelancing with a National Newspaper Award winning editor who sees a lot of potential in my writing and my story ideas. And as I learn to drive and buy my own car, I can keep working towards the goal. I’ve been doing home repair, putting up curtains and hanging pictures and making my home feel like MY home. The kids are doing well. I was afraid I’d have to start over at Crossfit, but no, I still have a lot of strength in me. I guess life is a little like running. Running is stupid, but it’s necessary to remain healthy and active. But there’s a big ass hill by my house. When I moved here, walking up that stupid hill was enough to wind me. This week I ran up that hill as part of a 5.5 KM run. Even after running almost 4.5 KM first, I made it up the hill and still managed to finish the run. And when you run uphill, your legs get stronger. I guess, as always, I’ve gotten stronger. And because I’ve gotten stronger, I have gotten almost everything I’ve ever wanted, which makes me the happiest MHC in the whole wide world.
Remember when I used to randomly switch jobs because I decided on a whim that I hated it?
We’re not quite in that place, but I did get a new job.
I don’t feel badly about this change.When I took my last job it left me with horrible anxiety that it would affect the parts of my life that made me the most happy…& it did. Even though I reclaimed what makes me most happy (family & fitness), now I’m joining a company that I love, respect the culture & see nothing but growth. For this I am grateful, even if the commute is kind of sucky. However, it’s not the worst commute I’ve ever done & I still have time for crossfit. But life has a way of just becoming awesome, so I’m proud of how I turned it all into a positive & built my career & myself the way I want & I learned not only can I survive here on my own, but I thrive and everything always just gets better! Hard work & being a good person always pays off and things will always work out if you treat people well, be nice & work hard.
But it’s a place I can build a career and still freelance (BTW my latest assignment is freaking awesome) & build my portfolio. More money means I can afford to buy a car next year (BECAUSE I CAN LEGALLY DRIVE NOW BITCHES). More money means more in the college funds as the dad reminded me this week (before I blocked his number because he’s annoying and rude) he’s on a fixed income & has no real plan to change that so I’m expected to foot the bill for everything. So, I need to be able to increase my earning potential. And I’m excited. I’ll be running my own store & building my own team and that’s gonna be amazing.
I’ve always managed to maintain good relationships with my old colleagues. Because of this, when opportunities come up, I am fortunate enough to take advantage. I told you I had some other options on the go. Well, one of them was with a company that I have a lot of connections with. My former District Manager (whom I still call Boss Man Adam despite him not actually being my boss anymore) made a phone call and suggested the YEG District Manager call me about an opportunity in the area. We had a good chat and what started as a sales rep offer turned into a Manager in Training/Co-Manager position that will lead to me taking over the store once I prove I can do what Boss Man Adam said I’m capable of. As much as I love my current boss and manager, more money & career expansion is too much to pass up so I’ll be starting a new job in two weeks!
So, feel free to stay tuned on Facebook (unless I’ve blocked you on Facebook), Twitter (unless I’ve blocked you on Twitter) or LinkedIn (unless I’ve blocked you on LinkedIn) for the next stop in my wireless career. I think it’s gonna be a good one.