The Light

Let’s all take a minute to talk about…me. 


Yup. Me. My blog, my rules. We are going to talk about me. 

Why, you ask? Because sometimes I’m too damn nice. Sometimes I allow people who don’t seem to care about me (or anyone, because they don’t appear to be capable of loving anyone, not even themselves or their family) to take up space in my mind. Then I allow them to hurt me with their batshit crazy behaviour. But why? They don’t deserve a passing thought in my life. And that’s when I realize after getting my life on track, I feel myself reverting back into that girl in Windsor who allowed people to control her. News flash; that girl is dead. I killed her & replaced her with the woman you see. And she is strong. And she is brave. She is talented. She is a God damned prize to be won & she is not settling for scraps from anyone ever again. My compassion is not to be abused. Sorry not sorry. 


So, back to me. You know, what we’re discussing today. Do you know what I love most in this world, besides my children? My blog. When my world was its darkest, I wrote. And while I wrote, I was happy. It helped me shape my personality into the woman I am today. This is the one thing that no man, no one can claim its success as their own. It’s mine. I built it all by myself & every favourable review, every happy comment was because of me & no human should interfere with my favourite writing outlet because they can’t communicate. So, they won’t. I’ll do what I want. 


I am the woman who packed up shop and moved to build a career in writing & I freaking did it. I’ve published work in major publications. I’ve received praise from editors and you know who did that? Me. Not you. Me. Not some faceless stranger. Me. I am the woman who is one of only three female managers in my district. I am a leader in a male driven profession. Yesterday, I was invited to a breakfast meeting for associates & managers who are considered to have bright futures in my company. I was the only woman there. I work hard & it pays off. I have built the life I want from nothing & I’m so damn proud of that. 

If you aren’t following my adventures on Snapchat, you should! (ASHMHC)

I’m the woman who lost 100lbs with nothing but a weight loss app, a running app & force of will before discovering crossfit. The one who goes running @ 10:30pm or the gym @ 5am with hips screaming in pain from arthritis because I need to set an example for the three girls I raise on my own. I work to show them that a woman’s potential is limitless if she works hard & treats people with kindness. Also, I refuse to gain all of that weight back. I may have gained a little, but I will lose it again. Maybe none of this seems exciting to you, but to me, it’s pretty damn incredible. 


I do not feel being proud of who you are is egotistical or vain. I’ve worked so hard to become the woman I am & I don’t apologize for who I am anymore. I’m a nerd that watches the wrasslin & reads books by the lake every Sunday & has a Harry Potter tattoo. I played Pokemon Go until I caught a Pikachu. I go to Church so I can learn how to be a better, kinder person and love the least of us. And every little thing I’ve done helps me get closer to becoming a better person than yesterday. And that’s all I can hope for. 

But I guess I had an epiphany. I always see the stalkers and the fringe cowards as a loss to my life because I care about them, but it’s not my loss; it’s THEIRS! I’m not the one hunting for them, they are the ones looking for me because they did stupid shit & instead of taking ownership, do more stupid shit! And they miss out on having me in their lives properly. They lose out on being with me, near me. I’m not of the belief that we put ourselves over everyone else, but I am of the belief that it’s okay to see your value. And it’s okay to think that people can be assholes. And it’s okay to want to be in control of your own life & if people cannot embrace you for who you are, then that is their loss, not yours. 

I’m not perfect, or the fittest, smartest, funniest, or prettiest. But I’m the best damn MHC in the whole wide world & I am very much in control of my life & my future. If nothing else, I have that. And that rules. 

Bird Set Free

Sometimes I get days off. And after spending time with my kids & crossfit, I hang out by a lake by my house and read books & think about stuff. 

Tonight, I spent my night FINALLY reading Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, because nerd. I like to sit among rocks & trees & read and enjoy nature. As a kid, I used to go to Bible Camp & read my Bible in the woods (fun fact, my oldest daughter was named after the place I went to Bible Camp). I’ll get more of this because my schedule has changed & I now get weekends off. Yup, normal Monday to Friday. I like being around nature because it’s a calm, peaceful place. Birds & trees are silent, and anyone near you is minding their own business. And no one is paying attention to you. 


Because of my personality, I’m often thought to love attention. This is not true. I hate it. I feel uncomfortable when eyes are on me. It makes me nervous like I’m in a spelling bee & my nose is bleeding & I pissed my pants and the word is “superfilous” (the choice of word stems from when I was visiting back home & we were having a shark party & my best friend & I decided I would tweet anything that we said. So we decided to take a random word & add “choking on dicks” to it. Superfilous means “unnecessary,” so this sentence was actually accurate. We laughed. We were extremely drunk. I drink once a year. This is why). I hate when people stare at me or when I’m forced to be in the centre of attention. When I used to perform, my hands shook. I do presentations at work because I have to, not because I enjoy it. I think that’s why I started writing. I get to tell stories. I’m not the subject. I’m the narrator. People don’t read something I wrote & think about me, they think “hey! That play sounded good!” Or “that person seems interesting!” It’s not about me. Even this blog about my life isn’t necessarily to be about me. It’s more about learning lessons & evolving, something all humans do. To most of you, I’m a faceless weirdo. But then, there are some of you who know me better than anyone, and those are the people I struggle with talking about why I hate being stared at or watched or whatever. 

This isn’t an idea that I share to my social media feeds. I never share my super personal stuff there. That’s like showing weakness or something. People will think I have feelings or some shit. This is for the like four people that read my blog with any regularity. So, Erica & like, three other people. I used to know who they were, but  I’ve turned that privilege over to a close friend who monitors my web security for me (that person is not Erica).  It’s actually nice to be able to write whatever I want without worrying if I’d offend anyone, because I knew who was reading it. Erica always says that the people whom I might offend are soulless creatures anyway, human poison who prides themselves on hurting me for kicks. That their only purpose is to hurt me as often and as painfully as possible for their own amusement because they are sick fuckers & who cares if I offend them, but I’m not really one for offending people. I like making people happy. It brings me great happiness to bring joy to others. All I want to is to love everyone & be a good mom & a good person & write happy shit and make people smile. I used to write things with a password just to make one human smile. I wanted to be able to use my one talent to reach them & help them communicate with people so they wouldn’t run away from things & return, repent, repeat. But, I never could. So, I waved my little white flag. Cut off all communication because I’m beyond tired of being shut out & stonewalled. It’s bullshit & it’s not how you treat people. Now all I care about is being a good person & mom & writer. News stories don’t touch you; they inform. I write now to inform, not make you think or touch your soul or break down invisible barriers. My blog, just me sharing my life. Not even interesting. 

But there’s always this nagging feeling that I cannot prove one way or the other that people use my blog to observe my life without being in it & that has always hurt me. 

Yes, you read that right. IT HURTS ME

Why MH? Why would that hurt you? Because I feel like I’m in my own twisted version of the Truman Show. I hate this feeling like I’m not worthy to be part of someone’s life, but it’s fine to observe me like your favourite character on a teen drama like One Tree Hill or some shit. It makes me feel subhuman. It chips away at my self esteem to know you’re good enough to watch like a TV character, but not good enough to speak to, have in your life. And when I feel like this is the case, I get really sad & feel very small. 


So, I’m left with this weird dilemma. I could stop blogging. That would make the most sense. Give up writing, the thing I love most to help keep people away from me. And what does that leave me with? Nothing, I guess. Erica says that’s what bad people want, to take everything from me until I have nothing. But of course, I’ll never have nothing. I’m pretty much the most blessed person I know. Great kids, great job. Amazing freelancing gigs, so I’ll always be writing, just not here. Bad ass Texan friend.  All good things. Sometimes I look at my incredible life & get excited to share it with people, which is why blogging has become an intrical part of who I am. It’s how I sort out my thoughts to build a better life for myself & my family. It’s how I scratch my creative itch. But even more importantly, I look st my life & I am so freaking grateful. I’m living my dream life and I built my dream life all by myself! Isn’t that the freaking coolest?! And I write because I’m so happy that I get to be the one to live this incredible life. However, I guess the Truman Show viewers bother me because those are the people I’d rather have in my life, but aren’t. And I’m not Truman Burbank; I’m an actual human & you shouldn’t get to view my life if you left it (or in some cases, I asked you to leave it). 

This brings me to my point; maybe to remove myself from the Truman Show, Truman needs to close the bubble. 


Erica reminds me that it’s not fair for me to continually sacrifice my joy so that people who cannot muster the bravery to be in my life can be viewers of the Truman Show. She rants & raves about selfishness, cowardice, etc. She’d say maybe the people who use my blog as the Truman Show should just go rebuild the bridge that they burned because they obviously need me…& a therapist. But I don’t make things easy. I build walls because people hurt me. Writing is how I try to let them down. But letting people who hurt me near me? Nope. Terrifying. Worse than geese.  Nope. My success rate at reaching people is 0% (which makes me question my abilities to write anything but news, as I’ve never emotionally connected to anyone). Not putting myself through that. One of my closest friends suggested that I start letting those walls down, and I balked. Walls keep us safe. Besides, why is it always me who has to make the first step when there’s conflict? Why is it always me who has to extend the olive branch, to try? If they wanted to find me, they would. They don’t. I’m tired of luring out scared bunnies. It’s tiring. 

Not this guy though. He’s good people.

Maybe it’s because for so long, I was told my blog was the way to get back in after people hurt me, that I’m reading too much into nothing but my gut instinct. I’ve been known to do that. But maybe I need to step back from sharing my life. Cancel the Truman Show. 

I wouldn’t even know what to say to reach out to nothing. Please just talk to me & stop hurting me? Don’t put me through this anymore, just talk to me? I love my blog, please don’t force me to shut it down, just please reach out & speak to me? I’ve always been one for many chances & I would give as many as needed & I could explain why I’m not even mad anymore. But I already did that in something only one person on Earth can read. But I know if I did that, I’d be talking to a wall. Maybe I’m not the only one who builds walls. Or maybe this time I built them too high. So I guess I’ll just be bidding you good afternoon, good evening, and good night. 

Your Type

I’m starting to think I’m spreading myself too thin & I’m pretty sure I don’t give a fuck.

I’ve been offered another freelance position with TWA Entertainment writing for one of their entertainment blogs. I’m reviewing a book for Great West as well as working on another piece. My story pitch was well received by another editor, but he’s not sure if it works in the paper I suggested, so he’s taking more time to think on it. But most importantly, I have a meeting next week with the editor of Metro Edmonton. I’ve met the guy before…and emailed him. And texted. And sent resume after resume. I’ve pretty much proven I can be VERY tenacious when I need to be. But I finally got a meeting for my sixth freelance position & I am so nervous that I may throw up. My best friend Erica calls him “Editor hottie” and said she “ships it” but I ignore her. This is a big opportunity for me & I REALLY don’t want to blow it. This would give me real newsroom access & it would mean so much to me. And I could still work my day job, which means I’ll get to keep doing such amazing things such as live & pay bills. Yay!

…oh, and I finally got a better work phone, so win for me. My boss asked how I got such a solid device as my work phone (which I now carry 24/7), I said because I’m awesome & everyone fucking loves me. He laughed. He gets me. 

LOOK AT MY WORK NEXUS 6P. LOOK AT IT. Although my business cards need work
That’s my fear; that I’ll spread myself so thin between management, journalism, raising my family, and fitness that I’ll burn out like I did in the winter. I keep reminding myself that I cannot allow that to happen. I’ve worked too hard for this & I need to keep my work life balance in check. So far, I’m doing alright. My friend Jannik jokes that I’m much easier to stalk now, as my schedule is so precise.I can’t complain about my work schedule; I build it because I’m the boss hahaha. Monday, Friday, Saturday are day shifts in my store, and running.  Tuesday – Thursday are night shifts in my store & crossfit (with a floating day off in there). Sundays off. Always (except for next weekend, where I’ll be reviewing Fringe Festival plays for Vue Magazine! How cool is that). I keep asking him if it counts as stalking if I know he’s there & leave him snacks and binoculars. We have an odd rapport. But my point is that I’ve built myself a balance. I worry if I keep adding to my plate like a fat kid at a buffet, if it’ll all topple down.

Aren’t we cute? But I don’t visit enough. Or ever. I am so mean.
But I guess I know that this is how it has to be. No one ever achieved success by sitting on their ass. I need to work hard. I’ve always worked hard, but this time it’s paying off in spades. I’m passionate about writing. It’s literally all I know how to do (oh, and kick ass in wireless. I’m good at that too) & work doesn’t feel like work. It feels like me doing what I have to do in order to become the successful woman & role model for my daughters I need to be.
When Fong, the weird pyramid scheme guy (who I thought was asking me for a three way when he asked me if I was open minded, proving that I’m super messed up) asked me if I could scale back & focus on having an easier time making money, I told him no. I like working. I like working hard. I like doing things that make me happy. Why would I trade that in for an easy path? 

So, I push myself by reminding myself that I earned these opportunities & I have to earn the right to keep them. I force myself to the gym when I’m tired or don’t feel like running by reminding myself that I need that self care, and I keep my day for me, my family, my sanity. Last week, I chose to spend part of it by my favourite place in Edmonton reading. Tomorrow afternoon, I’ll be in the exact same spot reading a book I’m reviewing.

If anyone needs me, I will be here every Sunday, recharging in nature

It’s a lot of work, but the best things come to those who put in a lot of work. So, I go into each day with the understanding that I need to put in that work to continue to succeed while balancing work, life, & fitness & being the kindest possible person I’m capable of being.

As always, to follow more of my adventures, follow me on Snapchat (ASHMHC). There’s lots of selfies with this filter. Fight me.

Unstoppable 

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.


Oh, hey guys, look at that!

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)!


Wait. Not that bitch. But can I take a moment to discuss my loathing for Pidgey? Fuck Pidgey. For real.

This is the picture I sent my boss with the caption “You cannot be serious.” It doesn’t work. I am getting a new one.

Speaking of vacation, I got an email from a local magazine, asking if I could cover some plays for Fringe Festival. I sent my work schedule & we should be able to work around it. But I didn’t hound & plead. They contacted ME based on my body of work in my city. I’ve earned a reputation as a reliable, eager, overachiever that can write the crap out of a magazine article. A reputation that I earned by doing just that. My Great West Editor assigned me a fairly high profile story because he thought I could knock it out of the park. It took a year, but I’ve finally built the portfolio that I knew that I could. And Glentel encourages the growth of their management team, both in and out of the business. My DM’s know my goals, both injournalism & telecommunications, and that I ALWAYS get what I want. I have a strong staff. My DTL (no longer my co-manager) is in the same mall as me (and a “bloody giant” as he says hahaha). I have created work/life balance and balance many things. No word on my story idea, but if I don’t hear back, I’ll just shop it or just publish it on My Trending Stories. Why? Because I can.

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.

Rise

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. 


Fortunately, I’m taking a well deserved vacation. 


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;


Oh…that? That’s just an article I wrote for the Lloydminister Meridian Booster, a Postmedia publication. No big deal.*

(*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. 

Fortunately, the Snapchat selfie filter hides the exhaustion. Feel free to follow my adventures on Snapchat (ASHMHC)

Hide Your Secrets

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). 

Aren’t We Adorable?

She’s come up with an idea for a business/social media brand that is completely rad. As the resident social media guru/Queen of cell phones, I’ve been helping her with ideas. While brainstorming, I came up with a story idea that I thought was really interesting. But it doesn’t fit my demographic at Great West Newspapers. So, after much discussion with my friend Toni, who is as passionate about radio as I am about print (and shares my disdain for WWE Women’s Champion Charlotte), I decided to pitch it to a newspaper.  

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. 

This has nothing to do with anything except that I promised him I would try to work it in.

I think I have finally reached the point in my life where I have almost everything I’ve ever wanted. My day job & writing are working together nicely, and I still have enough of a work life balance to watch the littles at their church play, movies at night & work out five days a week. I have loving and supportive friends. I have great hair. It’s all finally come together & soon I’ll be able to share some exciting news that will make me even happier. I’m so happy with my life right now & that I put it all together on my terms. It’s a really good feeling to know that you’re on the path where good things are happening & it’s because you worked hard, were kind & never gave up.

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. 

Somebody’s Love


After eight months, I’ve said goodbye to the world of major retail big box chains. 

Peace out.

I left my manager & DM thank you notes, as well as the store manager. Much like when I left the St. Albert location, my coworkers were gifted a bucket of snacky foods and a thank you letter, although this time, there was a welcome letter for the new hire, who has been a good friend to me since I started. I feel it’s important to make sure that those who worked hard with you during your tenure know you appreciate them. I’ve been fortunate to work with a strong manager and a District Manager who is a role model for all women in wireless. She loves her team, works hard for those who work for her and doesn’t take anyone’s crap. I hope that I can lead my new team with the same level of integrity and success that she has.

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.

Don’t we all Mr. Jameson

I guess I need to stop being so damn timid whenever I feel out of my element and just go out there and kick ass and be a bad ass. My body of work speaks for itself, so I need to stand behind it. I need to stop being afraid that I cannot do something and just focus on the fact that I can and I will do well if I work hard, treat people with kindness and respect and believe that I can be the best journalist and cell phone boss lady that I can be. So, it’s one day off to recharge the batteries then it’s back into the cell phone game as the lady of the house, while getting those crossfit workouts, thrice weekly runs and interviews for my next article done.

It’s a busy, beautiful life and I’m so grateful to be the one who gets to live it.

And I have this one on Team MH. She’s good people

White Noise

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!)

Still say that this is where MiTB ended. SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP.

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.


If not, I’ll find a happy balance between “aggressive bitch” and “wishy washy passive.” It’s gotta be in there somewhere.

Holy

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. 

Still pretending this is where MiTB ended. Fight me

Forget Me Now

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. 

See?

Well, I’ve made it my personal mission to actually run all the way around the lake & not “run until Honky McTerrorface & his evil family appear.” So, like every other morning, I got up, did my yoga & went running. All was well until…you guessed it. GEESE. 

Fortunately, our evil feathered creatures of death were distracted by a elderly man taking photos of them, for what I can only assume is a coffee table book called “The most evil monsters known to mankind.” I sped up, fearing for my personal safety, assuming I’d be one of those people who gets chased or murdered by the unholy spawn of Satan & all that would be left of me would be a plaque with my face while people gathered around it feeding bread to the mother fucking geese, having learned nothing from the tragedy. However, Satan’s minions were excited for their Snapchat debut (they dig filters I guess. Unrelated side note; I reactivated my Snapchat at work this week. It lasted maybe 10 minutes before I decided it was the stupidest & deleted it again. I didn’t even send a snap to my favourite Snapchat friend because I’m an asshole) & ignored me…& I finished my run & finally made it all the way around the lake. 


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…

…sometimes. 

Literally my worst nightmare