Bulletproof 

The magic number is 16. 

Before you ask what the magic number is for, it’s for many things. 16, the number of articles I’ve published this year. 16, the number of activations required for my store to reach its goal. 16, the number of assignments and tests my teenager received 80 or higher on this school year. The magic number is 16. 

To you, this means nothing. To me, this means everything. This means that all of the work I do each and every day to become a role model for my daughters and a successful human being is working & I am so proud of my team, my store, my kids, and myself. 

Still Disney Princess

I think about who I was when I switched jobs last year & how terrified I was every day of doing the wrong thing, making someone mad, their reputation, etc & how that was the absolute fucking worst. I can breathe now. I feel confident in my choices. I am in control of my life, and I’ve learned that I need to continue to grow to be a whole person, someone I’m proud of. No more walking on eggshells for fear of pissing off unreliable people who do not see my value. I see my value. AKA how I learned to love my life by not giving a flying fuck about what anyone thinks of me. 

I tell my friends who get upset that Prince Charming hasn’t ridden in on his white horse that their lives are not deficient because they don’t have a plus one for weddings. Your value is determined by you alone. I’ve found mine by living my life MY way. I built my writing career my way. I lose weight MY way. I run my store my way. I parent my way. I wear my hair my way. I’m in control of my life & success and failure is determined by me alone. Too often, people blame their parents, mental illness, their past relationship failures for why their lives suck. But it’s all on you. I used to be one of those people who said being in a rut was impossible, and climbing out would be too hard, but it’s not that hard at all. It’s a matter of taking one step & then the next. For example, getting healthy for me was eating right one day, then exercising. Then doing it the next day. No long term goal, just “I did it today, now I’ll do it tomorrow.” Same with work. We had a good day today. Let’s do it again tomorrow. But the biggest thing was reminding myself that no one has to power to tell me I’m not good enough or not smart enough or somehow bad or broken. I determine my value, not a boss or a friend or a partner or a doctor. I do. And I choose to see great value in myself. I’m smart, witty, unintentionally funny & maybe even kind of pretty. But I refuse to allow any human being to detract from my accomplishments, my success, my work, & my worth. The only person who’s opinion of me matters…is me. 


They say pride goes before destruction, but I’d rather be destroyed than swallow mine. I have worked too hard and too long to build myself into the person that I’ve become for any person who cannot see it to try and undermine it. Which brings me to the not giving a fuck. If you are someone who doesn’t see me for the person that I am; strong, tenacious, brave, talented, witty, clever and the best damn MHC in the whole world, you do not deserve to have any part in my life. If you leave my life, bye, I will continue to kick ass like you never existed. You are erased (I’ve erased quite a few people). Why? Because I refuse to allow anyone to tell me who I am anymore. I have a mirror to tell me my worth. 


This goes for everyone; why do you waste your time trying to win the approval of toxic friends, parents, lovers, when you could surround yourself with people who want to build you up, support you, and think you’re amazeballs. Those are the friends that I have. They’re the kind that encourage you, are proud of you, don’t make you feel like less than & also know their worth; they know how awesome they are so they surround themselves with people who want to build them up. If everyone surrounded themselves with only the people who truly loved them and wanted to make them happy & stopped seeking validation from toxic people who are incapable of love or self introspection, perhaps those toxic people could see how their self hatred has caused them to project hatred and maybe look at cleansing their soul through self love, wellness and opening up to truly love one another. Wouldn’t that be so much better? I choose to surround myself with friends, family, who want to build everyone up. I don’t care if you’ve been my best friend since we were in high school or family or whatever, if you are someone who puts me, my kids, down or refuses to respect my choices, you are erased (except Erica. She stays forever). 


Once I stopped trying to be someone everyone liked & started being myself, I started attracting people who choose to be themselves. You may not have all the friends, but you’ll have the right ones. And the more I was myself, the happier I was about who I was and the less I gave a fuck about those who didn’t like me. Why? Because I liked me. And the more I like me, the better I become. A better writer. A better mom. A better athlete. A better woman. A better MHC. 

We Got This

In case you’re new to the party, let me bring you up to speed; in addition to freelancing as a reporter, I sell cell phones. I’m the manager of a lovely little cellphone store & my team is amazing. We went from second last in our district to middle of the pack in 30 days. Not bad, huh? Don’t call it a comeback, we are just warming up!

Anywho, one of the perks is that I make good money that I can use to buy new phones, like this bitch right here.

That’s right; I spent a small fortune on a phone (PS I don’t get discounts on hardware; I had to preorder & pay $600 just like everyone else). Yup, doesn’t have a headphone jack. Oddly, it hasn’t impacted my life in any way. Strange.

Anywho, most people want to know about the camera, so I decided to test this baby out! Only one of these shots has a filter (if you can’t figure out which one, I’m so sorry for you), and I got a C in photography in college, so if these are any good, you can credit iPhone 7 for picking up my slack!

So here’s some photos testing the front & rear facing camera of iPhone 7! For more photos of my life, check out my TwitterInstagram, or follow my boring ass on Snapchat (ASHMHC)!






















My photography skills may not be that great, but the phone’s camera is amazeballs. 


 

Say I Am

I acquired another freelance gig this week. 

Before you say “MH! STOP EFFING WORKING SO MUCH,” I’ve dropped a couple of places to focus on local magazines and My Trending Stories. And I’ve still got my cell phone gig to keep food on the table, because Mama’s gotta support the fam jam. And besides, any of you who know me in my day to day life know that I simply cannot stop working so much. No one ever got anywhere by sitting on their ass and bitching. You’ve gotta get up and work. 


Anywho, back to my new gig. I’ll be writing for YEG Fitness, a local fitness and lifestyle magazine. I caught them on my Twitter feed & thought that I could combine my two favourite things; journalism and fitness! So, I got in touch and pitched an article. But not just ANY article. THE article. The one I pitched to a bunch of newspapers & while one editor liked the idea, he wasn’t sure it would fit. Buoyed by the idea that I was on the right track, I reached out & they liked it. The article has been done for months, so I just turned it in. The editor said it was good & submit a bio for the website! My story idea is going to print! 

I’m so excited; I worked so hard on this & it’s gonna see the light of day. I’ve built a little network by chatting up the reporters of the Edmonton Sun on Twitter as well. The editor is amazingly cool (and once said my blog was good, so there is that) and another is an unapologetic WWE fan like me (even if I did jinx Bray Wyatt). But I’m getting to know colleagues in my field. This is something that never happened in London. It’s not real networking; its talking common interests, but it’s cool to see that the Edmonton journalistic community is full of rad people. Once I learn to drive the car, I can apply for bigger positions and produce a portfolio of story ideas that I created. I’m so happy. 

I’m sorry Bray Wyatt

It’s all coming together. The risk of packing up my life to do this was worth it because I AM SUCCEEDING. I’m publishing work. I am maximizing my opportunities. And if I keep working hard, I can only accomplish more. 


In the interim, I’ve got my cell phone business. In 30 days, my store has gone from second last in the district to trending 97% to target. My team is a great group of people. They want to succeed as much as I want them to. My hard to please DM came to my store the other day & told me he was pleased with the 180 & asked how I did it. I told him I didn’t; they did. I just believed in them. Sometimes faith that someone can do it is all they need & it pays off. I’m so proud of my little store. We’ve worked so hard & it’s showing. 

My life is almost exactly the way I want it. I have almost everything I’ve ever wanted. My writing career is the most successful it’s ever been. My wireless career has never been more successful. My friends here are supportive and rad (even if Kymo did leave me to go to Vancouver). My kids love their schools & friends & my eldest loves her high school. I’ve found my niche at crossfit here. I couldn’t be happier with the way things are. It’s almost perfect. But I won’t stress the almost. I’d rather focus on the pieces of my life that work than the piece that isn’t here. This little quest to get my story published taught me about patience and perseverance. When it’s the right thing, it’ll happen & I need to stop obsessing about timelines and “back up your words right now” for fear that it’ll go away & just go with it, because it’ll work out in the end & if it doesn’t, it wasn’t the right thing for me & the next project, relationship, job, will. Just work hard, treat people with kindness, show respect and in the end, everything will work out rhe way it’s supposed to. So, I’ll just keep on focusing on making my life shiny and beautiful & being the woman I can face in the mirror & the mom my daughters deserve. 

Am still Disney Princess

She Sets the City on Fire

As a WWE fan and a woman who prides herself on being a feminist, I often give WWE a bag of Hell when they get it wrong & turn their strong, powerful female characters into stereotypical catty bitches determined to undercut each other. Today, I’m going to give them props for getting it right.


Months ago, I lamented about the plight of Becky Lynch, WWE’s last true heroine. The Lass Kicker was betrayed by friends, humiliated & often left sobbing, while her fans sobbed with her. Many nights, my nine year old, decked out in her little goggles & Becky shirt, would ask why everyone would beat up Becky. Why did everything bad happen to Becky, why always Becky?


But the character of Becky Lynch didn’t become jaded or bitter. In fact, she would cut passionate promos about how she would finally win the big one & she’d do it the right way, with honour & integrity. Becky would tell her fans that all the struggles would be worth it & she would win the big one in a way that she could be proud of.

Fans waited for months and months, but last night, they finally got their wish. Becky Lynch finally won the big one & became the first ever WWE Smackdown Women’s Champion. The woman who was once molested by Ric Flair and tossed out of the ring sobbing like garbage FINALLY got to stand tall as the victor, making history to the delight of fans everywhere. 


Becky Lynch won & she won with integrity. She didn’t cheat or stab a friend in the back. She didn’t do anything duplicitous. She won with integrity & hard work & even though my two of my three daughters were rooting for different women (they were rooting for Nikki Bella & Alexa Bliss), they all jumped & screamed with joy when Becky Lynch was declared the winner.


But the other takeaway from this night was that some of the women in the match went onto social media to publicly congratulate Lynch. Nikki Bella & Natalya (Becky’s latest onscreen nemesis) took time to congratulate Becky, compliment her work ethic & even while reminding people that they wanted to be champion, they were proud of Becky. And Becky made sure to thank them for their words, and for a moment, everyone had to stand up and notice that all of these women were building up each other. There was no catty sniping, just a bunch of women proud of their body of work & proud of their friend, even in defeat. 

My other two daughters would have been so disappointed if I hadn’t added a pic of their “girls” in this match.

Even the women who may not have publicly congratulated Becky (but I’m sure they did privately) still showcased class & poise. They congratulated all of their opponents for a job well done, for a great match & Trinity “Naomi” Fatu gave a thoughtful statement, reminding her fanbase that long roads lead to beautiful destinations. No undercutting Becky Lynch’s abilities. No claiming that she’s ugly, fat or didn’t deserve to win. Just six women proud of themselves & what they were able to do. 


So congrats to all six of these women for showcasing a different kind of female superstar; classy in defeat, proud of each other & appreciative of opportunities given, or opportunities created. You showcased athleticism in the ring, but showed passionate fans that it’s okay to be happy for someone else, especially when you know they worked hard too. Six women built up other women, with not a single personal attack or childish catty insult. For once, a women’s match really was about who was the best, and the right woman won it the right way, teaching little girls at home that with hard work and integrity, there is nothing you cannot do. 

Turn Off The Radio

Let me tell you about my Sunday. 


Sunday is kind of “my” day. It’s my guarenteed day off. I take my girls to church. We walk home afterwards. We catch Pokemon. And then I take a few hours for my sanity walking around the lake by my house with my headphones in (Currently A Day to Remember). The peacefulness is good because my schedule leaves me VERY little free time. Basically, if you wanna find me, check my work or the lake between 3-5 on Sunday (or Twitter hahaha). 

BECAUSE SCREW WORK-LIFE BALANCE
Gulp. 

Due to some staffing issues, I’m working quite a bit. Fortunately, I’ve acquired two new team members who are going to be great additions to the team. My store is doing really well, we’re trending strong & for the first time since I took over, I see is really succeeding. I’m also working on my latest article, which is something I’ve kind of campaigned for, a fun little piece that I’m really passionate about. It’s all super exciting. A couple of my pieces on My Trending Stories are getting some good traction, which is amazing. I’m feeling very accomplished. 

This is especially nice as last month, I was feeling very…overwhelmed. I was taking on more and more while also attending to the needs of my full time job and my family. My blog wasn’t really “mine” for a bit & I was feeling the stress pile up, so I put on a big smile and faked it until I made it, all on my own. And I freaking did. 

Am also Disney Princess

I know the theme of “I did it on my own,” is a recurring one, but it’s because it’s so very important to me. For most of my life, I’ve relied on other people and I know now that’s not who I am. I can never be the woman who relies on a man, my friends, my parents, etc. When I feel myself becoming her, I’m not happy. One thing I’ve learned this year is how much I value my space and my ability to do it on my own. I need to know that my accomplishments, personal & professional, are MINE. I’m so proud of the last six months of my life because I accomplished so much and I was completely on my own. I bounced back from my disappointing February and became fourth overall in sales for my district…for the quarter. All of Northern Alberta & I was fourth. I got my new job based on my abilities. I achieved my success in journalism by grinding & never taking no for an answer. But I did it. Me. Not you. ME. 

I need to be a whole person all of the time. That’s why I need to do it all on my own. It’s why I wouldn’t accept rides to find things when I got here; I need to do it. Every step I take to be independent takes me towards being the whole woman I am. I do not have a hole, there is no void I need to fill with people, vices. I am just me. But to be a complete person, who doesn’t rely on a human or job or status to make her happy, I had to embrace me. And I did. I love the woman I’ve become. I refuse to live my life on pause, I have to keep moving forward and growing into someone I can be proud of. 

Sometimes it was super hard. But one thing I’ve learned and if you don’t listen to anything else I ever write, this would be a good one to listen to (my legal assistant friends will tell you I’m standing in the corner. We had a family law teacher who did that. That’s how we knew it was important. We always said he looked like an owl who was judging us all. But I remember so much from that class so I guess his teaching methods were effective). 


I have a point, I promise. 

There is no such thing as a bad life, as you 100% have the power to change the narrative. Work sucks? Either change your attitude or your job! Want to talk to someone, go talk to them! Want to feel better about your appearance? Cut your hair, lose weight, whatever. Don’t complain about no money for the gym or a trainer, running is free and there’s a ton of fitness apps. Everyone has a smartphone. Make friends, meet people, set a goal, do something! Only you can make your life better. You are in control, just like I am. Life gets better if you put in the work. The last two years of my life I have been happier than I’ve ever been & it’s because I invested in myself. I’ll keep doing it too, because it trickles down to my daughters. Bright, determined Mommy creates bright, determined daughter who make their dreams come true. But most importantly, when you are comfortable in your skin & feel accomplished in your own goals, no one can ever use words or actions to hurt you. No one can take what you built yourself.


Which brings me to Sunday. No matter how much I pile on, or life tries to fuck me, or people try to hurt me, there is always Sunday. There is always that light that can turn it around. No matter how bad things get in your life (and truthfully, my life hasn’t been much of a struggle in years. I lead a very charmed life), any moment it can turn around. It’s your Sunday. So, no matter what’s happening, the world could be on fire, and I will focus on my bright shiny Sunday, because no one’s life ever fell apart by focusing on the good. 

Sky’s The Limit

Welcome to the Misadventures of MHC!

I hope everyone updated their address books, as there is no more ASH Multimedia. You’re probably wondering “why the name change MHC?” Part of it is for reasons that I do not care to discuss. The other is simple; the name no longer fit the story that I was telling. There isn’t really a multimedia component, as my photography skills are average at best, unless it’s something basic white girly, and that name was chosen as a joint venture with my ex husband. While I’ve always tried to brand it, I’ve realized what I’ve actually branded is me. It’s my story, my terms, my way. Why not have the name reflect that?!

See? I kick ass at this type of photography!

I’m still not 100% comfortable continuing my story here right now, for reasons I’m not really okay sharing with anyone right now (except my dearest ones, they know), but the sixth anniversary of my online home this week and I wanted to acknowledge it. Normally, I’d impart some kind of mind blowing knowledge, but I have none. Sorry. 

I do know that this year started off with my greatest nightmare coming to life, and I turned that into achieving the dream I’ve had since I was eight years old. Since I was a little girl, all I wanted to do was publish an article in a newspaper and I mother effing did it. Yes, I’ve published over 200 magazine articles, but being a news reporter was the goal. When we pulled up my transcripts, we found magazine writing was my weakest subject. Newspaper reporter, that was the goal. AND I DID IT ALL ON MY OWN. 


To the rest of the world, it’s just an article in a newspaper, but to me, it’s everything I’ve worked for since I was a kid. I didn’t give up. I kept trying. I owed it to eight year old Mary-Helen, who tirelessly made newspapers for the neighbours out of lined paper to make this happen. And I did. I intend for it to be the first of many. But even if it’s one and done, I did it. My name is sitting there on a byline on a Postmedia newspaper. That means more to me than anything else in the whole wide world. That’s what I did this year. I accomplished the only thing I’ve ever wanted since I was eight years old. 


I’ll never be able to adequately explain how that felt for me, but someone else did it for me & that is Sasha Banks. Head on over to YouTube and look up Sasha Banks wins the Women’s Championship (or click here). Just like I owed it to eight year old Mary-Helen, she owed it to 10 year old Mercedes to keep going. And she did it. I guess, if I had knowledge, I would say just keep going. Keep trying. Remember who little you wanted to be & make them proud. Be the good person little you was, before the world’s harshness sucked it out of you. Keep going even when the road is cold & bleak & you’ve never felt more alone. When your heart is broken & you are utterly defeated, get up. Try again. Turn your nightmares into everything you ever wanted. 

The name may have changed, but the format has stayed the same. Song titles for titles. Positive life affirmations. Same dorky woman trying to be better than yesterday. And in the end, if all I ever become is Mary-Helen, the woman who is too nice, forgives too often, loves too much, and believes all humans are good and deserve one more chance, but most importantly, does not quit on her kids, her goals or herself, then I win. 

The moral of the story is that in a world of Kardashians, I choose to be Mary-Helen. 


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.