“At one time, most of my friends could hear the bell, but as years passed, it fell silent for all of them. Even Sarah found one Christmas that she could no longer hear its sweet sound. Though I’ve grown old, the bell still rings for me, as it does for all who truly believe.” ~ The Polar Express, Chris Van Allsburg
Christmas is the keeping place of memories of our innocence, memories that harken back to a time when our only worry was if Santa really could find out if we’d been good or bad.
Ahhhh, to be a child again… if only it were that simple as adults… faced with expectations of others, guilt and loneliness in the midst of thousands of shoppers in malls decked commercial sentiments… it’s no wonder the holidays become a tipping point for many.
I opted out of a lot of the ‘expectations of others’ many years ago and it’s been far less stressful ever since. The kids have wonderful presents, yes, Santa never forgets, but there is no excess, Santa is not frivolous and neither are their parents. ; ) I refuse to even participate in the emotional blackmail of others commonly seen at this time of the year -life is too short and love is rare.
This year in particular, everything has been about conveying the need to be thankful and giving to others, to be generous in spirit, time and love, without attaching dollar signs to any. Love is not a condition of blood relation, some of my closest ‘family’ aren’t people I share blood ties with. Embrace those who come into your life for whatever reason, my experience has been there is always a lesson to be learned or given, good or bad.
Personally, I have so much to be grateful for this year, and despite the ups and downs, it has been a wonderful time of my life, full of growth, change, challenges and opportunities.
I learned that the best memories can’t be anticipated or planned, after a truly epic trip with my daughter to see the Tragically Hip in the middle of one of the most epic lightning storms Vancouver Island has ever seen. She is brave, fierce, beautiful,stunningly intelligent and how I was ever chosen to be her mother, I don’t know. She planned and paid for the trip, her gift to me on my birthday, her gift to both of us and a gift it was to remember…
I learned that you don’t need to have met a true friend in person, to have them drop everything to come and not only save you, but get you to the above mentioned concert in time, after spending 6 hours on ferries from Vancouver to Victoria…. but also that those friends are the ones that come to your life for a greater purpose. ( David, Brad and Diane )
Even at my age, there are greater life lessons to be learned… I learned the difference between real friendship and simply being usefully convenient to people. I learned that following the path I knew was right, would inevitably leave others behind on another trail -not by my own choice, but by theirs when the path was not of their choosing.
I also learned truth always has a cost. Always.
When I began to observe and write about the NDP as critically as I have the Liberals -especially in regards to some really hypocritical actions of the party this year – the backlash from many faithful readers from the left was stunning. And yes, it needs to be said.
The silence in the comments below each post…was deafening.
But they, you, continued to read. Some wrote they were torn, not wanting to split a vote.
Some wrote they were angry at my ‘betrayal’ to the NDP, not seeing my loyalty is my own, to this province - not any political party, and always has been.
Many more thanked me for speaking out, yet still feared repercussions from party brass – in every party, left to right.
I carried on, knowing for once with all certainty, my path was before me with crystalline clarity. I’m not, can’t be, loyal to the current system that allows political parties to be influenced by donors …and allows political parties to influence and control their MLA’s. What is right for the voters in each specific riding, is of far greater importance than the political agenda of any party as a whole.To hold elected officials to a party goal that doesn’t align with their constituents, is fraud, pure and simple.
I hate to be cliche, but it really isn’t about left or right, it’s about doing the right thing for the greater good, regardless of political leaning. The land we inhabit has become a rope in a political game of tug of war where we all stand to lose, and that is why we need electoral change, more independents, more accountability across the board.
Think about it.
For me,it’s about being able to look at yourself in the mirror every morning with a clear conscience – and I am happy to say I can do that every day.
I don’t need to prove my loyalty to this province, the body of work in these pages speaks for itself. BC Rail, run of the rivers, Enbridge - I was blogging about that back in 2009 – the horrific debt from P3′s that greatly contributes to this provinces debt-load, corruption and backroom deals… you’ll find them all here on these pages, and will continue to do so. I wake every morning with the goal of being the best I can be for that day, and doing the best for all of us.
Sometimes I fail, sometimes I succeed, but at least I bloody well tried.
Being asked to joining the Huffington Post BC as a political blogger has been a great opportunity and I was very honoured to have been featured in their launch edition. Despite some hesitation on my part initially – I feel very strongly about telling the entire story without editorial or corporate influence - there has been nothing but encouragement from my editor to share my stories and to continue to do so in 2013. Considering they allowed me to post a who’s who of Patrick Kinsella’s dealings in a recent post, much to the Liberals detriment, I can’t go wrong… nor can the people of BC.
It’s a win-win deal for all of us who’ve exhausted ourselves writing about the corruption in this province – and moving forward into the coming election, for me,this new platform will prove to be essential to getting the political stories out there on a widely read basis.
With the bulk of a recent, time intensive project behind me, you can look forward to more exclusive, compelling stories in the new year along the lines of those I’ve broken in the past with the assistence of protected sources. My commitment to all of you, and to myself, is to be true to this province as a whole.
The greater good must always come before any political agenda, regardless. Your way might not be my way, but if you live it in truth and honesty, you have my respect for that. It is, without fail, the common ground that binds us all.
I leave you with one of my favourite quotes, from a most selfless soul. And I wish you all, each of you, the best of Christmas. I could not have done all that I do, without you.
“People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are honest, people may cheat you. Be honest anyway.
If you find happiness, people may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway.
For you see, in the end, it is between you and your God, or your conscience.
It was never between you and ‘them’… anyway.”
** I’ll check in now and then over my Christmas break, but won’t be posting. If you find yourself looking for something to read, why not check out the wide variety of blog posts from the Huffington Post BC’s, best blogs of 2012, where I come in at #12 with this post . From parenting to politics, environment to money,there is something for everyone.
If you are a newer reader, hop on over the Best Of page to get yourself up to speed on some of the stories behind this Liberal government, check out my past Huffington post Blogs or check out my blog roll on the side to hook yourself up with some of my favourite bloggers!