Wednesdays are always great because I have my toastmasters meeting at SickKids. Like meditation at the Shambhala centre, it was something I picked up years ago, and then I stopped going. At the time I was really really frightened of public speaking, and even more so scared of not appearing put together, letting my insecurities show. I could barely even introduce myself! This time around things are a little better. I’m more comfortable with myself and more willing to look foolish. What a relief it is to allow yourself to be vulnerable! Rejection is never fun (I say this as I await the response to a question I just asked a friend), but once you get used to it, a lot of doors open for you. Because the worst that can happen is the person says no, or you don’t get the job, or you fail. And for me it feels deadly. Like it actually sears my heart. But I’m getting stronger and I think I’ve just had a lot of practice in getting rejected!

The theme of today’s meeting was ‘striving’, and the word of the day was ‘optimal’. The table topics are the best part, where the table topics master prepares a list of fun and interesting topics that relate to the theme, and people go up and choose one and deliver an impromptu speech between 1-2 minutes. The topic I chose was: “Many movies describe strivers and their journey towards achieving their challenging goals and dreams. What is your favourite striver movie?”.  I chose to talk about Wild, a movie about Cheryl Strayed’s solo journey along the Pacific Crest Trail. Reese Witherspoon was amazing in this movie and really portrayed the emotional journey with rawness. I related a lot to this movie because sometimes I feel as though my struggles with depression and anxiety are never-ending, but each step along the way, there has been wisdom gained and also heart-breaking beauty. I can’t say that it’s been worth it but I know that it has opened my heart. One of the topics that was presented beautifully by Lynna (who wants to start her own statistical analysis consulting business) was: “You have turned your hobby or passion into a thriving business. Describe the process and the challenges along the way.”  I loved this topic because I am planning to start my own consulting business! It’s actually really exciting and unbelievable. I never thought I was the entrepreneurial type, but turns out I don’t like being told what to do and I like to do things my own way!

After the toastmasters meeting, I sat in the Sick Kids cafeteria and edited my friend Daniela’s beautiful children’s book (the picture above is one of her illustrations). It is a story about a girl who is given a magical golden key and eventually finds that it is the key to eternal happiness and laughter. She experiences loss, adventure, and encounters many wise souls along the way. I loved editing this! It reminds me of my Mom’s dream of publishing a children’s book. Hers was called Tom Makes A Difference, and it is a wonderful story about a boy who is always nice to everyone and willing to help, and through his example inspires others to change. I hope to help Mom publish this book one day!

Went to Freshii and had my favourite tex mex burrito, and read the newspaper. I came across an awesome commentary on Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau’s bizarre singing of “Smile Back at Me” that she wrote for her daughter. I love how she is unafraid to bare her soul and be herself no matter what anyone thinks! I have faith in our prime minister simply because he is married to her! Great line from the article:

Yes, Gregoire-Trudeau’s performance was painfully awkward, ill-timed and in some places not quite in tune. But can you really dis a woman who bares her soul in such a weird and spectacular way? Even if she chose to do so at a profoundly inappropriate moment, are we not all richer for it?

Yes, yes, and yes!! So inspiring and makes me feel better about my ill-timed baring of the soul. :p



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