Archive for February, 2010

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Lately

02/22/2010

… I’ve been running around town in a red spandex light up catsuit.

… I’ve been unable to tear myself away from the breathtaking madness that Vancouver has become, even when I’m exhausted and cold, because I don’t want to miss a second of this.

… I’ve been singing O Canada at the top of my lungs, in the middle of Robson Square alongside hundreds of others, while chills run up and down my spine.

… I’ve been kind of working, but mostly watching Canada’s Team Martin slaughter the other curling teams.

… I’ve been living and loving and laughing as I attend parties with Seth Rogan, receive invites to hang out with Wayne Gretzky and hit up so many bars with my absolute best friends.

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It’s Just Another Ordinary, Miracle Today

02/18/2010

In the hours leading up to the Opening Ceremony, we danced around our dressing room, snapping pictures of absolutely everything and everyone. We slid into our spandex catsuits without reservation and hung out by hair and makeup while we waited for our lovely friends from MAC to fix us up for the fourth time in as many days. We hugged, we cried, and we talked about how excited and nervous and anxious and ecstatic we were.

When the clock struck six, the room fell silent as all eyes were glued to the tvs. This moment meant everything to each one of us and it did not disappoint. We erupted as the audience perfected the countdown. We watched in excitement as the snowboarder flew through the Olympic rings and welcomed the world to Vancouver. We celebrated the beautiful Native American dancers, and when the athletes began to parade into the stadium, we lined up at the door, ready to join the dancers, builders and tappers in a holding room to wait for our call – our turn to take the stage.

The energy in the holding room was ridiculous. When Bryan Adams and Nelly Furtado sang Bang The Drum, the entire cast sang along. Thousands of us were dancing and singing and jumping and trying to really, really absorb how amazing – how EPIC the moment we were in truly was.

One by one, the dancers, the builders and the tappers left the holding room. We cheered, wished them luck and gave them high fives as they took off to their respective stage entrances and we waited until finally, the call for rollerbladers to take to the stage was made. We waited in the wings and watched the solo aerialist, the storm and the mountain build. My eyes darted between the crowd, the cameras and the performance. I was overwhelmed with emotion.

We listened through our headphones as the choreographer counted us in. I skated onto the stage, beaming from ear to ear, partially concentrating on skating, but giving most of my attention to everything and everyone around me. When the music sped up and one hundred rollerbladers simultaneously switched their lights on, the crowd didn’t just cheer, they exploded. My body led itself through the rest of the performance as my mind was focused solely on being present in the moment, on feeling and capturing this memory so I could hold onto it forever.

As we skated off the stage, adreneline still pumping strong through our veins, we cheered. We cheered louder than ever before, and I smiled while shedding a few tears. Being on that stage, with the most amazing cast, in an Olympic performance broadcast to over three and a half billion people? It was the highest high, the best night of my life and something I will never, ever forget.

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Memories to Last a Lifetime

02/11/2010

Auditions. Phone calls. Costume fittings.

Thirteen hour rehearsals. Falling asleep on a new friend’s shoulder. “Yep!”

Laughing so hard your stomach hurts, and tears are streaming down your face. Australian accents.

Finally learning each other’s names. Sharing secrets. Keeping secrets.

“Good luck.” “Break a leg.” “Don’t fall.”

Lacing up rollerblades, slipping into red spandex.

Three billion viewers.

Performing in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Opening Ceremony.


At 6pm PST on Friday February 12th, the Opening Ceremony begins. I will be in the stadium, surrounded by thousands of other performers, watching the athletes parade in, preparing for my turn to take the stage. I’ve never wanted to remember anything, as much as I want to remember this experience. The cast, the directors, the music, the lights. It has been an incredible, once in a lifetime, whirlwind adventure that I don’t want to forget a second of.

If you will be watching the Opening Ceremony, which I highly recommend you do, and want to know when I will be on, leave a comment and I will send you a quick email with the details.

You Gotta Be Here.

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Olympic Exhaustion

02/09/2010

Every time I talk to my Grandma, she reminds me to ‘take it easy’. She sends me care packages complete with tea, hot chocolate, sliced and peeled carrots. She worries that I’m running myself into the ground.

Prior to the past couple weeks, I always laughed her worries off. School, work, a few ice times a week. A social life, volunteering, time to study, weekend travels, squeezing in favourite tv shows. Sure, I’ve been busy, but it has been fun. And like I tell my Grandma, I’ll have plenty of time to sleep when I’m dead.

The past few weeks have changed what busy means to me. Busy means waking up before sunrise. It means being hard at work for an entire day, and then racing over to a seven hour rehearsal. It means leaving the house at 7am, and not getting home until after 1am. It means doing this every day. Busy means your weekends aren’t a time to relax, but a time to squeeze more in. You race from arena to arena, to rehearsals, and then back to the arena. You literally sprint across downtown on a Saturday night, clutching your Olympic passes and nearly knocking over the tipsy girls in high heels, because you are busy, and right now, you are running late. Busy is your body being covered in bruises and your mind being so exhausted that stringing sentences together is work in itself.

Busy means wishing you could postpone your birthday. You somehow find time for a small dinner with your friends, but you sip water while they pre-drink, and then hug them goodbye – they’re continuing to celebrate while you return to the chaos.

Busy means being more exhausted than ever. It means you can’t kick the horrible cough you’ve had for weeks on end because you don’t have time to give your body a break. Instead, you beg it to bear with you for a few more weeks, and gently remind yourself, I’ll rest in March.

Busy means you’re burning the flame at both ends, but having the time of your life. And you wouldn’t change a second of it.

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The Birthday Post

02/04/2010

You’re just a kid, doc, you won’t understand. But one day, you’re gonna wake up, and all the big stuff, all the milestones you’ve been looking forward to – graduation, wedding, having kids, your grandkids – it’s all behind you. It’s all over. All you got is a bunch of yesterdays, and very few tomorrows.

I have a picture of myself, taken on my 20th birthday. I’m in an ice rink, sitting on beat up wooden bleachers, wearing my best friend’s hoodie, my favourite sweatpants, rings on the important fingers, and I’m beaming. I had been at the rink all day, briefly escaped for a burger and a milkshake, and immediately returned to the rink to watch a friend’s team play. I love this picture, not because I look fantastic, in fact, I kind of look like a caricature. I love it simply because it so perfectly represents who I am.

For quite a few years I’ve been sharing my birthday with a very important tournament my team hosts. Early morning games mean no celebratory tequila shots, no party dresses, and no dancing on tables at 3am. And honestly? I enjoy it. I get to spend my birthday playing the sport I love, surrounded by teammates I love. There’s no pressure to wear a tiara and have the time of my life. The games are intense, but the time in between is mellow, a lovely contrast, perfectly complementing my personality.

This year is a little bit different as my birthday is a couple days before the tournament starts, but because the games will decide whether or not my team has a chance of making Nationals, tequila shots are still a no-go. Instead, I’ll be celebrating tonight by learning some new choreography at Street Jazz with my best friends, and will be with them again for a drink or two and bundles of laughter tomorrow. Early Saturday morning I’ll be packing my bag, and heading off to the rink. I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Here’s to being 23, appreciating everything the year brings, and and cherishing each milestone along the way.

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Dumbbells and Decisions

02/02/2010

In the past five years I have worked as a server, a gym attendant, a bartender, a trainer, a skating instructor, a door-to-door vacuum salesman, a marketing editor and an office manager. Oh, and I spent a short amount of time working for a tuxedo company, where I spent my days trying to drown out my two female coworkers, in hopes of not developing an eating disorder as they couldn’t go thirty seconds without talking about god damn calories.

In addition to the slew of generally unrelated jobs, I’ve taken classes in everything from tourism to broadcast journalism to personal training.

To say that my education and career choices have been a little wishy-washy would be spot on. For the past couple years, I’ve been lucky enough to have an extremely cushy job that pays the bills while I’ve been figuring out exactly what it is I want to do, career-wise. And though I love my coworkers and truly enjoy my position, spending my days in an office is not in my long term plan.

What I’m getting at is:

I am completely fine that four years out of high school, I don’t have a fancy degree to my name. Everything I have accomplished has been on my own, and I have both a resume, and a personal life that I am very proud of. At the same time, I am finally at a place in my life where I am ready to move forward, on my own terms. No more chasing someone else’s dream. No more working my ass off  for something I’m not absolutely passionate about.

So I’m jumping in:

I am an athlete. 98% of the magazines I have ever purchased have been fitness related. I have the tiniest jewelry box you’ve ever seen, but have five drawers and an entire closet devoted to workout gear, equipment and attire. I love running, skating, moving. When surrounded by dumb bells clanging and the soft hum of treadmills, I feel at home. I am no stranger to bruises, bumps and aching muscles. Last weekend I played right through a slash that caused my thumb nail to fall off. I love the way working out makes me feel, and I believe I have the determination, the tools, and the personality to spread that feeling to others.

I want to teach, to inspire, to empower.

I turn 23 on Thursday, and I have set a very solid, very realistic goal that I will be a personal trainer by the time I am 24.