I’m Emily, a late-twenty-something British expat currently living under the giant skies of the Canadian prairies. I have an enormous, insatiable passion for lots of things in life – any moment, it could all be taken away – so I’m a firm believer in grabbing life by the throat and living it thoroughly to pieces. I adore UK TV/music, astronomy, literature, art, theatre, travel, science, psychology, and the bottomless glass of knowledge our planet has to offer. I love studying and analysing the vast, curious and brilliant possibilities of the human mind, the heart, and the infinite types of personality (although I often subscribe to the idea of there being just sixteen – myself being the all-too-sensitive and overly idealist INFJ), but my heart forever belongs to the written word. Nothing makes me happier than sitting down at a rickety old desk, pouring my imagination out onto paper. I’m currently in the process of co-authoring a horror novel with my incredible partner, set in our giant, creepy, and supposedly haunted apartment building, and am absolutely loving the project to death.
I feel things really deeply. Occasional quietness on the surface masks a rapidfire of thought and emotion beneath, and though this does tend to lead to a higher than average number of sobbing fits, I also get incredibly thrilled, excited and genuinely elated about relatively ordinary things. And as I once read, isn’t it better to be extremely happy, even if just for a short while, than just to be okay for your whole life? I try to be an eternal optimist – no matter how hard things may seem, I believe there’s a choice of reaction with anything that life may throw at us, and a learning experience in the toughest of challenges. The power of simple acceptance is also an incredible thing.
I spent a big chunk of my life living a life I didn’t want to live; being around the wrong people, not being my true self, being afraid to push myself out of my comfort zone, and most notably, allowing myself to be controlled by fear and a severe anxiety disorder. In the past few years, I made the decision to get out there and do everything I was ever afraid of, and now I feel like I’ve really found who I want to be, and the people I want to be that person with. I’ll continually push myself to grow, even if it is hard – I want to gain experience and confidence. That means there’ll be goal lists floating around here every so often. It’s not an easy thing to be able to look back and say I allowed myself to be controlled by things over which I have no control – but when you realise that where (or who) you are doesn’t align with what you want that to be, it can be an incredible catalyst for change. Something I’ve implemented into life as of late is the idea of not wasting time. It may seem a little morbid, but at the end of one’s life, people tend to wish they’d spent their time more wisely, more on love, less on hate, more on risk and leaps of faith and less on fear and worry. I don’t want to get to the end of my life, look back on my map and see that the ship never left the harbour. Someone once said that ships are safe in a harbour, but that that wasn’t what ships were for. I want to look back and see trails across stormy seas through torrential rainstorms and bands of pirates, up to new countries and through new sights and civilizations, stopping for treasure and beautiful sunsets and meeting a plethora of all sorts of fascinating people with whom I’ll share stories and build memories and from whom I’ll learn great lessons. I want to see it full of adventure and culture and colour, and I want to be left with battle scars that tell the story of a life well lived. And if someone stumbles across my blog, and feels inspired to challenge themselves, push their boundaries and see how life can change… it’ll probably be the most rewarding thing in the world.
Right now I’m continuing this journey through life and falling more in love with the wonderful things the world has to offer, and fighting to change the things it doesn’t. I’m exploring this crazy world we find ourselves planted on, this enormous galaxy we call home, and immersing myself in soaking up everything life has to offer. I’m discovering all sorts of amazing new music, learning the ukulele, writing new things, diving into incredible books and continuing my love affair with the arts. I’m a huge music lover, education advocate, and animal enthusiast… the list goes on. I’ll take love over hate any day, and work towards a better future rather than dwell on problems of the past.
For work, I’ve just made the move from several years in the non-profit world to the corporate one. I loved being able to work at a job that helped me in some way to help others, and I’m incredibly grateful for everything I learned there. When I first started, I was petrified at the thought of public speaking in staff meetings, let alone standing in front of a class, teaching and training, but I gradually learned that the desire to help outweighs fear every time. I worked for a bit at a financial consulting firm (!!) but ended up representing the company’s global diversity initiatives as Communications Chair of the LGBT network, striving for acceptance and equality in the workplace, acting as “Office Magician”, and playing pranks, but eventually I became caged in the role of “Admin Assistant” and felt the strain knowing I could be doing so much more. Now, I’m in the role as a Communications Manager at a publisher of several magazines – in a place that places just as much importance on awesome corporate culture as I do, and seems to embrace every crazy idea that I feel will make that a reality.
I’m not religious – I was briefly married to someone who introduced me to (and became my reason not to join) the church, and I could never get behind anything that fundamentally fuels division, that uses unknowns as a crutch instead of personal accountability, and that offers such a breeding ground for hypocrisy. I’ve had more than a few run-ins with religion, most notably being banned from all Catholic churches three weeks before my wedding (high five?), but I’ve come to the conclusion that faith in science, in fact, in truth, in love and in kindness is the religion for me. I think Richard Dawkins said it perfectly: “There is something infantile in the presumption that somebody else has a responsibility to give your life meaning and point… The truly adult view, by contrast, is that our life is as meaningful, as full and as wonderful as we choose to make it.”
There isn’t a great deal I dislike, but people who kick the back of your chair in cinemas and/or on planes, being stuck behind slow walkers, the cold, willful ignorance, animal cruelty, closed mindedness, and people who take pleasure from hurting others are all surefire ways to make me one very sad panda.
There will always be a soft spot in my heart for William Shakespeare, Geoffrey Chaucer, Neil Gaiman, Mervyn Peake and any other master of the English language that leaves me feeling lucky to have been alive to see such beauty in words. I ramble on here about lots of things, but I secretly love to write fiction. I’m definitely a HUGE nerd. I love to curl up with a good book, spend Saturday nights stargazing, watch TNG marathons, and on occasion, break out my life-size TARDIS. I’m a devout Trekkie, Whovian and sci-fi geek extraordinaire, and proud of it – I have a home-made WoW Night Elf costume, various starships in my office, and I may or may not have travelled all the way to America solely to go to a Star Trek convention.
One thing you should know is I’m NOT a niche blogger. Read why here. And one of my biggest beliefs is that every single person can make the choice to live the life they want to – happiness isn’t about the right circumstance, it’s about the right attitude.
Phew! High five if you’re still reading!
Not sure where to start?
On identity, and living in the void - learning to live without labels in a society fuelled by them
On choosing to recognize our ever-dwindling supply of time, and making the right choices now while we still have the chance
Unmasked: On personality types, who I am, and who I refuse to be
The Hazards of Cyberlife: On cyber-bullying, the loss of social conscience, and living in the age of trolls
The 26 Before 26: On why I’m trying to tackle everything I was ever afraid of – the year-long project that changed my life
An uncharacteristic Blogging Rant: On staying true to yourself in the blogosphere even if it costs readership
Shelving the Past: On choosing to let go of baggage, and allow the past to remain where it belongs
Spread Your Love Like a Fever: On the idea of becoming best friends with everyone in the world
The Tattoo Diaries: Journeying through transforming a mistake into something beautiful… with chronic back pain
I’ve written everything on this blog personally, meaning it’s copyrighted to me and not for use anywhere else on the internet. Please don’t steal!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.