Thursday, 8 November 2012


I crawl through “The Alchemist”, a few pages per night at a time. A more recent Miss Lame rule- must spend minimum 10 minutes reading HER OWN book before turning off the lights for bed- a good rule.

Amongst the magical happenings and discourse on god, I absorb and celebrate the core message of the book- Listen to your heart. Follow it.

This is where happiness is found- Within.

This is when we can find and appreciate love of our self and others- With openness and  

Listen to your heart. Follow it- An honest and beautiful message.

As cliché and simplified as this message sounds, this idea and our ability to fulfill it, is easier said than done.

We can all reflect on those times when we knew, deep down, we were not truly listening. The emotional and even physical discomfort experienced as the brain (logic) fights ferociously to suppress the desire and yearning of the heart.

Habit versus Change
Norm versus Deviation
Known versus Unknown
FEAR controlling decisions versus COURAGE controlling decisions


 This battle, the imbalance, torments ones soul. 

…At a certain point in our lives, we lose control of what’s happening to us, and our lives become controlled by fate. That’s the world’s greatest lie.” (The Alchemist, P. 17)

“The boy” in The Alchemist represents an individual who has the courage to change his path, to follow his heart and fight the distractions of current life, the logic thoughts and fear of unknown. His example and his growth is inspiring.

I recall my hearts aches and cries for change that brought me here, across the pond.  
A period in my life of fierce battle- brain v. heart- Heart won. I listened.
Seeking. Growing. Empowered.  At peace internally, I felt as “the boy” did in his triumphant moments that came from listening to his heart…

I’m an adventurer, looking for treasure” (The Alchemist, P. 40)

Throughout the novel the boy highlights moments of growth and realisation. His lens is constantly transforming through his active reflection of both new and revisited experiences.

He was learning a lot of new things. Some of them were things that he had already experienced, and weren’t really new, but that he had never perceived before. And he hadn’t perceived them because he had become accustomed to them.

Year two of my teaching career and life in the big London.

Following an exciting and unexpected summer, filled with new experiences, and new connections, I am confronted with the new academic year.  Despite many things about my life continuing on the same- the daily journey, working in the same darling secondary school in suburbia, just north of London- there is an abrupt and noticeable change in my world and lens.
Simple things, like the Ridley Road street scape, with it's eerie charm, now takes on a new feeling as I commute to work. No longer a stranger. I am part of it now. The vendors' "heyyy darrrrlllliinnn'"s are no longer perceived as menacing and requiring efforts to avoid engagement.  I bounce back, my Canadian smile and bubble, "Good morning!"  These interactions- regular, authentic and shared- start Miss Lame's day of right.  

As autumn term kicks into full gear, I sense changes within. There is an aged feeling in my spirit. I know my world more confidently, but things around me are not as colourful. My heart is starting to ache and moan. I am losing balance and there is a lack of clarity. My lens is getting dirty.  
Clouded with anxiety, it is difficult to see the answers. I struggle to control this hardening of spirit. 

Frustrated, I think "Miss Lame of all people knows how to look on the bright side". 
As I start into my newest book, a lend from my good friend Bea, A mind of its own: How the brain distorts and deceives, I begin to see where the recent heart ache might be coming from.
For “the boy” in The Alchemist and myself, a year and a half ago, the imbalance that led to heart ache and need for change were more overt- a desire for a new personal journey. To see new places, people and things. To grow as an individual. Sometimes, however, the need for change is more subtle, but equally affecting.

Chapter 1, Cordelia Fine discusses some core ways the brain deceives to self-enhance and preserve the ego.

For example: 
When Miss Lame mastered “the worm” dancing technique, she owed this achievement to her own dedication, efforts and awesomeness. This self-promoting habit of the brain helps to build one up.
Conversely, when Miss Lame struggled to triumph the “baby freeze” she began reasoning the failure, claiming her pants (trousers) we a bit slippery and that her “caboose” (booty) was influencing her centre of mass, thus the laws of physics were an obstacle. External reasons for failure in order to preserve the ego.

Fine highlights how important these “positive illusions” are in “keeping your head high and your heart out of your boots” (p.4).

“Survival of the fittest”- The “vainglorious brain” is a subconscious behavioural adaptation connected to survival and success in the human species- we are animals too (science-dork moment).

As I hyper-analyse Fine’s discourse on the “vainglorious brain”, I start to identify that perhaps I am lacking some of these self-preserving qualities as of late.  Naturally, as a new teacher, self-doubt is completely expected, as it is when we are faced with any new and important frontiers in life.

Miss Lame’s mistake is that she has allowed her teaching world to define her.

Who am I? EDUCATOR MISS LAME- my identity.

Any successes and failures in the teaching world are directly linked to my abilities, beauties and weaknesses as a person.
  • Success feels fucking glorious. Cloud nine. My identity, “Educator Miss Lame”, who I am, is reinforced. 
  • Failure, however, results in a debilitating blow to my ego. The violent brawl that ensues in the boxing ring that is my brain, clouds me. I become an anxious, useless puddle of self-disappointment. I, “Educator Miss Lame”, am a failure.
What exacerbates this be-all-end-all perception and eats away at my soul is my allowance of the teaching world to consume all of my time. No space has been left for other aspects of Miss Lame- the adventurer/seeker, the dancing machine, the footballer, the chef, a great friend.

I realise: "This hurts and this is why my heart aches."

Last week, half term break, gave me breathing room. Time to read, write this entry and zoom out of the teaching world.  My lens has been cleaned and I can see- A new lame approach is needed. Going to work on that “vainglorious brain”.

For me, my friends, my students. 


I DOWNRIGHT HATE this lesson! GOSH DARN Conrad HAS to be in the GOSH DARN class! The boys are such DOWNRIGHT POOP-HEADS!” Phyllis, expels her disdain and leaves me at the door with a sharp, hostile turn. A negative tornado, she angrily proceeds into the classroom and slumps into her seat. 
Crusty senior sass.

I’m sorry to hear you feel that way, Phyllis. There are some things that do need to change in here.” I agree with her.

Class “in session” (technically speaking). 

“TEDRA THE TANK!”George hollers.  
In the front row an anxiety attack ensues- Gertrude shakes and tears. Head in her hands.
The boy with Asperger’s, overstimulated, repeatedly expels foul words.
Chaos, the volume perpetuates the building anxiety in us all.
The classroom is ROARING
…Where does Miss Lame begin?
Perplexed, I wonder, “How can I possibly change this toxic environment around?”
Student removals from lesson. Trial and error. MUCH error.
Lesson after lesson, this chaos carries on…
Miss Lame’s last straw:
I turn around from helping one of the select few students actually attempting to accomplish work in this catastrophic space, to find trembling Gertrude- in the midst of one of her anxiety attacks- with “rubber” bits (“eraser” in Canadian terms) and a glue stick in her hair. Obviously launched by one of the boys- leaders in the anarchy.
Rage takes over. A very rare sensation for Miss Lame.

Emphasis on “downright”.

I have their attention.

The class is silent and looking.


I carry on, my tone sharp, direct, sure. I feel my words cutting into them. The boy with Asperger’s is the only other source of sound. Laughter. He is not sure how to respond to Miss Lame’s rage.     
This moment of real Miss Lame rage. Her slip of the tongue- an emphasis on “downright”. Not right but not wrong. 
The message: Miss Lame has a line. It was crossed. RESPECT.
From this day forward, a new atmosphere began to evolve in the classroom. 

A few weeks ago...
“GOOOOOoOOOOODDD morninnn’ miss, goooodddddd morrnnin’!” Deloris serenades Miss Lame as she skips through the door and into the classroom. One of the “old” songs Miss Lame often starts class with in the AM.


Even on the most clouded days, I can still say without hesitation: I am meant to teach. 

I love the quell in my heart that I feel as I contemplate this. Happiness found within.

Listen to your hear. Follow it. 

 NOTE: Any words that are bolded, italicized, underlined and in red are suggested/preferred words by Mom. She doesn’t like me saying words like fuck, shit, ass (etc) on the internet… I feel these words better illustrate my feelings at times, so just imagine them in there if you will.

Saturday, 22 September 2012


Bright idea

The spreading of my late Grandfather, Robert Lyman Lein’s, ashes- Thursday August 16th.

The celebration of his life- Saturday August 18th.

Living and existing on a different continent as my family came together, across the pond- relating, hugging, learning about Grandpa, family dynamics and history.

Sorting through memories and pictures. Reminiscing.

I was missing.

With this going on and out of grasp, I decided I had to do something. For me. For him. 

I set out at 9:30am on Thursday August 23rd- a solo bike ride of 100km before me.

To Brighton.

Why cycle? Reasons for my “bright idea”:

It is not that my Grandfather was into cycling in the slightest. In fact, he spent much of his life abusing his body- smoking and enjoying his beer- and not cycling. But the idea- “biking in honour of Grandpa”- just seemed right. Perhaps for the following reasons…
  • I was being healthy for him?
  • Hesitant that I did not spell my Grandfather’s middle name (Lyman) correctly in this blog entry I took a moment to use the inter-webs for some reassurance.  During this exploration, I discovered the old English meaning of “Lyman"
          “clearing, meadow”. I read.

          That’s it. I passed a ton of meadows when cycling.  A little retrospective reasoning…
  • The solo-ness of the adventure made it feel relevant as well. That I would be sorting out my own path, on my own terms, as Miss Lame does.  It would be just me and Grandpa’s crusty but deeply loving spirit, ploughing along the South of England country-side.


A primal cry. A sort of innate, unrestrained growl escapes from my core filling- contrasting- sharply cutting the calm country-side air. Just me. This great sound takes me by surprise and drives me. Forward. Out of the saddle of my bike, with a final blip of energy, all that I have left, my legs pump and force the pedals round the axel- crude and irregular in pace.  

Recognising the effectiveness of this vulgar, audible release I persist to discharge grunts, growls, profanity, you name it, as I power myself up miniscule inclines that for the first 2/3 of the cycle went unnoticed by Miss fitness queen Lame. Unaffected. No problem.    

Usually the first to poke fun at the neaderthals at the gym for their caveman grunts, alone in the country-side, I became Beth “neadrathal” Lame.

Feeling my physiology

ATP stock down. I can feel it so clearly. I am bankrupt of this incredible, life-sustaining molecule, which I need so direly to burst apart, to drive my muscle cells to contract in a concise, powerful way. Incapable of harnessing the beautiful and very helpful physics of forward momentum, I stagger forward, one, slow-motion, degrading pump at a time. Standing over my pedals, using my body weight.    

So this is what it feels like to be obese… IT SUCKSSSS!!!!!!!!!” Feelings of lethargy overpower me and I am incapable of more.

I know, with certainty, that my face is grey and drawn. My eyes dull- they gaze, unfocused.



1 minute of dead-eyed-gazing at the endless landscape before me- A hint of weary resentment.

Ok. No choice. Must continue.

I reluctantly place my foot on the pedal.

Brain instructions travel down my motor neurons to the muscle fibres in my legs- “contract and coordinate, aight?

Newfound energy- I am surprised- MY LEGS RESPOND!

Legs: “LEZGO YO!”
(yes, my tissues and organs talk in “gangsta”)

I cycle along at a new, smooth pace.

…For approximately 5 minutes...

A distinct drop. Everything sinks. Miss Lame experiences obesity again.

Whhhattt happennneddd??? Science-dork Miss Lame will tell you.
  • The minute of break in combination with a gulp of water (a crucial molecule involved in the making of ATP) gave my muscle cells the opportunity to construct a small reserve of ATP. Supplying my short burst of energy. 
The remainder of my trip was a series of brief, teasing moments of motor heroism, followed by abrupt, bodily defeat. 
Miss Lame found this incredibly intriguing and downright stupid all at once.

Food tasted quite good after.

Soooo happy to be eating!

 The next morning I enjoyed sitting on the beach, looking out at the ocean and visited Brighton Pier.

Back to school

Incredibly nervous. 

Will Miss Lame be able to “set the right tone” in her very own classes, day one of the NEW school year?

To be continuedddd…

NOTE: Any words that are bolded, italicized, underlined and in red are suggested/preferred words by Mom. She doesn’t like me saying words like fuck, shit, ass (etc) on the internet… I feel these words better illustrate my feelings as times, so just imagine them in there if you will.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Miss Lame in Italy

One year...

Sitting in the cobble streets of Firenze, Italy at a cafe. People flow by, a few at a time, some chat softly at the neighbouring tables, enjoying their breakfast "cakes" (typical Italian breaky- sweet pastries)- The right amount of commotion for Miss Lame's writing-focus. Background bustle with opportunities for momentary engagment with others- smiles.

A solo day of adventure for Miss Lame.  Needing a moment to breath in this new place. To write, eat and be me. Enjoy my own company.

I retreive the black, hardcover sketch book my sister gave me as a gift over a year ago from my purse. I scan through sketches and Miss Lame chicken scratch from over a year ago- The last time the notebook was opened.

I just so happened to notice this book as I packed for my trip and thought "oh, that would be a great writing canvas for my Miss Lame adventures in Italy!"

Curious, I take a moment to read my last written entry:

"Monday August 8, 2011- New adventure- Blog?"

I am about to leave Canada- in my favourite place in the whole world with my favourite people:
Northern Ontario, Canada- Jumping Caribou Lake- the family cottage- with my family.

In the passage, I brainstorm and hypothesize the pending unknown...

Becoming Miss Lame.

I decipher my message and I am moved as I compare, contrast and connect my current world and mindset with my person and mental place at that time.

What I didn't know. The unwavering confidence of my spirit.

I express a mind-numbing mosaic of feelings- excitment, pride, apprehension... Saddness?... These basic, contrasted feelings zip in and out of my brain, undirected, flighting and ultimately, uncomprehensible.

Miss Lame is usually very good at feeling emotions strongly. Clear, punctuated emotions is comfort to Miss Lame- They tell me what is wrong. They give me answers and insight. I feel in control.

Despite this brain flurry. There is a tone of certainty in my words- complete assurdness in my decision to step into the unknown, on my own.

No question- I was going to London England. I was going to teach. I was going to love it.

I was right.

Hypothesizing my new blog- "Becoming Miss Lame" in it's inception.

"Things I see and learn will bombard me as I venture to a new country and a new culture. This will increase the frequency and opportunity for "super-dork" moments, but it will also provide opportunities for deeper reflection and personal growth... I'm not JUST dorky..."

As I read this passage I am intrigued. I reflect- Miss Lame "super-dork" moments and their frequency...

Looking back on this year in the UK, it seems that this prediction was inaccurate. In a new place, with new people who don't fully "get" Miss Lame (there tends to be an initial distrust in Miss Lame's incredibly upbeat address here in London, England), super-dork situations became less punctuated. Perhaps it isn't the frequency of the lame occassions that changed but that they flew past, unnoticed.

The realisation: The beauty or fun in these super-dork moments is the shared laugh with friends who partake in the lame moment or catch them and call you on it.

Perhaps Miss Lame just doesn't notice how dorky she is anymore. It comes natural. I'm just being me.

Goodbye Grandpa Boobie.

I carry on reading my entry...

"Yesterday, my siblings, parents and I went to the hospital in North Bay to visit Grandpa Bob. He has been on oxygen for a while but recently has also been afflicted with a lung infection among other issues..."

A lump forms in my throat. Staring at the page, I grasp at my cappaccino, using my peripherals to coordinate. I take a big gulp, in an effort to pull the lump back down.

I read on: "It was so good to see him and hear his humour. He looks frail and weak... I feel a strange calm about seeing him... I dont know why..."

I read this and long overdue tears develop. Amidst the bustle of Firenze, Italy, I feel alone with myself. In a good way.  I can let go. Something I was unable to do months ago, last fall, as I piered at my parents through the computer screen one afternoon- the news of Grandpa's death rebounds off of me. I couldn't process it.

In Canada, this 18th of August, my family will be gathering in North Bay, Ontario to celebrate my late Grandfather's life. I will be missing this opportunity.

An upcoming adventure: In honour of my dear Grandpa Bob, I will be biking to Brighton on the South coast on Monday August 13th (tomorrow), surfing on a couch for the night and returning the following day. I plan to write, sit by the sea and talk to Grandpa.

I retreive the red pen in my purse. I write. I eat. I breath. I enjoy my own company in Firenze, Italy.


In Italy, my friend Bea and I step into a new world of flavours, social engagment and asthetic.

The speedo.
 "Why?" I question, entertained, perplexed and sometimes disturbed, as my eyes scan the beautiful coastal swimming encleave (Manarola, Cinque Terre), dotted, rather, interrupted by, scantally clad men. All shapes and sizes, young and old, in tight, package hugging, obnoxious in colour, speedo suits- Nothing left to the imagination. Too often, tummies portrude over the waistband of these spandy briefs, giving the illusion of nudity. Unfortunately.

WHY?- Miss Lame hypotheses:
I dig and grasps for some sort of reasoning behind this trend of over-exposure and decide on the following logic...
  • Maximizing tanned surface area of the body... Achieving that even, golden brown tan- No lines and inconsistencies on their bodily canvas. 
Miss Lame wonders- "what is the point?!"- as she notices the toll of this asthetic ambition- men and women approaching middle-age, red-brown in hue, rather than golden.  Their tired skin, crying for moisture.

The most prevailent form of Body Dysmorphic disorder in Italy?
  • Ease of movement... I imagine it's a freeing sensation. Much like skinny-dipping.
Not that we would wish to see majority of these men sprinting, prancing or attempting any particularly dynamic movement in this garb.  

The albedo effect.
Never before have I seen so much white, baige, cotton and linen.  A lot of white pants- or, rather, "trousers".

"They have it right", Miss Lame decides.  This observation launches my brain into a Science-dork rant...

Workin' with those photons (light particles).

Why  do we see green leaves, racy red cars, scalding hot black asphalt, and light, flowy white pants/trousers on Italian men? The physics of light and how we see colours.
  • White light from the sun or a common lightbulb is the combination of all the colours of the rainbow (visible light spectrum).  When white light strikes a prism or water droplet it is split up to show all colour components!
  • When white light reaches a surface (e.g. green leaves on a tree, a racy red car, black ashphalt, an Italian man's white pants/trousers) the colour that we see is the particular colour or combination of colours that are reflected off the object and into our eyes- the rest of the colours are absorbed into the material/surface.
The racy red car:
  • The colour red reflects off of the car and into our eyes- we see red. All other colours of the rainbow are absorbed into the surface.
Burning your toes on that HOT, black asphalt:
  • None of the colours of the visible light spectrum reflect off the surface- all are absorbed- As a result the surface becomes HOT (creates heat energy)
In the case of an Italian man's white pants/trousers:

  • All colours of the visible light spectrum (light particles) are reflected off of the white surface and into our eyes- meaning we see white- None of the colour spectrum gets absorbed into the material. This keeps things cooooolll! 
 Living in a Mediterranean climate such as Italy, wearing white and baige = good idea. 
What would be even better?

If Italians decided to wear tin foil- "Robot fad" is a good idea, I think..


Beautiful squares. Grandiose structures surround the open air with a strong, elegant presence.

As I walk through the space I feel the history. I imagine old farmers markets, rallies, movements. Sometimes lively and thriving with many individual contributions. Sometimes one voice or a pause- silence. A community come together or tearing apart.

I don't know the stories. But I imagine them.

Piazza Maggiore- Bologna (a film festival at night)

My favourite piazza experience:

A quaint, quirky, alternative little piazza.

Seated on crates. Crate tables craddle our wine glasses when we are not sipping away at them. A DJ plays retro infused dance music off to the side.  Offerings of free legitimate Shiatsu massages in order to bolster business.

Yes please.  


Savouring, smiling.  Heaven.

"I can't believe this..." I think as the mouthful of handmade, squid ink pasta, with fresh scampi overtake my mouth. Melting with pleasure.
After a moment to myself of complete an utter pleasure, I fixate my eyes on the view before me. Sea-side, Manarola, Cinque Terre, the sun sets and creates siluettes of the few land parked boats and individuals admiring in between.

Italy- A foodie's dream come true. Handmade pasta. Fresh seafood. Smooth, gorgeous gelato... The CHEESE.

Simple. Quality. Beautiful.

Customer service/common decency
Shops and service industry.

I walk up, eager, with my broad Miss Lame smile and open my mouth to speak.

A sharp, pointed finger.

A wall is created.

"ok." I step back and suppress my excitement for the moment.

Stone face, the tourism services women's eyes do not break from her computer screen.  After what felt like ages (likely 1 minute, but hyperactive, excited Miss Lame has a hard time with these things), the woman's eyes detach from the computer screen and meet mine- Lack luster.


She allows me to speak.
Of course my inquiry was not properly prepared. Not specific enough.  I was quickly turned away to seek the brochures consuming the wall behind me.

Don't get me wrong, not all individuals in service industry behaved this way in Italy, but it did seem to be a trend- A general vibe of complete and utter distain for the individual requiring their time.

Major exception was the lovely waitor whom on my last evening in Italy, recommended a great place to dance in Bologna.  A new friend from the hostel, also an educator of children, and I set out in search of this dance floor, determined to get our groove on.

We danced the night away with locals until the sun came up.  A perfect way to wrap up my time in Italy.

Dance. My favourite.

Miss Lame looks forward to her continued summer time adventures.  
The is so much to look forward to.

NOTE: Any words that are bolded, italicized, underlined and in red are suggested/preferred words by Mom. She doesn’t like me saying words like fuck, shit, ass (etc) on the internet… I feel these words better illustrate my feelings as times, so just imagine them in there if you will.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Miss Lame's Report Card

The Final Report: GRADING SYSTEM

FA- downright awesome
PG- Perrdy gooood
S- Satisfactory
WOI- Workin' on it...


Personalised invitations were assigned to the Visible light, Infrared, Micro wave and Radio wave families…


Chaotic excitement. Just how Miss Lame likes her classroom-  Paper flying, scissors snipping, hats, masks, props under construction- some of which seemed completely disjoint from the electromagnetic spectrum- but they were so happy and this creativity and excitement had to carry on.

No rationalising necessary.

Preparation time for the grand ball is up and the guest and their families are to take their place in correct spectrum sequence- shortest wavelength to longest- before introductions could begin.

Miss Lame was proud of her little rays of sunshine as they gaily shifted, chattered and coordinated themselves into correct order. Engaged. Collaborating. Success.

Introductions of esteemed guests:

(Miss Lame's favourite introduction- Visible light family)

A line of 8- Ece stands infront, holding a large white sheet of paper- "White light".  

"The sun or light from a bulb is a source of white light, which is actually a combination of all of the colours of the rainbow, which can be seen when white light passes through a prism or rain droplet and splits up into its parts!"...

As Ece explains the 7characters huddled in a line behind her fan out to either side- proud- each holding a different colour- Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, purple.

A beautifully choreographed rainbow. 


The Dance:

Miss Lame: "Before we can let loose and get grooving we must think about how we will dance...If all families move at the same speed- the speed of light- than how should we dance?"
I am hit by a barage of excited explanations:

"At the same pace!"
                                          "To the same beat!"
                                                                              "Like this, miss!"
(Did I mention I love my job... I DOWNRIGHT love it.)

"YES! Exactly!"... But if you all have different wavelengths how should you talk?..."

"Different speeds Miss!"

A mess of noise ensues.

My sweet, little year 8 microwave family begin experimenting with their voices and drop them an octave or two. Old man voices bellow through the science classroom out of 11 year old faces...

The visible light family begins chatting energetically- their words escaping their mouths at a rate beyond their brain speed- non-sensical conversation ensues as a result.

Miss Lame (so proud) exclaims "OK! We are ready! Let the dance party begin!

I press play on the youtube music video and step out from behind my desk and twist and swivel my way to the middle of the classroom- I crackout one of my signature dance move, the 1950s wobbly-kneed hand exchange that I learned from the best- my Mother.

I look around the classroom , smiling and encouraging my students to get their groove on.

Awkward, shifting eyes and big grins. Arms crossed tightly.

Who will be first to dance?

Oh, youth awkardness.. Miss Lame can sense their deep desire to be silly and let loose, yet they are not quite prepared to be a spectacle until joined by a majority.

A minute passes and the threat is made.

"Ok, I need to see some dancing in the next minute or else we are going to have to get the text books out and do some work."

Yep, bribery is the key.

No more than 30 seconds later...

The ENERGY in Miss Lames classroom reaches an all time peak- Utter joy.

Laughing, smiles so broad I can make out their tonsils. Sam and Miss Lame have a breakdancing "worm off", students stand in circles making waves and flailing their arms. To top it all off, a wild dancing train ensues- student after student latching on until the entire community is a part.  The train hazardously, gayily torrents around my classroom, papers flying, chairs tumbling.

My thought: "Ohhh my...         ...           ...This is amazing."


(they are not all as great as the Electromagnetic Spectrum Ball)

NOTE- One thing you learn very quickly in the teaching world is that things cannot always be perfect and your mental and emotional capacity to provide a stunning lessons, every lesson, every day is just not realistic. You do your darndest, but keeping things simple is good sometimes too...It is good to work with others who collaborate and share ideas- TEAM EFFORT!)

NOTE- This seems to be a consistent struggle for Miss Lame- I prioritize my fitness/athletics and nutrition, but tend to neglect my sleeping health- when the body builds, repairs, rejuvinates. Terrible. Many blog entries throughout this past year acknowledge the significant, positive impact of a full nights sleep on my teaching effectiveness.  I make many promises to improve on this poor habit.  I need to follow through.   


Sometimes it takes a simple moment, a happening or some particular words in particular construction to flip that switch in our heads. To realise.

There can be something particularly powerful about these 'moments', when we just haven't yet identified the "why" something just doesn't fit or feel quite right, or the converse, "why" something feels just right, and then a simple trigger launches this subconscious inkling forward into your prefrontal cortex of our brain- acknowledgement.

These moments could happen gradually or come crashing into our world, they could be little blips in the course of our lives or major crossroads. I truly feel that the more consciously we acknowledge these "moments" and more reflective about ourselves, our responses and choices, the stronger we become.

More personal growth. Higher expectations. Moving forward.

As my first full year of teaching wraps up and with many new, exciting experiences and "moments" flying at me, I find myself feeling sentimental and reflective.

I ponder, how did I get here?

All my life, the big, small, flighting, and moving "moments", from itsy-bitsy, baby Beth Lame through to present day full-blown Miss Lame, have contributed to this current person that I am.  The "moments" of particular impact involve my incredibly beautiful family and true, dear friends I have been fortunate to grow up with. 

Unconditional love and support.  The teaching world and travelling abroad has highlighted to me how rare and beautiful this is. 

Another major contributor to my current person is my spirit of "lameness", which has been fairly consistent through life.  Super-dork situations (moments) at every stage.  I feel fortunate to have grown up feeling comfortable in my own skin and feel this "lame with no shame" approach to life has contributed to my growth and learning as a person.  My opportunities.

Reflecting on my childhood, a few super-dork moments stand out in my mind...   

  1. Proudly wearing my bathing suit backwards to resemble a sumo wrestler, a massive wedgy and bee-sting nipples exposed as I flitter about in the sprinkler in the yard... 
  2. Getting incredibly excited over broccoli for dinner... Nutrition dork for life!
  3. Eagerly calling out "BOOBIES", no filter, during my first-ever Sex Education class in grade 5 as my teacher inquires about "signs of puberty"- I realise my "lameness" could be a source of entertainment for others.
  4. "Question girl" in University...Needing to understand. Not wanting to miss that chance for clarity. The more I asked questions the more I have been exposed to new "moments"- new knowledge, new challenges. Growth...   I'd like to believe no question is a stupid question... :)

Yep, Miss Lame with no shame has been a part of me through life.  

It is however, in the past two years that life as Beth- true-blue Miss Lame- really has began. 

Empowered, conscious and proud of my choices, my career and my self-directed life. 

A timeline: Important "moments" and realistations that got Miss Lame to her current 'place'...

  • March 2010: The sudden, life-changing moment that my brain when on a tangent- one thought leading to the next- pain- shock- the final thought: "you cannot be with him". Six and a half years. Not a mistake, but no more... It could not persist. A ginormous door of opportunity, through which Miss Lame could dorkily stumble, explore and grow, was opened to her. Choices and directions to come solely from self. Empowered.

  • July 2010-November 2010: New freedom. Returning from my first taste of travel and exploration- Chile and Argentina. An ache in my lumbar spine, symptoms of sciatica. Wrongfully diagnosed as having a back injury I faced a new terrifying realisation- I am not invincible. My body can fail me? My body can fail me... I was forced into the ultimate stagnant lifestyle- over 1 month of horizontal life- bed rest. Although many doors closed during this time- the slowing of  downright hyperactive Miss Lame, just as her world became hers- one significant door crooked open as Miss Lame discovered her love for writing. The inception of "Laying with Lame", Miss Lame's first blog, has been a crucial piece of Miss Lame's growth and identity. Life has gifts to offer, even in the most dismal of times. 
  • May 2011: Spine officially ok. Back at personal trainer work, while attempting to volunteer in a high school in order to somehow stay connected with the teaching world that I adored so much.  No teaching work. That stagnant feeling from the "Laying with Lame" days persists, despite my return to vertical lifestyle. The moment: Miss Lame connects with overseas agencies. Adventure, travel and MUST teach. A new direction. My life.
  • August 20th 2011: Little, lame Miss Lame, 5 foot, 2 inches, hobbles and hoist, struggles and sweats as she drags and manuvers two massive ski bags jammed to maximum capacity along with other smaller luggage bits-and-bobs in a new world.  Across the pond- London England- Heathrow Airport. I realise I know no one, have no mental map and have somehow made this all happen. Just a little lame woman ready to start up her teaching career and a new exciting chapter in her life. I recall feeling very happy about these facts. Being lost was excitment. 
  • January-April 2012: Downright, silly bottomed, poop head school. Miss Lame lets her energetic, positive, lame-with-no-shame person be dimmed and dulled as she struggles and pushes to educate effectively in a toxic, unsupportive environment.  Miss Lame realises the debilitation of anxiety and that "getting out" is not giving up.  
  • April 2012: Life on a positive upswing- Miss Lame stronger than ever!  My happiness project, with its simple yet affecting rules, help bring me back up (see last blog entry for clarification). My new teaching environment transforms, I am suddenly surrounded by beautiful people who love their job and work as a unit and my life explodes with opportunities for teaching success and growth.  I see myself again and know my capabilities.  Miss Lame's simple-beautiful realisation: Happiness is a conscious choice. All emotions are valid and beautiful and contribute to a fulfilled life. I believe that to be genuinely happy is about what you do with those diverse emotions and experiences- what you choose to look for/focus on and how you take in and respond to experiences- the simple, complicated, stressful and stunning. 
  • July 2012: I am strong. So fortunate to have such a beautiful career. I am a great teacher. I have come so far in the past few years and can't wait for more.
  • A new, recent "moment" for Miss Lame- instant connection. New feelings. A person who sees and experiences his world through a similar lens. He showed me the following piece, which I feel closely ties into my message of personal growth, acknowledging "moments" and speaks volumes about happiness and choice.

This is your life, do what you love and do it often.

If you dont like something change it. If you dont like your job quit. If you dont have enough time... stop watching TV.

If you are looking for the love of your life, stop, they will be waiting for you when you start doing the things you love.

Stop over analyzing. Life is simple. All emotions are beautiful. When you eat, appreciate every last bite.

Open your mind, arms and heart to new things and people. We are all united in our differences. Ask the next person you see what their passion is and share your inspiring dream with them.

Travel often; getting lost will help you find yourself. Some opportunites only come once so seize them. Life is about the people you meet and the things you create with them. So go out and start creating.

Life is short, so live your dream, and wear your passion.

Make the choices that make you happy, love the people who make you happy

  • Current: On holiday. Just returned from 8 days in Italy. Beautiful people in my life. 
Happy as a lark.


Dearest readers...Questions to consider...
  • What in your life makes you happy?
  • What are some "moments" in your life that have contributed to who you are today? How do they make you stronger? 
I would love if you would share some of your "moments" in my comments!!!!

NOTE: Any words that are bolded, italicized, underlined and in red are suggested/preferred words by Mom. She doesn’t like me saying words like fuck, shit, ass (etc) on the internet… I feel these words better illustrate my feelings as times, so just imagine them in there if you will.