I hope the Christmas season left you with tons of fantastic memories that made you smile, brought warmth to your heart, or made you laugh allot. My Christmas left me with an overwhelming sense of gratitude. So as I usually do between Christmas and NYE, I want to take a couple of minutes and look back at the year of 2009… express my gratitude, reflect on just how great my life is, and take stock of the goals I have achieved. Lets go back to:
December 15th of 2008 saw the birth of “the twins” my new niece Katelyn and nephew Carter. Both have blossomed into adorable little kids, and although I am so grateful for them I do feel a bit empathetic for Julie & Dan. They have their hands very full.
During New Years Jocelyn was off in Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon with 8 Aussie girl friends so I ended up working, however at 2:30my friends Jay, Johan and I decided to do a road trip the next day so we headed home, got a couple of hours sleep and drove to Revelstoke, BC. for a couple of days of skiing. While there, we met up with my old friend Ron Glave, carved some turns and had the perfect start to the new year.
A week or so later I got a call asking me if I’d head to Vancouver to help run the World Cup Ski Cross, Boarder Cross, and Half Pipe “test events” for the Olympics at Cypress Mountain. Of course I said YES, so I spent almost three weeks in January on Cypress Mountain, helping to run those events. Check out this bit on Shawn White in the Half Pipe (http://tinyurl.com/ykvo5lk), and some footage of the Ski Cross race (http://vimeo.com/3281971).
In March I helped market, organize and run the 2and annual Ski Cross National Championships. (http://www.ski-cross.ca/2009-National-Championships). This is always a fun event as it is a small crew doing a big job and I love working with Andrew, Jocelyn and the rest of the crew at Canada Ski Cross.
In May Joce & I attended The Illumination Intensive. It is a weekend retreat held by a company called The Warrior Sage (http://www.warriorsage.com/ii/learn_more.html) that is designed to help you to peel away the images, terms and labels we give our selves and to get in touch with who you really are…. among other things. It was one of the most profound and life changing opportunities I have ever undergone. I would suggest that everyone do this at least once in their lives. I am going back again this year.
In June I participated in The Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting the Alberta Cancer Foundation. This was a two day 100km/day cycling ride south of Calgary. Through many peoples generosity, I managed to come very close to my goal of raising $5,000, so it was a great success. Between all of the Calgary participants we managed to raise $6.9 Million dollars (http://ab09.conquercancer.ca/site/PageServer?pagename=ab09_homepage). An amazing event!
In July my Mom finally had a successful double lung transplant after nearly 2 years on a waiting list. I made the decision to head back to Ontario to be here for her after her surgery and so I spent much of July in the hospital with her. A HUGE heartfelt THANK YOU to all of the doctors and nurses at Toronto General Hospital. Wow, what a miraculous procedure, and a massive team effort this entails.
In August I came back to Calgary and help run a couple of events one of which included a Triathlon I participated in last season, The Lake Chaparral triathlon with Multisports Canada (http://tinyurl.com/yb6avt2). I really love doing these types of events and around about the same time I decided to see if I could find enough of them to make it a full time job.
In August and September I also worked one of the biggest event contracts of my life with The World Skills competition in Calgary as one of the five Venue Coordinators. This is an international event put on every two years, and is similar in style to the Olympics but focused on the trades and technology that brought 51+ countries to Canada. We started six weeks prior to the actual competition and had only one and a half weeks to get up to speed prior to moving onto Stampede Park. During the competition I was responsible for managing 13 skill areas that covered approximately 150,000 sq/ft of space. However one of our Venue Coordinators got sick and had to leave shortly into the competition and Charlene, Dan, Cody & I had to jump in and get er done. It was really amazing to be such an integral part of such a large international event. Really pushed me to use everything I had and learn allot more. I am hoping I’ll be able to get involved with the next event in London in 2011. Check it out www.worldskills.org
Just before the event happened I had my car broken into and most of my stuff that I really value was stolen. My computer, hard drives, bike gear, workout clothes, new suit, camera, iPod, etc… I am just now finishing the whole reimbursement process from the insurance agency. I am really not a big fan of the insurance industry.
In early October I had a number of direct experiences that led me to reevaluate every aspect of my life. Needless to say I was not happy with everything I was finding. I am not depressed or anything like that, in fact it has been extremely positive process. I am seeing this more like the universe giving me one swift kick in the ass after another. As a result of all of this though I have begun to make some changes in my life. I have also begun to create some space so that I can refocus in on: who I really am, my relationships, how I am with money, what direction my life is going, what kind of impact or worth my life has had, but most of all HOW I live… day to day.
In and amongst many of these “experiences” and allot of real life stuff that has been going at this time, Jocelyn & I decided to go our separate ways after almost four years. We are trying to remain close friends and I think we are almost there, which is good because she is still one of the most amazing women I have ever met.
In November I helped out my old bosses Kourosh and Greg at one of the most remarkable multi speaker events I have ever been apart of, Engage Today 2009. His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Dr. Stephen R. Covey, F.W. deKlerk, Les Brown, Sean Stephenson, Greg Habstritt, Vishen Lakhiani, Carol Cone, Janet Attwood, Garrett Gunderson, Lynne Twist, Eben Pagan…. I really can’t do it any justice, just go check it out. http://www.engagetoday2009.com/engageblog/
In November when my Mom was released from the hospital I decided to move back to Ontario for the holidays to assist her with the transition back to real life with her new lungs. Since I came back she has been getting much stronger, and the setbacks are far fewer than the steps forward. She still has a long recovery process but I am confident that she is on the right track and that being here has helped.
Christmas this year was really heart warming for me, not only because of being here with Mom but that I got a chance to spend some time with my brother Dan, my sister Christie, and my nieces and nephew Avery, Jayde, Kateyln and Carter. Just to see the look on their faces when seeing all of the presents and fun stuff to play with was well worth the trouble to get here and the time off work.
Looking forward into 2010 I am very excited. My decision to run events full time is coming along and in January, I will be heading up to Blue Mountain to help run the first eastern World Cup Ski Cross. (http://www.bluemountain.ca/rockstar_ski_cross_grand_prix.htm)
In addition to that in February, I will be heading off to Vancouver to the biggest outdoor show on earth. No not the Stampede, but the 2010 Vancouver Olympic winter games. I have been asked to take on a couple of key roles at Cypress Mountain for the freestyle events during the games. I am going to be the Chief of Start for the Ski Cross event and Assistant Chief of Start for the Boarder Cross and Parallel Giant Slalom events. The crew of people who are working on these events are top notch and we all get along famously. I had no idea that they were going to give me such huge positions, but needless to say I am very excited can’t wait till February.
So that wraps up my recap of 2009. All in all it was a fantastic year, I achieved many goals, even surpassed some, but sacrificed much as well. 2010, will bring much change for me, it will be a year to finally become financially free, to have allot more fun, to begin traveling again, and a year to get engaged…. but that I’ll save for another post.
Thanks for reading,
For those of you on FaceBook, here is my year in review via the images I have taken.