All about me

Okay, so I’ve recently come to realize that a huge portion of the people who read and comment on this blog don’t know me, or anything about me (except for the whole cancer thing, obviously). In fact, there are over 1,000 people who subscribe to my blog, and I’m pretty certain my mom and dad only make up two of those people, because I have the ability to do basic math. So I feel like maybe I should tell you some non-cancer-y things about myself, in an effort to not just be “cancer girl” to all the loyal readers out there.

Here are some facts:

1. I come from a really great family. Boring, right? But that’s the truth. I have a big bro and a little sis, and two parents who love each other. We all live in the same city and see each other all the time. I also have a very large extended family, many of whom I also see frequently. I always thought this was kind of normal, to come from this awesome, big family, where everyone is smart and funny, and gets along and loves each other. I now know that that is not always the case and I am extremely fortunate for how I was raised and the relationships I have with my family members.

The siblings. The one who clearly looks nothing like me is the bro's girlfriend but she is included as a sibling as well because that's how we roll. (If you're a music fan, you can check her out at basiabulat.com.)

The siblings. The one who clearly looks nothing like me is the bro’s girlfriend but she is included as a sibling as well because that’s how we roll. (If you’re a music fan, you can check her out here.)

2. I’m married to this handsome man:

He’s smart and kind and makes me laugh until I can’t breathe. There is no one in the world I’d rather spend time with. We met on the internet, as is becoming the norm for lots of modern-day couples. Although I like to think we were a bit ahead of the curve on that one. I sent him a message after checking out his profile, because he spelled everything properly, made a couple non-obnoxious jokes, and didn’t look like a serial killer. I had no idea I’d ever end up marrying the guy, but here we are, living the dream (minus the cancer part).

3. I love movies and TV. Probably to the point that it might be unhealthy, but if that’s my worst vice, then I’m okay with it. It is hard for me to relate to people who “don’t watch any TV” or “haven’t seen a movie in years.” I just can’t understand that, because I get so much joy out of these forms of entertainment. I can go on forever and ever talking about whatever good or horrible show I am currently obsessed with. I feel actual anxiety when I hear of some new TV show that is getting a lot of buzz and I haven’t yet seen it (i.e. True Detective, which is next on my list). Current/recent faves are: Scandal, Game of Thrones, Downton Abbey, Orange is the New Black, Homeland (despite a pretty weak recent season), Girls, The Mindy Project, Breaking Bad (RIP), Nashville, Pretty Little Liars, The Vampire Diaries, Parenthood, The Bachelor… I will stop there before it gets any more embarrassing.

I grew up completely obsessed with movies. This is how I bonded with friends, and how I often judged prospective boyfriends (I have since gotten a lot less snobby about such things, as you can see from my occasionally terrible taste in television). I still get extremely excited to see a new movie in theatres, and I swear, my heart skips a beat when I hear the movie studio’s opening theme song. Sometimes I find myself humming the New Line Cinema theme, for no reason. That’s probably a pretty strange thing to admit, but alas… the truth.

I could easily write ten thousand words on my favourite films. There are many great, remarkable movies out there, but the ones that I always return to, that I have watched a million times and could watch a million more: Edward Scissorhands, Back to the Future (Pt. 1 for always, Pt. 2 for laughs, Pt. 3 for never), When Harry Met Sally, The Royal Tenenbaums, A League of Their Own, Annie Hall, The Lion King, Wizard of Oz, Hook, Marry Poppins, Home Alone, Poltergeist, and Dumb and Dumber. Those are truly my tops, many of them being childhood favourites. Obviously there are “brilliant” films like Citizen Kane or Schindler’s List, but those aren’t exactly DVD’s that I feel like popping in every night as I drift off to sleep. For me, my favourite movies are all about comfort. This was especially true when I spent lots of last year being ill, and sometimes the only thing that could comfort me was this:

4. My other favourite subject to talk about is food. I am, one might say, obsessed with food and eating said food (note: I amΒ not obsessed with cooking. Cooking to me is just a necessary means to an end. I would much rather have someone cook for me, so I can just focus on the act of consuming the food, which is really the only part I enjoy of the whole cooking thing). I love food so much that if I’m eating something delicious, I will literally try to shove a piece of whatever it is in the mouth of whomever I am dining with, because I need someone else to experience what I am tasting. My husband and sister both find this extremely annoying, but I will never stop doing it. My friend Laura and I often write each other emails that are only about food — which new restaurants we have eaten at, which ones we’re dying to try, where we’re going to meet for lunch next week. And then when we go out to eat, we only talk about the food that we’re eating the entire time, and we joke that anyone sitting near us would likely think we are insane, or haven’t eaten for a month.

I just love food. Healthy, unhealthy, fine dining, hole-in-the-wall diners, all ends of the spectrum. I don’t discriminate. If you put it in front of me, I will probably eat it (a fun theory that my siblings like proving by putting something on my plate and watching it disappear, without me realizing that I have ingested anything). Some might say I have an addiction. But I just say, I LOVE FOOD SO PLEASE FEED ME AND I WILL LOVE YOU FOREVER.

My favourite activity.

My favourite activity.

5. I don’t drink alcohol. Party pooper, right? Sorry to disappoint. People always think that this is some kind of great life decision or statement or religious thing. But I actually can’t drink alcohol, for it makes me very, very sick. I have pretty bad chronic reflux disease (yet another thing, like cancer, that is usually saved for older people… I guess I’m just ahead of the game). This means that things like alcohol, caffeine, spicy foods, and some other things can do crazy things to my insides, which if it gets bad enough, can make me violently ill. Occasionally maybe I will have a few sips of wine or some champagne for a celebration, but for the most part, I abstain. Being someone who does not drink has made me realize how much value people put on alcohol consumption. A lot of people look at you like you’re some sort of weirdo if you don’t drink. I know some people can’t imagine the non-booze life. For me, it is pretty easy. And it also makes me a really cheap date, which may or may not be why my husband chose to marry me (just kidding… I hope).

Okay, I think those are enough random tidbits for the time being. But maybe now you feel like you know a tiny bit more about me, albeit on a somewhat surface level. If you feel so inclined, all you wonderful strangers/lurkers/random people I’ve never met, leave a comment and say hello and tell me something about yourself, or your blog, or what you’re doing here. I meet people all the time who say “oh I know you, I read your blog” and I know nothing about them, which always feels a bit strange. So don’t be shy, say hi! Or at least tell me your favourite movie, so I can judge you swiftly, because really, that’s the only way to do it.

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34 thoughts on “All about me

  1. Mama Leone says:

    I found your blog through Mortimers Mom. I have had friends and relatives with cancer and your posts are informative and helpful, thank you so much for sharing. (Uggg. I am guilty of recently telling my friend who’s going through chemo that she looks great!_ You are a great writer and I hope you will continue more posts like this one! I can’t pick an absolute favorite movie, so here ‘s a few: “The Lion King”, 40 Year old Virgin, Pretty Women, Steel Magnolias, City Slickers, Goonies. Odd random strange fact: We recently went to see the Lion King in New York we stayed at the Westin and our room looked exactly like the picture of your husband in the above post was taken at the Westin in NY.

  2. Tracey says:

    Love this post Steph! I do feel like I know you now – here’s a bit about me πŸ™‚
    I met my husband in a bar (it was 1989)
    I very rarely drink alcohol
    I’m a dog lover…well animal lover in general
    Favourite movie of all time, It’s a Wonderful Life
    Favourite TV shows – Sons of Anarchy, Six Feer Under, Breaking Bad, Rescue Me, Orange is the New Black, Dexter, Dragons Den
    I can’t roll my tongue and can barely snap my fingers
    I’m a chemo/card angel and make my own cards – my blog is kinda boring but it’s http://www.thestampinlab.blogspot.ca

  3. Leah Zajac says:

    Thanks for sharing about you! A few of my favorite movies are Gone With The Wind, The Princess Bride, (original 3) Star Wars series and Spaceballs. Some of my current TV shows (like you) are Downton Abbey & Game of Thrones plus I also have my guilty pleasure shows like The Millionaire Matchmaker. It’s like the Bachelor but with one shot at a date! Dessert is my favorite meal of the day. I especially love dark chocolate (won’t eat white chocolate (it is NOT chocolate)) but pretty much all desserts are welcome on my plate. I also met my husband on the internet and practically phoned it in for our first date because it was the last one in a week of sub-par dates. Of course it was the best one too!

  4. shirley says:

    Some of my fave movies; Fargo, Last Picture Show, Best In Show, Far From The Madding Crowd, Blue Jasmine, Life Is Beautiful, Pleasantville, Strangers On A Train, Secret Window, Hide and Seek

  5. Rae says:

    1. You guys are so cute.
    2. I can’t believe two insanely attractive people like you guys met on an online dating site. I guess the stock photography models they show aren’t a complete sham?
    3. Can we talk about how good Vampire Diaries is? I don’t think anyone else will believe me. I make my husband watch it, and he complains, but then he asks questions about what’s going on throughout the show, so I think he’s lying and he secretly likes it too. Also, the Originals, which I think I may like better now? Or maybe I just like vampires with British accents. It’s hard to say.
    4. That’s the best Valentine’s Day card I think I’ve ever seen.
    5. Now I’m embarrassed I ordered you to have a cocktail after your last treatment. A mocktail, maybe? Or maybe just a large sundae? Honestly, if I had to choose between alcohol and ice cream, I would go with ice cream. Unless I could eat ice cream topped with alcohol. Don’t judge me!

    • Steph says:

      Haha you are awesome. I am loving all this Vampire Diaries love… who knew! I really think it’s great too. I tried to force it on my sister by buying the DVD years ago… and she still hasn’t opened it, which makes me very angry. I love it so much. I haven’t watched The Originals but now you’re making me think I should! I really didn’t love the set-up episode for it that they did last season on Diaries, so I figured I wouldn’t really care for the show. Not that I need another teen show to add to the bunch.
      I do have mocktail-type drinks all the time, when they’re actually listed on a menu. I’ll always be like “I’ll have the fizzy party fruit punch drink please” or whatever embarrassing name it has.

  6. Linda Gold says:

    I am going through a somewhat similar journey and quite often find what you say is exactly how I feel ! I love your optimism, something I myself try to do…it’s either laugh or cry right ? πŸ™‚ favorite movies ? Hunger games, twilight, I know…gag ? Not everybody’s cup of tea !
    And oddly enough fave tv show is Greys Anatomy ! As if I haven’t had enough medical stuff in my life ! But I love to see the impossible situations survive ! Cuz miracles are out there πŸ™‚ I live on Vancouver Island and today we have SNOW πŸ™‚ All the best to you, enjoy your mindful moments xox

    • Steph says:

      I watch Grey’s too! I have tried many times to stop because it’s just gotten so bad… but I always come back to it. I actually haven’t seen Twilight, which is really bizarre because of my love for teenage vampires. For some reason it just never appealed to me!

    • Steph says:

      I am so excited by the Vampire Diaries love! For so long I thought I was so alone, and slowly, others are “coming out”… very happy about this.

      If I could drink, I’d be right there with you πŸ˜‰

  7. Jill says:

    Hello Steph….you don’t know me,but I must say I feel like I know you…and I’m going to say something that might not be politically correct here. But, I must say it….How you have managed your struggle with cancer has given me the strength to deal with my “stuff”….many times I have said to myself – “if she can get through her day, I can get through mine”….My eldest son was killed in the car accident Oct. 7, 2013 – the worst day of my life….
    And my newest favourite movie is “Still Mine”…..

    • Steph says:

      Thanks for writing Jill. I am so sorry to hear of your terrible loss. That must be so difficult for you. Giving you a virtual hug across the internet!

      I haven’t seen Still Mine but heard it’s great… looks very sweet.

  8. Stephanie Vordick says:

    Hi. I am a friend of your cousin Lauren in Maryland and have read your blog since its pretty close to the beginning. You are a great writer and I am always inspired by how you choose to deal so honestly with your cancer. My mom has cancer and she doesn’t talk much about it, so your writing helps me connect with her, even though your circumstances are different. Know what I mean? My favorite “comfort” movie is Parent Trap (original).

  9. MVJF says:

    Ah! This post spoke to me! I have approx. 300 Disney movies – all on VHS, obviously – that I still watch all the time. (This number may be an over-exaggeration, but only a slight one; I have an affinity for hyperbole.) I watched that Lion King clip with the dorkiest smile on my face and now I really want to watch the whole thing. And Pocahontas.
    I also like trashy TV: got somewhat bored with VD (Vampire Diaries, not Venereal Disease…) and stopped watching, but I just rewatched all 6 seasons of Gossip Girl and loved every second of it.

    Nice to see this side of you. A person behind the cancer. πŸ™‚

  10. KD says:

    Stephanie,

    Your blog is incredible! Your attitude in life and the way you write can be a lesson to us all.

    I went to Yorkhill and Thornhill with you!
    I don’t think you know me as I am your brother’ age, he would know me for sure as we had classes together at both schools and come to think of it we may have even had the same first grade teacher!
    I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoy reading your blog (obviously not the parts about any of your pain or suffering)but I wanted to tell you I think you write beautifully.
    When you do write your book you can be sure it will be on my iBooks (cause who actually has a physical book in hand these days! πŸ˜‰ ).
    Sending you so much positive energy and I hope you continue to feel great from here on out!

  11. juliebjulieb says:

    Hi., I admit it, I’m a lurker. Stumbled across your blog and wish I’d found it earlier. My mom just went through breast cancer last year so I could have done with reading the point of view of someone going through it so I could have supported her better. We also live in Toronto so I love that perspective. A friend lent me the first season of Scandal in the fall and not knowing anything about it I thought I would sit down and what one episode – I ended up watching hours and hours of it and now I’m hooked. Thanks for sharing! Julie

  12. listys says:

    ‘Planes, Trains & Automobiles’ as the movie that always makes me laugh, out loud, no matter how many times I’ve seen it.
    Remiss if I didn’t include ‘Best In Show’, great ensemble cast and dogs (love on four legs).
    My list is very long…but the two I’ve mentioned are worth a nod!

    ~Pat

    • Steph says:

      I started watching “Plane, Trains” when I was sick but must have fallen asleep… forgot to finish it so thanks for reminding me. I don’t think I had ever seen it! And I love Best In Show too.

  13. Jessica says:

    Hi Steph! It’s me Jess, friend of Shirley’s! We met at an Alice in Wonderland theme baby shower for baby Z!! I’m right there with you with movies and TV and I get so into it that now my stomach is in knots after tonight’s Vampire Diaries. I met a guy today who said “oh I don’t have TV, I can’t be bothered.”
    Uhm ok so what else is there to do!!! Ghostbusters cracks me up every single time! The Goonies probably one of my all time faves also!! πŸ™‚

    • Steph says:

      AH, I am always SO excited when I meet another adult who watches Vampire Diaries… it seems more and more people are getting hooked. Didn’t watch tonight’s but I will tomorrow. I’ve loved it since day one. Team Damon all the way!

  14. donzwebb says:

    Hi Steph! Awesome post.:) We’ve got soo much in common. I too watch way too much TV and try and go to the movies as often as I can. I’ve watched Home Alone and A League of their Own a million times and I won’t ever get sick of them. Re: TV shows, I started watching True Detective this week and I’m all caught up lol. I definitely recommend it! Hmmmm last movie I saw was Jack Ryan:Shadow Recruit and it was actually quite decent. Next up, Labor Day! Have you seen it yet? xoxo Donna

    • Steph says:

      I have SO many movies I need to see right now. I didn’t read great things about Labor Day so might save that one for a rainy day. Next on my list are Dallas Buyers Club, Nebraska, and Inside Llewyn Davis. I have the first True Detective eps on my computer, but I want to watch it with my husband and he has been busy so I have been (not) patiently waiting for him!

  15. Karin Foster says:

    Hi Steph….glad to hear things are looking up. I find it wonderful that you can be so open about your cancer. We have Scandal, Downton & Homeland in common and food (sort of)….I love collecting recipes & trying them out to see if they’re as good as they seem. Unfortunately I have a weakness for desserts.
    hugs Karin

    • Steph says:

      I have a major weakness for desserts as well. They are my favourite. I like collecting recipes too, but more to look at the yummy looking photos than for actually making the food πŸ™‚

  16. Lorraine Arias O'Brien says:

    Hi Steph, you don’t know me, but I know you through your blog. My favorite movies are Casablanca, Slaughter House 5, We All Loved Each Other So Much (Italian), the Lion King, the Little Mermaid, and loved the Royal Tenenbaums! Glad to hear that your appetite is hearty! Great to hear that you are doing so well!
    Lorraine

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