Krista Turcasso

This August we attended our 11th Wapiti Music Festival. Yes, we have been to every one… even when our kids were wee. The cool mountain air and mix of music and chatter lulled them into the deepest sleeps they had experienced as infants, and we wished it could be Wapiti every day! 

“Summer has filled her veins with light and her heart is washed with noon.”
— C. Day Lewis

Today Fernie awoke to cloudy skies. It’s May, and imagining a smoky summer is rather depressing. I have already been feeling deflated after last week’s decision by the RDEK to allow the rezoning of a beautiful piece of land between Fernie and the ski hill. Environmental stress is compounding, which I think is inevitable if we are staying in tune and doing our part to advocate for the future of our children and this planet. 

Spring has long been thought of a time of rebirth. A time of hope, playfulness, fresh air and childlike wonder. 

In our family, my siblings and I have birthdays in spring as do my daughters and niece. So, it truly has always been a time of celebration. This year I have deeply ruminated on this, as spring has also become a time of tremendous loss. Our nana, who passed while we awaited our sweet Maria. Our mummu, as we celebrated Maria’s birthday. Our cousin, as we celebrated my niece. And most recently, our uncle as I awoke on my birthday. 

Equality has always been extremely important to me, but never as much as now, raising two young girls in an ever-changing world means I am quite literally faced with the challenges constantly. And just when we think we have taken many steps forward, extreme events happen, like a global pandemic, that take us many steps back. 

I was at a meeting this fall where I learned there are 14 homeless people living in the Elk Valley. While it was shocking, it was also believable. Not only has it become more visible, the housing crisis has been in the spotlight in the news, political campaigns, and in discussions around many tables across the province. But as we are all learning, there is no easy or one solution. 

Recently, my eldest daughter started calling me bossy. The first few times, I didn’t address it. But when I heard my younger daughter call the eldest bossy, I stopped what I was doing. I sat down on the floor with them (they were getting dressed to go skiing), and I asked what they think bossy means, and what does Mom do that makes them feel like I am being bossy. Not surprisingly, asking them to do things, reminding them of the plan etc. equates to ‘bossy’ in their six and eight-year old minds. 

The City of Fernie is building a playground in our neighbourhood. Let me say that again. The City of Fernie is building a playground in our neighbourhood! And we’re stoked! 

While Parkland Terrace has been established for nearly 50 years, this is the first playground it has seen and there is a buzz of excitement in the air. 

Two years ago, during my first year on the board with the Columbia Basin Trust (CBT), we received a presentation on Climate Change Impacts and Implications. It was shocking and devastating and I 
left questioning my choice to have had children. What kind of mess are they going to be left with? I felt hopeless. 

Lately, I have thought a lot about women being labelled as emotional. Like it’s a negative attribute and something that should be discouraged and avoided. This has made me realize that people seem to have created a habit of commenting on other people’s emotional states.