577 days later…

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Hello, internet.

It’s been 577 days since my last blog post.  Here’s what has happened since then…

  • I got pretty involved with the indie comics scene, connected with some awesome creators, and had a few short one-shots I wrote get published in some small press anthologies.  I really love writing comic scripts and collaborating with artists, colorists, and letterers.  Just a really fun medium to work in.
  • I also started a few other creative projects which, sadly, didn’t come to fruition for one reason or another.  These projects included co-writing a few long-form comic series, joining the “writer’s room” for an audio drama podcast, and landing some small voice acting gigs.  I still have hopes that a few of these will work out, but 2016 seemed to be a rough year for almost everyone.
  • My job situation got to be pretty stressful, resulting in 12+ hour workdays.  That, plus a growing sense of loneliness after living on my own in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere, pushed me to start looking for a new job.
  • In June 2016, I came to terms with the fact that I was queer and sank into a months-long depression as I agonized over how my family would respond.
  • I spent most of my free time on a LGBT+ internet forums finding support, making friends, and exploring what it meant for me to be queer yet Christian.
  • I came out as bisexual to my older sister (and brother-in-law) on August 13th, to my brother on September 5th, and to my parents on September 11th.
  • One of the aforementioned internet friendships became my first full-fledged relationship (albeit a long distance one) as I fell for a woman who lived 2,000 miles away.  She supported me through my awful work situation and as I navigated what it meant for me to be out to my family; and I supported her as she struggled with gender dysphoria and the loss of a dear friend from suicide.
  • My uncle passed away.
  • My grandma passed away.
  • My niece was born and I became a first-time aunt.
  • I visited my girlfriend on two separate week-long trips — once in March and again in May.
  • I got a new job in a different city, so I ended up buying and moving into a new house with my sister, brother-in-law, and newborn niece.
  • My girlfriend and I broke up two weeks after I had moved and three weeks before she left for a life-changing surgery out of the country.  We ended things on good terms and with the intention of remaining friends; we still had love for each other, but ultimately wanted different things in life.  But unfortunately, that didn’t spare me from the utter heartbreak at the loss of what we had.
  • I am slowly creeping out of my introvert cave, exploring what this new city has to offer, and feeling a bit more free to live as myself.

All in all, the past year and a half has been an absolute rollercoaster.  There have been amazing highs and devastating lows.  But, hey, that’s life, isn’t it?

It feels good to be back.  I hope to return to posting somewhat frequently, now that things seem to be settling down.

Here’s to the next 577 days!  They may bring joy, they may bring pain; but whatever may come, I’ll just keep moving forward…

In Which I am a Tear-Caked Mess

I had plans today.

I was going to go to the store to buy some groceries and things I need for this week.

I was going to take a walk.  Play some Ingress to replenish my inventory and get back all the keys I burned before the Anomaly.

I was going to work on some of the blog posts I have sitting in my Drafts folder.  Maybe write some short fiction for another creative project I’m working on.

But no.

Despite a stormy morning, this afternoon has been bright and sunny.  My emotional state, however, reflects the reverse.

I had a good day at work today.  Got a lot of things done, listened to some fun podcasts while I did them.  But right before I left for home, my boss asked to speak with me.  He has done this on a few previous occasions.  I’m a shy introvert and tend to keep to myself, so he often pulls me aside to ask how things are going.  He complimented my work and told me that I was continuing to do a great job.  But then he brought up his concerns about my social disposition.

Although I’m a shy person, I’m really quite friendly.  I love people.  My boss said that he knew that much to be true.  But as he went on, it was clear to me that he felt that my reserved nature was coming off as being aloof and unapproachable.

I don’t know if my other co-workers see it that way.  I’ve tossed jokes around with them and am always talking with my direct supervisor.  But the point of the matter is, my boss believes that my other co-workers see it that way.

As I listened to him appraise my social interactions (or lack thereof) with my co-workers, my emotions ran from indignant to ashamed.

This is all pointless, I thought to myself.  This is obviously just another example of the extrovert-bias in our society.  I am who I am and I can’t change that.  I’m doing all that I can to be nice to others; I can’t flip a switch and become outgoing and thoroughly affable.

But as I began to view myself through his eyes, I could see how my actions could be misconstrued.

Maybe I am anti-social.  I could definitely work on being more open.  This is the same problem I’ve had all my life.  I need to change if I want to be a successful member of this company, and of society as a whole.

I knew it was probably unprofessional to cry in front of my boss.  But sometimes these things can’t be helped.

He apologized and said he didn’t mean to make me cry.  I apologized and said it wasn’t him; it was my own self-criticism and social anxiety.  He promised he just wanted to help me.  I promised I would work on being more open.

Though I snuffled through the last few minutes of our conversation, my face caked with tears, we ended on good terms and gave each other a hug before parting ways.

I let it all out on the drive home.  As someone who usually keeps her emotions bottled up inside, it felt good to cry it all out.  I let out a few wailing sobs to the open farmland as I drove by.  The release felt good as I channeled all my frustrations into each bawl.  I cried so hard that I could feel all the nerves in my belly, ears, and arms.  It was that tingling sensation like they had fallen asleep, but instead, they were screaming along with me.

I had plans today.

I was going to go to the store.  I was going to take a walk.  I was going to write.

But instead, I’m just going to curl up on my bed, throw on my headphones, and try to drown out the world with some music or by watching some mindless movie.

Most of the time, I’m fine with being an introvert.  I’ve come to terms with who I am and how I interact with the world.  But some days… some days I feel like I’m broken, like there’s something wrong with me, like I don’t fit in with the rest of those world.  On those days, I hate who I am.

Today’s one of those days.