Handsome brooding vampire guy has to swoop in all sensitive mouth and overhanging forehead. How 'bout leaving some scraps for the homely-looking fellows who don't turn evil when they get some?

Doyle ,'Life of the Party'

Goodbye and Good Riddance 2022: Hindsight is 20/22  

Take stock, reflect, butch, moan, vent. We are all here for it.

JZ - Dec 31, 2022 7:31:34 pm PST #17 of 105
See? I gave everybody here an opportunity to tell me what a bad person I am and nobody did, because I fuckin' rule.

I’ve gotten cards from dcp, Calli, Jesse, Java cat, Jess, Laura & Brendon, Kat G, askye, sj and more, and I’m treasuring every word and every pixel of affection even as I hate this year. I’m still grimly repeating, “There’s got to be a pony,” but it gets exhausting.

sj - Dec 31, 2022 8:07:29 pm PST #18 of 105
"There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea."

I’m very much looking forward to this year being over, and I’m very much hoping for a kinder year for myself and those I love.

Pix - Dec 31, 2022 8:44:43 pm PST #19 of 105
We're all getting played with, babe. -Weird Barbie

I haven't posted anything in this thread for a couple of years because I've had no energy for it, but I'm ending this year feeling better than when it began. Obviously, there's much to worry about, including my love of all of you and worries about your health and my knee and money and the state of the world, but I don't want to dwell on that, and since I know we also need to hear when there's a glimmer of light, I'll share a little of mine.

The big thing for me is my dad. This time last year, he was sinking deeper and deeper into dementia, and I was trying to figure out how I was going to keep him safe when he was hellbent against moving into any kind of assisted living. Then, like a miracle, his neurologist prescribed two medications — first one, and then the second a couple of months later — and my father emerged from the mists. He has his sense of humor back, and he can do simple things, like manage his pills correctly and keep track time and place. He no longer calls me from Florida wondering where I am, and he remembers things like birthdays. The damage from years of micro-strokes did irreversible damage, and I will always have to take care of his finances and go out to check in on him regularly, but I'm no longer in a state of constant panic/despair worrying about him. The meds are working in a way his doctor says only happens in about 20% of patients, and I am deeply, wholly grateful.

My mom continues to be in good health, overall, and I loved having her out for Thanksgiving. Poor thing just got over having Covid twice (she rebounded less than a week after she tested negative the first time), but she's in good spirits and very happy to be testing negative again. I'll see her in a few months when we meet in Tucson to visit my aunt, uncle, and cousin. My aunt has been really sick, and I haven't seen her since 2019. I'm really looking forward to that.

Work is going well for me. I have carved out a safe niche and found my place at my school, and my journalism program is thriving. I still lose sleep over yearbook deadlines and teenage shenanigans, but I am happy there. Oh, and apparently my work teaching healthy competition and collaboration in high school is being featured in a book coming out this year? A journalist came to my school to research it last year and spent some time with my students and me, and now I'm an entire chapter in this upcoming book. I'm bemused by that whole situation, though gratified. Imposter syndrome kicking in a bit, but I'm trying to let it be what it is.

For the first year since 2019, ND's business has been healthy. We have a long road to recover from all the debt he took on to keep his employees through the dark Covid days, but the company is doing well, with new clients and a great staff. I'm so proud of him for everything he's done to fight for his employees and his business, which we honestly didn't know would still be around a couple years ago.

I've also made time for some adventure in the past year, from running away to Tulum with erin_obscure to snorkel and swim in cenotes and dive with turtles to taking quick trips with ND, including the one we are returning from now. We went back to Maui for the first time since we got married there in 2010 (guys, our 13th wedding anniversary is next week ... OMGWTFPOLARBEAR). Our friend Paul has a condo in Maui, and he gave it to us to use for three nights for just the cleaning fee, and ND was able to use Hertz points for the car. We used our Alaska companion fare for the plane tickets, so a pretty economical trip! And it was wonderful to spend a couple of days there together.

We also added a huge galomph of a puppy to the pack. Book is almost 9 months old and full of mischief, but he's a big sweetie and will be a great dog. All the other beasties are hanging in there well and providing lots of snuggles.

I continue to be so grateful for my community of friends, both IRL and online, and I wish you all good news and health in 2023. And when things are hard, as they are right now for some of you, please know you are never alone. Sending love and light to you.

dcp - Jan 01, 2023 5:33:06 am PST #20 of 105
"I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam," -- Popeye

Happy New Year!

I've made it to 2023. I admit to some surprise.

The good news is, little has changed. My cancer is well controlled, as are blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes.

The bad news is, little has changed. The medications I take to keep the cancer subdued have significant side effects. Fatigue is high, strength is low, stamina is low. Metabolism is low. Energy is low. Attention span is short. I have trouble remembering things.

Lymphedema in my feet and ankles comes and goes.
Neuropathy in my toes, feet, and fingers comes and goes.
Rage comes and goes.
Tears come and go.
Depression comes and goes.

The kilograms come and don't go.

I might make it to 2024. Or I might not. I dunno.

Make the most of each and every day.

JZ - Jan 01, 2023 8:04:01 am PST #21 of 105
See? I gave everybody here an opportunity to tell me what a bad person I am and nobody did, because I fuckin' rule.

{{{dcp}}} (fancy brackets, for the new year)

Pix - Jan 01, 2023 9:25:37 am PST #22 of 105
We're all getting played with, babe. -Weird Barbie

Hugs, dcp. Thinking about you.

javachik - Jan 01, 2023 10:05:31 am PST #23 of 105
Our wings are not tired.

dcp, that’s tremendous that you’ve kept the various issues under control. We are very glad you’re still here to beckon forth 2023! I sure hope the side effects decrease and you’re able to pull out many, many moments of joy in 2023.

Pix, I’m so glad to hear the meds your father is on are working their magic!! What a huge quality of life difference it is for both of you!

Pix - Jan 01, 2023 4:25:51 pm PST #24 of 105
We're all getting played with, babe. -Weird Barbie

Pix, I’m so glad to hear the meds your father is on are working their magic!! What a huge quality of life difference it is for both of you!

Thanks so much, and thank you also for always being willing to listen when I needed to vent over the last two years about it.


Shir - Jan 07, 2023 2:13:36 am PST #25 of 105
"And that's why God Almighty gave us fire insurance and the public defender".

Oof, my 'istas. Just a bunch of great, big hugs to all of you. Having a difficult year on top of pandemic years is quite an icing on a cake that nobody ordered. I'm sorry, and I love y'all.

I'll start with an apology. I only got to sent most of the cards (4/5) on Thursday, and it takes them 2-3 weeks to arrive. New job is good and a great improvement in most parts, but it also takes a lot of my time so finding the time to go to the post office was a challenge. But the real apology, I'm afraid, is for the stamps. sighs You see, darlings - for some reason, every time I try to mail something to the U.S., the post people give me these stamps: [link] I usually manage to catch that in time and ask them for less depressing stamps, but I missed it this time, and the lady at the post played a very hard level of the game of "I already handed to you these stamps, I'm not taking them back to replace them. No, there are other stamps and I will not get up from my chair to check". So, Happy New Year and happy camps' liberation day, I guess? I'm... sorry for the stamps.

The last card will be sent to its recipient in two days with the items that I got from the Old City yesterday (you know who you are! <3).

Cindy wrote in Natter: "I keep thinking about meeting so many of you in person. I keep thinking about how real — how Velveteen Rabbit — we are to one another, even people like me, who only post here and then. Anyhow, I'm glad you're real.", and this echos my feelings perfectly and beautifully. Especially upon reflecting that most of the communities I've had around me ran their courses/I left because various reasons in the past few years (I kind of wrote about it here: [link] pass: hideme). You are still here, and I appreciate this very, very, very much. You know how I have a job that actually pays money now? Some of the money I'm saving goes to "visit Buffistas fund". Meeting Jessica and Nilly was wonderful and one of the best things that happened in 2022.

In an update of my own, 2022 was a year of adjusting. I'm still adjusting, so it looks like the theme for 2023 as well. I spent late 2018-half of 2022 in stressful and demanding surroundings, took some hits, and meh'ing/belittling wins (there were wins. I just nodded, shredded them mentally and moved on to the next item on the list). I'm trying to re-teach my brain to stop processing everything as a struggle and enjoy the good stuff I earned from years of hard work or that just there along the way and shift emotional boundaries I've set years ago and no longer serve me. It'll take a while. My sister and her partner will be moving to Melbourne in a few months, and my parents are still my parents who are not connected very well to reality. Politically things here are looking grim, I'm working full time and trying to publish papers and to be more active in local progressive and mutual-aid communities, and oh, yes, I also need to remember how to date again and stop hiding from what I want. I used to joke that there is no better time to try and be soft toward others around me and to myself than living in a place that is slowly slipping into autocracy, but it is also true. There is no better time to be human to one another and to ourselves. There is only now.

So, 2023? Let's go. And much, much, much love to this place and to all of you.

dcp - Jan 07, 2023 4:15:19 am PST #26 of 105
"I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam," -- Popeye

The adjusting never ends. Ride the wave.