Stopping to Smell the Roses
2016 has been a really different kind of year for me. I started off the year unemployed by choice. I realized that I was hopping from job to job looking for a perfect situation while being too bogged down in the day-to-day bullshit of the petty tyranny of management. More often than not, my days were centering around building my defenses to cope with emotional terrorists who would routinely try to break me. When my last manager questioned my contributions, my self-worth, and my intelligence by talking to me like I was a disorganized 7-year old, I decided that I would leave my job and find some peace.
That was when I started writing again.
I’d planned to do it. I’d already purchased my domain and set up my site – which needs work. I made a blog space and started writing. I set a schedule that seemed doable – 2 posts a week, and then worked on hitting that. I also decided that I wanted to get my writing in front of people and I started investigating websites to see who was looking for writers in topic areas I felt comfortable.
After that, all I needed to do was produce content. So I did. Sometimes my essays were accepted, sometimes they weren’t. It didn’t matter because I planned to write and post, be it on a site with a large following or my page with its 5 hits a day.
I’d also decided to change up my convention line-up. Where before I only attended the big 3 Atlanta conventions (MomoCon, DragonCon, and AWA), I decided this year I would work on creating panel content. That has been a truly rewarding experience. I *LOVE* creating content. I love figuring out something to talk about and then putting the pieces together and it is something I hope I get to keep doing. The one downside is that it is time consuming, anxiety inducing, and dramatically changes how I attend a convention because I need more downtime to recover. That said, I love it and managed to be on 5 panels at 3 conventions this year. I call that a win.
I also decided to attend more conventions this year and had the unexpected opportunity to attend San Diego Comic Con for the first time, ever. The result is that by the end of July, I’d already attended 5 conventions, 3 cosplay photo shoots, and still have a couple more upcoming conventions. This is in addition to returning to work and continuing my writing, which has been picking up traction.
Needless to say, this has been a busy year.
My cosplay is suffering some. I’m not particularly happy about that, but I can’t do everything. I keep trying, though. Every couple of months I write a post about taking a break because I need to do it. Self-care is important, but it’s one of the first things we sacrifice when we start new projects or get ambitious about something. I have reached a point where self-care is required. When I skip basic needs like food and sleep, I get sick. Your body will let you know what’s up and make your ass sit down. I’m slowly starting to listen. Mainly because I have to.
I’m complaining but it’s the best kind of complaining. I am extremely happy with the strides I’ve made this year. I’m totally happy with the changes I’ve made. I am feeling more in touch with myself and I’m doing things I am proud of…and having fun along the way. Is it a challenge? Yup. Are more changes in the pipeline? Yup. Am I excited and worried about that? Yup. Am I going to keep doing it? Yup.
October 18, 2016 will be the 1-year anniversary of the creation of this site, Breaking Normal. Like me, it is a work in progress. Work that I can honestly say I’m glad I am doing.