If you guys are into new year new me stuff (lol) I highly recommend Year Compass. You can download it for free, and even if you do what I do and use the prompts to write elsewhere, it’s a neat tool/questionnaire to help you get your thoughts and goals organized. Not sponsored at all, I just like sharing cool, helpful, FREE shit.
Anyway, I wanted to post my yearly timeline, which is a mash of all things, but mostly an event timeline. Memorable things whether written about or not that occurred, and anything I want to look back on later.
2018 as a whole? Crazy, man. I am really bad at categorizing whole years because that’s such an arbitrary time, especially when it cuts off in the middle of winter, but I would call 2018 “busy” more than any other word. Things popped up all the time. Sometimes they were planned, sometimes not. Having a baby meant learning to do things differently in just about every way. Oddly enough you won’t hear me complain about it much. It can be harder, but he’s so worth it, so fun, and we have so much help that I truly don’t have much to complain about.
Zordon’s just over a year and his personality is out in full force. He’s a serious boy, which is hilarious when he’s not intending it to be (he does a great glare in public, something I think he inherited from me.) But at home he does laugh and smile and cut up, and he has his goofy moods. He’s pushing every boundary he can find, but he’s still sensitive and sweet. I have the cutest story from a few days ago; he had been napping on the chair and he woke up, sat up and blinked sleepily (everyone can agree all kids are their cutest in that sleepy phase…) and I went and laid my head against him. He wrapped my head in his little arms and patted my neck affectionately and it just made my entire week.
With all that said, let’s rewind and start at the beginning!
January – March
Allyn got his dream job and started right at the beginning of the year. It was a great way to start off, but scary…change is always scary, even when it’s promising. I remember buying supplies for his new job for Christmas and having the private worry that things were going to blow up in our faces for taking a risk. But ‘dream job’ is not just a saying in this case–it truly is a fantastic place for him to be. He’s so much happier and he does great work. I have the bonus of not having to worry about him in an industrial field anymore. He’s safer, I’m happier, he’s happier, all good.
January was also littered with me obsessing over Penny Dreadful; the first two seasons rival Bates Motel for how amazing the storytelling and narrative and characters and soundtrack were. Allyn’s birthday is in January, and I got him tickets to the Wastelander’s Ball. This overlapped my Penny Dreadful ballroom scene obsession and I think he probably assumed I was insane when I was practicing waltzes and replaying everything a million times.
Yet another thing that started right in the year was my EMT instructor class. When I returned from maternity leave (what a joke, USA) I was miserable, considered quitting, I missed my baby and had a huge bout of postpartum depression to boot. I think Toby picked up on all this because I had only been back a few days when he sent me to get my instructor’s training. The ability to now instruct and help with training gave me something to look forward to and I think it instantly helped my morale.
March came and went and the highlight was the Wastelander’s Ball, which I talked about in depth here. Nothing else needs to be said, it was fantastic!
April was a terrible month, because right at Easter Weekend, Zordon was hospitalized and that was another terrible ordeal I wrote about. I am still traumatized from that experience and every cold or fever he gets, I worry.
Also in that month I made the quiet decision to go home and help my dad get some of his stuff straightened out. Where he lives is so remote and inaccessible that it’s pretty impossible for one person or even a few people to really do all that needs done, and it can’t happen in a week, but I do feel good about the work that I did. It was no vacation, in fact it was a huge mental stress, but I can feel good that I helped. Read more here.
I’ve learned that each trip I make home is another opportunity to really confront my past as its reality and not the monster I’ve made it to be over the years. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a monster, but seeing where I played and grew up and the home my parents built has softened me in a way I would have never imagined while being in foster care. It is totally different than being in proximity to my foster homes, which I have no desire to do and are an entirely different part of my life, but I digress.
In May I lost someone that I consider a mentor and friend, but more importantly, probably the best human being I’ve ever met. His name was Leonard, and he was unlike anyone. I know hundreds of people would say the same about him. His loss affected so many people. He was an EMT for 38 years. There’s one story about him that I haven’t told here or anywhere, so I thought I would share that.
When workers come onto the property for the first time it’s me they see (unless you know, they’re lost, or I’m not here) but one early morning Leonard was standing by my desk and we were talking. Anytime he came in early he would come and chat with me, and what I would give to have him back even if it’s for the most mundane talk (which, it never was with him.) Anyway, I’m crabby at 6am, but we were standing there talking and some new workers came in and I did my usual half-asleep ‘morning’ and passed them their paperwork. Leonard, way friendlier than me and most of the population, immediately tried to strike up a conversation with them.
He was energetic and outgoing, even though he wasn’t drinking coffee…I saw the strange reaction of the workers. They were hesitant and furtive and looked away and answered him shortly. My immediate thought was “what the hell is wrong with these assholes? Leonard shouldn’t even be nice to them, they’re acting like such bastards.” I honestly considered ranting at them then and there to how dare they act like that and soon enough they’d know Leonard is by far the best human on this earth and stop being short…and then it hit me, that they were reacting to his burns and scars.
They didn’t see him every day like I did and it probably shocked them. They probably weren’t even aware of how they were acting. But I know that I was, and Leonard knew for sure. It was an eye opener for me because here I am, this relatively normal looking human being grumpy because I like every other person on earth needs more sleep, when Leonard probably got a lot of reactions like that and it never stopped him from being open and welcoming to anyone. I’ve since made an effort to always be even slightly nicer, because if he could do it without coffee, I can do it with.
I’ll say it a million times; he was a phenomenal human and trying to fill the void he left is like trying to fill the ocean up with handfuls of sand.
We went to the Rat Fink Reunion for the first time and had a blast. It was our first big trip in a car with Zordon and he did great.
I had a strange personal situation come up that summer. I’ll write more about it in the future, but I don’t want to spoil this entry with the insanity of that, but I had to make a hard choice that ended up in hurt and spilled secrets. It was the right choice, but whoo boy was it ugly.
Amid all this and more, I had my first Midsommar Party and it was a huge success. It’s one thing I regret not taking more photos of or writing about, but I have the memories and that’s good enough for me.
When I say “and more” I mean some other stuff with my dad, but I don’t want to share any of that here. What I will say is that Allyn and I ended up with an unexpected vehicle. Score.
End of Summer and Autumn
August was when our post-apocalyptic presence really started.
Allyn and I met up with a bunch of others for a photoshoot;
and ended up in the Fan X Cosplay Contest.
We won Zombie Prom King and Queen.
We organized Vault 70’s first official meetup and made so many new friends and met extraordinary people. All of the magic in these months really disillusioned me further with pinup. I have never seen two groups with such polar opposite agendas.
Wasteland: have fun! screw off! be nice! junk! friends! help! FUN. Pinup: cliques? Judging? Self-esteem issues from everyone? fakeness? lies? popularity contests? lol. Where was the love of vintage, where was the sisterhood? I found that more in the raiders than in the pinup scene. I spoke about this on Instagram and Facebook, but just to make it a public note, I have decided that my pinup days are behind me as far as contests and groups and all that.
I will always go to car shows and sport vintage-inspired fashion, but there’s a very clear and thick line in the sand between me and these groups and events. I know I need to to steer clear of toxicity even when I’m supposed to be having fun. I’m mostly okay with it; there’s some residual sadness at what could have or should have been, but what do you do? In case I needed any cheering up, the Wastelanders have collectively been there and done that for me, so I’m good and happy about the decision.
And to end the year? What else but another bout of intense anxiety and me realizing that I need to be in therapy? LOL. After my traumatic medical interventions getting to the doctor has been the furthest thing from my mind but it’s been obvious by my lack of personal anything management, that I’m again in survival mode and not budging. Some days I can’t even function enough to return a call or pay a bill. It’s bad. I do have an appointment coming up to test for something I never thought I’d possibly have, but more on that later (if I do actually have it.) I have also decided I’m going to check on a few of my other symptoms that have just been “deal with it” for months/years. I think 2019 is primarily about taking care of myself, because in 2018 I took care of everyone and everything but and now in December boy oh boy is it showing.
So on that depressing note, here are a few fun things from the year:
- I think my favorite movie of the year was the Ritual.
- I started watching Vikings and gave up after Ragnar’s death. The story just got ridiculous. But I do get the hype; in the beginning it was a beautiful, made-with-love show.
- I became obsessed with Lana Del Rey’s song Heroin, despite not ever being obsessed with heroin.
- Ironically while buying costume accessories for Wastelander’s Ball, I found a new band (new to me) and have blasted them repetitively all year: Alt J. Favorite songs would be Adeline and Deadcrush.
- Probably logged another nine thousand hours of watching Forensic Files.
- I helped out several others with art projects and art this year; it was fulfilling. I hope to continue this trend.