Bard by BlueInkAlchemist, on Flickr

I can’t even begin to fully articulate what the last few weeks have been like for me.

Hospital. Near-eviction. Rapid, rabid mood swings. Disastrous car trouble. More car trouble. Moving. PAX. Yelling. Broken phones. Tears.

And yet…

Here I am. Whole. Unbowed. Determined. Unbent. Successful. Unbroken.

If I can survive this, I can probably survive just about anything. And despite the best efforts of my badbrain (which can be broken down into “head weasels” as my friend Faust puts it), I survived.

I’m sitting in the new apartment with things boxed up and some furniture needing assembly and distribution to rooms, but for the most part, it’s starting to feel comfortably like home. I can walk down to the nearby transit center, getting some very welcome daily cardio, and catch a bus downtown. I work there, now, at a lovely Starbucks, slinging coffee and smiling at folks who just want to get through their meetings or finish filing TPS reports. I remember that life, and I don’t envy them a bit. Getting back into food service has been like falling off of a bike: easy, and while it might have scraped me up a bit, gravity is a good force for teaching you how to pace yourself.

After my shift, I can walk up the hill to the Seattle Central Library, and write in a secluded, quiet space. I have some new ideas for the novel, and while I cringe at the thought of going back to the beginning to adjust something, I know it’ll benefit all future revisions and edits, as well as the final product. So that’s another to-do list item to check off come Tuesday.

For now, though, I’m resting and recouperating.

PAX was fantastic, in and of itself. I’ve often said that working a show brings out the best version of myself. Being around people I love and haven’t seen in months can kick me into a bit of a manic state, and I use that energy for positive, productive ends. I ride the demon; I do not let it ride me. It’s a mindset I need to continue to maintain outside of shows, and I’m hopeful that working a well-defined job with a solid schedule can help me do that. At PAX, I’m now in a managerial position, and this last show saw me helping with a new department. From all accounts, it went quite well. I’ve now been tapped for similar work with GeekGirlCon, and I predict making it to most if not all of the PAX shows in 2016. It’s a huge part of my life and a major inspiration.

As for everything else, the darkest of my dark thoughts feel far more irrational and distant than even a week before this writing. I’ve gotten my medication adjusted, and I’m seeing therapists again on a regular basis. I’m doing my utmost to keep lines of communication open and maintain honesty, without being cruel or unfeeling. Thinking before I speak, that sort of thing. It feels like this has been sort of a ‘soft reset’, on many levels. And I plan on making the most of it.

It feels like I’ve been away. Almost as if I’ve been separated from myself. I haven’t lost sight of my goals, but after everything I’ve been through in the past few weeks, those goals no longer seem so distant, so unobtainable. I can’t pretend that I don’t have hard work ahead of me. But at the same time, it’s work for which I’m suited. Telling stories. Seeing people as people. Listening. Feeling. Thinking on a situation and giving advice that not only placates, but guides and reinforces.

I am a good writer. A good friend. A good worker. A good person.

Nobody can take those things away from me.

Not even me.