Finished Business

The world’s got pretty weird over the last year and a half or so, hasn’t it?

I wanted to write something before now, but I honestly had no clue where to ever start, and the longer I waited, the more I felt like I had nothing to say. Much like the end of 45’s presidency, every week felt like something new… a new announcement from the CDC, new mask mandates (or lack thereof, goddammit Florida), new virus strains. Being perfectly honest, trying to keep up with reality as it is… it’s exhausting.

And that’s not even taking into account all the regular struggles of humanity since this pandemic began.

But even without a global pandemic that brought the world to its knees,, all the normal and abnormal of 2020 and 2021, this has been some of the most wonderful, painful, satisfying times of my life. And it’s time I shared a little bit.

Hello, internet. It’s been too long since we caught up.

Absolutely real image of me and my wife in our real basement. Really.

The biggest news is, I got married back in early 2020, literally a few weeks before quarantines started here in the US.

Everything went about as perfect as it could, too: a small ceremony with people I love and trust, surrounded by friends and family, I married the nerdy girl of my dreams. My oldest friend was the one to marry us, my Best Man is a man I consider my brother, and I cried the most satisfying cry of my life seeing my wife walk down the aisle in a beautiful dress. Just for one day in my life, depression and anxiety couldn’t ruin anything. That day was perfect. 

And one thing I’ll admit helped my mood was, I could show off the game I’d like made just for my wedding party: a Game Boy game starring them, featuring a cameo by both my cat Sadie ( my wife had wanted to include her in the ceremony somehow, so I made the game initially to include her) and my late grandmother who’d passed away a year and a half prior. More tears when I shared it… dang I cried a lot that weekend. Totally worth it.

That was February. Then, the world screeched to a halt, no one knowing when things would clear up.  By the time we figured out this would truly be a long-term problem, in the summer of 2020, I took another step for my own long-term happiness: I enrolled back at my first college. I only needed a few classes to finish, much closer than I thought, so I threw some money at them and got to taking those classes. Four total, one in Fall, two in Spring, one in summer. And at the end of the Summer 2021 semester it was official… I was no longer a multiple-time college dropout. I was a two-AA-degree-wielding college grad. Took 18 years, but better late than never for my English degree. (And English for transfer, just in case I decide I’m not done yet.)

Those were personal triumphs; there was one hurdle to get over in the process. Back in April 2021, I did something that needed to be done: I called and spoke to my father on the phone. I didn’t want to, but it needed to happen to completely end contact. Trauma is hard to deal with, especially when someone causing that trauma doesn’t realize the impact its having (or worse: they may be aware, but just don’t care enough to stop), and toxic behavior leaves lingering emotional scars. So, I had to truly sever that painful connection, as directly and clearly as possible. I’m sure I’ll be dealing with that for years to come, including what may happen as a result of this blog post. As a part of that healing process, just for myself, I’m pasting this info anyway. There’s a lot still to unpack and move past, but hopefully this can be part of stepping forward.

And there are still more personal triumphs and painful moments that have happened since the start of 2020, from fresh connections with long-lost friends and proud anniversaries to being vaccinated back in May. And there’s plenty I still want to do, like I haven’t done stand-up at an open mic since February of 2020 and I haven’t completed a new story in a little while. But just to get myself back in the blogging mood, I wanted to share some of my moments since the world was flipped on its head.

What have been your proudest moments since the world changed? Please feel free to leave a comment, I’d love to help celebrate with you.

Stand Tall, be safe, and get vaccinated, friends. The sooner and the more we do our part. The sooner we can get back to the world as it was in 2019. Never thought I’d pine for that, but that’s where we are now!