Guess Who’s Back?

This is weird. I haven’t blogged in a solid year and a half. I haven’t really done any writing in about a year. There’s so much to share and yet I wonder if I should. My therapist tasked me with writing something before our next session. Here goes nothing…

When I left off here, I had taken a voluntary demotion at work and I was in a good space. I was still writing for Carpe Nocturne and nothing too crazy was going on. Well, 2017 ended up being crazier than I ever imagined it could be. In April of 2017, my dad was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. Talk about scary, bad news. The cancer was Stage 2 and hadn’t spread, so the doctors were confident that they could cure it and that my dad would make a full recovery. They were right. My dad is happy and healthy today thanks to the wonderful medical staff at U of M. The road to recovery was rocky, filled with radiation, chemotherapy, surgery and fear. The doctors actually took out my dad’s esophagus and built him a new one out of the top of his stomach. So wild to think about. He lost a lot of weight and couldn’t eat normal food for a while, since the surgery is similar to gastric bypass. He had to spend so much time in the hospital. But, his cancer was cured and my whole family feels very lucky.

During the summer of 2017, I took a risk and started performing at some open mic nights. It was scary, but super fun. I put on my stage outfits and sang some of my favorite covers. People were super supportive and nice and I felt very welcome. I realized I could be myself on stage and express myself in a new way.

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Then came Halloween, my mom’s birthday. She didn’t look good and wasn’t acting right when we were passing out candy to the trick or treaters, but she pushed through. I found out the next morning that she was in the hospital with major heart issues. She had a 99% blockage in the main artery to her heart plus blockages in her other arteries and could have died. She had called an ambulance after I left that night because she just didn’t feel right. Thank God she did. She had to have surgery to clear the blockage and she quit smoking that night. Her recovery has also been difficult, but she went to cardiac rehab, is on new medications and she’s back to work. Again, I’m just so happy she’s alive. I don’t know what I would do without her. She had to have foot surgery this past May and that has also been a slow recovery because Achilles tendons are a bitch. I’m so sick of hospitals and I hope I don’t have to go to another one anytime soon.

All of this stress took a toll on me. I thought I was having heart problems, so I got checked out at the doctor and all was fine. It was anxiety. I realized I needed to talk to someone. I hadn’t been in therapy since I was 15, so I was super nervous but it’s been super helpful and I enjoy it. I also started taking anti-anxiety and blood pressure meds. I never wanted to be on psychotropic meds, but I just couldn’t manage my anxiety anymore and it was seriously affecting my job and personal life. At the beginning of 2018, I got a new job and my first real boyfriend. Lots of change. I’m now a Data Support Specialist at the same agency, so I work with data, build dashboards, manage databases and all that geeky stuff. I’ve learned so much and my job even paid for me to take a community college class! Super awesome. However, the job is stressful and I have to work harder than I ever have before, including taking work home and meeting strict deadlines. The pros definitely outweigh the cons, though. Unfortunately, me and my boyfriend broke up in May. It devastated me. I still love him, but he wasn’t healthy for me. He didn’t make time for me, he wasn’t very nice to me and he even said he didn’t love me. There were good times, too, but the bad was really bad. My heart was broken because I loved him more than anything and I tried everything to make it work. I haven’t seen him since the breakup and it’s been really hard. But, I deserve better.

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THOT. I took a vacation.

I’ve been doing a little online dating and no offense, but I haven’t met a normal person yet. By normal I mean someone who doesn’t lie, just want sex or ghost me. My favorite was the guy I discovered was a former Catfish that appeared on the TV show. Nice. Needless to say, I’ve taken an indefinite break from online dating. I stopped writing for Carpe Nocturne around the summer of last year. It was a big time commitment and I didn’t feel the appreciation or respect from the magazine anymore. I also saw the quality go down. It appears the magazine has shut down now, which is super sad. I had a lot of fun writing for CN and made new friends and connections. I mean, I got to interview Kerli and Lindsey Stirling! I’ve been thinking of writing for another publication, but I just don’t have a lot of time or motivation.

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Concert lewk. 

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I saw Amelia Arsenic from Angelspit perform live. Epic!

Currently, I’m trying to get back to making music and writing more. This is my first step in that direction. It feels good to get everything off my chest. Life is hard and I definitely don’t have my shit together. I’m just doing the best I can and trying my best to be happy. I hope to write a lot more often here. I hope to see my blog friends return as well. 😉 Now I need to sleep. I’m getting old. I can’t stay up late like I used to. lol

13 thoughts on “Guess Who’s Back?

  1. I know my comment is late, but still. I’m very touched finding a web-log like this after all my own struggle. I can’t recall seeing someone on WP of this much depth, personal expression and insight. Someone who knows how they feel, what they like, what they dislike, what hurts, what brings solace or joy. It’s very refreshing and also sad because I know things have changed a lot as I see less people commenting. This is rather the downside to my view of the world now: less talk and more empty exchanges between people.

    The awareness of stress touches me deeply, too. That tends to be something I find majorly overlooked with a trend in this rating and criticizing everyone that has emerged and imploded. One thing I really smile at is similar music in common! Who is there now to discuss Emilie Autumn or The Birthday Massacre with? Well, no one for me anyway. That being said, I’m a talker and listener if you are looking for someone like that. Glad that I took a link-hopping trip last night and found this. ❤

    • You are so sweet! Your kind words mean so much to me. I’m so glad that I was able to touch you. I won’t lie, I pretty much left WP because I felt the sense of community disintegrating and all the friends I made over the years disappeared. It’s all about micro-blogging and Instagram these days, which I just don’t connect with. I love long form blogging and the freedom it gives me. I’m sorry to hear that you’ve gone through struggles. But you’re very strong because you’re still here! Sometimes I would feel bad for blogging about sad stuff and I wanted my life to be all rainbows and sunshine. But I knew I would be lying if I hid the dark parts of myself. You gotta embrace both the light and the dark in the world, that’s for sure. I miss sharing my unusual taste in music and fashion with people. I’ll talk about EA and TBM with you any time. I’ve seen them both live…life changing! You might just be inspiring me to try this blogging thing again friend. 😉 I’m Jonathan by the way.

  2. Thank you. And I’m glad my words mean something to someone. Too many folks just went into a decline, but it’s not like they weren’t encouraged to do that. So it spread to WP, but it’s truly all-over. All that emphasis on short-term and mini-attention-spans, which yeah, not my thing either.

    And yep, I’m still here. Where else was there to go? Hee hee hee. Although I still thank pen friends heartily for getting me to a head-space I could breathe in again. And agreed, life is hardly all rainbows and sunshine. I was always willing to meet people half-way but too many took advantage of that. It just seemed that the only happiness anyone wanted was the empty-headed kind. Or they just wanted to hate because… it’s this odd way of getting approval from others…? Which just sounds way off. Aye, I saw the birthday cake. Neat to know another Jonathan. I’m Daryl, a happily married chik. (I wouldn’t point it out if I hadn’t had that misunderstood so often.)

    WP is “okay”. I was able to alter specifications to my liking and what’s nice is the platform didn’t constantly change or update so the specifications stayed in place! I tried other things but this remained consistent. One just needs to not get caught up in the WP version of chain-letters, distractions, bots and popularity contests.

  3. Well, shoot. I tried the E.A. link thinking it was a blogpost and it went to her website, oops. Then I searched for The Birthday Massacre and there wasn’t much so I’m just coming back here to say what I was thinking about.

    What I remember of The Birthday Massacre when they were relatively new was that they were from London, Ontario (Canada). Maybe I missed something but after a while it stopped being London and became Toronto. Admittedly I know that London Ontario has a history of subtle problems with the city’s name. Mail would frequently get lost and I’m grateful now I have a pen friend from there who’s mail doesn’t get lost. But I’ve been wondering this for a long time: Were they ever from London, Ontario? Is there any remaining record of that?

    I could go on for some time about this band with a fellow fan. I have never really known others who were fans of the band. When they were new they were “my new favourite” band and I haven’t really had a new(er) one since them. ❤

  4. I’m curious: Why did you feel the need to go to a third party source (tumblr) to find out who I was? I mean, you have the source, myself, right in front of you. I have made myself exceptionally easy to contact and talk to. Is there some kind of requirement for a barrier?

    • Seems like you’re jumping to conclusions. But since you want to confront me, I’ll confront you. Your posts and comments are ranty and annoying so I really have no desire to get to know you. But hey, keep posting about me. 😂 You’re the one who contacted me on a platform I rarely even use anymore. Maybe you would be more successful if you adapted to social media instead of fighting it so hard. Food for thought. 😉

      • Wow! Well, that didn’t answer my question, but it was insightful. As far as I was aware social media was a choice. Then somewhere in this decade it suddenly was no longer a choice. The bigger companies purposely made it addictive, which is one of the reasons a lot of us are far more on edge than we used to be. I was more interested in discussing musical groups, then heard nothing about that. However, it fascinates me that this less trivial question did get answered. Food for thought, indeed. 🙂

      • I don’t remember looking you up on Tumblr. I did check out your podcast and maybe look you up on Facebook. I do a little Internet stalking on people that intrigue me. Guilty. Sometimes I get overwhelmed with long comments and don’t have the energy to respond. That’s not nice of me. I also kind of gave up on forming new friendships through this site because so many people have left. I kind of figure what’s the point?

    • PHEW! Accepted and thank you! I’m sorry you felt attacked. I have had to analyze on a lot of stats and hints and sweeping generalizations through these years. I’ve been overwhelmed, too, with a lot of people avoiding topics with me when they love or adore the work. Not getting the solutions or discussions is what makes me ranty and I prefer not being that way. (It’s been scary when I’d get a lot of approval for ranting, I must say. I’d rather have fun.)

      I had a feeling you checked out the show. I’m sorry the show itself didn’t go better, too. But I know when there are things happening in the world that we’re tricked not to focus on, or forget, it’s important to have a recorded dialogue/monologue somewhere of the situation as it unfolds. So an audio copy of someone (me) slowly losing their marbles is the sad result. (That’s why I have the other web-log more focused on the radio drama I set out to do and promote that more. The only people using that for the Q & A are pen pals, really.)

      But yes, I am often out looking for those of like-minds. I go back to the dial-up internet era when all this was far slower. Strange how we make time/labour saving machines and then feel so rushed when they work well. Anyway, one of the reasons I know what I know now is from The Center For Humane Technology. I highly recommend it.

      WP still works a little bit, mostly I’ve commented to an author getting random assumptions thrown at her about her books. I’m still up for chatting music and bands, though. And take your time, too. That’s the key. We’re all feeling way too rushed now, that’s for sure.

      • You’re very smart and I appreciate your perspective. I’ve rejected social media for a long time. I got a public Facebook like 10 years ago and all these people who bullied me in school suddenly wanted to be my friends. It felt so fake and gross I couldn’t continue with it. So now I just have one to follow bands and such. I couldn’t be on a platform where I couldn’t express myself without getting shit for it. I’d much rather have my friends compliment my selfie than random strangers with ulterior motives. No one wants to hear about feelings or struggles or real shit on social media and it’s so frustrating. I’m not happy all the time and I want to share that with people and support others in the same boat. It’s nice to have someone to talk to about all of this. Thanks for that 😀

      • I am so grateful to hear that! It’s extremely difficult to find anyone who will just express themselves like that. You hit the nail on the head, because ten years ago Facebook was great. We were re-uniting with people, using the events option and seeing old pals for visits in physical space. Then things shifted but they shifted so slowly we couldn’t tell what was wrong. People would notice, “Yes there’s something wrong, and my pals are going koo-koo,” but we’d keep going back. So there was resistance but it would always be short-lived. I’ve noticed that since 2015 in particular.

        Oh, and yes. I remember people who were mean to me from years before wanted to connect on FB! I was flabbergasted. You wanted to say, “Hmm! As far as I knew we were anything *but* friends!” Although I did make that gesture in the MySpace days to someone who wanted to reconnect who’d been mean to me that didn’t answer my letter when I tried to discuss that with her. So with MySpace I got a message and gently pointed out she’d never answered my letter… and… that ended there. Never heard from her again.

        You’re welcome! I’m happy with a small group. I’ve been through a lot of suburban rebellion if nothing else, a ton of getting picked on for being different. (Blue hair in 1989 in public: The reaction wasn’t pretty!) So seeing the alteration from the big business social media via counter-cultural types has really been scary. I was so relieved you had reacted better over the weekend: I flipped on “Hide and Seek” by TBM. Not the best album, but there’s often one song I especially gravitate to.

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