Fall is hard. No matter how much I love Halloween (ALL THE LOVE) or cooler weather or changing leaves or god forbid I don't include fucking pumpkin spice or someone will stroke out--and I love all these things--I get down. I feel old. I feel ready for death and I have felt that way ever since I was twelve. I told my dad I didn't like autumn because it made me feel like I was supposed to die and he gave me a hilariously disturbed look. Seasonal affective disorder is real, and it grabs me by the metaphorical scrotum this time of year.
One of the things that's been so important for me in therapy is really sitting down frequently and having that heart to heart "but you're here now and here is mostly all right" talk. It's something I have to do more often when, like now, I'm having nightmares or get triggered by some asinine thing I completely and utterly forget the present, every single bit of it. When the present is crappy, therefore, I have an even harder time pulling myself up. And the present has been pretty damn crappy! Flemith's surgery started a landslide of bad events that would normally cause me to just roll over and give up. I won't go into them here, but just trust me....bad.
I kept scheduling activities in the hopes that things would change and I would feel some of that "but you're here now." Despite all the inner turmoil, personal illness, exhaustion, and feeling like I'm pushing a stone pointlessly up a hill, some amazingly sweet touches have taken place this month.
-A friend came and made breakfast for me, Derik, and Nicky: Elk sausage, egg, and hashbrowns!
-I went to Oktoberfest and had a BLAST! I even danced.
-Flemith has continued to grow and thrive and be the sweetest cat on earth
-I taught EMT class for my coworkers (more on that below)
-a coworker who knows how obsessed with Mad Max I am, gave me his paracord bracelet
-I went to the Utah State Fair and rode the rides and ate gross food and took a moonlit car drive
-I was in the Utah Urban Arts Festival pin up contest!
This is arguably the most important to me and I wanted to talk a bit more about it. So a few weeks ago the EMT training schedule went up and I got excited because duh I'm a loser. Leonard, our trainer, picked up on my enthusiasm and asked if I would be interested in teaching a portion. I jumped on that like a dog all over a steak. Leonard knew that I had my CPR for Healthcare Providers instructor's certification and that I had taught in the past. What he didn't know is that I am rabid when it comes to the combination of teaching and EMS--they are my two passions in my professional life.
I think I must contain my enthusiasm as well as a toddler because Toby, my boss, stopped to talk to me about it before the class and he asked if I'd be interested in getting certified to teach. In other words, a bona-fide Utah State EMS Trainer. YESPLEASE. Again, I didn't hold back my intent. I can't be subtle about this. Despite being dog tired I completed my portion of the training and it went really well. I loved it. I feel so valued and so impassioned when people believe in me this much. Not only is this the best job I've ever had, but Toby is the best boss I've ever had, and I can't lie, seeing him give me a thumbs up after I finished my class was basically the best thing in the world.
So I entered my very first actual real onstage arguably legit pinup contest! I've done a few hither and thither that weren't...well, onstage, but this one was! I had to enter and become a finalist (which I already had for another show, but it got rained out) and then had to do my walk and answer questions and pose and the whole nine yards. I have to say, it was everything I hoped! I met some fantastic girls and got to pamper myself and look all perdy. Best of all a few people showed up to cheer me on and a few who couldn't, texted me and called me to wish me luck. I didn't win, but I honestly don't even mind. The girls who did win deserved to, everybody was dressed to the nines and looked freaking amazing. I even got to nerd out for a minute and give my 30 second spiel about how important the atomic age is and how I got into pinup thanks to the country's history with nuclear energy and its appeal to me....it was an easier lecture than Fallout....
So here we are with a few weeks left in September. I have an impromptu camping trip coming up in a few days that I'm really excited about, because after the pomp and circumstance of a pageant, I really need to be makeup free and grungy, eating hot dogs from a stick over the fire. I'm also going to take this opportunity to tell as many skinwalker stories as I can.
I also booked my ticket to go home in October, and that's in the back of my mind for now. I have more to look forward to, it seems, but these small and simple gestures of kindness from people in my life have so far gotten me through a mostly pain-free September.