FRIDAY OPEN THREAD: Moving Forward Oh My God

Hello, cozy patterned sweaters! Welcome to the Friday Open Thread, where Straddlers near and far convene to discuss what’s going on in the world, our lives, and our dreams. Any weird dreams lately? I’ve sure had some.

I hope your Halloween was the best yet and that friends and strangers alike loved how clever your costume was. I am one of those people who adores this stretch of the calendar from Halloween to New Year’s, cliches be damned, so I’m thrilled we’ve finally gotten to the good stuff. It’s when I feel my emotions most deeply and take the best stock of where I stand. Maybe it’s because I’m a fall baby, maybe because significant life events always seem to happen for me right around this time. To that end…

Photo of a black Volvo station wagon parked on a city street.

RIP, ol’ girl.

It’s finally happened, everyone: I have to say goodbye to my first car. Ruth has been exemplary in her service to my family. She was my dad’s for years before I adopted her and has never let me down despite how poorly I understand her. Like her namesake, she is old as hell, but she gets the job done. After this most recent round of tune-ups and surprise expenses, though, it became clear that this really was Ruth’s Last Ride. So I am in the process of acquiring a new vehicle and getting my hand control system moved over (which is a lot more complicated than it sounds) — all while facing a number of other Unprecedented Decisions that are pushing me in a terrifyingly forward direction.

So tell me, dear readers: how do you handle daunting transitions and changes in your life? Any advice for making big moves, literally and figuratively? Do you have any important choices, intimidating purchases, and/or leaps of faith you need to make and want to share with the class?

Let’s gather ’round and build each other up! Deep breaths.

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Carrie's body is weird and she's making that work for her. She lives in DC by way of Los Angeles and has a conflicted relationship with social media, but you can follow her on Twitter and Instagram anyway.

Carrie has written 83 articles for us.


  1. happy fallin together season to y’all! this is the time of the year that big decisions, big revelations, and the hard work of making change always seemed to happen for me as well, and my advice in handling that comes from a very pisces sun/cancer rising/capricorn moon place.

    I handle all transitions in life with the basics: journalling, making a playlist, a vision board, casting a spell, and then…you know…the necessary work and steps to make those things happen. the big moves always required a clear vision because I love a good vision board but I need a to-do list (and a not-to-do list)? And the beauty there is that everyone is different and everyone needs their thing to go about change.

    So my advice: write about it, talk about it, create something through it, dance with it, envision it, cast a spell, make a downpayment, search for it, keep your heart open, but keep your vision clear—-all the contradictory things.

    you are fallin together right in the nick of time, and it is a beautiful thing to do!

    p.s. it is a full moon tonight–great time to release anything that may be blocking you from change!

    • As a Virgo through and through I applaud your to-do list suggestion. (I may or may not have a five-pages-and-counting color coded spreadsheet about my upcoming move it’s fine.)

  2. “Like her namesake, she is old as hell, but she gets the job done.”

    my girlfriend, whose name is Ruth, is 24. #justiceforruth

  3. Keep on keeping on, Carrie!

    For me, daunting life changes tend to come in the form of lengthy relapses of chronic illness and having to figure out, all over again, how to cope. The uncertainty can be overwhelming. Being housebound and socially isolated is often too painful to acknowledge. A saving grace has been discovering web series. They’ve entertained and amused me, offered a means to be culturally engaged and helped me explore my identity.

    Two beautiful queer web series that I have been watching lately are:

    “Middlemarch: The Series”, created by Rebecca Shoptaw (


    “LA Web Series”, written by Alexandra Swarens

    — I’m not affiliated with either, but LA Web Series is currently fundraising for a 2nd series and I really hope it happens.

    • Will definitely check these out as a means of relaxing AND feeling validated at the same time. Thank you! And I’m with you on pain relapses; having your body pull the rug out from under you at random makes any sort of future planning a dicier proposition. Hang in there friend!

  4. Sending all the positive energy your way during this time of transition! There is definitely change in the air. When it comes to my own life… it feels positive. I hope the transitions that these next few months bring are also ones that are welcome for you :) In regards to the world at large though… I’m hesitant to place my hope in the nature of the change.

    *Unrelated Note*

    I had a conversation with a coworker in the car today in which she assured me she was going to heaven. Not at all in a joking manner. It got me thinking about how lovely it must be to be so sure of your own goodness. She was like… I could die today and I wouldn’t care, I know where I’d be going. Is it OK that when it comes to stuff like that my mind is a big “????”?! I think I’m good some days, but most of the time I think I’m just OK/doing the best my imperfect self can in the moment and if I died tomorrow I’m completely at a loss for what would happen. Heaven, hell, purgatory, dirt. It has really put me in a strange head space.

    • I don’t know about your coworker, but a lot of people I know are 100% sure they are going to heaven and it doesn’t have anything to do with their belief in their own goodness. It’s entirely their faith in God’s goodness. Which I find… more difficult to understand? Like, I can reason that I am a decent person and while I’ve made mistakes I’ve not done anything that would merit eternal damnation. BUT I have a MUCH harder time looking at the world and thinking that it’s possible that an all-powerful God made everything AND we can trust that God loves and forgives us.

      • Yeah, I can totally get behind that line of thinking.

        I do know of some people who have faith in God more so than a faith in themselves. Both lines of logic are hard to for me to understand though.

        Also, I could totally be projecting on to my coworker from previous experiences. I was raised Catholic and there is a belief in mortal sin(including but not limited to “homosexual” activity). Can’t go to heaven with mortal sin in the back pocket. By that logic eternal damnation is warranted simply for being in a relationship. Gotta be honest, it is a lot to unlearn and really does a number on my ability to reason that I am decent person. So yes, this is probably much more a reflection of my own state of being rather than a reflection on my coworker’s comment.

  5. Hey all! I split up with my partner of 6 years a month ago so everything feels like a big life change! I have never lived on my own before and am surprised by how well I am managing in terms of keeping the house somewhat clean and tidy and myself relatively well fed. (I have a chronic pain condition so always thought I wouldn’t manage) Still up and down emotionally but am trying to keep busy and do all the other things the internet tells you to do after a break up. In the long term I have to figure out how things will be financially too. I am hoping in the long term I will have lots of exciting new changes to celebrate but have to work through the crappy stuff first.

    • hey hey hey!
      every single thing you have done deserves a parade of support those are the biggest changes around and I hope you know that the new changes to celebrate ARE the very things you are doing right now.

      keeping a house clean, living on your own, feeding yourself–those are badges earned with great effort and great celebration! WELL DONE!

    • I am so impressed with your ability to handle this unwieldy situation! Keeping busy has always helped me too and yes, there is much celebration on the other side the crap!

      • Thank you everyone who applied for this. I am currently in bed in the middle of the afternoon crying so this support means the world! X

  6. You can do it Carrie! I believe in you!!

    For me, when making big life decisions there is something really important about writing things out by hand. The physical connection between my hand and the pen and the paper and my brain feels like I’m manifesting the future into existence more tangibly than typing on a keyboard. I also do plenty of spreadsheets (yay for color coding!) and pinterest vision boards, but I also like mind maps and hand written lists and color coding in pens and highlighters. Of course It’s not like that for everyone and You Do You.

    Also I’m learning the importance of having a cheerleader for big daunting things. I’ve been working on a YA novel for months and I just kept rewriting the first 10,000 words over and over and over. Until I enlisted my best friend to be my writing buddy. I’ve never sent anyone my writing in progress before, but I’m sending each chapter to her as I finish it and she’s done nothing but heap praise on me. I know there is a LOT of editing to come, and she’s keeping her more critical notes for then, but right now what I need is a voice telling me “you can do it!” and she’s so freaking good at that.

    So for you, Carrie, and everyone else — You can Do it!

    (Also I’m doing NaNoWriMo — Username lezbrarian be my buddy!)

    • your friend is rad+this is a wonderful reminder of how we need people to support us in tangible ways <3

    • Legitimately feel heartened after reading your comment, thank youuuu

      Also yes accountability is huge! I’ve gotten weirdly into productivity podcasts recently (which are 99.9% hosted by somewhat clueless straight white dudes so it’s a combo hate listen and regular listen) and they all constantly talk about accountability buddies. So glad it’s working for you!

      (My daily to-do list is always handwritten)

    • I love your description of how potent good ‘ol pen and paper can be :)

      I’m glad you reached out and found a buddy to help with your writing. Yay for good peeps supporting each other!

    • I came on here to find other straddlers doing NaNoWriMo! Are you using it to work on your YA novel? I’m using it to continue a ghost story I’m like 20,000 words into, and it’s nice to hear that someone else is also “cheating”! I’m also definitely absolutely not making the 1,667 words goal, but it’s nice to be encouraged to do at least a little bit every day, even if it’s just like 300 words. I’m off to buddy you now :D -lenohr

      • Yay!! Yes I’m working on my YA novel, and I figure as long as all 50,000 (or whatever) words I write are New, I’m not reeeeeaaallly cheating.
        I make the rules work for me haha ;)

  7. I wept when I had to let my first car (Rob, Rachel’s old buick) and also raged because he was taken too soon by a dumb driver who then refused to talk to her insurance company for a month.

    when I have big life changes I try to think about the good parts of what is to come, meditate on attachment to help let go of what is changing, and read the Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, specifically Joy and Sorrow and Time.

    oh and of course, cuddle a dog. that always helps me.

  8. I decided to start therapy again recently, I know it’s the right thing to do cause it feels like my world is falling apart and I’m fading away, but it’s scary to start this all over again. I’ve had two other therapists previously and both times I felt like I went to them at a time when I was figuring things out so I could figure it out with them. But this time, there has already been so much, I already understand so much about how my brain works (doesn’t work) and now I have to fill in all this backstory before I can get to talk about what is currently the most difficult thing. And I just don’t have the time for that, I get a very limited amount of appointments through my school’s services.

    • hey jay!

      I am no therapist–but as someone who has been dating her share of therapists–and has gotten tired of rehashing things that I know over and over in order to get the help I want for this exact moment–I hear you on this backstory problem.

      I have found that I am someone who is happy to write it out–and so I began a document (and countless journals) of what I have identified as “my issues” just to have on hand when it comes to seeking new therapists/seeking new help in general. getting to that backstory is important but it is emotionally daunting. I totally understand being too busy for it–but I also know what it is like to be too busy and then let that fading away take over.

      making a plan to write it out and storing it in a way you can share easily could help–I hope you keep at it! you are worth it!

      • That’s a good idea, I have a few days before my first appointment, it would probably at the very least help me to write some things done to figure out what it is I want to focus on. Thank you

    • I’ll echo the comment on getting something written down. It’s been super useful for me. Wishing you all the best on your journey!

  9. For quite some time my life was very predictable. I had a 5 year and a 10 year plan that for the most part I was able to follow through with. Now after 10 years self employed, in the last few years I’ve tried out a few different part time jobs, working to make a good fit with all of the pieces of my life. I think I’m getting there. I got myself a passion planner, and my main passion is to be a parent. We’ve been doing foster care now for 8 months which brings so many things that are beyond our control. I was telling a friend I feel like I’ve given up on many of my principles, but she said it was a mellowing. Mellowing does sound nicer. So we’ll see what life brings, and I’m trying to be kind to myself when I don’t know all of the answers and can’t predict the future. Still I am grateful for all of the supports in my life and the opportunities I’ve had to share love and kindness.

    • I am very interested in what the journey to becoming a foster parent (or adoption for other folks out there?)looks like for queer women and any prep work you did/lessons you learned if you have the energy to share any of that.

      • @sparkymcdragon I do enjoy talking about journeys and about foster care! I also just posted some about it in the new merch article.

        My wife and I live in the midwest in a smallish town. I had received a newsletter from a larger town in our state that the foster care system was looking for lgbt foster parents. My wife is trans* and we weren’t sure how that would play out, but the person who did our home study was pretty good about it all.

        In our area there is a definite need for foster parents, but I was turned down to be one when I had an in home day care because in my state you can only foster kids over the age of 7 if you watch kids in home. Fast forward to after I closed the day care, my wife and I had tried IVF and it didn’t work, and I strongly wanted to be a parent. It took a bit of discussion before my wife agreed to try foster care. Getting licensed took about 7 months and a lot of invasive questions and self reflection (the latter of which I do think was good).

        I had thought about foster parenting for quite some time and have a strong background in early childhood, but there have definitely been some challenges that I was unprepared for. The kids were just so sad and angry at times. And they were only 4. At the same time I have loved the opportunity to support their biological families.

        The mom of our current little one was asking me if I watch the 700 club. She was talking about how it was saying that in Texas gays can’t foster or adopt, and how she is glad that in our state they can so that my wife and I would be foster parents for her little one until she is able to be back home.

        We definitely still have a lot to learn, and there are so many unknowns and things outside of our control, but for now it is a journey that I want to take.

        If you have any specific questions feel free to send me a message!

        • Thanks! That’s all very helpful. I’ll send you a pm if I can formulate some questions.

  10. Go team!

    I have Gender Affirming Surgery on the horizon (I’m getting GAS!). This is such a time of learning for me. I’ve learned how to ask for help, how to be vulnerable, how to deal with being helpless.

    I’m so excited to learn how to inhabit and relate to my body once it’s been, well… “fixed”, as I see it.

    None of this has been easy. I wouldn’t be able to handle it without my families, inherited and chosen. Also a therapist. Good therapists are wonderful.

    • Congratulations on getting GAS (heh) and three cheers for a great therapist!! What an awesome time in your life. Go you!

  11. I’m pretty sure my first car, GERTI – which got totaled over the summer, may she ride in peace – was the same model as yours and she served me (and several people before me) faithfully for a total of 22 years (and would’ve been longer if some asshole on her phone hadn’t rear-ended me on the highway…). Volvos are resilient little fuckers, aren’t they?

    My undergrad friend group is kind of a disaster right now and I’m trying to mitigate the drama from halfway across the country, and try to contain the fallout but…it’s such an absolute disaster and it’s stressing me out but I can’t abandon them right now.
    (especially cause this was all caused by a person who I said last year was untrustworthy and manipulative, but did anyone listen? no, of course not, no one listens to me until shit actually goes down)

    Plus I’m nearing the end of my first semester of law school and finals are looming and the reading is getting more and more dense and I have to start looking for internships for next summer, so I’ve got that stressing me out too, so much so that I think my ulcer is flaring up.

    I’m really looking forward to going home for Thanksgiving and just…escaping from academic stress for a few days. I love law school, and I want to be a lawyer, but it’s so hard.

    • law school is SO hard. good thing you love it and have your eye on the long-term prize! it’ll be worth it.

      have you tried the headspace app? they have really short (3min) SOS meditations that can be a huge help for calming down a bit when you feel overwhelmed.

  12. One year ago today I put all my stuff in the back of the car of the girl I was dating and drove it across the country and moved into a crappy house and started over. Now everything is different and it was stressful and most things sucked for a long time but now things are good and much better than before the move. I wish I had advice for getting through the part where everything sucked, because other people told me this part would happen and that did not make it any easier while it was happening, but maybe keep in mind that things will pick up? Like to think of the part where things suck as a long, slushy walk home in bad weather, but at the end a warm home and dry socks and your pet are waiting!

    I just went away for two months to work on my next book and the other people here are nice and I’m excited to be here, but everyone is much straighter than me and more outgoing and I’m anxious about socializing or not socializing when everyone else is, why is adulthood so full of situations engineered to make you feel like you’re back in high school and what do I even do around straight extroverts?

  13. Apparently there’s a new character (or new to me. I don’t watch the show.) on “Van Helsing”.

      • Oh man, Missy!
        I started watching that show because I thought it would be like Buffy?
        Hahaha, no.
        I mean, wow.
        I‘m the kind of person who couldn’t stomach True Blood.
        I look away during gory parts on TV and even put my hands over my ears so I don’t have to listen to the sounds.
        Then you know, I started watching Van Helsing, because I thought it would be like Buffy and thought I‘d give it a chance?
        Trauma forever.
        One I‘m not going to revisit for Missy sexy Peregym in like a black uniform with swords.

  14. My contract for work runs out in March, my current rotation does by New Years and I’m also going to take my specialty exams at the beginning of next year, so there is going to be a lot of change afoot.
    I‘m prepping for that by changing myself first.
    Cleaning up, taking care of things, eating well, being on time, loosing weight, working out, etc.
    Winter is Coming.
    I‘m trying to find some good footing for that particular fight against the darkness, the rest of it, I feel, will somehow slot itself into place.
    *wraps hands and balls them into fists*
    Game on.

  15. Things in my own life are sort of… all going on hold while I support others. Trying hard not to let it get to me. Trying hard not to be jealous. It’s difficult as hell. I keep reminding myself, things will come for me too. Doesn’t make it any easier.

  16. OK I need help y’all. I’m about the finish a PhD. I’ve thought since I was a little kid that I wanted to be a researcher. (I had a particular field in mind; I’m now in an entirely different one for reasons that in retrospect have a lot to do with poor quality of an important class in high school and perfectionism + internalized misogyny leading to intense fear of proving myself inadequate in my original field…which in combination meant I needed help, and wouldn’t ask for it, and blamed myself for not being smart enough…anyway, long sucky story but I do like my current field.) I’m very curious, I have lots of good ideas, I’m a pretty decent teacher and mentor, I’m decent at stats, I taught myself to program and wrote all the code to run my dissertation experiment – I mean, I sound like I ought to be in academia, you know? And parts of it still sound like maybe fun.

    But assuming my committee signs off on my final revisions and I graduate in December, that will be ten fucking years I have worked on this degree and I am just tired of it all. It has taken me this long partly because of systemic factors beyond my control, partly because I have struggled with depression and anxiety and impostor syndrome and perfectionism and all that associated crap, partly because due to all that I have wasted an insane amount of time because it’s really hard to make myself engage. And the things I need to write/revise require deep engagement, I can’t just get by with minor fiddling that doesn’t really need my whole brain involved.

    When I go to my professional conference, or sit around with my fellow PhD students, I get enthusiastic all over again. So many good ideas! So many potential projects! I should really start applying for jobs! Then I get home to my computer and it’s like trying to reach something good through a thick rubber sheet. If I press really really hard sometimes I can reach it for a little while, but if my grip slips for an instant I’m shot back out and I can’t get back in without all that effort again. If I want to do academia, I really need to get my butt in gear, apply for a bunch of jobs, apply for postdocs, apply for grant-writing training workshops my association offers…

    I don’t know which story I’m repeating: the story of switching majors away from my first passion, the moral of which I now believe to be “I should have asked for help and worked harder, I really could have done it, I’d most likely now have tenure and be doing something fascinating in my first field if I’d stuck with it”…or the story of my first marriage, the moral of which I now believe to be “when it is literally an enormous physical challenge just to will yourself into the basic surface forms, like ‘walk to your apartment instead of going past it and keeping going until you fall over,’ that’s maybe a sign you should get the hell out.”

    I’m not doing myself or anyone else any favors if I willpower-through into a career that I’m unlikely to achieve much success in if I’m just making myself go through the motions. But I also don’t want to let the depression/impostor/sexism monster fuck me over again and cheat me out of something I might really enjoy and be good at. Ugh. Help, y’all! How do you figure out what you want when all you really feel like is “leave me alone, I just wanna curl up in bed and read books and go for walks in the park and ride my bike for like six months. or forever.”?

    • Would it be so bad to take some time off? Is that a feasible option for you? It sounds like you’ve been burning hot for a while now. It might be worth it to take some time to yourself and regroup, especially before such big decisions.

      • I am seriously considering it. I’m lucky enough it would be financially possible especially if I just did some part-time work in my clinical field. Of course given the academic hiring calendar, I either go on the market now and start a job next August, or don’t go on the market for another year and don’t start anything til August 2019. Would then have a weird gap in my cv to explain when applying; could be ameliorated by clinical work and turning my dissertation into a few published papers, which would probably help on the job market – but that would make it not really taking a break. So, pros and cons.

        • Good Luck with your decision making. I have no real suggestions however, the old saw of “when in doubt, don’t”… has always worked for me. Perhaps you can sort out which.. don’t…is more compelling.

    • oh man, I feel SO MUCH of this. I almost felt like someone was spying on me and writing about my life.

      sending good thoughts your way!

  17. Just want to chime in to thank Riese for the recommendation on Halt and Catch Fire. I’ve streamed s1 and s2 so far, and I just love it.

    Also, while watching the show, I realized that I went to high school with Lee Pace. ?

  18. I got my baby tooth extracted this week! It was surprisingly painless! Doing that made it easy to focus on my job interview yesterday that I was also stressed about! There’s probably a metaphor in there somewhere about the anxiety of growing up but I am just GLAD those two things are OVER.

    Until next week, when I find out if I made it to the *second* interview

    Godspeed everyone. May you have the strength to work through whatever’s giving you anxiety in life x

  19. I sold my first car a few years back I know how it goes. It went to my friend’s(who has the same name, but different spelling as the car) then gf, who during the test drive was bad mouthing her(my friend). I was told her then gf took her into the car the night she bought it and christened it. Lol. I do miss the car a bit as it could really handle a corner well. Thankfully, I don’t see that car anymore(though I see cars like it, different colors as mines was a rare bright blue). I like to image the owner is taking care of it the way I would, and it went to another lgbtq person so at least afaik straight people haven’t really owned the car.

    How was everyone’s Halloween? My plans were canceled, but I was okay with it as both my knees haven’t been playing nice with me this week. I may see a doctor of this keeps up. I met up with a nice woman from the women onyl friend making app Vina and had a lovely walk and then dinner at a hidden gem of a restaurant(Hot Food is the name) in the East Hollywood/Silverlake area(not to far from Cuties Coffee, aka The Planet). They have some really great vegan shakes. The new friend just recently came out as pansexual, so it was nice to be at a restaurant where two gals were talking about toxic masculinity, and where there was visibly out lesbian couple(leather jackets, Rhea Butcher hair cut, and a looks that said I’ll take your gf and treat her right het boy). She asked me if they were local celebsbians, but I don’t think they were, unless they were friends with the likes of KStew &/or Tegan and Sara. We then headed to a gay leather bar for drink, which to my surprise they have a lesbian night once a month(when I called them previously they told me they weren’t sure if they did). So, now my new friend knows all the queer spots in her neighborhood.

    I also spent my Sunday morning on Topanga Canyon trail I frequently hike. Saw a family of deer again(always see them on this trail). It was relaxing.
    Grazing deer.

    Thank you for reading and viewing my post. Have a positive weekend.

    P.S. if you are in the LA/SoCal area Cuties Coffee has their monthly Queers, Coffee, and Donuts(QCD) event. Please support local queer spaces, we need more than just bars as safe place. We also need more lbtq women and other iding pepple owned places like this!

    • That night out sounds awesome, and I’m super impressed by those photos, especially the deer one, just lovely.

      • Thank you, it took a while to get the shadows right on that shot as the deer was a bit too dark(hiding on the trees can do that).

  20. I had the worst week and kept on thinking about suicide. But I made it to the other side. Kind of.
    University makes me feel like I have the worst writerly skills. This week suckedddd.
    On a fun note I cut all of my hair off. I was just tryin’ to look like Halsey.
    I’m just looking up names of other writers who were called crazy in school and than went on to be well loved blah blah blah. Sigh.

  21. So, this is something the collective brain trust at AS might be able to help me with:

    Last year I wrote a decent-ish scifi story with a trans lesbian protagonist (~10,000 words) that I’m looking to publish, because I’m broke and need money. I’ve submitted to most of the SFWA Qualifying markets, but they’ve all either turned me down or (largely) aren’t accepting new submissions currently. Anyone have suggestions for where else I might be able to submit? Thanks!

    • Do you want a printed book or do you just want your story available for purchase?
      Cause Amazon does this self published ebook thing but uh it’s like 99 cent per copy I think which sucks if you’re looking for a payday. But I don’t know the whole deal with them, might be worth investigating.

      Also have you considered any queer publications?
      But again that’s probably gunna suck in regards to pay.

      I really hope your story gets published and your fiances into the black. We need trans protagonist stories,and more queer scifi stories. Scifi was invented by woman it’s time we take it back.

      • I was going to suggest the same thing and say Amazon as I’ve seen many self published stories. Sadly most of them aren’t well bought(like in the 400 people range) from what I’ve seen; though sci-fi might be different than romance involving queer gals(both cis and trans stories of course).

    • Wherever your story finally gets accepted, please make sure you let us know about it. I’m sure I’m not the only one here who’d be interested. :) (And anybody who puts in the hours to write something decent deserves to be paid for it!)

  22. My first car was a beautiful light green Bug. I got her while I was in high school and loved her to pieces. Alas, she was taken from me in a nasty accident (my fault), but the fact that she crumpled in exactly the right way probably saved my life.

    On the topic of transitions, I’m… not exactly in a transitional period, but I am in a liminal space in terms of my health. It’s been 4 years and I still don’t have an official diagnosis for my chronic health issues, which has left me really uncertain. It’s an interesting (read: shitty) place to exist in, since I don’t exactly know what I’m transitioning to. Are there surgeries in my future? Can I have kids? Is there a chance this will get better or worse? It would be nice to have the answers to at least some of the “big picture” questions.

    … *sigh* Sorry for whining about my health again. Didn’t realize it’s been on my mind so much lately.

    • Solidarity on major life uncertainty. ;) It’s not whining, it’s processing. I hope you get some clarity soon. Or peace. Or, hey, both. That’d be cool.

    • It’s not whining about health because chronic illness is really rough and undiagnosed chronic illness is even rougher (because how do you make things better if you don’t know the problem????). I hope you find some answers and some relief soon.

  23. i’m so sorry to hear about Ruth! my first car was also a big old volvo, named the white rabbit, that both i and my little sister learned to drive on. when it finally got too expensive to keep repairing it, we sold it for scrap to KQED public radio. and my current car is also inherited from my dad after many years. she’s a forest green toyota tacoma, 5-speed manual, 320k miles, covered in lesbian feminist bumper stickers. i adore her and i hope she runs forever.
    because of the place i’m at in my life — being 20, halfway through undergrad, seriously aiming myself at grad school but a bit afraid of what i’m getting myself into– i feel like i’m kind of constantly in a transitional period. i don’t have any advice other than solidarity with all of those Big Weird Life Decisions. <3

  24. Sorry to hear about Ruth! Hope you find a good new car. I don’t know how to deal with transitions. I just panic all the time and hope it passes. Haha. I feel like this whole year has been dealing with a big transition. Like last year I came out and my first girlfriend dumped me this time last year and I moved cities so it’s been a bit of a time for reflecting on how I’m going and I’m going pretty well. I’m kinda struggling to find a job and kinda hoping that I can figure shit out. On the up side I’m going to an awesome queer party tonight and I’m so excited!! <3

  25. I know no body asked but I’m going to tell anyway, the etymology of the name Ruth:

    Hebrew(obviously), derived from the word re’ut (friend).

    It means friend y’all
    Do you feel vaguely weepy? Because I do.

    • I read that last line as “Do you weep vaguely? Because I do.” and didn’t think that was wrong, I just thought me too! ME TOO!

      • Crying with dry eyes that don’t produce enough tears to be fully weepy?

        Is that what you’re talking about?

        Because I’d have to say me too.

  26. RIP Ruth <3

    tw: abuse/harassment not overt though

    Big changes indeed! I gotta quit my job cause harassment (and its escalating) but I gotta get a new job first, cause……..I need money. But I've never done this before and it's really fucking with me, because for some reason I thought being abused would be…..over but its not???? so self-harm has been very bad lately. But!

    My sister came in and threw out all my self harm stuff cause I asked her to and my friends are lovely and stay and treat me with good love and I'm trying to get back into writing and reading and like I know this is a change that needs to happen but I'm so hesitant about it cause I just keep thinking, I'm in a place (kinda) where I can help others and I want to do that, but I'm obviously not in that great of place if it's lowkey destroying me. I don't know, in my head this makes sense. The point is! I'm aware! I'm vigilant! I'm trying to take better care of myself and ones I care for! I'm sober and getting Neosporin and taking everything one step at a time!

    I hope you all are well and have a great weekend!

    • Cheers to one step at a time and glad to hear you have good support. Hope you do get back into writing!

    • hair looks great! so glad you made it through a rough weekend.

      don’t let the uni experience get you down. I’m so impressed with anyone with the courage to share their writing and hang on through negative feedback. I am a phd (not in writing at all) student and a uni teacher and I 100% believe that the relationship between success at uni and in the world is tenuous at best. I do think uni is important and can teach great skills, BUT it’s also a system that doesn’t fit everyone and sometimes is set up so students learn more about just fitting expectations than exploring new things.

      hang in there, keep working on your writing and make sure you love it, and I’m sure you’ll find more receptive audiences in other places!

  27. I sent a terse email to my boss about how shitty it felt to be expected to pick up the slack in my classroom every time a lead teacher quit and basically be the lead without any raise, and then be asked by coworkers when I was going to “take” a position that I wasn’t being considered for, but was doing really fucking well. She gave me the job

  28. I keep missing FOT because they’re posted not RIGHT IN THE MORNING because any other time I am puppy wrangling and that is a FULL TIME JOB.

    I also feel like I’m in a transition period–quite literally–because my insurance has FINALLY approved top surgery, though I’m not going to have it until like April, which is annoying because WAITING but also not because it means that hopefully I can sort out my GI issues before then because having surgery while not really being able to eat is not the best idea I know. But I feel 10000x better about my new GI doc, and I feel really good about the NP I’ve seen in my cardio’s office, and having a care team I feel good about (for the most part at least) is making me feel much better about things! And I’m in the midst of came shopping which feels weird but also good because having something to help with balance will be very helpful for my bad days.

    And I’m applying for a job! Which is a big deal because I haven’t really felt able to work for a couple years (despite pulling some days safety boating).

    Here is the puppy piranha boy himself

    And the piranha boy and the cat warring over the bed (with me and my bed head as mediator)

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