“After what we’ve been through, it would be very easy to give up, to lose hope. But not here. Not today.” – President Laura Roslin, Battlestar Galactica.

Have we discussed how Laura Roslin is my Science Fiction Patron Saint?

She isn’t flawless.  It’s one of the reasons she resonates with me as a person so much.  She, like the best of us, gets swept up in the force of circumstances and must atone and make do as best she can.  exCUse you. She’s sentimental and ruthless in turns — I can relate.  She’s resilient and forceful.  She’s unimpressed with your bullsh*t, and her instincts are well-developed.  She is also someone worth having around in an actual crisis.  I can relate.  She takes the starkness of her mortality in stride, managing to love ferociously anyway.  She knows what it means to have to make irrevocable decisions on short notice and simply live with the consequences, imperfect as they are.  And she’s usually right about who to throw out the airlock.  You know.  Usually.

I’m a bit squishier than she is at this stage in my life, but hey.  I’m young.  Cut me some slack.  There’s time.  It actually turns out that Ros is a fairly decent screening process for most people daring entry to my life and heart.   Chances are (and the data shows this to be the case!) that if you are not down with L-Ros, we’re not going to get along for long.  You’ll admire the wrong things about me (my compassion!  my good looks!  The things you need, rather than the things I enjoy!), you’ll want needs met I’m uninterested in meeting (basically anything having to do with free therapy, a fight you think you can win, sex that doesn’t serve me, endless endless support without reciprocity, narcissistic supply, validation of your ego, or someone who pulls punches to hand-hold you through life with perpetual patience and nary a word about her own desires, needs, or limits), and I’m gonna end up making this face, when we’re done:

So all of that said, I’ve been channeling President Roslin a lot these days.  Life has required a lot of me, lately.  Don’t get me wrong — Veni, vidi, vici, bros.  But I could use a lie-down once the dust settles.  Maybe a trip planet-side.  Stretch my legs and feel the sun on my face.  I’ve still got a Cylon or two showing up on my sensors, and I’m throwing some serious shade in the direction of one Gaius Baltar (eugh, what a ceaseless chode), and any collection of Sixes and disciples he might have at his disposal; but it’s mostly bright stars and blue planets these days.

I’ve had to make some pretty fast choices with incomplete information, state uncomfortable truths with as much grace as circumstances will allow, and maintain some semblance of diplomacy in the face of intractable assclowns in order to extract myself from situations that no longer serve me or my goals.  It’s been an adventure.  I’ve also needed to look my partner in the face and apologize for how hard things have been.  How I haven’t been my true self.  How sometimes my decisions might have been the right ones and gone poorly anyway.  How some of my choices were the wrong ones and went about as poorly as, perhaps, a less thinly spread person could have anticipated.  There have been some crying jags.  There were days when hope felt far away — days where change felt completely out of reach.  But here we are.

  Throughout, I think it has been helpful to have models available in fiction to shape our responses.  Adama-Roslin is a relationship we both hold in exceptionally high regard, and desire for ourselves and each other — maybe minus the cancer diagnosis, but hey.  We don’t call all the shots, do we?  One of the things that helps is that they’re both rather obstinately principled people whose principles are not always in accord with their partner’s.  And yet, decisions get made.

Orders are issued and executed in the spheres proper to the influence, authority, and expertise of each individual.  Autonomy is flexible, but preserved, respected, and intact at all times.  Our conflict is healthy.  He does not balk at the vastness of my emotional landscape, nor do I expect him to disclose his without being asked.  There is also a medium-sized human who looks to both of us, now, to augment her sense of family, support, and acceptance.  She has some Starbuck moments (sometimes heartbreaking to watch, but also inspiring), these days, and we expect and look forward to her impetuous and opinionated nature to continue to assert and reveal itself as she grows.  She’s bound for greatness, and bearing witness to that is a singular honor and joy.  It helps that she’s irreverent, hilarious, and insightful in turns.

So.  Saint Laura Roslin, guide my thoughts, words, actions, and occasionally, sartorial choices on this day and the days to come.  Continue to grant me shares of your courage, decisiveness, determination, curiosity, and razor sharp wit.  May I always reflect the pride I have in my partner out into the world, and feel with depth and intensity for the people worthy of my care.  This, in the names of the Lords of Kobol.  So Say We All.

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“After what we’ve been through, it would be very easy to give up, to lose hope. But not here. Not today.” – President Laura Roslin, Battlestar Galactica.

The Wheel Turns, The Times Change

It is difficult for me to fully grasp that, this time last year, I was in the throes of one of the most heart-wrenching break-ups of my life, a catastrophic shift in what I considered my family unit — referred to here as Gallactic Collision 2014.  There are a lot of moving parts in that equation to this day, a full year later.  A lot has changed for me, entirely and wholly for the better. Freed from toxic, oppressive, and limiting influences, sexual manipulation and emotional exploitation, I never dreamed I could be this new creature.  It’s amazing what a person can accomplish when they are not spending ten hours a day up to their elbows in psycho-emotional vampires.

My chosen family has changed a lot.  I’ve gained Caitlin, Dirae and her partner, So Many Shouty Women, an entire enclave of wonderful people in Toronto I adore, Hanif and Alex are back in my life.  Ginny, Shaun, and I are all neighbors.  I’ve gained three adorable cats I love dearly.  My family from Alliance LARP is stronger than ever (Congratulations, Sean and Samara on your engagement! I love you!).  And Thomthulhu and I …  are wonderful.  I am gifted with an amazing partner who, despite how challenging the last twelve to eighteen months have been, looks me in the face every day and says: We Have Got This.  I know we’ve got this, because we run sh*t.

And today is proof.  With the help and support of more people than I can even dare to try thanking (though Hanif, you’re at the top of the list), I’ve resigned from my position at the law firm.  

My last day as a paralegal is Friday, June 19th.  That Sunday is my second anniversary with Thomthulhu, as well as the Summer Solstice.  The next day, I begin my new role as a Systems Analyst at a small, but well established niche software company.  My salary will almost double.  Innovators at my new place of employment basically write their own tickets and design their own positions.  I will be working with an intimate team of weirdos and nerds who recognize my skills and talents, and want to see me rise like a sun on the horizon of an uncharted planet.  I will be on-site quite a bit while I get up to speed, but the goal is eventually, for me to work two days on site most weeks, and the other three from wherever I choose.  I will be selecting my own core hours, and my work day will be over in the early afternoon most days.  I will have a lot more responsibility, and will be required to learn unceasingly for the remainder of my career.

So basically, it’s the total best and I cannot wait and I’m excited, terrified, and starry-eyed all at once.

The paperwork is signed, sealed, and delivered.  In half an hour, I will be heading out to see BoringBot’s art show down on Penn’s Landing and plot what will happen to him and his pals in tomorrow’s session of Jade Regent.  Then I see Nyree in person for the first time at a Picnic in my neighborhood, which will be a delightful preview of my impending takeover of Toronto later this summer.  Sunday, I meet baby Ada for the first time.  Amanda is in town with her new daughter, and I will also meet her wee Lily next week, and will see much more of the Birdwell family this coming year!

So many strong arms have held me through this year of transitions and uncertainty and hope.

Arms I never could have dreamt to even hope to find.  And yet, and still.  Here we are friends.

I could never have made it without you.

Love, Love, Love, Love, Love.
RD

The Wheel Turns, The Times Change

Brief Thoughts

I remain perpetually amused when people who reject the usefulness, appropriateness, or value of rules in relationships or self-identify as relationship anarchists continue to fall back on legalistic models and language for getting what you want without asking solving interpersonal conflicts.  This has come up several times lately and I’ve managed to keep my snark down to a dull roar and a wry smirk. When your identity, your models, your vocabulary, and your actions don’t accord, you’re bound to run into some skeptical faces about what exactly you hope to accomplish with your speech, and I’ll be at the front of the crowd with one eyebrow up, laughing at your expense.

Yesterday was Thomthulhu’s birthday and it was lovely. We went to the Twisted Tail and ate some good food, and I gave us a membership to the Philadelphia Zoo, so we can go whenever we want.  I’m so looking forward to a few uninterrupted days in his company.  I have a long weekend coming up and have a few small projects around the house, including a window privacy film solution that won’t cost me a bajillion dollars, and measuring our windows for homemade insulated curtains.

I recently re-YOLO’d my hair and I now look like a magical unicorn princess, which is my preferred state of being.

The rumor mill’s a little thick these days, and that’s a bit tiresome.

I’ve been solicited to co-write a paid advice column and we’re generating a lot of ideas about that and I’m hoping to do some writing tonight after I make dinner and clean the bathroom.  A few folks are also terribly excited about me writing more extensively on apologies and the culture that does (distinct from the culture that should) surround them.

All of these, plus Ash’s new wordpress environment are keeping me pretty busy and creative.  I’m eyeing up stenciling a few rooms in Sarnath, as well, though I think that should wait til the Autumn when it’s a bit cooler.

I know I’ve been quiet lately, which is often a sign that I’m busy.  There’s other stuff going on in the backchannels of my life, especially with regard to my mom’s health that also have my a bit preoccupied, but I’m still around.

xo.

Brief Thoughts

So uh, this is awkward

Hey y’all.

Uh.  I’m not sure what brings you here, and to this specific posting in particular.  It’s a pretty painful one, and there were a straight up ACRE (holy f*ck) of you guys reading it over the last week.  I hadn’t been monitoring my stats the last few days, as I’m preparing for a pretty big exam.

I can’t imagine that you folks are in my regular readership, and I just wanted to put it out there that if you have questions, I’m glad to field them as best I can either publicly in comments or privately, if you prefer to remain anonymous.

Also, if there’s something I should know… I’m all ears.

Edited to fix the link.  Thanks @LizEden

Love,
Hil

So uh, this is awkward

Sung in the key of Nope, ShoutyBiz, and oh hey look new baby.

First things first, we adopted another black cat, because I’m sure I have toxoplasmosis that makes that seem like an Excellent Idea ™.  She is tiny (compared to our pre-existing Behemoths who tip the scales at a muscular 12.5 and 13 pounds respectively) and her tail is like three inches longer than any other cat I have ever met.

look at my dumb teeth!
This is her ultra-mecha-serious form, also known as Derpnir.

Her name is Gleipnir, and she, like the Fetters of Fenrir after which she is named, is made of six impossible things.  Here she is on her first night at the apartment, bonding with Thomthulhu…
Re: Consistently Rapey People and Their Stupid Triflin’ Bullshit I have adopted a strict policy of reprising the lyrics to popular songs on Facebook to incorporate as many hilarious inclusions of the word Nope as possible.  So far, Toto’s “Africa” has been my biggest hit with the Shouty Peeps in my life, but this week also included a Crowded House reprisal that is fitting given the tendency of sh*tbirds being seemingly incapable of shutting up about how they’ve probably raped people, call it something nicer, and how that qualifies them to talk about rape and abuse response even though they have no formal training whatsoever!

There is freedom within / There is freedom with Nope
Try to catch a deluge in a paper NOPE
There’s a Nopal ahead / Many Nopals are lost
But you’ll never see the end of the nope
When you’re traveling with me.

HEY NOPE HEY NOPE DON’T DREAM ITS OVER
HEY NOPE HEY NOPE WHEN THE WORLD COMES IN
THEY COME, THEY COME
TO BUILD A NOPE BETWEEN US
WE NOPE THEY WON’T WIN.

If you are a real life/Skype/Phone friend, you have probably had the privilege of me actually singing this nonsense in your actual life.  You’re welcome and I’m sorry.

In semi-but-not-directly related news, I have a tentative trip to Toronto planned for this summer, assuming I can get my shazbot together for a passport.  I am pretty pumped about it!

Sung in the key of Nope, ShoutyBiz, and oh hey look new baby.

Note to self:

AJ Amazon has requested that I write the story of how I lost my wallet in the presence of a very strange and scary man, and how it came back to me on a day that was a huge punch in the tits.  Seriously.  Wednesday was a real tit-punch.  There are some rays of sunshine now, though!

I’m going to be setting my narrative of Tit-Punch Wednesday and the Rays of Sunshine (working title) in alternate history Victorian England, a la The Difference Engine, and you can all look forward to that either later today or tomorrow. I’m thinking that I will vaguely reference a cholera outbreak and give my story self a title.

Note to self: