Judah and I have joked that we should do a Babylon 5-intro-style outro for 2012. "This was the year of cancer." "The year of startups." Et cetera.
The year was 2012. The name of the place is Gojirawitziev.
This is a year we survived.
We lost our darling little boy-cat this year. We lost my grandmother, and I had to figure out how to support my mother in a way I've never been called to do. This was the worst year we've maybe ever had financially; that pressure has been crushing us, and has kept me, at least, from doing some things that would have been beneficial for my career. It was a year of massive stress in every conceivable way, from the ex-landlord's harassment to spending thousands of dollars on the cats and losing one anyway to the nuclear dramabomb that got hurled into our lives in September. Arisia stuff exploded. I had to take leave from BARCC. My medication was making me literally lose my mind. (I'll let Judah write about his own stuff, but: entrepreneurship! Startups! You can get a rough idea.)
We are exhausted.
But it is a year we survived. We moved from that heinous landlord situation to a much bigger and better house with an awesome landlord. Through it all, I managed to drag myself back to writing and submitting work, and I sold six poems and a story, almost all of which I wrote this summer before things really started to escalate. I won the Rhysling Award. I was Guest of Awesome at Pi-Con. I wrote another story that I'm tremendously proud of, not just for what I did but for how I did it, and I'll have news on that soon, hint hint. I have weaned myself off of the awful med and seem to be doing well so far.
One of the huge exhausting-yet-rewarding things this year has been the college application process. Elayna visited maybe two dozen schools. We narrowed it down to nine. She wrote 14 college essays - to be fair, a lot of those were 100-250-word things. She had four interviews. And while she was doing this, she was attacking her Senior Thesis Project, which counts for half her English grade this year, and acting in/pretty much assistant-directing her school play. Lots of careful management of the Elayna. She did just fine. And she's gotten two college acceptances so far. Now we wait and see; we won't hear from most of the rest til spring.
Looking forward? I have at least two poems and one story coming out next year. I expect to dive into scholarship applications Real Soon Now. I'm planning a coming-of-age ritual for Elayna, who turns 18 this March. She'll be selecting her college, we'll be scrambling for financial aid, and she'll be graduating in June; lots of family will be there!
I will be working on Cicatrix. I got sidetracked earlier this year with the feeling that I should get some poems and short fiction into circulation, and July-October was taken up by Everyone is Dying Horribly and I got very little writing done. But I'm reaffirming my commitment to that. And insisting upon a puppy when I finish it.
2012 was the last full year that my daughter and I will live together.I have been coping with that. My aunt says that the anticipation of her sons' departure for college was worse than actually having them gone; I hope it's the same for me, because this is putting me through the wringer!
Judah and I were talking the other night about my journey through parenting. "I'm fighting the end boss right now," I said.
He was puzzled - "But she got accepted by two colleges! I thought that was the end boss?"
"No. The end boss is her leaving home and living on her own. The end boss is her independence. I win when she's independent."
It has been a year of leveling up through endless boss battles. Leveling up in spite of. Working incredibly fucking hard all. the. time.
In 2013, this work will pay off. We got a lot coming up.
Watch us soar.