What else can be said about 2016? This will go down for many as one of the most disappointing and disheartening years in recent memory and history. This year was even a roller coaster for me, not all bad but not all good. So let’s go over 2016 the best way we can.
January: I found myself let go again from another advertising job. I knew the nature of the business was high turnover but I never expected to have to change jobs so frequently. But I did manage to go out to Goliad with a friend and discover some of the more “interesting” aspects of Texas history. As a black woman, I’m always at odds with Texas history. To think that these men who fought for their right to own other people are praised and defied here in the state, I dunno, it’s just a strange feeling for someone with such a high level of dual-consciousness. For some context to the Goliad situation, here’s the bigger post on the San Antonio Missions I wrote late last year here.
February: I continued my job search but was able to pick up some fantastic freelance work. And I did manage to find a random as hell site in the Hill Country. I was traveling to Fredsrickburg with Amber and this little site had caught our eye as we were planning our trip. Someone, for some reason, wanted to build a replica of Stonehenge and complete with Moai statues (which have nothing to do with the Celtic origins of Stonehenge). Well, more power to him. If I had that kind of disposable money, I can’t promise I’d always be prudent with it.
March: I took a job in Austin that didn’t pan out but something wonderful did come out of it. My very handsome car, Kurogane. You can read about my transition from walking to driving here. I also ended up picking up a contract job that was stable for the time.
April: My grandmother passed away after many years battling lupus and I came home to visit and be with my family. We coped. We moved on. We buried her in a way only we could. I miss her, of course, but I’m comforted by the fact that she is no longer suffering.
May: Mostly full of costume work in prep for A-Kon.
June: WOW. A-Kon was…a lot. So much. You can read all about A-Kon here. I had an amazing time with Ricky and Carlos and really, this one was a game-changer. Some of the highest highs and at least one of the lowest lows but we handled it all with grace, humor and lots of delicious food. I’ll never forget sitting in the car and crying with Carlos. We admitted that as friends, it’s difficult to be apart and when we’re together, we can pick up like no time had passed at all. I cried for the city I miss so much. For the memories I make every single convention. I cried for all of those reasons but I got back on my bus and returned to San Antonio, knowing that it would be far from the last time I venture up to North Texas to see my friends and put on a show that the fans go wild for. This one’s actually from the con. This picture here is from A-Kon. I got to challenge Alexander Hamilton to a duel.
In addition to A-Kon, I also was reminded of my mother’s passing via a callous Facebook notification that you can read about time, the nature of grief and how awful it is to be reminded via social media that your mother died here.
July: I celebrated my birthday in Corpus Christi. I had asked to visit the beach, so Amber took me to the beach. This is one of the nice pictures of the ocean.What’s not pictured is my book on the poetry of Sappho and my immense desire to find shade despite requesting that we go to the beach. It’s like I always forget that seeing the ocean usually means temperatures that I do not much care for. Oh, and realizing that apparently Domino’s Pizza WILL deliver to a beach: which seems like a terrible idea. I think it’s a terrible idea.
Also, on this trip I got to see one of the oldest trees in state (maybe even the nation). It was a beautiful tree that I’m sure has seen a lot, survived a lot and will continue to survive things long after I’m gone. It was a surreal existential moment, recognizing that this tree has seen more of human history than I ever will.
It’s called the Big Tree. Really, no better name for this behemoth? Oh well.
I also saw Welcome to Night Vale live as a gift to Amber and myself (post here) and Fitz and the Tantrums in concert a gift from Amber to me for my birthday (post here). Needless to say, July was very busy.
August-November: I was let go from a company that I thought would be a great fit. I put in hundreds of applications and the months all blurred together until I found work again. You can read more about that experience here. The only other good thing to come out of these months was the amazing panel review I received. At this time, I’d like to thank my friends and family that helped me through such a difficult time. No one likes being out of work and the support system I had around me was an integral part in me getting back on my feet. This was also around the time I returned to the church which you can find out more about here. I did land another gig in November and so far as of this post, it’s a great fit.
This also featured an election that…I just rather not talk about.
December: So far despite all of the celebrity deaths, December has had a fun and emotional Christmas that you can read about here. And since December is still technically going on, let’s hope the celebrity deaths slow down just a little bit.
Amazing how quickly a year flies by. Amazing how people come and go in your life. Amazing that friends who have been with you through highs and lows sometimes are better than family and amazing how wonderful routine and normalcy can be. This year was…for many, including myself in places, not great. It was a tough election year. A year filled with national and state tragedy. It was a year of hate crimes, senseless death and unmatched hatred and bigotry. But beneath all of that angst, there was a light. There was friendship. There was community. There was love and kindness and coming together. So I hope that for all of you who only see the darkness of this year, I hope that you all can see the light, no matter how dim. That light’s there and there’s always a light at the end of a tunnel. Because even dumpster fires eventually stop burning.
See you all in 2017.