The days leading up to this day were nuts. A week before, I supplied my mom and brother with maps leading to 1) Home to their Airbnb, 2) their Airbnb to the venue, and 3) the venue to their Airbnb. The night before the wedding, we had our families over for dinner. Not only was my family 2 hours late to dinner, but they ignored the maps I had supplied and got stuck in soft sand – exactly what I had feared. It took us about a half an hour to even locate them in the pitch darkness, and then when we finally did, it was probably another 45 minutes for Jordan and my brother to dig the car out, while I stayed about a quarter of a mile away (so as not to ALSO get stuck in sand), trying to phone roadside assistance for a tow truck. That was a harrowing evening, and on top of everything, we got back to our venue/Airbnb and discovered the hot water wasn’t working. We were already tired from the long day. We had attended a funeral in the morning, then ventured up to Lancaster to pick up our food from our caterer, then took some unfamiliar back roads through the high desert to Yucca Valley.
I woke up extremely early the day of the wedding. My mind kept running through all the things I needed to accomplish before people arrived. I started decorating the night before but injured my thumb pretty horribly. That was another thing – my thumb was throbbing so badly I couldn’t sleep. And guess what! Some of my decorations and florals had blown away in strong winds overnight. At this point, I didn’t care if the whole place burned down; I just wanted to have that marriage license signed.
My family was driving me crazy. Jordan and I both had our moments of being annoyed by everything and everyone, though I’m pretty sure it was mostly my family being annoying.
The wind picked up by the afternoon, and messed up our plans for an outdoor dinner. This was something that was important to Jordan. He worked tirelessly for a week to build a cedar table that would not only seat all of us, but would ultimately serve as our dining table. The only thing we could do was move it inside. Thanks to our family, they set everything up while we went to take romantic photos and also heated up all of the catered food to prep for eating. Where would we be without them?
In the end though, we had the short ceremony of our dreams (around 10 minutes long), a signed marriage license, and bunch of beautiful wedding photos that look like editorials. AND an unexpected stop motion video – a pleasant surprise from our photographer Max Junio Photography. It actually does feel a bit different to be on the other side.
How do we cope with failure, and what is the narrative that we use to make us comfortable with telling that story?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. There have been a few times recently where I’ve heard about what one person has said that’s different from what I understood, and it has changed my perspective. I think that’s sometimes how we understand life, especially when we fantasize what we wanted and what could have been against where we are now. We all do that, but not everyone looks at it through a lens of reality.
In most of my youth I didn’t understand why people wouldn’t say what they were thinking at all times— like those bits in movies where there is something “better left unsaid.” But as I’ve gotten older, there are a lot of things I’ve left unsaid, uncorrected. Ultimately it doesn’t change what happened and what will be. It just is.
Almost a year since we started working remotely, and we are both getting the vaccine. I got my first dose today. I was rejected back in January since even though I’m a healthcare worker, I don’t have direct contact with patients. But it was opened up to us again. I’m excited that I’m closer to being with my friends and family again.
I became a statistic and got COVID-19. No matter how careful you are, how many masks you make, how often you disinfect everything, you can still get it.
It was pretty horrible for me. It put me out of commission for 15 days, with recovery on top of that being another 2 weeks. I still have a lingering cough, though it’s not nearly as bad as it was. I’ve talked about my illness ad nauseam already, but I thought I was going to die at one point.
I thought I could be one of the few who would get away from 2020 untouched, just like we did in 2016, which I personally thought was a pretty good year, other than getting a shitty new president. The latter part of this year went in a different direction. Still, it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.
2020 has really tested my relationship, but I now feel more certain about it. We’ve gotten to an unprecedented level of comfort around and dedication to each other. We appreciate each other more. We’ve had to scale back our wedding plans a lot, but I’m happy that we are going to even do it at all.
I’ve also become re-acquainted with an old hobby and have become much better at it. As a goal for 2021, I’m hoping to replace the bulk of my wardrobe with handmade. I hope to learn to be a better tailor, and I’ve been teaching myself to be a more patient seamstress.
Here are my resolutions for 2021:
Sew 1 project per week (unless legitimately unable to do so)
At the beginning of quarantine, Jordan and I restored my grandmother’s sewing table. We picked it up from my mom’s and stuffed it in the back of my car. Jordan wasn’t exactly impressed with what I decided to take home. He asked what my plans were, and I said, “Maybe we could paint it! That would be a good project for you!” He wasn’t confident we could do it, but I had pretty good baseline of knowledge on how to accomplish this based on my years of watching HGTV. This was a great project for us, and it actually sparked an interest for him to start building furniture and restoring other furniture items. Now we spend some of our Saturdays at estate sales, picking furniture to restore.
Back to the main story: I’ve been wanting to have a sewing space for a very long time, but I’ve just never had the room for it. We slowly started to put together a space for me to organize all of my sewing stuff and fabrics.
It took quite a long time because I couldn’t figure out an ideal layout in the small corner we have to work with. When I finally figured it out, I couldn’t get all the things I needed in one go because of stores being shut due to COVID, then low stock and then delivery times being really long. Things finally started trickling in. It’s still evolving as I learn about what does and doesn’t work. I’ve been using our kitchen island as a cutting/workspace while we have my actual cutting table being used as a desk for both of us. I’ve been properly using my new space for the last couple of weekends, and I already have ideas for improvement. I used to hate the idea of getting everything out just to sew, knowing I had to put it ALL away again right after (or else be forced to live with the clutter). Now I look forward to making all the projects I’ve had backlogged!
Did you know that if you had chicken pox as a kid, it can come back to haunt you as an adult in the form of shingles? Shingles is rare for my age group. It is also extremely painful because it affects your nerves. Like, imagine feeling simultaneously numb to the touch, yet having pain that alternates between burning, needle pricking and aggressive stabbing. And because of where it’s affected me, it’s also affecting my spine. The doctor said that it was very likely triggered by work stress. I believe it, considering what’s been happening the last couple of weeks. So take it from me: don’t stress.
Some days are harder than others. Some days are very emotional and some are just very boring. Most days I don’t go outside. I now have a fear being around a lot of people. I used to be an anxious person in crowds, and now I’m just scared.
I’m not returning to the office until 2021. It’s official. It’s been harder lately. I have so little contact with others.
Most days are ok. My cat has become accustomed to sleeping with me. Now I can’t go back. It’s so cute to see how she’s snuggled up next to me when I wake up momentarily in the middle of the night. I feel lucky that she’s a good cat. At least I’ve done something right.
I bought a wedding dress. My mom hates it. She said my dad would never approve. It’s not traditional, but I never saw myself as a traditional bride anyway.
Speaking of, things have gotten weird about our wedding. Seeing how things are going I’m pretty sure we aren’t going to have a big wedding anymore. But we will have to reassess come November. I kinda wanted to have an elopement style wedding anyway.
I have an association problem. Any kind of trauma I’ve had, I connect certain things. Or maybe I associate certain things with trauma? One of those things has resulted in me not doing music anymore. For a long time I thought it was because I have nothing to say. But now I realize that it’s because of certain events that are a result of trauma. In my years of therapy, I had never realized this until recently. Or maybe I wouldn’t admit it.
I don’t even like to listen to music much anymore. Even the stuff I liked. My car stereo is almost exclusively set to NPR (not even KCRW, but KPCC, which is entirely news).
This is something I have to work on. I think I could be perfectly content avoiding it for the rest of my life, but my partner is always trying to get us to collaborate. He always tries to make me play bass (which I’m terrible at). But what if he wasn’t making me? What if I dive in and enjoy it? What if I learned to stop associating a feeling with it?
I want to get to that point again. It’s been an inner struggle that I know has been there. I’ve gotten to the point where I just want to be free again.
I’ve been lucky enough to be working at a time like this. I’m realizing now how accidentally strategic my choices have been.
We’ve been holed up as much as possible during quarantine. We moved house in the middle of it (couldn’t really avoid it), and everyone is happy, including the cat, but it’s strange to have moved at a time like this. You can’t really even get things you need to make it a home.
The new normal is so odd. Shopping with a mask is normal. I went to an electronics store to set up my home office, and we looked like we were going to rob the place while we walked around.
I have virtual happy hour with my friends.
You can’t find chicken or eggs. Who knew that chicken was the meat of the apocalypse? We’ve been eating tofu because it’s widely available. I would go back to vegan for now but I’m on a special diet. I’ve been losing weight even more so now, but I suppose that’s good.
I haven’t seen my mom in ages, for fear of infecting her, but we talk or video chat nearly every day.
But the best part is I at least get to be holed up with my best friend, with whom I fight a lot, but he makes me better and still loves me with my lost logic. I am the worst person in front of the best person but it’s great. For someone as high strung as me, he’s wonderful.
I started a new job at the beginning of this month. I left Disney back in January and ended up having an unexpected 3 weeks off before I started this new one.
I took this job knowing that it would be a challenge. But I’m realizing it’s like going to a country when you only kinda know the language, and you’re only understanding about half of what everyone says to you, and only absorbing about half of what you do understand. It’s discouraging knowing that it’s a mountain to climb. I haven’t felt this dumb in a while, but in some ways I’m happy to be where I am. I feel lucky and also I have a lot of respect for the people and teams I work with. I wonder when the anxiety will stop.
I live super close to work and have been able to walk home sometimes. It’s a leisurely 25-minute walk when I take it slow. I’m also able to work from home half the week, but I haven’t yet because I’m still figuring stuff out.
For now I’ve accepted that I can’t know everything right now. I’ll be anxious and confused and constantly questioning, but I just have to be all of those things right now in order to get to the other side.