Dear 100 Hour Board,
Updates on Board Question #92312?
Dear my kenku's name in a D&D campaign,
To past yayfulness: You have exactly one year to fix some big stuff before it breaks catastrophically. I recommend you get started now.
To future yayfulness: Please tell me you actually followed through with therapy and medication. You need it. You deserve it. I don’t want you to have to go another year without it.
Please find your answers below.
Dear 2019 TBS,
GIRL WE DID NOT DROP THE BALL. The all caps are really necessary. I'm sitting here, on our best friend's couch, teary eyed thinking about how much we did not drop the ball. Truthfully, I am so proud of us. I can feel it in my toes, I swear to god. About a year ago, we got that motel room with the big jetted tub when our world was, yet again, falling apart. We'd bought that journal, the one with the Glinda quote about having had the power all along, and we wrote. We wrote about how we loved ourselves, and how even though nobody else was ever going to quite understand what our life has been like, that is okay because WE KNOW. We can comfort and care of the Black Sheep. We have that power. We are great at caring for others. We can do that here. And that self-love we put in writing, it felt so incredibly sacrilegious somehow. Sacrilegious, that is the word. It felt like someone was watching and would jump out and point out all the ways in which we did not deserve that, even though it was just us in that motel room. I still think about that a lot. I have used it to power me this year. We deserve that feeling, and we deserve to have it all the time. And we're fighting for it, just you wait and see.
This year, I've spent a lot of time with our new best friend. They say that the way to get better from attachment issues is to undergo a lot of therapy or to have a really healing relationship where you can develop some really basic skills, like trust. We have been lucky enough to have both this year. You would be shocked to see the lack of walls it is possible for us to have. I'm excited for you to see it. It is something else to just BE, to say what you mean when you mean it. As Anne the wondertherapist said it would, it frees up so much energy to do other things. It is shocking how average people live, and you're going to learn this year that a lot of happiness is just protecting yourself in a million tiny situations throughout the day. Those things add up, Teebs, and they add up way faster than our calculus has taken into account.
We used to think hope was not dying by suicide, was living to old age, even under the weight of managing near-unmanageable mental health problems. That isn't hope. It goes so much further. I have hope for a good life now. That sounds ridiculous; I'm writing from the middle of a pandemic and worldwide protests in response to American police brutality. It's definitely privileged. It's also so wonderful. It's something we have never had before. Our life doesn't have to scrape by. There is possibility and energy and open space.
Keep holding on. You're going to graduate from day treatment 2.0 soon (you worked full time AND finished an evening day treatment program, you incredible weirdo). You're going to get an apartment on short notice soon which is going to be hard and sad. But once the summer is over, the speed is going to pick up. Things are going to get better. It's still hard. We don't have complete control yet. Just this morning we cried for an hour over ... what, exactly? I'm still not sure. But it is nothing like what it was when we started writing these two years ago. It doesn't compare. There is so much hope.
2020 Black Sheep
Dear 2021 Black Sheep,
The world is crazy now, but I hope you have kept pushing anyway. Are we going back to school? Do we have that girlfriend or that cat yet? I trust you. I'm excited to meet you.
- 2020 Black Sheep
Response to past me: I am doing okay. Here's a big surprise, you are about to start dating the most amazing woman and you're going to get married! So yay us! But you left us two stupid general classes so now I'm doing both in spring term so that's not very cash money of you.
To Future Me: Did that one project finally get over? Please tell me it's over. I really beg you.
Dear Past Goff:
There are limits to how much caffeine our bodies are supposed to have for a reason, and it's not so you can walk the line of those limits like some kind of jittery trapeze artist. Please stop drinking so much of it. Also, you can't tell me what to do but you're right.
Dear Future Goff:
I know. I need to get better at following up on my goals and just trying in general. I'm working on it.
Dear me from last year,
Wow, that was really good advice. True as ever! I swear to continue to sweep very rarely.
Dear me next year,
Still dreaming of opening a cat cafe bookstore or are you finally getting into the lifelong techie mindset?
To past me:
Your relationship with one of your friends is about to become closer and more important than you ever would have predicted. Stop resisting vulnerability, lean on your friends, and communicate honestly and often with the people who are important to you. Sign up for therapy now; it'll save you a lot of trouble in the summer. Also, you're finally going to cry over a boy. Actually, two boys. Start rebranding now, sis.
To future me:
I'm becoming more and more aware of just how much I have to learn and how far I have to go. I really hope that you've taken some time to learn and to find a sustainable way to contribute to causes that matter to you. Also, please tell me you're eating mindfully and budgeting responsibly. How are your relationships with all your friends? Who are you rooming with next year? Have you stretched recently? Do that. I've got a lot of questions about next year, but basically, I really hope the world is looking a little brighter to you than it is to me right now. Wish me luck; I already know that I'm going to need it.
I did in fact settle into Ohio okay, and I quite like it out here. I have some casual friends from our ward, but no one that I'd consider a best friend in any sense of the word. I do still try to remember to get things that spark joy rather than just provide function.
Ohio won't cure your depression. In fact, you're gonna have to deal with some other health problems first, so buckle in. Also, schedule your door to be replaced sooner rather than later because otherwise it'll be June and you still won't know when you'll have a new front door.
Have you been able to find any answers health wise? Are your friendships in Ohio any stronger? I don't know if I want you to be pregnant this time next year, but are you any closer to the idea of having another kid?
Dear Guesthouse 2019,
I know you don't believe me but Coldplay is putting out an album this year. You won't know about it until like a month before. You know what else will come out of nowhere?
I'm not going to tell you. Because the uncertainty will help you grow. But uh, life gets crazy. Some advice? Keep working hard. Be patient. Stop caring about what Cockatiel is doing because it's draining you and I wish we had figured that out before.
Pebble does a really amazing job picking out your ring. Trust him, the kid's got skills. Your wedding won't be at all how you imagined it, but it will be perfect.
In regards to your messages? I stopped buying as many candles, so TAKE THAT. Also, which stupid thing are you talking about because... I don't remember.
Oh and uh, for the love of all things holy, take your iron pills.
Dear Guesthouse 2021,
You did it! Aren't you so glad? I'm proud of you! Don't give up now - we have so far to go. Have you met Jess Calarco yet? Soon... soon...
I hope you still don't take for granted how awesome it is to be able to fall asleep next to the person you love the most every night. Am I in a "honeymoon phase?" Maybe, but I hope you're still really happy to be married. You worked hard for it!
How was Alaska? Don't let Pebble convince you to move up there.
I hope things have normalized somewhat... but I really am so unsure of so much right now I'm not sure what to tell you. I'm taking care of myself for us!
Dear Year Past Anathema,
What's going to be the most surprising to you is that you'll actually get into your first relationship. I mean, I guess it's going to be a good learning experience? But then again it's also going to fill you with anxiety, and breaking up will fill you with joy. So... maybe don't get into that relationship.
Buying your first car and then having to drive it will give you months of nightmares and sudden attacks of anxiety-induced nausea, but it does get better. Eventually.
For the most part, life is going to be good. You'll have funny moments, like being woken up by weird bubbling noises coming from your toilet, but hey, at least it will give you a story. You're going to absolutely love all the social things you'll do with your siblings.
Dear Year Advance Anathema,
What is work like now? Were you able to stay on roughly the same team after the company acquisition, or are you somewhere else? Has the world gotten better? I seriously have so many questions that I wish could be answered.
Dear Quill ~
From that question:
To 2020 Dragon Lady: How's your Etsy shop? Have you learned to navigate being an Obliger? What are your plans for full day freedom this fall? Work more? Make more t-shirts? Volunteer more? KonMari your house? Something else? Did Take Home Library survive the 3rd grade expansion and digital upgrade? Anything I should be aware of to prep myself for this coming year?
From 2020 Dragon Lady:
- My Etsy shop was very successful until Dragonsteel asked me to take down my Stormlight Archives shirts, and in retrospect, that was obviously copyright infringement, but somehow I never actually considered that. [face palm] My shop never really took off after that, and when the pandemic hit, I couldn't have one more thing, so I put it on long-term vacation mode. I still get fairly regular orders from people I know, or friends of people I know.
- I have more fully learned to navigate my Obligerness.
- I have no plans for full-day freedom this fall. I can have no plans for fall. When certainty was almost in my grasp, it was mockingly torn from me.
- Take Home Library survived. There were ups and downs, but we made it. I laughingly joked this year that the second year was basically another first year because of all the changes, but what could possibly change for the third year? Oh. Pandemic. Will library books even be a thing in schools next year?
- What should you have prepped for? You're actually well-stocked on toilet paper, but I really wish you would have thought to stock up on hand sanitizer and Clorox wipes a little better. Oh, and latex gloves. I don't use them often, but of course I would run out in May 2020. I'm not sure there's much else you could have done to prep for the Year of Jumanji.
- I really, really, really just want to know what life looks like now.
~ Dragon Lady