California pulls me OUT of depression, and other surprises 2016 has already brought.

It’s a combination of things, really. Being sober. Being an aunt in the same way, and a new way, at the same time. Getting hard reality checks, and giving my own like I’m entitled to know as much as my 9-year-old self. Seeing an engagement, for the first time since Annie and Floyd, and then finally letting myself see that God is a similarity, and it might not be bad. I’m thinking about the affair I had with a married man a couple years ago, and really thinking of it in those terms, which is more fact than not.

Stephie is good for me. In ways that I forget I need. She’s so selfless, and I fear I am her polar opposite. I wasn’t always, and I’m not the heartless bitch that I sometimes feel I am, but I don’t give like I used to. Then again, I don’t treat people as poorly in other ways, so maybe it evens out?

No. I need to be giving more.

I’ve got my schedule set. It’s about 3 weeks past due, but at least I did it. And I have a game plan for next week, and three social engagements. Not counting the kink events. I know I’m getting better because the idea of being alone tomorrow scared me. “Leos don’t like to be alone, Brittany!” I don’t know what I’ve been in the mountains, but I need more lion and less gerbil. Only a Dani-sized amount of gerbil, not a apartment-sized amount.

Steph pulls it off, you know. Life. lol I wish I could make it sound less gushy, but that’s the goddamned truth. At dinner tonight, with my last chance to see half my family, I just went on and on about Aub. I love bragging on my niece, because it’s like bragging on her mother, vicariously. Especially since she’s still a young child. Aubrey is her own person, anyone can see that, but she’s so much of her mother. She adores her mother, wants to be near her, share secrets, and hold hands. They are friends, but they are mother and daughter first. She admires Steph, but has a healthy respect/fear that I think was the goal of everything Karen taught me. It’s insane. AND-and, Steph raises this child prodigy at the same time as earning a degree. She maintains family dynamics with her family and her fiance’s family, both of which are freakish large. Plus, fiance, right? She’s gonna do this whole wedding thing, and I am learning that people plan them a year or two in advance because it takes a year or two to get all this shit together. There is going to be a hell of a shit show in this awesome, exclusive, Shit Museum come October, let me tell you. Wubalubadubdub!

My sister and brother are kind, generous, hilarious people that I am desperate to win approval from. That’s one of those hard truths that cut both ways. They have this amazing bond, and they always have, and I always envy it. And they have bonds with me, too, but we don’t communicate on the same page. I always feel like we’re just off-center. It’s good to see them, and even better to get to know them. They both deal with things that I don’t think I could handle. The sheer amount that Allison gives to her friends in time alone is amazing. She will bend over backwards for them. Alex will give the shirt off his back, literally, for someone he loves in need. He makes me want to be a better person, and I think maybe 3-4 people in my life have done that for me.

It’s been a functional work trip, considering the very small, achievable goals I set for this trip. I aimed too high for NOLA in October. I’ll need to break them down to even more realistic goals for August, and then again for October, because I’ll be back to CA twice more this year. I hope Jared and I can fit a month in there sometime, too…I might have to plan all of 2016 by the end of the month.

It’s so late, and I should go to bed. I’ve got a beach trip tomorrow. Then hangouts with Mom, and the rest is still a bit fuzzy. However it pans out, I’ll be back in Denver on Thursday morning. At which point I will kiss the boyfriend, hold the gerbil, and probably pass the fuck out.


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