Sometimes I wish for an undo button, not because of regret but because I’m afraid. I applied to a job doing IT support and now I’m anxious about it. What if they hire me? (Like I’m not the one with ultimate say?) How will my life change?
Before applying it seemed like getting a job would be a good way to get myself out of my apartment (and make money) but in a way that’s maybe easier than all the MeetUps I talk myself out of? But now I’m nervous.
What if I suck? What if I’m just harassed because I don’t look like an IT Person (TM)?
Change – even theoretical change is scary. Change that involves leaving my apartment and interacting with other humans is terrifying. I wish it wasn’t.
But when I write it out, these are all factors I can control for, and when I remember I have agency, a job offer isn’t so scary.
Strangers on the other hand…
Not so long ago, I was one of those really unsocialized homeschoolers who couldn’t hold up a conversation about Harry Potter but could tell you about ANWR (Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge), domestic (oil) drilling, and how little control our federal government really has over the control of oil prices. I’d only ever played racing video games occasionally – my favorite games were the educational ones my parents bought or that my grandpa got from school – namely, Mavis Beacon Typing, Story Weaver, and Amazon Trail. Those were just the games I was allowed to play, actually. My brother played Need For Speed, and Lego Racers (which I joined in on a few times) and was allowed video games and consoles.
I lived in a very controlling, mentally/spiritually/emotionally abusive home, where I raised and nurtured 6 of my siblings until I moved out days before my 7th sibling was born at 18. I was never encouraged in any artistic endeavor or to do anything but get married and become a breeder for religious reasons. That’s what I got for being born with a uterus – my reproductive organs defined my worth.
I never read The Chronicles of Narnia, Lord of the Rings, or Harry Potter because magic was witchcraft, which we would inevitably start practicing if we were exposed to it (because of our lack of brains?). At one point we abandoned our Disney collection, until my mom had too many kids it was impractical to keep them from Cinderella even if it did have a fairy godmother in it, and she did use a spell (bippity, boppity, boo).
I thus immersed myself in historical fiction and studying history so intensely that I still have a lot of random stuff memorized. It was the only allowed form of geekiness that I had, and so, I used it. I had 4 pocket constitutions; for a couple years I always had one on hand, just in case. I knew where to find ANYTHING by the article, and often section number.
Because I was so intensely set on learning I saw through the bullshit that a lot of the history “teachers” in the Christian community were peddling. Their revisionist history – while I was never allowed to say otherwise without being lectured – was clearly ill informed, completely untrue, and lacking in any historical context. I knew this because I studied everything around and leading up to events just for the context.
Now when people try to tell me that we were meant to be a theocracy by our founders, I call bullshit and brainwashed.
That’s kind of besides the point, though. The point is that I was sheltered. I was not allowed to play actual video games for more than an hour here-or-there if my siblings needed a player 2. I wasn’t allowed to read fantasy books because of religion. I hadn’t seen Star Wars until I was nearly 17, and even then I was bored because it was Episode 1. I’m convinced we only saw it because my mom was confused about the “classic” nature of it, and the kid from Jingle All The Way was starring.
I didn’t see LOTR until I was 17 at my boyfriend’s house, because he was really into it: Tolkien quote in email signature and everything. We started with the extended edition – I had to watch it 3 different times before I got the story and then I fell in love with the genre and with LOTR – Two Towers especially.
When I moved out, and moved in with my boyfriend’s family which is an even longer story, we started playing the PC version of Halo on occasion. That was my first “real” introduction to gaming, even though I hated getting shot all the time while figuring out how to move. I was also introduced to Firefly and Fringe – we’d watch these quietly to avoid waking up his parents, who are also not into science fiction or fantasy.
When we got married, we bought our first console, cable, and I’ve come a long way since then. I’d always identified as a geek, much to my mom’s horror, because I always knew I was – so you can imagine my happiness upon finding not only a ton of content, but a ton of people who were into the same things. We discovered that Focus on the Family outright lied about Harry Potter; Doctor Who is amazing; Browncoats are forever; and GAMING IS FUN. There are games that have stories, you guys! STORIES, not just racing and/or shooting. I had found that piece of me that was missing and wanting to manifest, that piece of me that helps everything else make sense.
Ask any ex-quiverfull or fundamentalist daughter and they’ll tell you it’s reallllllly hard to escape the you-are-your-uterus-mindset and find out who you actually are, what you actually like. This has been a long process for me – an ongoing process even, because I’m still unlearning old thought processes. On bad days, I just sit and wonder if doing what I want is even worth it – if being me (whoever that is) is even worth it.
Now, I’m making the third season of my web-series. I started it last year in a moment of clarity, sudden bravery, and lack of fucks to give after an existential crisis.
This project, KieryGeek Season Three, is all about storytelling: the things that I love about gaming, sci-fi, fantasy, and geekdom – I’ll be talking about world-building in games and collecting play-through footage. I’ll also be creating stories with the help of my co-conspirator Matt (MALE FRIEND I’M NOT MARRIED TO WHAT? TAKE THAT UPBRINGING!) in a hangout format. I’d really like to see this funded not just because it’s cool and another kind of community, but because it would mean so much to me personally and my constantly self-critical psyche to do something amazing and worthwhile and completely me for a change.
Thank you everybody!
If you’re reading this on the blog right now (and chances are, you are), you’ve probably noticed a major color change. I missed having a custom theme ( had one once, a long long time ago) so I thought I’d make a custom background for my current theme, so it’s still a bit more me, and less boring looking, while still keeping all the wordpress functionality that I need.
I spent several hours on colourlovers making patterns and palettes and colors and so many things. At first I made a bunch with the pink color that my logo had in it, and I found a striped background and created shades of pink, which looked fantastic and fit with my logo well. But there was so much pink. Don’t get me wrong, I *love* pink, but truly, blue is my favorite color and I had a thought: Why am I even using pink if I really like blue? So I decided to go back and edit the header on my blog and change the color to blue, and then make a blue background, because I love blue!
…Then I decided that while I was at it, and since it’s the same logo I use on etsy – I’d go ahead and fix the colors there too.
I liked the pink, I really did…but I’m a blue girl – so I figured, why not just go with that?
That’s not the only thing that’s new or changed though. I found an article on Mashable (from a friend) about the new Facebook profiles that will be rolling out in October and how to activate it early. So, as I had already had a developer profile thingy from something that I was working on earlier (not web-dev…I think it was the new twitter thing needed an app or something) I just updated an existing thing and joined the new open graph profile early. My favorite feature is the cover image, and I really love the picture I put up and how all the new features look and am generally just really psyched about the full integration of it. So I thought I’d post the picture that I have up there (it’s brilliant – you can put up your couples picture, while still maintaining your face for your profile, ha!).
I love the way the archives (there ARE archives!) work too and the streamlined profile. It’s pretty neat. Now all that’s left is to change the colors on my fan page for Kiery’s Whimsy and get back to drawing the rough illustrations for The Balloon Lady 2.0!