I learned a lot this year. A LOT. I came a long way personally and professionally, and it looks like things are really looking up. For both me and manz.
Professionally, I learned that I had had quite enough of porn, thank you, after being involved in the industry for so long. 7 long years!
No, it isn't. It really isn't.
I learned that taking a chance on something sometimes does work out the way you want it to, because that's how I found my current job. I took a chance and even though it sounded like the job was really difficult, and I wasn't sure I could do it, I applied anyway and got the job. Through this job I learned so much more. I learned that religion isn't inherently bad after all, it just requires the right kind of people to be involved in it for it to be something truly wonderful. I also learned that appearances really ARE deceiving. Social workers aren't always nice people despite their psychology background, and blue collar working men aren't always gruff and taciturn individuals - still waters run deep. I learned that I have to understand that not everyone will like me, and that I have to be okay with that.
I think the most important thing I've learned at this new job is something Gandhi said once. "A 'No' uttered from deepest conviction is better and greater than a 'Yes' merely uttered to please, or what is worse, to avoid trouble." Because I think it's ridiculous to ask for raises when the people who pay my salary (the members I represent) are getting pay cuts and have to pay at least $1000 for their healthcare every month, and because this means I disagree with my coworkers and believe they're selfish sons of bitches, they've decided to create a working environment for me that has been pretty terrible. But I refuse to support them, even if it means they're going to be rude and give me the mean side eye when I walk by. On top of that, because I refuse to support them, this means that I'm anti-union, against the democratic process, and a hypocrite. (Because they want to know - how do I do my job every day and tell people to stand up to their bosses and stand with their coworkers, but not support my own coworkers when they're asking for raises?)
It's been brutal having to constantly say no, remain professional, and the hardest part of all is having to rein in my usual violent impulses to hit someone and really hurt them. The workplace is the only place where if someone gets in my face I need to take a deep breath and count to ten. As satisfying as it would be to beat some ass up in that bitch, I won't go to jail for those fucks.
Personally I learned a lot, too. I learned that the way our society works these days is that reality television is real, social media is friendship, and faith is science. Or for that matter, reality television > reality, social media > true friendship, and faith > science.
I learned that just because someone is related to you by blood, that doesn't mean you're obligated in any way to have a relationship with them. I learned that I finally, for the first time ever, really am truly okay not having a relationship with my fucked up family. I learned that family really means the people who love you and care for you, not just the people related to you by blood. I did however also learn that building up a new family is going to take some time and effort. I learned that just because my birth family is fucked up, that doesn't mean that I have to create a new family by having kids to try and fix everything through them. I learned that me and manz are really okay not having kids now, if ever. Perhaps the most important part of what I learned about family is that I can't change anyone, and I can't change what people think of me or believe that I am. People will do and say and believe what they want to, and I need to understand that, accept that, and let it go.
I also learned that I'm still a nerd, and I'm really proud of that. Despite the fact that most people (before Big Bang Theory became popular) think that being nerdy is something bad, I don't care. I learned that these days, when I choose to do something that is outside the norm, its not because I want attention. At least, not anymore. It's because I really want to do whatever it is I'm choosing to do.
Why yes, I really did buy a Health Energy Potion.
I guess a lot of the stuff I learned in my personal life is stuff my brain already logically knew for some time, but that my heart had some trouble accepting. But now I think I'm at the point where at long last, my mind and heart are united in everything I do. Now, more than ever, I have no regret. Because of that, when someone asks me, "How are you?" I can really say "Good" and mean it.