Chapter 91: “Reacquainted Passion”
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With that essay, I handily won the Brian K. Welch scholarship and with it, a renewed desire to reacquaint myself with my passion. Around the same time, a wonderful employee at NESCom informed me of an annual poem collective called “Crosscut,” which was accepting submissions. I hadn’t been focused on poems much lately, but I knew that it would be a welcomed reprieve from my Photoshop and video projects.
I wrote four for the book and believe it or not, two were accepted! I was overjoyed with their literal acceptance of my work! To me, it was a validation that my entire career wasn’t a fluke! Three of the poems had rhymed, and for the fourth, I played with the notion of revision, forcing myself NOT to rhyme. Here are the four I had submitted (the latter two of which, were chosen):
Simultaneously, I had wanted to revisit my gaming childhood by reflecting on my path into gaming and detailing how I believed that I could never play video games in the same way ever again. I hadn’t planned on the series being so anti-video games, but the sentiment crawled out of my subconscious, as I knew that I had spent countless hours behind the wheel of a plastic controller with colorful buttons.
To satiate this transcribed desire, I signed up for a MyIGN Profile on IGN.com and began a blog detailing those very things. I called it “My Video Game Kind of Life,” and I planned to write until I was caught up with the present day. What is with me writing about myself?
I planned to finish the last post with a reveal of a love/hate relationship with video games, and how they would always be a part of my interests and of me. Part of the reason I posted such a blasphemous video game perspective on a video game blog was to gain views of the contradictory and inflammatory nature. Essentially, I had hoped to accumulate support and admirers via vitriol. Yeah, my plan was foolproof.
At any rate, I was writing much more frequently than ever, and I was still getting A’s and high B’s in school all the while maintaining my work life and home life (albeit barely). Deirdre and I had been pretty solid, but she was so quiet and reserved that I wouldn’t know if something was bothering her. I kept thinking back to the two times we broke up and I could see a similar look in her eye that something was off. I asked her if everything was okay, and she assured me of it. I suppose it’s not proper to expect an honest answer from such a stupidly broad question. We as humans aren’t easily direct with our emotions. I knew I wasn’t often, and Deirdre here was no different. Yet, it pained me to feel that I wasn’t giving her and Kaitlyn enough time. Sadly, I didn’t have a lot of time to give.
I used my projects as a way to combat isolation and to spend time with my family and friends. This was my method to kill two birds with one stone: get a project completed and form a memory of it with my loved ones. I found that I thrived more when I worked with other funny people, and the resulting videos proved that. Unfortunately, Deirdre would never in a million years get in front of a camera, but Kaitlyn would and did.
I really found my stride collaborating with my friends:
Okay, so they’re not good. I get it now, but then, I was working on honing my skills behind the camera.
As the holidays rolled around, I was able to spend more time with the family, and as a result, something amazing happened. I felt at ease in my celebration and didn’t hate myself for being lazy and unproductive. I had felt fulfilled for the first time in my life, and I was mentally okay with spending time away from work. I had a tendency to be rather hard on myself when it came time to review the day’s productivity. If I didn’t do enough creative things, then I would get mad at myself and eat more or sink deep into video games. When I felt complete during these rare days, I was absolved of my self-inflicted sins, and free to do what I please with the remainder of the day.
And that was an entirely foreign feeling. But boy, did it make me contented. So, I sat back, watched Kaitlyn open her gifts to her little heart’s delight, and I smiled knowing nothing could ruin this moment.
This is an ongoing story of my personal battle with Cancer. My hope is that it helps others who are currently experiencing their own battles (whether it be for themselves or a loved one) or to help with early detection.
The way I’m doing it is terrifying for a writer. I’m writing a publically available first-draft outline for an eventual book, chapter by chapter in weekly form. The only reason I’m doing it this way is to get the story out as soon as possible for someone out there who needs a survivor to visit them during their own treatment. If you’re reading this and need someone to talk to, tweet at me and I’ll give you a call. No questions asked. This story is for you and I’ll help any way that I can.
Stay tuned, as I will be posting a new chapter every Monday until the story is complete.
And remember if you experience any Anemic symptoms– get checked for Leukemia as well.
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