Heya peeps! It's Friday. My favorite day as long as I'm still looking for my real life.
Well, we made it back to Xena Con. Ha! I would've never guessed that would happen. Seriously. We had just come off the worst year of both of our lives. I seriously thought we had made it 15 and that was it. Stuff happened last year that was so out of character for both of us that we began to barely recognize each other. It was scary bad.
Our friends were rooting for us, but I tell ya, neither of us were. I thought the world had crumbled and that some weird alternate dark miserable universe came and replaced my sunshiney one.
Turns out we learned a lot. We learned that we had never mourned together. Ever. I've lost family and so has T, but we had never lost immediate family. People that meant exactly the same to both of us. When T lost her Grandpa, I was sad, but I was there for her. When I lost my Grandma Tucker, T was sad, but she was there for me.
Last year, when we lost Chris, neither of us had any idea how to deal. I felt guilty for telling her he would be okay. It felt like I lied to her. It was mostly to convince myself, but I didn't want her to worry.
Of course Chris didn't want us to worry, so he didn't really let us know he knew he was going to die.
I gotta say, I disagree with his decision, but I get it.
He did it so we'd have fun at Xena Con. It was all we had talked about for 6 months. My comment at New Year's, "Nobody die!" I'm sure helped influence his decision. Honestly though, it didn't do anything but confuse and make us feel left out. We worried the whole time we were there. It was a roller coaster of hope, loss, depression, fear, and back to hope. At the 2012 Xena Con, Jennifer Sky talked about how her liver was dying. With every word all I could do was think of Chris.
Later, one of the long time Con attendees spoke about how she was donating all of her partner's collectibles. They had been together for something like 30 years and she had just passed away...from Cancer.
It seemed like death and cancer hovered over the entire con. T & I ended up in a huge argument that night. I'm surprised the authorities weren't called. We pretty much didn't even touch each other the rest of the trip. Words were short. We were both suffering but we thought we still had hope. We didn't.
The last words from Chris to me were words of concern. He was hopeful that we had made friends and that we were having fun. I lied and told him we were. The truth was we had just started what would be a painful, depressing, devastating, exhausting year.
In 16 days it will be one year since Chris left. I miss him every day. I miss him and Cindy just showing up at random times. I miss so many things he did for me as a friend.
It wasn't just Chris we lost though. It was our family unit. The random weekend visits and discussions that lasted until dawn. The rants about our parents and our jobs. The holiday traditions. We tried to deny it, but we both knew it was true. And that we needed to mourn that as well.
Instead we tried to kill each other.
We even looked at places to move. We decided to separate. Every failure became the fault of the other.
Every day I tried to find another reason not to hang myself in the garage. For real.
I have some pretty amazing friends. People that genuinely care.
I'm still not sure if we figured out how to mourn with each other, but we did learn how to stop hurting and hating and blaming. We learned that we weren't broken, just bent. We learned that we were "worth it". We learned to have compassion for each other. And empathy. And to believe in each other again.
We also learned that we need spirituality.
Not religion or dogma, but that connection to the universe that somehow, we had lost.
We learned that we hate our jobs and that we are tired of feeling stuck. We aren't and we aren't going to be. We haven't finished trying to be what we always dreamed of being.
The number one thing we learned was that no matter what, we want to make those dreams come true side by side. Together. The world isn't this terrible negative scary place you see on TV and in movies or even in books. No, it's beautiful and amazing and good.
Sure, crazy things happen, but just being alive is crazy. Crazy amazing.
So, that brings us back to Xena Con 2013. We had to go back! We couldn't let THAT last one be OUR Xena Con experience forever. Especially since they decided to have another. It was supposed to be the very last one in 2012, but so many people came that they went ahead and had another.
T sold her car, which is great because we didn't need it and it will save us lots by not paying for a tag or insurance. We got creative and came up with enough to go. At the last minute ticket prices dropped and it all came together. So, we went. Free this time from any burden.
There were some minor difficulties at work, but that was all really just a learning experience.
Let me tell you kids...we had a blast this time! The con wasn't nearly as packed this time and we actually met back up with some peeps from last year. I got to meet some of the people from the show that I really admired and they were all amazingly positive and nice.
It's weird how many of the people involved with the show believe in soulmates and true love and deeper love than most people understand. I'm always surprised by how many of the Kiwi's don't shy away from talk of many lives together with their partners. Xena Con really is sort of a gathering of souls that believe in what many might think impossible. They all prove it isn't.
Every year Xena Con raises over $25,000 in charity. They've collected more than 16 million in the 18 years of Fandom. It's a good crowd. A little strange, but pretty amazing.
Burbank feels like another home. A safe place. I'm not sure I could ever live in a city THAT big, but I promise you, we will go back. If not for Xena Con, then for something else.
Life is super better now. T & I had an amazing holiday season and have found our way back from the darkness. Back from the ledge. Back from the swamps of sadness. The universe seems to be whispering things to us. Beautiful things.
Be good to each other. Do something that scares you. Create. Laugh. Love deeply.
And May the Force Be With You...Always.