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Present and future's so bright

So you remember that post about me being worried about having to dumb myself down and wondering how long it would be before I was able to place myself into a job/career that would be challenging and exciting and I could stay with for years? Well, less than a week since I replied to someone on Indeed (she'd reached out to me back in November but I didn't see it. When I discovered it last Sunday during a casual job title search I assumed they'd hired for the role and just asked her to hold onto my resume and information should a similar role open up again), I accepted a role that ticks every box as a job I will be able to make mine in a way I haven't since working at Nashville Opera.

Thursday morning I felt compelled to check my spam folder and discovered a bit to my horror that the woman on Indeed had replied that day (Sunday) and forwarded on my information to her successor (she's retiring this month). I'd also heard from Donna (the successor), that day (Sunday). So I apologized profusely for being late in replying but said yes, I was interested, and sent resume and cover letter. Within an hour or so Donna wrote and asked if I could interview that afternoon. I said I needed to give a bit of notice, so I took a 7 a.m. interview slot yesterday morning. I sent her my references after the interview (which went very, very well, though I love interviewing and know that I tend to interview well no matter what, but I was particularly excited about the role and situation itself), and then got a call around 4:45 from a number I didn't recognize, so I didn't answer it. Due to celebrating a Friday and just not checking my phone again, I didn't check my voicemail until 10 o'clock. It had been Donna, really wanting to talk with me about the job.

As of around 10:00 last night, I enthusiastically accepted the role of Medical Billing Specialist at Columbia Pain and Spine Institute where I will be part of a small team of 3 specialists and one supervisor (Donna), building an in-house billing and support team from the ground up. Donna is hand-selecting her team (she just started in this role with the purpose of building the team) and I clicked with her immediately during our chat. We seem to be very much on the same page in terms of professionalism, having an agile mind and wanting to create a team within this clinic that, within a few years' time, is seen as a model for other clinics who choose to do/bring their billing in-house and on site. So not only will this role be a Kristi-shaped one, as when I was the one person ticketing department for Nashville Opera, a role that hadn't existed until I was in it, but the entire team will all be coming together at the same time. It's not an exaggeration that I feel like I've just joined an elite force and I will truly come into my own in regards to my profession and being able to really bring all of my skill set to the table. In no way did Donna ask this, but I would enthusiastically sign a 2-year minimum contract to be a part of this new team. I have the instinctive and intuitive sense that this will be the place and environment that is ever-challenging (without it being like Airbnb hypergrowth challenging of nothing EVER staying the same in a frenetic nightmare, but professionally challenging in terms of me able always to learn more, draw on current and future resources and professional groups, and actually challenge *myself* to throw myself into a job I actually believe in and where I will get to learn SO MUCH) where I will want to stay for a very long time. Perhaps until I retire!

So... I've had a lot of busy brain as this all came to pass so quickly, but I'm trying to slow today down back to regular time and remind myself that I've worked to get to this place. I tend to want to see a lot of serendipity and Universe gifts and this certainly falls into that category, but the other very real part is that I've done the work to get here. Despite throwing so much of 2017 into the toilet with my then-unrecognized pattern of creating chaos to start over, I did complete my Medical Coding and Billing certificate online course, I did pass both the CCA and CPC-A national certification exams last March, I did thorough and consistent job hunting to secure a Medical Billing Associate role at ZoomCare and was there nearly 4 months, and continued searching to get placed in the Patient Associate role at CenterLink. I'm the one who decided to write to you, my friends and supporters, when I was despairing about having to dumb down to be safe, ie: living in a post-alcohol environment for myself, and took your belief in me that what I was doing as temporary to heart. I've done what it takes to ensure that I have my disulfiram prescription and Evan and I are in a partnership about me taking it every other day. I'm on buspirone, and also have the Wyld gummies which are subtle yet have been a positive contributing factor to my feeling at 0 on a scale of 1-10 in regards to stress. My brain is healing, I'm living authentically, I feel my core values are far less misty and becoming ever clearer to me, and none of this is a struggle. For that reason alone I know that all of these decisions and this extended period of transition is, without a single doubt, what I am meant to be doing at this time in my life. I believe that the ultimate gift of 2019 will be my year without fear.

Right here, right now, I no longer fear myself.

Oh, and I've been in my post-alcohol phase since 1st December, so today marks 6 consecutive weeks of making that choice. This is nearly always when I get really squirrely, but with all of the other tools I'm actively using at this time, plus the mega excitement of this new role, means that I can safely celebrate (if I feel the need to put that label on it) with the gummies and not immediately put all of these extraordinary opportunities at high risk. What an incredible gift all of this is. I'm awash in gratitude.

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/536524.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Welcome, Yule!

Kristi and Evan xmas morning

Of all things, this morning my memories led me 11 years back to a Christmas time spent in Kingsville, OH, with Wolfie and Kosh and PGH Patronus. Despite the actions I'd taken to get there, once there, I had a very good holiday. That said, I'm relieved how much time has passed and the condition in which I'm spending the solstice/xmas/yuletide/holidays this year. A very merry from Evan and me!

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/536309.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Writing again, and roller skating

So I haven't done this in... years, but I'm finding myself writing in small bits during my 15 minute morning break and 30 minute lunch. It seems like it was back when I was at Rosetta Stone and writing Wraeththu and Slave Breaker fanfic that I would eat my lunch in the back seat of my car (back then I had an hour) and just write and write in my composition notebooks. It feels delightfully familiar to be doing that now, though it's the third and final novella of my original Reggie/Kelp "Surprised at Nothing" set. I don't know what the ultimate plot line is going to be, but the characters already surprised me when I was at sauna last Sunday. That was when the new ideas came to me and I started writing on them Sunday afternoon. Sauna is such a gift to me on so many different levels!!

Tonight I'm going to my first group class at Oaks Park. SO EXCITED!! Not least because the class cost includes skates and you can stay afterwards for the general skate to practice your new moves. I'll definitely post how it went!

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/535971.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

MKAL link

So I'm doing this Mystery Knitalong-- wanted to share links during the few weeks of getting the clues and knitting along! here's the link to pics!

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/535643.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Dumbing down, being safe, and patience

Last night after having a really blissful, productive yet also leisurely, weekend, I found myself somewhat unexpectedly in tears and asking Evan if he thought that I'd need to sacrifice truly compelling/engaging/challenging work for the rest of my life in order to be 'safe' in regards to my disorder. In other words: is the ultimate sacrifice in having a mostly stress-free life in which I'm not drawn toward alcohol as any kind of coping mechanism (but also not bored, because that's an even more compelling trigger for me, longer term) that I don't challenge myself in a work environment? That I'll never be paid anything close to what I believe I could earn, and more importantly, be in a role in which I'm learning new skills, taking on more responsibility, and feeling like I'm actually being challenged? He was very encouraging and supportive and said, "No, what you're doing now isn't going to be permanent. Once you have some real time under your belt and your brain and body and psyche have had an opportunity to really heal and you're feeling much stronger, only you would be able to hold yourself back. What you're doing now is temporary. Goodness only knows how things will be a few, much less several months or a year or more from now. You'll be working for at least a couple more decades, if you want. This is just how things are now."

I really, really, needed to hear that from him. If any of you, most of whom have known me for a decade or longer and haven't seen me function in an alcohol-free mode for more than 7 months at a time (and even then, that's only happened twice since... 1988), if you can envision how much more potent and fulfilled I will be in the future and can share that, I'd be grateful. No pressure, however. 😍

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/535408.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Lots of positive shifts

There's so much going on in my inner and outer worlds right now, but I do want to note some major shifts that have happened of late. One is the idea of rather than closing myself off as I commence down this road of quite conscious transition, I'll use my languishing WordPress blog that I created when "Surprised at Nothing" was being published as my more public-facing blog. That, rather than Facebook, which I've been moving away from anyway. Sure, WP will be monitoring my content just as much as EvilCorp FB, but it's still not FB. This is particularly relevant as I'm returning to a chapter in I Promise Myself, a book I checked out from the library a couple of months ago. Chapter 5 focuses on composing a vow to support conscious transitions, and this dovetails perfectly with the other book that had come across my radar just at the right time (2 weekends ago I was detoxing, which meant no sleep, so it was perfect for reading the book in one night), The Way of Transition. At least right now, the idea of having a celebration with people here in Portland who love and support me as I mark the transition into being someone who is post-alcohol is a very compelling one. Why not let people celebrate that decision and other holistic healing decisions and triumphs (and console me during setbacks) with me, in real time, in person??! There's really no need to put up barriers to that.

Another element to this that has come to me is an informal post-work schedule for the next few weeks. This will keep me on track in regards to a daily mindfulness practice I share with Evan, exercise, project work (this vow process or creative writing or any creative practice, really), and still allow plenty of downtime.

The third and final new-ish life quality aspect that has become manifest in my consciousness is that perhaps in addition to treating myself to jewelry at different milestones on my journey, I've decided that I'll gift myself once a month or so to a 1:1 training/exercise/lesson of some kind. The first thought is roller skating, so I can be taught how to skate backwards and to do crossovers with grace and confidence. But maybe some aerial work (especially after missing that aerial yoga class, wah stupid train), maybe another 1:1 with Jessa at Mod Physique, perhaps some contortonist training... there are so many options all over the city. And a 1:1 would be focused and not involve any kind of package of classes. For those here in PDX with any recommendations, they are welcome!!

Lastly, referencing one of my recent posts, I also think that taking the Wyld cannabis has helped my sleep. Some of that may have to do with the utter lack of stress in my life since last Monday, but I've also noticed that evenings when I have one of the gummies, I sleep like a rock. More yay for finding those!!

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/535042.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Grief during the holidays

This holiday season my heart goes out especially to those for whom this year everything is ALL WRONG. A loved one committed suicide and isn't here for the first time. A loved one has inexplicably gone missing, and there is still no word. Others look around and are confronted with a precious-one-shaped gaping absence-- the departure perhaps expected, but just as permanent. A lap is bereft of a lifetime furry (or feathered, or otherwise) companion. It seems as though there should be unique cards to send to those suffering the traumatic first 'celebration' in which loss and grief are around every corner, and heard echoing in every bright tune.

For you to whom this is relevant: you aren't forgotten, or shunned. I (and others) hold your pain, so as to share the burden. You are not alone. We hold you gently in light and love.

burning votive candles shaped in a heart

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/535030.html. Please comment there using OpenID.
After a short brush with a reminder as to why it is so incredibly important for me to put my healing, wise choices and self-awareness above all else, I'm having a great week! Work is going very well and I even enjoy being there (it's not a dream job or anything, but for what it is, it's phenomenal and I feel incredibly supported), and we have wintry weather. Cold and bright and quite windy. My office is up on the 3rd floor of the building and we stay pretty toasty, so I wear layers. ;)

As part of my job, I see lots and lots of names every day. I've snatched up a few (ie: written them down) as a habit from when I was writing all the time. Nothing like being inspired for names!
    Jansuk Duku
    Jaxon Zarkades
    Cedar McGinty (a personal favorite, as McGinty is my heritage name on my dad's side!)

Two other things/concepts that have come my way recently that I've found so supportive of my healing path and journey: this book. Reading this alone has illuminated to me how profoundly what I'm going through now — and for months or years to come — is a transition. I'm making changes, yes, but the start and end of them, such as they are, I won't recognize until I've gone past them, if it makes any sense. I'm in a time of extended transition, walking in a terra incognita, but I feel well protected.

And then, there's my not every evening, but many evenings, sort of treat to myself which I'm finding to be a very satisfactory alternative to alcohol:
These are a 1:1 CBD/THC cannabis gummy. They give me such a lovely, tingly buzz about 40 minutes after ingesting one, lasts about 2 to 2 1/2 hours, and I feel great in the morning. They honestly had me at the packaging when Evan brought one home to try- just a beautiful, unexpected shape, and just plain pretty. So, so happy that cannabis is legal in Portland and I have a great dispensary literally 1 1/2 blocks down the street that gives both a neighborhood and age discount! (the latter only applies to Evan, but I'll be there pretty soon!!)

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/534592.html. Please comment there using OpenID.
I found the Gimli trip fic I'd been working on back in '09 (helpfully labeled on the flash drive as 'Gimli Trip Fic, lol, and I really like the title I had/have for it, "A Journey Measured in Friends"), and it's a good 9.3K. The problem? I apparently at the time had some big secret that Gimli was going to tell Pippin and Merry once he arrived in Hobbiton (this is set post-WR when Pippin's second daughter is about 6) but for the life of me, I have no idea now what he was going to tell them. Do I hope it comes back, or just go back to it and ignore that part and potentially re-write it? Oh, the questions. ;)

I've really been enjoying my time off work spent mostly with Evan, but also taking some intense, focused classes at Industrial Barre which is close to me, especially when borrowing Evan's car. Yesterday he and I did something very spontaneous for us (ie: planned out in under 24 hours): we went to Mt. Scott Community Center so I could get my roller skating fix for free!! We were able to visit briefly with our friends Holly and Elizabeth, who walked up to see us and chat and look around at a First Nation fundraiser, and then we went to see Jocelyn at her house. So much socializing in one day! But it was a good time. And here I am, skating! I really prefer Oaks Park, which is a proper skating rink (not a converted basketball court), and there were way too many children, but I at least got to skate for about a half hour or so.


(if the link doesn't work, here it is just written out: http://thrihyrne.net/pictures/20181124KJLSkating.mov)

In joyous news, I discovered a whole new season of The Great British Baking Show streaming on Netflix, so we've been enjoying that and also the newest season of "Sheltand," which arrived on disk. That, my beloved, and knitting, and it's been so wonderful!!

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/534322.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Owl Cardigan project

Pictures of my current knitting project! Was talking about working on this Owl Cardigan with my sister and mom last night and realized I'd not taken any photos yet. Link to the project on my Ravelry page is here! But since I'm me, if you don't want to click, the photo is below as well. ;)

And 2 mini posters I liked enough to download from an occasional glance over at FB:

This entry was originally posted at https://thrihyrne.dreamwidth.org/534156.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

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