I’m a web developer. I’m a techie. I have fairly severe social anxiety (I’m apparently pretty good at hiding it though). Why the heck does online dating terrify me?

It doesn’t really make sense. At least not on the surface.

I think the reason people think online dating is easier for those with social anxiety, is because you can get to know people without interacting face to face and decide whether or not to meet them.

Honestly, for me it’s a lot harder. I’m not entirely sure why. I’m sure I can’t be alone in this. As uncomfortable as I am meeting new people in person, I feel like it’s easier to read them and get a more genuine conversation out of them. There’s something about hiding behind a computer that terrifies me. Even though my life is spent on the internet, it terrifies me. Yet being out and interacting with people is extremely exhausting. I feel like I can’t win.

Does anyone else find online dating extremely nerve wracking?

Continue reading

So, I didn’t post about Fan Expo right away because I was just way to exhausted. The weird thing is that I wasn’t exhausted the same way I normally am.

Usually, being at a con fills me with excitement and I enjoy every bit of it – except for not getting into panels I really want to – and it’s just so much fun. This time, was different. Not that I didn’t enjoy myself, it just wasn’t the same.

I had a few panels I wanted to attend, it took me some time to get oriented with the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. It was a bit confusing to say the least. I ended up not doing any panels.

The problem I really had was, even  though I did start getting excited about going the day before, once I got there, I kind of just wanted to leave.

Firefly Team Up at Fan Expo Canada 2016

Morena Baccarin, me, Jewel Staite, Alan Tudyk at Fan Expo Canada, September 3, 2016

I managed to stick it out for my two photo ops, which weren’t too far apart, but photo ops go so quickly.

First, was the Firefly Team Up with Morena Baccarin, Jewel Staite, and Alan Tudyk.

Getting in, was chaotic. They were not well organized, compared to how Calgary Expo did it in 2013. Once I got it, it was pretty quick. I spent far less time waiting in line than I did in Calgary, so that part was good. We were coming in from the side where Morena is, so I didn’t really get to interact with Alan, more than a quick hi as I walked up. They pushed everyone through so quick!

When it was done, they all said thanks and I quickly got in a gesture to Alan, to draw attention to my Con Man Kickstarter hoodie. He didn’t catch it right away, until I turned away from him and he let out a really excited sounding “nice!” when he saw the Con Man logo on the back.

William Shatner photo op at Fan Expo Canada 2016

William Shatner photo op at Fan Expo Canada 2016

I wandered the show floor to waste time until my next photo op. I picked up some t-shirts. Then headed back towards the photo op area and hung out for a bit and managed to get in much closer to the front of the line.

Nothing really exciting happened in the photo op, but I realized later that they took the picture sooner than I thought. I was still adjusting my shirt. lol

Then I decided to try and get some autographs. I got Jewel first, then Morena shortly after. Alan’s line was too long, and my feet and back were extremely sore.

I wasn’t feeling overly anxious or anything, or at least I didn’t think I was. I was in a fair amount of pain, because I wore absolutely the wrong shoes for and as much as I wanted to be there, I also didn’t want to. While waiting in Morena’s autograph line, I started having heart palpitations. My heart wasn’t racing, it was just skipping every few beats, inconsistently, for about a half hour.

Heart palpitations aren’t new for me. I’ve been having them since 2010, but not like that. Most of the time, it happens one or two times, and then nothing for several days, even weeks. It doesn’t seem to be triggered by anything specific, most of the time, anyway. I have had it start when I’ve been particularly upset, on occasion. Anyway, it was weird, but it went away. However, I think there was some anxiety happening that I was less aware of, and my depression was causing the lack of excitement too. It was hard.

I was debating leaving then. I didn’t want to, but I just really didn’t want to be there. I was getting frustrated navigating the crowd. I wandered the show floor for a while and picked up a few other things.

Sam Maggs signing at Fan Expo 2016

I finally actually got to meet Sam after missing out on seeing her in Calgary in 2014.

I managed to waste just enough time to justify staying a bit longer and heading down to Sam Maggs’s signing.

Got to talk to her for a few minutes and met some cool people in line.

I picked up a couple more souvenirs and then headed back towards the north building, since I had to go there to get back to my car.

I figured I’d check to see if there were any others I wanted autographs from.

Most of the autograph tables seemed to be closed up for the day, and no one was left who I wanted, so I headed back towards the exit to the parking garage.

I was finding myself getting even more angry and irritated as I made my way out. People stopping and cutting me off. I could been my anxiety levels increasing and I started walking faster, as fast as I could with how much pain I was in.

Once I got to my car, I sat with the air conditioning blasting for at least 10 minutes, because I was so hot and sweaty and gross and my legs needed a break! I was so relieved when I finally got out of the downtown Toronto traffic. The rest of the drive home was calming. Much better than the drive home from Calgary Expo, which was a 3 hour drive. The traffic was better, but it was so long.

Next year, I think I’m going to fly, because it’s only 12 minutes, instead of close to an hour and a half. The flights from Niagara don’t start for a few more weeks, so that wasn’t an option this time. I considered taking the GO train from Burlington, but the idea of being stuck in public transit makes me anxious, like I have no control. It’s weird because it’s common to have anxiety while driving, but that’s not generally an issue for me. Except as far as being unsure of where I’m going. As much as I hate being stuck in Toronto traffic, I feel safer in my car. Bizarre, I know.

Anyway, overall, it was well worth going to Fan Expo. Even though I didn’t have nearly as much fun as I’d hoped, it was still worth it. I don’t regret going. I just hope that next year I’ll feel up to going for the whole weekend, at least two days, so I can go to some panels.

My Favourite Moments

Jewel Staite’s Autograph Table

Photo ops are usually too quick, but I like that as a souvenir more than an anything else, but going to autograph tables, you get a little longer and often they will interact with you.

Jewel Staite AutographI went to Jewel’s table first. I was shocked by how nice she was. Not that I was expecting her not to be nice, she just seemed like she really enjoyed being there. Kind of like John Barrowman, only not quite as outwardly. (If you’ve ever seen John Barrowman at a con, you’ll understand what I mean. Meeting him is not an experience you will forget.) I had been talking to the person helping at her table while she was with the person before me, because I was trying to decide whether I wanted her to sign my photo op picture, one of the items I brought with me, or one of the photos from her table.

Since my photo was Firefly themed (having Morena and Alan in it) I decided to go with a Stargate Atlantis picture from her table….course there were 3 or 4 to choose from, so that took a bit longer. lol

As the person before me left, I grabbed one and moved down the table to Jewel. I told her that she was my second Atlantis autograph, and she excitedly asked who my first was. (It was Joe Flanigan at Edmonton Expo in 2013.)

I mentioned why I went with an Atlantic pic instead of having her sign the photo, and she saw the photo in my hand and she said that it turned out really good. I said that I’d had some not so good ones before, and told her about how bad I looked in a picture with the cast of Torchwood because I was laughing so hard because John Barrowman grabbed my ass. She laughed really hard, like she was not at all surprised. Just like anyone else who knows John Barrowman, it wasn’t surprising at all.

Dancing Deadpools

I wish I’d gotten a picture of this, but I didn’t have enough time to get my phone out.

So, going from the north building to the south requires going up two escalators from the floor where the smaller exhibition room was with the photo ops and autographs. (There were two floors below where there were panels and other things going on.) Then you walk along a long bridge-like space overlooking the show floor, and into a hallway like bridge that goes over the GO train tracks, and has a good view of the base of the CN Tower (which I didn’t have the energy to take a picture of). Then you have to go down two more escalators to this one area that I don’t think was being used for much, but people were hanging out there. As you walk to the next escalator, the floor continues around it, and straight ahead was a DJ table with music blasting really loud. As I stepped onto that escalator, there was a song playing with a really good beat (no idea what it was because I don’t really listen to current pop music) and I looked up to beside the DJ table and there were two Deadpools and a Spiderman dancing. It was really funny. People all around me on the escalator were recording it, so I’m sure it’ll end up online somewhere.

It provided a good laugh for me, as it was nearing the end of the day. I was heading over to Sam Maggs’s signing, in the south building. I had to go down 2 more escalators to get there, but I was still picturing the dancing Deadpools so it made it less stressful.

I haven’t been to a con since September 2013 because of my depression. Three years later, my nerd and depression are battling it out in my head. My nerd is winning this one, but depression is close behind.

My first convention experience was Calgary Expo in 2012. I heard that Amanda Tapping was going to be in Calgary, and I couldn’t not go.

Naturally, I had to go again in 2013. I bought my tickets the day they went on sale, without knowing whether there would even be guests that I wanted to see. It was just too much fun.

They ended up getting, Richard Dean Anderson and Michael Shanks, so I had to continue my Stargate SG1 photo op collection.

Later in 2013, I went to Edmonton Expo. I got my first Stargate Atlantis picture, with Joe Flanigan.

2014 rolled around. Of course I ordered my tickets for Calgary Expo right away, again. As the event grew closer, I found myself fighting with whether or not to go. I kept using the excuse that I couldn’t afford it, but in all honesty, money had nothing to do with it. I mean, yeah, money was tight but it hasn’t stopped me before.  This was the thing I spent all year waiting for.

I may have been in debt for over two years, but that wasn’t the real reason. I wasn’t really the thought of spending a few hundred dollars on tickets, photo ops, autographs, memorabilia, or a hotel room. It didn’t help matters of course, but it wasn’t the real reason. I didn’t actually know what the real reason was at the time, just that there was a really strong part me that had absolutely no desire or energy to go, even though my heart wanted to, so badly. What I didn’t realize at the time is that I was struggling with depression.

I hadn’t been diagnosed with depression or anxiety yet – that came about 7 months later – so I really had no idea why I was fighting this so hard.

I ended up getting a refund for my tickets on the very last day possible. If I hadn’t, I would have had to go. I know it would have been good for me and I would have had fun, but the part of my brain where depression lives wouldn’t let me go through with it.

The strange thing is, looking back now, my anxiety had nothing to do with it. Even my social anxiety wasn’t really a factor when it came to attending cons. I was comfortable at cons. I mean, the first time, I was nervous, but once I figured out how insanely awesome it was, the thought of going never scared me. Not even a little. It’s the only thing I’ve ever done entirely on my own without wishing for someone to go with me. Going out to dinner or a movie or whatever on my own fucking terrifies the shit out of me though.

Being around all those people, didn’t bother me. In any other circumstance I would be extremely uncomfortable and avoid it at all costs, but there’s something about being surrounded by fellow geeks, nerds, and fangirls/fanboys that doesn’t terrify me. The only time I’ve felt truly happy the last 10 years of my life was when I was my two times at Calgary Expo and my one time at Edmonton Expo. It’s like I was meant to be there. Anyone can strike up a conversation and find something in common and lots to talk about. You just don’t get that anywhere else.

The fact that I had even considered not going to Calgary Expo just didn’t make sense to me. The fact that I actually requested a refund on my tickets….. I still can’t believe I did it. The difference now is, I know exactly what it is that was holding me back then and what I’m fighting with now.

It’s so easy to make excuses and just not bother doing something because quite honestly, it takes more effort than you feel strong enough to put in.

I know I’ll always regret not attending a con that I really had no good excuse to miss, but as long as I consider it and come up with a reasonable argument against going (like no guests I’m interested in), I know I’ll be OK. I will always regret missing Calgary Expo 2014. I missed out on Karen Gillan and Matt Smith! I mean, he’s not David Tenant, but in still mad at myself for missing out.

I have not been to a con since September 2013 in Edmonton. I moved in early 2015, so even if I’d wanted to go to Calgary then, I couldn’t.

Now, I am closer to Toronto, and I know there are a few cons every year. I heard about the Niagara Falls Comic Con on the last day, last year. I forgot about it this year until the week before, but there was no one who caught my interest, so it was an easy decision to say no.

I’d been keeping an eye on the guest list for FanExpo 2016, but kept going back and forth in my head about whether or not I would go. It took me probably two months to finally decide.

I was struggling with the idea of paying for a hotel and booking the time off work. I was looking for any excuse I could come up with, not to go. I keep going back to money, but the thing is, money isn’t really tight right now.


I can come up with them all.

I know I would have fun. So why is it so hard?

I realized in July that my depression has gotten pretty bad, with no trigger. I’m still battling it. New medication is starting to maybe make some difference, but in still having a hard time.

Finally, my logical brain kicked in, I don’t have to drive 3 -7 hours to get there (like I did when I lived in Alberta). If I don’t want to stay in a hotel, I technically don’t have to. But what really helped me make the decision was the idea that I don’t need to take time off work or even book a hotel, if I only go on one day!

My nerd and my depression have been battling it out for weeks in my head, but I think I found the perfect compromise.

I am going on Saturday, and Saturday only. I will drive to Toronto in the morning, and drive home that night. I don’t need to put my dog in a kennel, because my parents can take care of him for the day.

I bought one photo op (Firefly teamup!!!) so I can enjoy the con and either go to some panels or just walk the floor and buy some nerdy stuff.

…..Later, I  gave in and bought a second photo op (SHATNER!!!!!!!)

I was interested in John Barrowman’s event (because he is f-ing hilarious – I met him in both Calgary and Edmonton in 2013) but after I looked at the price, I decided that it’s not worth the pressure I’d be putting on myself. Having less specific plans, especially plans that require money, makes me far less stressed out.

I am finding myself occasionally dreading the idea and occasionally regretting my decision, but I know it’s just my depression. Attending cons is something I love! I know I will have a good time. I’m still battling the negative thoughts and the lack of desire to actually go, but I have to go!

I’ve already bought my tickets. I can’t change my mind. It’s one day. AND it’s on a long weekend, so I’ll still have two days to recover.

I’ll post my pictures, probably as soon as I get home. Maybe even before. We’ll see.

3 more days!

This week, I started a new job. Leading up to the beginning of this new endeavor, I was completely terrified.

The months following being diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder took me from being overworked, extremely stressed, and fighting suicidal thoughts to being even more stressed, trying to manage things completely on my own, and being stigmatized by people I trusted. I ended up going through a fairly traumatic exit from the company while still trying to find the right treatment for my anxiety. I was also diagnosed with severe Social Anxiety Disorder right around the time all this was happening.

Still trying to work through managing my anxiety, I knew I needed more of a routine to help keep me out of the grips of my depression, so I began working on updating my resume and portfolio.

The difficulty with searching for a job as a web developer is that 90% of the jobs in Canada that I’m even remotely interested in and qualified for are in Toronto or the GTA. I have absolutely no desire to live in downtown TO or have to commute. Luckily, I came across a job posting for a front end developer at a company 20 minutes away.

Since front end website development is where I specialize, I had to dig a little deeper. I was intrigued by the products they built and the projects they have done, so I applied. Within a couple days I was asked for an interview, and the following week, a second meeting.

My social anxiety was out of control and the fear of a reoccurance of what happened with my last job made the whole process extremely difficult for me.

After being offered the job, I had to wait a little over a week before I actually started. All that time, I spent ruminating about all the things that could go wrong. I even had moments where I felt so badly that I wouldn’t be able to get through the whole ordeal that I found myself thinking about ways to get out of it (including suicide). I have these kind of thoughts quite frequently, but what’s ironic is that my anxiety actually keeps me from following through with any of them.

And then this week came around. Tuesday was my first day. I knew beforehand that one other would be starting the same day, so that made me feel a little better, but I was still terrified.

The entire day, I was on the verge of panic. My heart was pounding. By the time I left for the day, I was exhausted!

My second day, I was far less anxious. Having been in the office and gotten used to the work environment and the people around me, I was much more comfortable. I actually even had a conversation with a few of the other devs. I was still nervous, but who isn’t during their first week in a new job?

Thursday went about the same.

Today, I actually felt productive. I was a contributing member of the team!

I have never been more excited about the future of my career. I am working with technologies that I’ve been wanting to work with for a long time, but never did because any of the technologies I’d suggested trying out at my previous job were shut down and rejected for invalid reasons, so eventually I gave up and just tried to do my job the best I could with the tools I already had.

The thing that I am most excited about is the fact that I there are people who know more than me! Sounds like a weird thing to be excited about, I know, but the one thing I really didn’t have at my last job was someone to bounce ideas off of or to get advice on how to execute tasks I didn’t have much experience with. For four years, I had to rely on Google to help me struggle through things that were beyond my knowledge because my boss was too busy or in some cases was actually less experienced than me (there were a small number of topics where he would call me for help). Now, here I am, working for a company who is working with current, standard technologies of the web development industry, and had a team of several experienced developers.

I haven’t been excited about my career since I graduated from college in 2011, so I can’t wait to grow with the company!

On a lighter note, I realized something kind of funny today.

I knew from looking at the company’s website before my interview, as well as from meeting the team at the office after my second interview that the team is made up, mostly, of guys. I mean, I do work in a predominantly male dominated industry, so it shouldn’t be that surprising, but at my last job, the team was mostly women.

It didn’t hit me, though, until the end of the day today, after the director of business (a guy) left, followed by the bookkeeper (lady), and the designer and project manager (both ladies), and I looked around the room and suddenly it occurred to me. There were 8 people left in the office. Just the devs, hacking away on our keyboards. 7 of the 8 devs on the team are guys, and the 8th is me. I was sitting in a room, coding, with 7 guys! Seven men to one woman. It felt super weird, yet somewhat empowering.

We need more women in technology!

Apparently, I Am A 24-Year-Old Boy….?

That is according to this Apply Magic Sauce psychometric test, which I found a while back via Hello Giggles.

Screen Shot 2015-10-12 at 11.35.41 AM

Age, gender, and personality results of the test.

Seeing as I am actually s 27-year-old woman, I can only assume that the reason for this is due to the amount of sci-fi and technology related things I like on Facebook compared to the number of beauty and home decore related things.

If that’s the case…… HOLY STEREOTYPES BATMAN!!!!

I sinceriously hope that isn’t the case here, but in all honesty, I can’t thing of any other reason for this thing to guess that there’s an 84% chance I’m a man.

Here’s some more of my results:

Intelligence, I'll take it! Life satisfaction? Ha! Yeah right. Not even close. I'm not at all satisfied with my life.

Intelligence, I’ll take it! Life satisfaction? Ha! Yeah right. Not even close. I’m not at all satisfied with my life.

It showed this first, and I thought it was kind of funny, especially compared to the result if I'm a female.

It showed this first, and I thought it was kind of funny, especially compared to the result if I’m a female.

Apparently there is a higher chance that I'm gay, if I'm a man, than there is if I'm a lesbian. I must have just the right amount of girly likes on Facebook for that result. LOL!

Apparently there is a higher chance that I’m gay, if I’m a man, than there is if I’m a woman. I must have just the right amount of girly likes on Facebook for that result. LOL!

Hahaha!! The relationship status.... Yeah. I'm chronically single.

Hahaha!! The relationship status…. Yeah. I’m chronically single.

And then there’s the fact that it doesn’t think I’m in the IT industry….. Hello!!!!! Web developer!!!! Although, web designer is sometimes considered to fall under “art” so I’ll take that one. But I really don’t post/share/like a lot of web related things on my personal Facebook because more than 90% percent of my Facebook friends are NOT techies so it wouldn’t really be worth sharing. All my web related things tend to go on Google+, Twitter, Tumblr, and LinkedIn, what I share things whoever publicly or with my fellow web nerds.

What I would really like to see though, is something that looks at all your social media and doesn’t assume that girls are not nerds. Then maybe most of the results would actually be closer to accurate.

The thing I think we have to remember is that there is no finish line with depression, anxiety, or any other sort of mental illness. We’re on this path, and the path is constantly changing. Sometimes it’s flat and well-marked, and we can see all the way to the horizon. Other times, it’s so heavily shrouded in fog and mist, we can’t even see past our fingertips and we need someone to show us where the path is. And sometimes, we come to a wall that we don’t think we’ll ever get over.
tears in rain | WIL WHEATON dot NET

This is one of the reasons I love about Wil Wheaton! He is very open about his struggle with mental illness.

The main reason I wanted to share this post is because the conversation he shared, towards the end, really hit home with me.

Wil is also hilarious. This line made me laugh:

there is no such thing as a good morning at bullshit o’clock.

And also, this:

(If you can spell bananas without Gwen Stefani doing it for you in your head, you’re missing out on something great.)

Note: His post is really long and he is mostly talking about some game that I know nothing about, so I skimmed over that portion of it. If you don’t want to read the whole thing, I’d recommend reading up to the part where he says, “We went on like this for a few more minutes, my anti-morning sass offset by Ashly’s relentless happiness and positivity.” You could probably go a bit further if you wanted to. Go as far as you want. Then skip down to about where he says, “Still with me? Good.” and continue reading from there. Even skipping that big chunk in the middle, it’s still long, but it’s worth it!

Wil has said on several occasions (on social media and interviews, etc.) that he hears stories like this all the time, which in some ways makes it feel less special, but for each of those people, it is deeply personal. At least it is for me. But knowing I’m not the only one also makes me feel good at the same time.

This is the paragraph that got me:

I extended my hand and thanked him for playing, because it was a genuinely fun and challenging match. He took my hand and he said, “I was really hoping that I’d get to play with you, because you saved my life.” Before I could respond, he continued, “everything you’ve written and shared about anxiety and depression helped me get treatment for my own mental health.”

If I ever get to meet Wil Wheaton, I hope have the opportunity to tell him he saved my life too!

He is also, all around, a pretty cool dude, so meeting him would be an honour!

I knew who he was and that he had been on Star Trek, but I only started following him on social media after he appeared on The Big Bang Theory because I discovered that he was a huge nerd and that is freaking awesome! I just wish I had figured that out before I attended my first (and second) convention (Calgary Expo 2012 and 2013) because he was there both times and I didn’t bother to get a photo op or autograph because I really only knew him from Big Bang, and that he was on Star Trek: The Next Generation, but I wasn’t that big into it, so I didn’t care that much at the time. Plus, I was busy meeting Amanda Tapping, Michael Shanks, Richard Dean Anderson, and Nathan Fillion! Now wish that I had added Wil to my list of people to get photos with, or at least an autograph! But back in 2012 and 2013, he didn’t mean to me what he does now.

I’m sure I’ve written about it enough times on social media that by now most people reading this probably know, but I’ll share it again anyway.

I suffered for many, many years with self hatred, poor self-esteem, and basically zero confidence. I worried constantly about what people were thinking about me, whether they liked me or not, whether the group of kids on the other side of the room were laughing at me because of how fat I look, how terrible my hair is, my ugly clothes, or something stupid I said. I also had horrible situations constantly popping into my head, triggered by things as simple as one of my parents being 5 minutes late getting home from work which means they got in a terrible car accident and I’ll never see them again, or I forgot to lock the front door and now there could be a serial killer somewhere in my house waiting for the perfect moment to jump out of a dark room to murder me.

After moving over 3,000km away from the friends I’d known since grade 1, to a teeny tiny little town in the middle of nowhere, I began to retreat into my own little world inside my head where I pretended all those old friends were not slowly drifting away and losing touch and we’d all be together again some day, while in reality they were growing up and moving on with their lives. Today, very few of them are still friends with each other.

On the outside, I was completely miserable.

High school is traumatic enough without being the new kid who just moved from another province, and completely different culture. Moving across the country at 13 years old, when all the kids have formed their little groups and refuse to accept anyone new, add in anxiety disorders that have begun to create physical symptoms, but no one seems know be able to figure out what is causing them, so the mental illness remains undiagnosed, and you get a teenager who has lost all interest in the things she was once passionate about and struggles to find new things to be love, and thinks the entire world is against her.

Fast forward to adulthood. In November of 2014, at age 26, I was driving home from a convention for work. (A 7 hour drive! No joke. The joys of living in the Canadian prairies!) I had planned out all the podcasts I was going to listen to on my drive there and my drive back. I listened to Wil Wheaton’s episode of Girl On Guy on the drive home. I’m glad I didn’t listen to it on the way there! It would have made for a very rough weekend otherwise!

I had heard Wil speak about having depression in the past, so I was a little bit aware, and kind of expected the topic to come up, but I did not expect the reaction I had to it this time.

If you listen to the episode, at 1:24:58, Wil gets a notification on his phone which he then explains, “that’s my alarm telling me, ‘it’s six o’clock, you have to take your brain pills.'”And then Aisha asks if they can stop talking about Google+ and start talking about that.

So, he goes on to explain his situation, and then it ties back to their earlier discussion about how he was always so angry when he was younger.

As the conversation continues on in that direction, I am suddenly hit with overwhelming, brick wall of emotion. I’m driving in the dark, on the highway at 115km/h, and I can barely see through the tears in my eyes, I’m hyperventilating through violent sobs, my whole body aches, my nose is completely plugged up (does crying make anyone else congested or is it just me?), just trying to keep my car between the white lines. I debated pulling over, but I couldn’t seem to get my body to do that, and I knew if I did that I might never stop crying and then never get home, and I had to be at work at 8:30 the next morning, so I kept driving.

It wasn’t because I felt his story was sad or that I felt sympathy for him or anything like that. It was because it felt as if he was talking about me. He was describing my life. My situation. My feelings.

I was just so unbelievably stressed and overwhelmed with life, and had been for at least a year. I felt like I wasn’t going to survive much longer.

Something I realized recently: If it wasn’t for the fact that I had my dog, Mosley, depending on me to feed him and keep him safe, I probably would hate attempted suicide at some point in the past 3 years. I thought about it frequently, but the thought of Mosley being left alone with no one to take care of him before anyone realized I was gone, broke my heart and kept me from going any further, kept me from turning my thoughts into actions.

I know I said earlier that Wil saved my life, but obviously my dog did too. If it wasn’t for Wil talking about this on Aisha’s podcast, I wouldn’t have gotten help when I did.

Listening to Wil’s story made me realize that there was actually something wrong with me, medically, and no matter how hard I tried, I wasn’t going to be able to fix it on my own. I needed help.

It took me about a week and a half to work up the courage to call my doctor’s office and book an appointment. If it wasn’t for the feeling I got listening to Wil, I never would have even talked to my doctor. I would have continued down the road I was on full of so much stress I was making me physically ill, completely irrational anger towards people and situations that were entirely out of my control, self harming because I didn’t know how else to escape the overwhelming hopelessness of it all, and hating myself so much that I just didn’t want to live.

If Wil’s story hadn’t encouraged me to take that first step, I don’t know where I’d be right now. I know things would have gotten worse. I don’t know if I’d be alive right now. It may have gotten to the point where Mosley wasn’t enough to keep me alive.

But I took that first step because of Wil Wheaton.

Wil Wheaton saved my life.

I noticed the other day in my mobility account that I can upgrade my phone. I thought I had a couple more months to the end of my contract, but I guess the phone is paid off now, so I don’t have to pay extra for an upgrade.

I’ve had in mind, for a while, what phone I was thinking I might upgrade to, but while doing a bit of research a couple other phones caught my attention, so I thought I would seek the opinions of my fellow techies out there.
Continue reading

I know these quizzes are supposed to be fun and everything, but this shows you how terribly inaccurate they are.

I got Sheldon. That didn’t bother me. I kind of hate Sheldon (he annoys the hell out of me), but Big Bang Theory wouldn’t be Big Bang Theory without him.

What bothered me was the description. LITERALLY the only thing here that is true is that I’m dedicated to my chosen fandoms.

I have terrible self confidence and self esteem and would never in a million years think I am smarter than anyone I know, because that’s how poorly I think of myself. (Argue with me all you want, it won’t change how I feel, and I know that how I feel isn’t necessarily true.)

On top of that, the questions are terrible. Asking me to pick a breakfast when I like most of the options, how does that tell you about my personality? And choosing a song from 6 options when I don’t know 2 of them and I don’t even like the other 4. And yes, I knew the answer to the algebra question, but that doesn’t effect my personality, it just means I understand algebra.

I also did one that tried to guess what level of education I have, which I thought would be fun. The result was. I guess on most of the questions, but the result said I have a PhD (which is why I think its funny, because I definitely don’t). But the result said that I excel academically, which I definitely do not. I hated school. I don’t do well in that kind of environment. I’m very hands on. I do not do well writing in a strictly structured setting and am not very good at organizing my thoughts (as you may have noticed). Learning information is not my strong suit. Learning how to do things is. Therefore, I was better suited for college than university. I have an Ontario college diploma. Definitely do not have a degree, masters, PhD, or anything fancy. Just a two year diploma.

But even though I don’t do well at the academic type stuff, I am also very good at retaining random knowledge. It has to be of some interest to me for me to actually retain it though. So all the stuff I learned in social studies, aside from geography (which is very visual), I don’t remember a thing! Science, I was good at the math stuff, but anything else…not so much. I am excellent at algebra! I actually kind of enjoyed algebra in high school. I think that’s part of why I like the scripting side of web development so much. (For you non-web devs out there, you may understand that more as programming, but it is more accurate to call what I do “scripting”. Especially, if you talk to an actual programmer. I do know the difference!)

Anyways, back to the Big Bang Theory quiz. I know it was supposed to be fun, but it irked me a little. A lot of these stupid quizzes do. You’d think that would make me stop doing them….It doesn’t.

Here’s the quiz. Have fun! Feel free to share your results.
Oh, and here’s the education quiz too.

The weirdest thing happened to me yesterday, and I totally don’t understand what it was about.

Bit of a (fan)girly explanatory intro…

When I was getting dressed yesterday morning, I chose to wear my weeping angel (Doctor Who) tank top, with a brown tank top under it.

I wanted to wear my TARDIS bracelet, but I also wanted to wear more bracelets because I’ve gotten used to wearing 4 or 5 on my left wrist. (I’m also self-conscious about scars on my wrist, even though the older ones are pretty light, I have some more recent ones that aren’t quite that light.)

My Harry Potter bracelet set (plus Deathly Hallows bracelet) is brown and gold, so I figured the colours I was wearing would look good together (excluding the black hoodie I wore to keep myself warm). So, I opted for the HP set on my left wrist and my single TARDIS bracelet on my right wrist, pared with an off-white, plain, braided bracelet from my Orphan Black set.

The important thing to note here is I am right handed, and sometimes wearing things on my right wrist can get in the way of things and be a little irritating, so I only ever wear bracelets and stuff on my left wrist. In addition to that, my left hand is not very coordinated, so putting things on my right wrist is tricky (so is painting my nails on my right hand). I think it took like like 5 minutes just to get those two bracelets on.

The weirdness…

So, I went upstairs to start working. I was sitting at my computer with my coffee and I just felt kind of weird. I am used to having stuff on my left wrist, but it felt weird having bracelets on my right.

I don’t really know how to explain it. It was just a weird feeling, in my whole body, but felt like it was mostly in my arms.

At first, it kind of felt like I was backwards. It was weird. Because I’m used to having things around my left wrist it felt like there was nothing there, but it felt like there was lots of heavy strings wrapped around my right wrist. It started to feel like my arms were not part of my body anymore. That’s a terrible explanation and probably sounds worse than it was, but it was just a super weird and uncomfortable feeling, and it was freaking me out.

So, I tried moving my arms around to just sort of loosen things up a bit, thinking maybe it was just weird tension or a circulation issue or something that could be explained away physically. Didn’t seem to help.

I’ve been reading lots and watching lots of YouTube videos about mental illnesses in the past few months, and suddenly the thought of dissociation popped into my head.

I don’t, at all, think that’s what it was, but it was the first thing I thought of and that freaked me out even more!

I panicked, and rushed to take off the bracelets from my right wrist. I still felt a little weird for a while, but it started going away, and an hour later, I had forgotten about it, mainly because there was lots going on at work, and I had lots of stuff to do.

Weirdest thing ever! I don’t know what it was, but holy shit I will probably never try to put bracelets on my right wrist ever again. Totally freaked me out.

I love television. I love getting into and addicted to shows. Movies don’t provide the same experience as TV shows do.

Tatiana Maslany in Orphan Black.

With how much I like TV shows, and how passionate I get about my favourite shows, it seems natural that I would want to do reviews of my favourite shows. I’ve thought about it for a long time. I like the idea of doing that, but I finally came to the conclusion that I wouldn’t be any good at it.

I am very observant when I’m watching TV shows (and movies too). I always pick up on little background things and inconsistencies, like a book being open in one shot and closed in the next, or someone’s hair sitting a certain way, and then the next shot, it’ll look different, and then the next shot, it goes back to how it was before. Some of those little things drive me nuts. Sometimes, there are things put in, intentionally, to see if the audience is paying attention. I do miss things occasionally, but for the most part, I do notice those things.

Especially with CGI and green/blue screen work. It always annoys me when you see that weird glow or odd colouring around people or objects. Sometimes these things will actually distract me so much that they actually take me out of the story. I don’t like when that happens.

I enjoy watching the behind the scenes stuff. Because of that, I’ve learned a bit about how those scenes are shot, so I understand why something like a person’s might change. They often don’t shoot in chronological order, and in most cases, they shoot with one camera, so two slightly different shots could even be shot on a different day.

The reason that I don’t think I would good at writing reviews is that even though I am a very analytical thinker, I actually don’t tend to analyze the shows that I’m watching. I just watch for the entertainment. I often watch shows to distract myself from other things happening in my life. For 1 hour, I can forget about the things that are stressing me out in my life. I don’t tend to make predictions or set expectations for what will come from a show throughout a season. I just enjoy them.

Richard Dean Anderson, Christopher Judge,
Amanda Tapping, and Michel Shanks
in Stargate: SG1

One example that comes to mind is Stargate Universe. I am a huge Stargate: SG1 fan. I also really enjoyed Stargate: Atlantis. A lot of fans of the franchise didn’t like SGU because of how different the style was. To be completely honest, I did like it. It was different. It was nice to see actors from the past series make appearances through the two seasons of the show, but it was a completely different show. It wasn’t intended to be another SG1. As much as I love SG1, it wasn’t necessary to make another. SGA was very similar to SG1, which I think is why everyone liked it.

I understand why the makers of the Stargate franchise wanted to go a different direction, and it had potential to go on for a few more seasons. I would really like to see how they planned to resolve the story at the end of season 2. They really just got unlucky with what was happening with the SyFy channel in the US, since that’s where most of their funding came from. I’m sure if Space (in Canada) could have afforded to order a season on their own, they probably would have.

Anyways, I do wish that I could write reviews, but I just don’t think about shows as much as I would need to. It would require that I change the way I think while I’m watching shows, which I probably could do. Maybe some time in the future I might start doing it, but for right now, I’m just going to continue enjoying my TV shows and being a fangirl!

I occasionally do those random tests and quizzes that cycle through Facebook. I don’t always post the results because some of them are stupid.

In the past few months, I’ve been learning a lot more about myself and how I think. A few days ago, a Facebook friend posted a link to a personality test. I don’t usual take these kinds of things very seriously, but the results of this one I found were actually quite accurate.

According to this test, I am an analytical thinker. Here is the description of that type, with things crossed out that I don’t think apply to me. Highlighted in yellow are my own comments.

Analytical Thinkers are reserved, quiet persons. They like to get to the bottom of things – curiosity is one of their strongest motives. They want to know what holds the world together deep down inside. They do not really need much more to be happy because they are modest persons. Many mathematicians, philosophers and scientists belong to this type. 

Analytical Thinkers loathe contradictions and illogicalness; with their sharp intellect, they quickly and comprehensively grasp patterns, principles and structures. They are particularly interested in the fundamental nature of things and theoretical findings; for them, it is not necessarily a question of translating these into practical acts or in sharing their considerations with others. I love building things and putting my knowledge to practical use. Analytical Thinkers like to work alone (most of the time, but not always)their ability to concentrate is more marked than that of all other personality types. They are open for and interested in new information. Always!

Analytical Thinkers have little interest in everyday concerns (I’m not really sure what they mean by that) – they are always a little like an “absent-minded professor” (uhhh….ok) whose home and workplace are chaotic and who only concerns himself with banalities such as bodily needs when it becomes absolutely unavoidable. The acknowledgement of their work by others does not play a great role for them; in general, they are quite independent of social relationships and very self-reliant.

Analytical Thinkers therefore often give others the impression that they are arrogant or snobby – especially because they do not hesitate to speak their mind (I do hesitate in many situations but not all) with their often harsh (even if justified) criticism and their imperturbable self-confidence. Incompetent contemporaries do not have it easy with them. But whoever succeeds in winning their respect and interest has a witty and very intelligent person to talk to. A partner who amazes one with his excellent powers of observation and his very dry humor. 

It takes some time before Analytical Thinkers make friends, but then they are mostly friends for life. They only need very few people around them. Their most important ability is to be a match for them and thus give them inspiration. Constant social obligations quickly get on their nerves (sure do!); they need a lot of time alone and often withdraw from others. Their partner must respect this and understand that this is not due to the lack of affection. Once they have decided in favor of a person, Analytical Thinkers are loyal and reliable partners. However, one cannot expect romance and effusive expressions of feelings from them and they will definitely forget their wedding anniversary. I’m not married, but I am actually pretty good at remembering birthdays and stuff, so I probably wouldn’t ever forget my wedding anniversary. But they are always up to a night spent with stimulating discussions and a good glass of wine! (I hate wine. lol. But the concept is accurate.)

Adjectives that describe your type: introverted, theoretical, logical, spontaneous, rational, analytical, intellectual, skeptical, pensive, critical, quiet, precise, independent, creative, inventive, abstract, eccentric, curious, reserved, self-involved, imaginative, unsociable (I don’t think I’m bad with social situations, but I don’t enjoy them), determined, modest, careful, incommunicative, witty

So, as you can see, there’s not much of that that I don’t agree with. I’ve never seem a test like this produce such an accurate result of my own personality.

That’s not to say it will be as accurate for others. There are only 4 questions.

If you take the test, you’ll notice that you get two lists of statements, and you have to pick the list that you agree with the most. I found most of them, there were a few statements in the one I didn’t choose that I agreed with and a few in the ones I did choose that I didn’t agree with. But one of the questions I had a hard time choosing because it was fairly evenly split. Because of that, I figured it wouldn’t be accurate, but I was pleasantly surprised by the result.

If you want to take this test, click here.