A Rough Year

I guess it’s been an eventful year.

Bike stuff:

I built a polo bike and a flatland bike. Sold a road bike and acquired a mountain bike. Rebuilt a motorcycle carburetor, and replaced almost all the major parts of that motorcycle (it’s almost reliable now!). Road tripped to Washington on my motorbike, went to a flatland jam in Vancouver, played a ton of bike polo, scored at least one goal (never said I was good at it, lol!). Went on group rides with motorbike people. Had intense conversations about gear ratios. Learned how to do foot-jam endos and dork wheelies.

blue road bike

 

Car stuff:

Co-owned a van, a Lexus, a vintage Toyota Corona, 2 BMWs and 2 Toyota Corollas. Helped build up one of those Corollas from chunks of metal found in a yard. Drove the rubber off them all. Went on numerous drifting ride alongs and even drove myself a couple of times. Spent a happy week of evenings on my back in the mud and snow bolting together a car that was destined never to run.

red toyota corolla

Computer stuff:

Built this website that you’re reading, a Java application for scoring racecars and an Android app for calculating carburetor displacement. Completed 3/4ths of a diploma in Computer Systems Technology (6 months to go). Wrote a lot of blog posts, some of which have been read people other than my mom. (hi mom!). Talked my way into, and quickly out of, a job at an actual software company. Went back to school and learned some more, then got a summer job doing tech work in the government. Then back to school still again, with a job doing peer support there, an opportunity that wouldn’t have been available to me a year ago.

But Despite All That

It’s honestly been the most eventful year of my life. I  don’t think this list covers even a third of it. Through it all, though, I’ve been struggling with mood swings that I want to run away from, feelings of hopeless abandonment, weeks where I’m convinced that no one in the world wants to be near me. Feeling that way as I write this, to be honest. I wrote this post as a way to reach out, and let people know that I want to build stuff with them, listen to whatever obscure thoughts they’ve got going through their mind, and generally build up a community and a family. Even writing that sentence is hard, cause I feel like a total idiot for saying such things and am fairly certain that people will glance at it, think “huh, weirdo”, and move on without a second thought. But there it is, an invitation to anybody else who’s feeling lonely and directionless.

Also, I want to mention how much I appreciate my actual family. I keep on forgetting that they really do love me, and are in fact available for conversation and comfort. I know where I got the confidence and discipline to carry on even when I’m struggling. Every time I remember I’m freshly grateful. Hope you all have a happy new year. And please, all you rad people, make a point of bragging to me about your accomplishments, so that I can congratulate you in person.

The time you enjoy is not wasted time.

 

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Published by

Shannon Graham

Shannon has been writing brief essays and occasional how-to articles at Rocketships, Unaffiliated (.ca) whenever inspiration strikes, since 2012.

She is interested in your opinion.

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