(Riss:)
So I hurt myself sort of badly during weightlifting PT recently, to the extent that I can't lift my hands above my waist without pain going all up our arms. Most of our back is completely frozen up and I even managed to screw up all my upper body joints, even down to individual knuckles. At least I am capable of being incredibly thorough and hardcore at something, even if it is just me damaging myself while being a huge people-pleasing retard.

Thus, I have to sit up because I have two heating pads wrapped around our torso and if I lie down (according to the directions) the heating pads may overload and catch on fire, and that would be a fairly embarrassing way to die. In the end, I finally find myself at a point where I can make the Catch-Up Post that I haven't been able to make for months.


May - July 2011:
* I graduated with my BA in Psychology. ROTC caused my GPA to drop from 4.3 to 4.0, and sadly I am the kind of person who nearly went out for blood over that. I consoled myself by noting that at least it didn't plummet all the way to a 3.9.
* In the same week, I commissioned. This was awesome because I was finally out of ROTC.
* Our mom convinced us to break our apartment lease early on account of the rapidly-growing termite infestation that was engulfing our studio unit from all sides. Termites are actually fascinating little animals; I think we would all rather have them than roaches. Regardless, the lease break happened and we moved back in with the parents. Having regular feline contact again was a blessing, but not enough to counter the effects of having to live with the parents again, which caused...
* ...A negativity spiral of epic proportions that resulted in me doing all sorts of ill-considered, impulsive things Inside. I attempted to create a completely sealed Inside environment that would keep me isolated from the others. Their overall consensus was that this was a terrible idea that I should be cured of immediately, and over the next month or so they managed to wear down the barrier and use assorted means to drag me back out. I am still not honestly sure if that was a good thing or not.
* Although I'd sworn not to buy a new car until my Ultramarine-blue 1995 Hyundai Elantra's warranty expired, our mom reasoned that it would be worth more as a trade-in if we gave it up with four years to go. I was finally seduced by promises of an audio system that would allow us to plug iPods directly into the car for six-speaker playback and control from the steering wheel. (I am a sick audio whore, no sense in denying it. :P) Aurora, the old car, has hopefully gone to new owners who will love her; in her place now is Vandred, an Indigo Pearl 2012 Elantra who was named in memory of the loco genius Night Lord VOID WARRIOR from Dembski-Bowden's novels.
=== Vandred drives so smooth that he's practically an organic extension of my own will. Sometimes, when I go out to find him in a parking lot, I think things to him like, "Who's that sexy car? Could that sexy car be MY car? Just LOOK at that sexy car, you badass sexy thing, you!" Vandred responds with gloomy contempt. I think he accuses me of driving kind of crazy. I insist that it's his fault for being so goddamn sexy to drive, sexy badass thing that he is.
=== Additionally, though, I did finally get the LEGIO17 plate for the new car. It delights me, though I was only recently made aware that, at least according to GW canon, Night Lords hate Word Bearers slightly more than they hate everything else, so... Yes, it's strange and awkward, but still I can't make myself dislike it. c_c
* New tattoos acquired. Sadly, this is not the computer with the design files on it, so you'll have to take my word for it. Small identical designs on the back of each wrist are (in my mind--apparently other people aren't certain what they are) a candle flame on our left and a water drop on our right. Coiled around most of our right upper arm is a cobbled-together quote from EXEC_HARMONIOUS in Hymmnos:

Though I may be struck by countless blades
Though I may be terrorized by countless terrors
Though I may be bent to despair by countless laments
I will never stop offering this song to you
All this hatred, and all these sad histories, will come to an end now
This irreplaceable world and these precious lives
Let the light of love envelop all of them


July - November 2011:
* I was in CBOLC (Chemical Corps lieutenant school) for this whole period. CBRN and HAZMAT are actually quite interesting. Pity that Chem is probably the least-respected branch in the Army. *sigh*
* Living a comparably sparse existence while in post housing was actually quite good for my focus and sanity. Currently, now that I actually have everything I own in one location, I continue to want to get rid of at least half of everything I own just to have less stuff, as apparently I am very prone to getting overwhelmed/overstimulated simply by having too many objects around...? No, I still don't understand my neurochemical quirks any better than I did before, really.
* I picked up active Tibetan Buddhist practice and joined one of the first distance learning schools for cho. Whether the latter was actually a good idea remains to be seen.
* In August, I received word Inside that one of the Thorns had been killed in a routine resupply raid. This event was not an established plot point and the casualty was a person not previously detailed in the work. There were some difficulties following the death, but the end result was that I offered to open up the Inside as a kind of afterlife for the Thorns (with approval from the others already here), as their canonical afterlife is basically a brief hell followed by oblivion. So we now have Serenus here with us.
=== Serenus is another deep-Insider who is not hugely interested in the Outside. Given that the war is finally over for him, he's refocused on agriculture and contemplation and is thus good company for [S].
* Vandred's maddeningly sexy audio system was prewired for XM Radio, and he came with three free months of Sirius as an attempt to lure folk into contracts. (I know better, though. Our mom has had XM in her car for a while, and every time we'd drive with her I'd hear something that I couldn't forget and ended up buying from Amazon. It's a twisted racket, I tell you. So no, I ended up letting the connection expire and never thought of renewing it.) While listening to various electronic music stations on XM, I encountered Skrillex. I can't say that this was exactly a positive thing, though it's definitely become a deformative experience.
* And ultimately I graduated from CBOLC with my DOD HAZMAT certification. Yayyyyyy.

November 2011 - Present:
* Moved to Colorado to work at Fort Carson. By sheer crazy luck, our mom was able to find us a pretty nice condo not far from post. Technically, I am still moving in even now, as I am amazingly inept at...owning things, I guess. At least when there are a lot of things. :/
* Plantbabies acquired~! I have been afraid of owning plants for a long time because I've accidentally killed a couple in the past by not watering them correctly (one was a cactus that I overwatered ;_;). However, under the combined influence of S and Serenus, I've gradually come to see the appeal of growing things and taking care of plants. So I picked up a small rosebush almost as soon as we got to Colorado. It took a little while for me to figure it out, but it seems to be doing well. Maybe I'm overconfident, or maybe just lonely in the Outside, but I now have two additional rosebushes, a Lithops (I recently became obsessed with Lithops and was amazingly lucky to find one in Home Depot, though I'm still trying to figure out its species :P), and a little bundle of Fenestraria (window plant). We also planted our resurrection plant in a pot, but while it's technically unkillable we're having issues keeping it resurrected. :/
=== Lithops and Fenestraria have similar adaptations designed to help them pull in as much sun as possible while minimizing their surface area in order to prevent dehydration. Their leaves are few and thick, and there are lenses that look like frosted glass on their upper surfaces that let sunlight into the interior of the leaves, where there are additional light-processing surfaces. They use both their insides and outsides to pick up the sun--isn't that cool? :D
=== Regarding growing things, Serenus (and Lord Tarrasque) finally inspired me to attempt...growing food. I figured it would be useful because I normally avoid eating veggies, but if I grow them and have nothing else to do with them, then hopefully I'll be driven to eat them (so goes the theory). But the seeds and the trays looked so tiny, and so...I seem to have accidentally planted something like 50 Romaine lettuces, which have now all sprouted. O_O;; Watching these cute little things come out of the soil and grow to face the sun in a new direction every day has gotten me rather attached to them, to the point where I feel uneasy at the thought of yanking them out of the ground months from now and callously devouring them. :/
=== I have also developed a powerful interest in pet jellyfish (and there's a place that seems to be setting up to offer pet comb jellies in the future, and comb jellies are just odd and sadly defenseless and adorable), but was convinced to give up the mad ambition to acquire jellybabies due to the military lifestyle, specifically the question of who would care for my critters when I'm off being deployed. This remains on my list of Cool Shit To Do When I Am a Civilian Again (Assuming I Have Any Income).
* Obviously, I lived through NTC. I did get a relatively mild lung infection. Some people who have deployed before have told me that if the blowing dust at NTC laid me up then I'll probably die when we get to Kuwait next spring. *sigh* Why can't America get mixed up in the business of people who live somewhere pleasant?
=== The experience at NTC was very positive overall, and provided some contrast to the job at Ft. Carson. ...And I keep starting to write about the comparison, but I don't want to get into that. There would be too much job-related crap clogging up this entry. Instead, let me say...
* I love living in Colorado. Even the small bit of it that I've seen so far has places in it that look like paintings that fantasy artists make when they're trying to depict some ideal place that is too beautiful to exist in ordinary reality. Somedays, I get very weirded out by that, as it is occasionally surreal to be able to walk through such scenes. The air is so clean here (and so thin, which makes running a bitch, but let's not rain on the parade too much). I really, really love living here. However...
* I hate my job. Although I've really only been here for a couple of months, given that I was at NTC for a month, I just...feel lessened by the environment. People are supposed to join the military to improve themselves and their lives. Instead, everyone is overworked, and although I would like to use my focus and intelligence to do my job well and diligently (given that I remain broken in that people-pleasing, Protestant work ethic sort of way), I get so many taskings dropped on me that I don't have the time and resources to give much attention to any one of them. Other people in the office just tell me that none of them are important and that I should just throw something together or literally make things up just to push the work off my desk. I hate that. For me, it doesn't matter if I never wanted to be a Chem Corps cube slave when I grew up--I just have this need to do good work when I work. There's a part of my brain that shuts down in incomprehension at this idea of doing bad work on purpose, and yet that seems to be all I'm expected to do. It's like I can feel my own sense of decency eroding by the day, all while people dump all the work that no one respects or cares about on me, so my self-esteem is getting even lower and I'm getting literally nothing out of this but life support.
* On that note, three years and four months until I can get out of the military. :D The bad news, of course, is that a psych undergrad degree is worth about as much as the paper it's printed on. D: Life is like one of those RPG boss fights that you're not ever supposed to win, right...?


That was relatively painless. :) I've been moving the heating pads around while writing, and that's cleaned up a good bit of the misery. Time to sleep now, though~

--Riss.