TLDR Intro: My old website imploded from neglect, so here we are.

It's actually not a bad metaphor for a lot of what's been going on in my life. There are so many things that have fallen by the wayside over months that have turned into years. Things I wish I could find time to engage with but don't. Half-working things I can't seem to find time to fix. It's a problem that I'm working on solving, but progress is slow. Sometimes the solution is drastic; sometimes it's more incremental.

In the past few months, I lost the best fish in the world, moved house, and flew halfway around the world and back.

Two years ago in November, I realized I could actually have a pet now that I was living on land. I brought Ruvi home, and he was my constant companion as I got used to living on my own again. He was there waiting for me every morning, even on the mornings when I didn't feel like getting out of bed. He was always pissed off and ready to fight and bite anything (including my finger). And I have to say it was encouraging to have a companion who was always so energetic and feisty, no matter what was going on in the world. But this summer, some of the little "quirky" lumps he had began to slowly grow, and as they did, he became much more subdued until he mostly just sat quietly on his leaf each day. In the end, I made the decision to put him down. I definitely cry a lot less now that I'm taking testosterone, but not when it comes to this fish. I wasn't always the best caretaker, especially when work got busy, but I hope that he got to experience the fish equivalent of happiness in his little aquarium. He brought an immeasurable amount of joy to me during his short life, and memories of him will stay with me forever. I'm very fortunate to have had him in my life.

As for my move in October, it was unplanned. My apartment complex decided that my rent would double if I wanted to renew my lease in the spring, and I decided it was time to find somewhere else to live. So, after some very stressful and discouraging apartment hunting, I found a place practically next door to a wildlife rehab center. I'm hoping I'll be able to volunteer next year during the harbor seal pupping season. Either way, I've already seen three seals since I moved, and it's nice to have so much more nature around me than I did at my old place. It's an older building with older building quirks and problems, but it has lots of space and light.

All of this took place right before I went to visit my colleagues in Moldova. I'd been working with them for years, but I'd never actually met anyone at the company in person. Moldova is a small, beautiful country that I hope I'll have the opportunity to return to in the future. Hopefully, the next time, I can spend at least a few months living and working there. It would be nice to explore a little and experience the country in a slower-paced, more thoughtful way. This time it was all about work, but I still managed to get out and see a little of the capital city of Chișinău, try some delicious Moldovan cuisine, and remind myself how much better coffee is in Europe.

Anyway, I'm working on simplifying and streamlining my life so that I can prioritize the things I care about. With the chaos of the move and trip out of the way, I'm doing what I can to get into healthy routines—all that boring stuff that frees up time and energy for the things I want to do. Boring stuff like getting a good night's sleep, backing up files, and dealing with taxes.

Starting Over Simpler