Friday, Feb. 17, 2023 - 10:11 pm.
The third of four vacation weeks: done. This one was left me a bit drained. Since last week we'd been socializing a lot, and we topped it off with Andrew's nephew who came to visit. He stayed here over the weekend and until Tuesday.
He's in his mid-twenties, he's very nice, affectionate and laid back. He's a visual artist but most of his "formal" jobs have involved cooking, and he's a great cook. He's very homely so we went out with him for errands and shopping, but he offered to cook for us at least one meal a day at home.
He had a must on his list for his trip, and that was visiting the graves of his great-grandparents and his uncle, Andrew's brother. That was very touching. Andrew and him cleaned up the graves and left fresh flowers; they hugged and cried. Andrew even bought flowers for his brother's ex girlfriend, who took her own life a month before he did(?) and was buried nearby.
Neither Andrew's nephew nor I had never been to my brother-in-law's grave before. It is under a tree. It's heartbreakingly comforting.
Anyway. Andrew's nephew (can I say he's mine too?) is a good kid, if not with a queer identitym which is none of my business, with a queer appearance. We connected and had interesting conversations.
Nevertheless, Andrew and I are not used to having people stay over with us. The apartment felt small for three people, though that's because of the way we've set it up and because we're used to just being the two of us plus the cats. I missed my own space and having time to myself, so while I enjoyed spending time with the nephew, I was relieved to go back to our routine.
After that, we didn't plan anything for this week. I'm dragging my feet towards next weekend because we have to do a three-hour drive to attend a wedding. Andrew's cousin is getting married and he decided he wanted to be more involved with this extended family, so we're going. I wouldn't be dragging my feet if the wedding had been earlier this month, I swear.
I Do. Not. Want to go because we'll be traveling back home on the last day of the summer break for the country. It's a Sunday where all highways will be bursting with traffic with all the people coming back from vacation into the start of a new academic/school/work year. Plus, I'll be doing all the driving up north and on top of being a long drive, I hate it up north. All that to attend a very conservative event (please, please, let there not be a "wife must obey husband" line during the wedding) with conservative people in attendance. Oh, joy.
I've done a great job biting my tongue to not say any of the above to Andrew because, well, he said this is important to him. It'd be very shitty of me to say any of this, especially considering that a good part of my shittiness comes from making assumptions about how much all that is gonna suck. I don't know that, really. Plus, I enjoy road trips and staying in hotels with him, so at least I have that going on for me.
Other stuff I have going on: I finished the make-up course that Andrew gifted me for my birthday. It was fun, I learned a lot! I'm also halfway through my webtoon online course. And I'll take a sign language course, hopefully I'll register tomorrow. I've been wanting to learn for so long. Early in our relationship I saw Andrew communicating with a deaf uni professor in sign language and I thought it would be great to know. You never know when it may come in handy.
Lastly, two small victories: first, I signed a contract with Penguin Random House! They'll be publishing a short story of mine and I'll get fucking paid for it. It's nothing in the great scheme of things but it's huge for me. I've been writing and publishing for 20 years now, getting nowhere, as I've said far too many times here. It feels amazing that they approached to ask me to submit a story they could consider for an anthology (I feel I almost didn't make it, as they requested specific themes that I barely touch upon).
Second, last year I left five copies of my novel in an independent maker store in the city. I learned this week that all five copies have been sold and I got paid around 40 USD! One of the owners (the store is run by two queer women who are a couple) said I could bring more. I was over the moon, I still am. More than one person saw that book and decided it was worth paying for it and taking it home. I really do hope they enjoyed it.
As usual, I have more stuff on my mind but I'll stop here. Overall, I'm doing great and getting back to exercising too, after a month and a half of assorted ailments. I'm trying to have a positive outlook, to not assume things, to go with the flow, to not complain too much when unexpected things get in my way, to accept the negative but focus on the positive (i.e., stuff we've done versus stuff we will not be able to do during our vacation).
And I've been succeeding, you know! I've made a conscious effort with the above because life just won't get any simpler for us. I want a kid, I do, and that entails having less time to myself and constantly facing the unexpected. Might as well start getting used to it.