This is part 2 of a post I made a few days ago about just how overcommitted I am and how I got here. Now, it’s time to list those commitments.
A Lot of Things
I’m involved in a lot of things. Ironically, everything on this list I’m doing because I love it and am passionate about it. But as I’ve found many times before, it’s impossible to maintain that level of passion about so many things. And, even if I’m excited about something, if I’m trying to do all the things, I end up not giving any of them the best.
The Really Important Stuff
In all the things I list below, none of them are as important as my family, my home, or my self-care. These are the commitments I need to focus more on, but somehow get pushed to the back burner whenever life gets in the way.
- Nurturing my relationship with my life partner
- Spending quality time with my daughter
- Keeping close to my family
- Caring for our home
- Taking care of myself, including managing my ADHD, PTSD, Crohn’s disease, etc.
I work for Automattic as a Happiness Engineer for WordPress.com. It’s my dream job and I love it. So much so that I’m always working to be better at it. This involves lots of reading, chatting with coworkers, testing things out, and just generally focusing in on learning constantly (one of the Automattic creeds is, “I will never stop learning.”
I’m also a weekly contributor for This is True. I’ve been writing for Randy for over 7-1/2 years (time flies!). I love writing and TRUE has been a part of my life since the mid-1990s, so it’s awesome being a small part of it every week.
I also have a lot of things I feel passionate about and have started, am working on, or am trying to restart all kinds of different things.
I’ve been refereeing roller derby for over 5 years now, and absolutely love it. I’m now a co-Head Referee for Ohio Roller Derby, a facilitator for the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association’sRules Theory Committee, and travel all over skating and having a blast under my derby name: Stray Taco. This year I’ve travelled to tournaments in Pennsylvania and Michigan. Right now I’m in Waterloo, Ontario, and in a couple weeks I’ll be in Hawaii – all for derby!
I’ve also written for Roller Derby Rule of the Day for a while, but had to take a hiatus that’s turned into permanently setting that aside because I was just too overcommitted to do it well. (I still help with some of the online stuff and enjoy having fun rules discussions, though.)
The LGBTQIA+ Community
I came out to myself as a bisexual man around 2008, and to the world on December 7, 2015. Since then, I’ve had a passion for the entire queer community. I started a project now called My Intersections, where I would interview people of various genders, sexualities, and relationship configurations. The goal of Intersections is to promote conversations and bring to light just how human people are, even if they’re different from you. The project fell by the wayside when I started work on opening a community LGBTQ+ Center in Southeastern Ohio. I worked to establish the nonprofit and get the ball rolling, and helped bring about Athens,Ohio’s first Pride Fest. Then I realized that I couldn’t continue to give what was needed for the Center. Thankfully we had a great group of people who are continuing to move forward and hopefully there will be a new Center opened in the near future.
The Intersections project keeps calling to me, and I would really love to pick it back up again someday.
I’ve been developing or working on the web in some capacity since 1995 when it started taking off. Back then, I used Notepad to write HTML to put up our office’s web page. Since then, I’ve done everything from making web pages (including a personal WordPress blog in 2008-2009) to developing major web-based applications. I’m actively working on several websites right now (at various stages of completion). I had the good fortune to be at the right place when the web grew up, and have been along for the journey ever since.
That’s a Lot
I know, right? The thing is, I don’t necessarily want to give any of these things up, which makes it more difficult to get all of them done. I’ve set aside a few things as I’ve gone along, but it’s become more obvious lately that I have to (a) get better organized with all these things and (b) make some hard decisions. I do believe I can get a lot more done with some life adjustments without sacrificing myself, my family, or others who are depending on me. But I also know that I have to ask what is going to be set aside if I take on something new, and – like I did for the LGBTQ+ Center – if there may be someone better to get these particular things done.
This is an evolving set of blog posts. Honestly, whether anyone else reads these or not, it’s been helpful writing out my thoughts. Next up, my next steps.