Friday, January 31, 2014

Mixing worlds


The last few days here have been pretty chilly - not by Nebraska standards, of course, but there's still snow on the ground.  Temperatures today are forecast to soar into the 50's which is welcome relief.  On the news they said that the average temperature here for this time of year is 52 degrees.  I'll take that.

My first week at the new job is winding down.  So far so good.  This isn't the first time I've had to get into a new environment and become productive quickly so I'm soaking up as much as I can as quickly as I can.  I think the term for it is "drink through a fire hose", but so far I'm not feeling overwhelmed.

I'm making arrangements to get more settled.  Now that I've landed on my feed and I've got some confidence that things will work well here I'm more comfortable getting myself situated deeper than just a hotel room.

I mentioned in the past that I became friends with several of the people I worked with in Nebraska.  I really didn't make any effort to socialize outside work, so the only place I'd likely meet someone to build a friendship is at work.

I have also mentioned that I typically don't talk too much about my past at work.  It's just not important or relevant to the reason I'm there.  It's not even on my mind 99% of the time.  It's not that I'm actively trying to hide it - it's just that it's a non-thing.  I'd be happy to chat about it if the need (or the desire) arose.  But it never does, so I'm fine with that.

Several of my friends from Omaha have recently sent friend requests to me on Facebook.  My FB friends are a unique blend of LGBT folks, family, old friends, co-workers, and others I've met along the way.  I don't think I'd want to friend a co-worker while we're actually co-workers because that would be mixing two of my worlds in a way that would make me uneasy.  But adding them as friends when we don't see each other every day just seems to be logical and practical to me, so I have done that.

The interesting part is that my Facebook page is connected to my website.  One of my friends from Omaha wrote to tell me that she vissited my website and was impressed by all that I've achieved in life.  I thanked her.  She also said she wishes she had known about my history while I was there because she's got a good friend who was in the news a few years back for starting a Gay Straight Alliance at her high school.

I realize she said it as a positive thing, but that's one of the reasons I'm reluctant to share that aspect of myself.  I don't want to become one-dimensionalized, or otherwise categorized based on that single aspect of myself.  It's difficult to explain that to people sometimes, and perhaps it's part of my own insecurities.  But it's true.  Anyway - if you're a friend from Omaha who is just now finding my website this isn't meant to be bad in any way.  I wasn't hiding.  But I'm a very deep, complex person who just wants to be treated as the Donna you've always known.  That's all.

After work today I head to Charleston to complete the cross-country drive.  I'm very much looking forward to it.  It's a big sports weekend: Syracuse vs. Duke basketball on Saturday evening, and the Super Bowl on Sunday.  Good stuff.

Speaking of friends - several of my friends are "activists".  Many are attending the Creating Change conference in Houston at the moment.  I attended for a few years.  But frankly that's a chapter of my life that has been closed for a while now and I'd far rather be in Charleston than anywhere else.  That's the best part of reclaiming my focus and my time - being able to be where I'd rather be than where I'm supposed to be.  By tonight (Lord willing) both of those drivers will be aligned.  :)

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