One Nerdy Cupcake

I don’t regret what I do, I regret what I don’t do.

It’s been an interesting week.

When I first went into recovery post surgery I said I was going to do a blog a day, which would include the story I’m writing called Alternates.

I realized later that this is unrealistic, as I have a lot of projects going on top of this, along with trying to find a job with a steady paycheck for post recovery. Especially after the last announcement made to me about the gorram tumors.

The last bit of information sunk me pretty hard into a pretty bad depression. Like, I was depressed already, but I went back into the “what the fuck am I doing” mode, that made me question even living. Which is horrible, no one should ever have to feel that way.

Here’s the weird thing that happened though.

My brother gave me Microsoft points and downloaded Minecraft for me. I didn’t think anything of it because why would I care about a game that is literally Legos, when I have Legos AND Lego games? I had also sworn it off because, and this actually happened, my best friend almost missed her wedding BECAUSE OF MINECRAFT. These things alone made me go “oh heeeellll to the fuck no I’m not playing this”

But now its on 360, so my excuse of not playing it because it was a PC game was nulled. Then, since my brother bought it for me, I couldn’t say I can’t afford it anymore. He told me to hop on and he would teach me how to play.

It’s so simple. There is nothing in this game that would hook me. I kept telling myself that. Until 6 hours later, when I found out I had been playing for 6 STRAIGHT HOURS. WHAT THE FUCK?! WHERE DID MY TIME GO?!

I did this multiple times in a row. Being on bedrest, you really don’t do MUCH. I mean, I’m still writing stuff for the webseries (which premieres tomorrow, OMG) and working on Alternates (which, I promise, Part 3 will go up soon. I just keep rewriting it because I haven’t liked it) and physical therapy, which wears me out more than I care to admit. I played some Gears of War, some Arkham City, finished the second run of Borderlands. But I didn’t have a focus.

For some reason, Minecraft provided me with focus. It sets off my OCD in a way that would be constructed into my usual running around like a madwoman (or as Trin puts it, VIKINGSAMURAININJAWORKER) but because I physically cannot do that right now, it put my brain down and was like “Hey, calm the fuck down right now. Just because you can’t do it at this second doesn’t mean you can’t do it later. Stop trying to kill yourself and accept this.”

I have to remember that sometimes. I know that I had set myself up when I kept reminding myself that I had gone through this before. I forgot how long it took me to where I was before the second break, but I’ll be okay. I know recovery isn’t nearly as bad as it should be, but I hate not being able to do anything. By August I’ll be fine and being super ninja fighter at Star Wars Celebration and PAX Prime (possibly Gen Con as well, we’ll see) but this couple of months where I’m not allowed to do anything does sink in.

Are you on Minecraft 360? Or just on 360 and want a new friend? My GT is BakaNaki and I’m on a lot. I am not (sadly) playing Diablo III because I have a laptop that tried to explode from just thinking about it.

Now I’m worn out from the past few days. Physically being up and about is quite tiring after being in bed for 3 weeks. ūüôā


{May 9, 2012}   Gorram Tumors

I was in sincere inner debate if I was going to let this info out, but since I’m writing this new side of my health journey, might as well put it all out there.

I’ve been fighting tumors for years. I know this sounds weird, but I randomly get tumors. They aren’t cysts, because we checked for that, the doctors describe them as tumors.

I have had a tumor in my brain for years. I can’t do anything about it, because there’s a good chance I’ll end up a vegetable. I’ve had 7 different tumors removed over the years.

I had to go to the doctor for a spine check up. I’m still paralyzed, although I will randomly get waves of feeling going down my legs. I’m now able to stand for a short period of time. Extremely short period of time. But its better then catapulting myself off of my bed and into the wheelchair. I had my tumor scan while I was there.

Yes, I realize I’m totally not using any sort of medical terms. Its easier this way.

One of my worst fears was confirmed: I can’t have kids. Its not so much that I want kids, AT THIS MOMENT, but if I was actually able to find someone that could A.) Put up with me B.) I could put up with C.) Travel with me and I won’t kill em D.) Convince me that children AREN’T chestbursters E.) Convince me that having kids would be a good idea, I would like to imagine that the option would be there. I’m not against adoption or anything like that, but its still one of those “bwaaaaa” moments.

The brain tumor is still there, not moving, being pokey. I feel like I should give it a nickname. They think there is another developing. I really only remember that its there when I have migraines that knock me out for days, but I’ve had those pretty much under control.

Tumors found on kidney, stomach and liver. I’m glad I’ve given up drinking, because otherwise I would be drinking right now. Pretty much confirmed I can’t for a while. Which is good for my wallet.

Yeah, not much in the way of good news this time around. Can’t all be good days.

So lets talk funny business.

I’m collaborating with @carlyspade, writing out sketches for her new webseries Intro to Nerdiness. It debuts May 21st, so you should check that out. Here’s the intro!¬†

I also am apart of a weekly podcast called All Things Good And Nerdy (#ATGN) with @RoundTableNerds and @TheAdahy. I was off last week and will be again this week. We usually have a 4th rotating guest host, this week being @woohoocthulhu, and filling in for me this week is @MichelleEaley. It streams live on Sunday at 10am EST. Here is last weeks episode!

I’m also still writing Alternates, which Part 3 will go up within the next couple of days. I’m splitting the site into different pages. That’ll go up soon.

Mikey Neumann (@mikeyface) has said that the next part of The Returners will start going up this week, so make sure you’re staying up to date on that as well.

In August, I will be travelling to Orlando, FL for Star Wars Celebration, from there I will be flying directly to Seattle, WA for PAX Dev & Prime. Then in October I will be travelling to New York City for New York Comic Con. I hope to see some of you all there!

I saw this on Tumblr today and I laughed more than I should (yes, I did think Avengers was AMAZEBALLS) : 

Hopefully the next medical update will be something good!

{May 8, 2012}   Alternates: Part 2

This is the next part of the story Alternates. To understand what is going on, please read Part One. Please feel free to leave comments, but please be constructive in criticism.

Before Mam and the other Saviors were taken from us, I had only fought an Alt once. We mainly stayed underground, we were content there. But like most 13 year old girls, I had wanted to disobey and explore the world above. It turned out to be an almost fatal mistake right away. I was untrained. I didn’t know what I was seeing. The only times I was above ground, I was escorted by Mam, and it was just for errands. Humans and Alts both lived above ground, so Mam had a home where she had built us our underground home. I had the blue diamond contacts in, I thought I would be safe.

Can I tell you something? At 13, no matter what species you are, you’re wrong. Listen to your elders, because they are right, you’re wrong. I was not safe. By my wandering, I had not only put myself in danger, but I put Mam in danger of being found out for hording Mutts, which is punishable by death. I put the other Mutts in danger. Because I was 13, and I didn’t want to be locked up anymore.

I decided to go on the rooftops. I put 3 knives on me, one in my boot, and one in each back pocket. Because we never cut our hair, I had it pulled up into a ponytail. I thought it was silly to even bring the knives, but who knew what adventures I would find out there? Just before sunrise, Mam was asleep. I crept to the opening we used to go on our errands I opened the latch and pulled myself out of the underground. Even just entering the house without Mam was exhilarating.  Checking the windows, I looked to see if anyone was around. Seeing that the coast was clear, I dashed out the front door, across the street to the alleyway between the grocery store and an abandoned building. I saw a ladder on the side of the abandoned building, so I quickly scrambled up to the roof, ducking down, waiting for Mam to come out guns blazing.

She didn’t.

I waited what felt like hours before moving. I hopped from rooftop to rooftop, amazed at the things I could see. Everything looked so small! Everyone was so tiny! Then I ran into him.

There was an Alt on guard at the roof of a store. I didn’t understand why he was there, but since I had the contact in, I smiled politely. Gruffly, he asked “What are you doing up here?” ¬†“Just wandering around!” I replied, with my best smile and big eyes. At that moment, I knew something was wrong. Not only was he looking at me…he was looking through me. Alarmed, I started to back away, but before I could move quickly enough he jumped, landing on top of me.

“Mutt!” He screamed, “Your fake eyes do nothing for me! Do you think we are stupid? Do you think we are powerless to you? Do you think you are better than me?”

“No! No! No!” I sobbed, trying to reach for my blade. He felt me struggling, because he pulled out his gun, holding it to my head. Before I knew it, his head exploded and I was being pulled to my feet. Mam’s white hair hit me in the face. She looked me in the eyes.

“Rissa! Rissa can you hear me? Rissa! I need you to run! Run, Rissa!” She shoved me in the opposite direction, but I couldn’t leave her behind. 2 more Alts came and the sound of the gunfire. Before I knew it, my knives were flying, landing directly in their chests. I ran and grabbed them, realizing their blood is not red like ours. Their blood runs black. I stood there for a second, staring at the chaos that I created, when Mam grabbed my arm. We ran, faster than we ever ran before, back to the grocery store, where we stayed until way past dark. Mam didn’t speak to me the entire time we were there. I spent my time counting calorie labels on cans. ¬†She didn’t say anything when it was time to leave, she just grabbed my arm and dragged me back to the underground. The first thing she did was slap me square across the face. That hurt more than the Alt that tackled me.

“Do you know why you’re escorted everywhere? Do you? I know where it is safe for you. Alts can see past your contacts, your fake skin. Think, Rissa. Think really hard. Do you ever see Alt’s whose name I don’t know? Do you ever go to someplace where it is not full of humans? I’m trying to protect you! There are Alts everywhere. Alts can see under you. They can read your mind Rissa! Alts can control us. We got lucky today. This is why the Alts have taken over the Humans. They can read and manipulate who they are. I’ve been lucky. Your mother, was lucky. You are lucky to have this place Rissa, and you almost threw it all away. What if someone had seen us? You would have given not only our pack away, but the Opa and Pinky’s pack too!” She was so angry she didn’t look at me the entire time she spoke. I sobbed quietly to myself, giving her a minute before speaking.

“Mam..I didn’t…”

“No, Rissa, you didn’t. You didn’t think. You thought you knew it all, thought you could be safe with your little knives. You’re lucky Dylan saw you leave. I’m lucky Dylan saw you leave.” She slammed her hand against the wall. “Do you know how much I wish I could just let you go up there? How I wish the Mutts could be one of them? I want you to know who your mother is. I want you to live with a family. I want you to be able to have a family. But Rissa, you can’t right now. You can’t leave. I need you to help me take care of our ever growing family here. Can you do that?” Tears streamed down my eyes as she put her hand on my cheek.

“Of course I can Mam. I promise I will always take care of this family.”

I kept that promise. The seven years I remained in the underground with the Pack I trained and studied harder than anyone else. Dylan, one of the other Mutts who was rescued around the same time I was, tried to keep up. He was good, but he was always a step behind. He was an Alt Mutt like me, although his skin was a deep forest green and hair that was bright yellow. His eyes were two different colors, one a deep chocolate brown, the other a light blue. I told him one time that he could hypnotize the Alts with his strange eyes. He laughed, his deep, rumbling laugh that shook the cavern. For someone who was a few months younger than me, he always seemed older. He never took well to sparring or shooting, but excelled in education. He was great with Pinky, always able to keep her talking about religion.

If we weren’t fearing for our lives, we probably could have fallen in love.

When the Saviors were taken, Dylan had to pull me away from the door to the common area. I wanted so badly to save them. I resented him for taking me away, even if it was logical to care for the other Mutts. We couldn’t teach them, like Mam, Pinky and Opa, but we could keep them safe. The Human Mutts were easy to pass off to other families, who were willing and able. That still had left us with about 40 Mutts that the three Saviors had left us to take care of. With no income, no food, no water and no place to stay. We feared staying in our underground cavern. The few nights we had no choice to stay down there, we set up a watch system so that at least one person was awake at each hour. During the darkest hours I would venture outside, creeping from building to building, trying to find a safe camp. I found one abandoned building, which I stayed in overnight to see if Alts or Humans came by. It seemed safe, so we moved there.

It took about 3 days, but we were raided. It turns out our house was being watched, which meant someone saw me find the old building. Smoke bombs and gunfire poured in from all directions. Dylan moved the younger Mutts out as I stayed behind to fight. When we moved, I packed in a way that kept me heavily armed at all times. I used the two guns I had strapped to my back first. I fired into the smoke, just hoping that something will show. Their eyes are reflective, I was just waiting for a clue.¬†Unfortunately, I was given far more than a clue. 10 Alts appeared, all armed. I should have turned and ran, but wanting to protect my family I charged them, firing wildly. They took me down easily, easily manipulating the guns out of my hands, bringing me to my knees. All the sparring in the world couldn’t have trained me for what happened next…

Part 3 will be up in a few days, I’ve already started work on it. Please feel free to leave constructive crit!

With Borderlands 2 and Aliens: Colonial Marines on their way, Gearbox Chief Creative Champion Mikey Neumann is a busy guy. Even with these two major projects, he has been writing a novel called The Returners, Part One made recently available on eBook through Amazon, or on his website Neumann regularly tweets the progress of the novel, which he describes as “almost crowd-sourcing the editing process”.

The Returners is a fast paced science fiction work of art. The story begins following Alex Heaton and Chloe Freimont, a seemingly normal young couple, until a sudden gunfight sends them running. It turns out Alex and Chloe aren’t who they claim to be, and they have been found out. Alex is actually Alexander the Great, while Chloe is Joan of Arc, and they are among a group of Returners who have returned for a second life. Packed with historical references, fantastic action sequences and great humor, Neumann brings to life characters most don’t think of outside of their history class.

With everything going at such a quick pace, there are points where it seems a little rushed. There are some mind boggling bits towards the end of Part One (which, for obvious reasons I cannot tell you, but you’ll understand when you read it) but in knowing that is only the first part of an ongoing series, I’m able to brush it off. Its fairly well rounded, although some of the characters, from my point of view of Janey, need more of a backstory with the Returners. You find out rather quickly that she had grown up with one of the characters, but at the same time, not knowing can add to it. Its a double edge sword when you play too much with the history of characters, given that the Returners are originally someone else, you really can’t mess around too much.

Something to keep in mind when reading this is that it is Part One. I read it during the development (so, I was impatiently  waiting for each chapter) so if there are questions, know that there is plenty of time for questions to be answered. The story is solid, not held down with a lot of details. I tend to become bored quickly with stories that are heavily detailed, but with The Returners I never felt that need to skip over sections because of pointless details.

I really enjoyed what I have read so far of The Returners, and I’m eagerly awaiting Season Two!

Given his busy schedule, I didn’t want to bother Mr. Neumann too much with interview questions, but I did get the chance to ask him a couple regarding the novel.

Where did you come up with the concept of The Returners?

As the beginning of the book can attest, I was walking down Sunset Boulevard back to my hotel in Hollywood. We were doing recording for Aliens: Colonial Marines and I had a random idea for a short story I would write in my free time while I was out there. Halfway through the short, I realized I had just taken on a second novel. It seemed far too large of an idea to try and cram into something that small.

Fifteen chapters later, that still feels like a solid decision. I’m loving playing around in this universe.

How did you choose who would come back as a Returner? Do you have a favorite? Do you connect with any on a personal level?

I connect with all of them on different levels. I’m extremely careful about who and how I choose which returners will appear in the book. From a high level, I try to imagine what kind of archetype will serve the story the best. From there, I take some of those archetypal ideas and research for a similar historical figure. The last step is layering and plotting out their second upbringing and how that has affected them as a person–this is the step that creates a fully-fleshed out three-dimensional character.

As or favorites, thirteen year-old Albert Einsten is the most fun to write. I love how frustrated he is that all his existing knowledge is floating around in his head and he has no way to unlock it other than growing up again.

I think it would be interesting seeing The Returners done as a graphic novel, would that be something you would consider?

I haven’t begun to think about doing the story in different mediums. Especially not one where my audience would shrink my moving into it. Not that I have anything against graphic novels, but I’d like to grow my audience in a meaningful way if it’s going to start jumping around.

Having said all that, I am pretty sure that the story would work best as a television show. We’re in the golden age of TV right now and who wouldn’t want to get in on that?

Will you continue updating the story in the same manner that you did with Part 1?

Yes. All new chapters will be up for free on the website. This will not be changing anytime in the future.

I hope that people appreciate how the story is being delivered and invest in the eBook versions so I can make enough money to keep the site up and running, pay my editor, and so on.

Outside of The Returners, what do you recommend people should be reading?

I’ve been bouncing around and trying to find a novel (or series) that really grabs my attention. I can say without pause that 50 Shades of Grey was definitely not that novel. Heh.

Okay, for real. Ready Player One is my favorite novel of the last few years, easily. If you haven’t read that, you should get your brain checked and then dive in (provided your brain check cleared your for non-strenuous excitement of the Ernie Cline variety.)

The Mirage was a clever alt-history book I enjoyed.

Tweets by Simon Pegg.

The back of a box of Kix.

Those are all worth reading.

Check out The Returners, now in eBook format on Amazon, or on You can also follow Mikey Neumann on Twitter for updates on the novel @mikeyface

{May 4, 2012}   Alternates

Everything written here is part of a crazy vivid dream that I had while undergoing surgery. Where this all came from I have no clue. This might just start off as a draft, we’ll see. I’m still not sure if I’m going to keep the title as Alternates. If you have an idea for a title let me know. Constructive criticism is welcome (seriously, constructive. Don’t be a dick.)

His hazel eyes.

I’m fighting for my life. There are bullets whizzing past my head. I am ducked down behind a now crumbling piece of concrete, and I’m thinking of¬†his fucking eyes?!

My skin is turning pink where the concrete shards hit me. It’s better than the bullets I suppose. I take a deep breath, push my¬†fuchsia¬†hair out of my eyes, and start running. Keeping low to the ground, I weave through an impossible maze of concrete walls, too scared to look up. Bullets keep flying, while I remain unarmed. Another bullet whizzes past my head. I dive behind the closest wall, scratching through the dirt, trying to find some sort of weapon.

“Get it together Rissa” muttering to no one but myself. “Get it together. This is nothing. You can do this.” I dig through the dirt, my now polka dotted blue skin turning grey under the piles of dirt. Something has to be here. Something needs to save my life. My hand hits something. Slowly, using both of my hands, I pull out the stone like object. It old. There is a chance it won’t work. But its better than running.

I pull the pin on the grenade. I stand to throw, but as it leaves my hand, the world goes black as the bullet hits my chest, throwing me backwards into the concrete wall behind me.

My life wasn’t always like this.

When The Alternates came is when life changed.

The Alternates look like humans. Their appearance differs in color. Normal skin colors for them are various shades of blues, purples and greens. Hair colors are various shades of pink, a very bright yellow and a glittery aquamarine. The aquamarine is very rare, and is usually only among the oldest of The Alternates. The only hair color that moves with both cultures is red. We refer to them as Alts. They have a name that isn’t The Alternates, but enough time has passed that no one possibly remembers it, or cares.

The story changes every time I hear it. So much time has passed since the Alternates came. It was before I was born. Some say they just showed up. Some say they came through the television, sending calls of help, threatening to destroy us if we don’t comply. The Alts want Earth. Every story ends the same though. Someone fell in love with the Alternates, those beings that were trying to kill us. Stockholm Syndrome, some claim. But they fell in love, which is where the Mutations, or Mutts come from. Where I come from. Mutts are supposed to be killed at birth. Most of us aren’t. The easiest way to tell a Mutt is the eyes. Alts have a very unreal color blue for eyes. Its is as if you mashed deep ocean blue with the lightest blue you can find, and covered in glitter. ¬†All of their eyes look as if a symphony of blue diamonds erupted. They are beautiful. And deadly. Mutts never inherit the eyes. If we are born with normal skin, we can be passed off as human. Those born like I was, with Alt skin and hair, there are contacts that are passable for Alt eyes, or we can cover ourselves in a fake skin.

We have to hide who we are, or we die.

Mutts aren’t even given to their parents. As soon as we are born, we are dumped outside of the hospital, figuring we’ll just die off. Some hospitals are guarded, so that humans with soft hearts don’t try to save us. Luckily for me, whoever my mother was, she was poor. I was born in a non guarded hospital. Someone saved me. I called her Mam. Mam protected me until she was found out. She had saved almost 30 of us. She was kind, gentle…and a cold hearted killer. She taught us how to protect ourselves. She taught us the basics of guns, how to take it apart, put it together, clean it, hide it, shoot it. The 30 of us are particularly good marksmen. She taught us to fight, sparring with us constantly. She would challenge us to other Mutt Packs, or the other families of Mutts that are hidden underground. Mam was human, she was remorseful in some of the ways she had to teach us. But if she didn’t, most of us left from the pack wouldn’t be alive today. We owe Mam our lives.

In the area we lived, there were 3 other Mutt Packs. One from an Alt, whom we called Pinky for her hair color. We never learned her real name. She had rescued about 45 Mutts. It was easier for her, being an Alt. She was one of the few Alts who were not out to kill off the humans. She just wanted everyone to live in peace. To her, we are all the same. She said those of us who were considered Mutts should be considered Evolution. Pinky taught us to be calm. I know if Pinky wasn’t there, a lot more rage would have seeded from the Mutts. She taught us yoga and meditation. Pinky was really religious, as are most of her people, but she never pushed it on us. Mam was Christian. Some of the Mutts took to religion. I personally didn’t. I think that if we’re going to die because we were born of two species, a deity isn’t going to save my soul. Pinky and I had long talks about it, she would have liked me to see things her way.

The last of the Saviors was an old man who we referred to as Opa. He was our educator. He only had about 10 Mutts at a time, given his advanced age. After Mam would train us, Pinky would calm us, then Opa would educate us. He was a man who had traveled the world when he was young. He taught us the ways of the world, how to survive without electricity or running water. He gave us the¬†intelligence we needed to survive without them, should anything ever happen to them. When what happened to them happened. Our basic math skills, our advanced reading and problem solving skills, we gave the credit to Opa. He taught us how to debate, how to see both sides of the argument. He would tell us stories of old, he was alive before the Alt’s came. He doesn’t remember much, he was just a boy. I don’t even know how old Opa was when they took our Saviors away. When they found our Mutt Packs. When we all started to run.

It was like a movie sequence. We all met in the basement of an abandoned store, through an entrance no one knew existed. There were tunnels underground that we used to go in and out of this store. We don’t know how we were found out, we didn’t know people knew about us. Mam, Pinky and Opa had been running this operation before I arrived, 20 years earlier. We had just gathered for our meditation with Pinky as Mam loaded guns behind us and Opa prepared lesson plans beside us. Smoke poured through the floorboards above us. Thanks to the training we had received, us older Mutts knew what to do. But the younger Mutts cried, they were untrained. We grabbed them, diving into the tunnels. I stayed behind, grabbing one of the guns that Mam had just loaded. I turned to face the armies above us, but Mam shoved me in the tunnel before any shots were fired. It was the last time I saw any of them. That was 9 years ago.

So this is where I’m starting with the story of the Alternates. Like I said, I’m not sure if this is the title I’m going to keep, but this was seriously a dream that I had. A crazy vivid dream that I have much more to share. I really want to know, is there interest to keep going with this, or should I leave it alone?

I guess in my last post I came off sounding much stronger then what it feels like sometimes.

I guess I can usually fight past everything, mainly because for so long I was okay. I did survive. I fought hard for what I wanted, and I got it.

Then there are days like today. I’m still paralyzed from the waist down, I know…stop being impatient. It’s only been a few days. At 26, my body isn’t going to heal as quickly as it would when I was 16. I¬†know this.

But today…today I can barely will myself to do anything. I look at the chair and want it to disappear. I look at my legs and just want to cry. I fight with whoever dares to enter my room because I can’t seem to articulate how much I hate not being able to do anything.

Rejection letter after rejection letter keeps coming from jobs I’ve applied for. I love being a writer, I love working in theater, I love doing conventions…but I need a steady paycheck, and I’m not about to ask for charity. The Non-Boyfriend is really just Non now. Things are building up, and I can’t seem to shake it off.

/Deep breath

To focus on the positives of things, I’m lucky enough that I will have the feeling back in my legs in time. The logic in my head knows this.

I have some of the greatest friends in the world, even if the non-boyfriend checked out. The Chicago Enforcers have a monthly game night, and with my not being able to be there, Trin (@TrinAndTonic on Twitter) made a stand in for me:

Between her and our Super Secret Friend Karlyn they live tweeted the event to me, with awesome commentary from Paul. Josh and I struggled and failed, but we tried to Skype me into the game.

Some of the pictures:

Josh studies the game. They were playing Betrayal at House on the Hill. Trin and Karlyn played as me at first, but Josh took over. (I never got the end result if I lived to see the end though)

Josh and Paul (@porusan on Twitter) study the game. GAMING IS SERRRRIOUS BUSINESS GUYS

This is the cutest picture ever.

Not only is this the best picture taken of me EVER…I don’t have to physically be anywhere to Photobomb Trin anymore!

I love you too Trin ūüôā

Things like that mean a ridiculous amount to me. I don’t even know how to repay that. It was close enough to being there for me.

I have amazing people in my life. Even when I’m down and out without a job, no use of my legs, want nothing to do but cry my eyes out and never get out of be, I’m lucky enough to know that there is someone there to yell at me to quit sobbing atnd get back up.

For everyone’s kind words, to those of you that have made me blush brighter shades of red than I ever thought possible, thank you. You really are just amazing people that I cannot express my words of gratitude for. If not for you guys I wouldn’t wake up in the morning.


Fuck it, there’s the publish button.

Just so that its out there, I’m going to post the beginnings of a story. Thanks to some crazy vivid dreams while I was undergoing surgery I started something new, one that I actually think I’m going to expand on. So I’ll post that soon.

Sometimes, funny things happen. They can be funny haha, or funny OMGWTFJUSTHAPPENED. What happened was funny OMGWTFJUSTHAPPENED.

Let me explain.

When I was 16, I was in a diving accident. One that should have paralyzed me, but due to my stubborness and about 85 million miracles, I was able to pull through to be able to walk, run and even compete in Muay Thai. Yes, I had clearance from the doctors to do so. (I think that is going to change now though). Here’s the breakdown of what happened.

At 16, I dove off of the high dive (for the first time!) and landed in an angle like this:

Well, close to that. Come on, look at the picture. It’s pretty amusing looking, and less scary then what happened.

The damage done was this:

C6 and C7, along with T2 and T3 (somehow T1 is okay?) were cracked (ask me to turn my head left or right. It’s pretty limited.)

T12, L1, L2 and L3 were pretty much destroyed. They are no longer in my spine. If you want to feel something weird I can pop the metal pieces out, you can feel the weird points where I have no spine.

Sacrum and Coccyx were cracked and severely bruised (I’m still not sure if its fixed?)

The nerves are a whole different story. You would think with such a severe injury I would be far more dead in the nerve area then what I am. Seriously kids, drink your milk or take your calcium pills or something. I have some sort of RIDONKULOUS bone density because the nerves themselves were not damaged as badly as they should have been (one of the 85 million miracles I used)

Like my sciencey pictures? But this is basically so you get the jist. The joints, traverse process, spinous process and discs were damaged beyond repair. Because of my ridiculous density, I wasn’t completely damaged in the nerves.

One of the next miracles was having a team of doctors that were open to suggestion, who were creative, who wanted to help this crazy 16 year old girl walk again.

It was a long process. Again, I got lucky, and helps that I am so stubborn it hurts. I was (am) determined to walk and compete again. I’m naturally competitive. Nothing gives you the rush like fighting does, which is really difficult to explain if you’ve never done it. Fight Club logic.

This is the part I don’t really understand how it happened, but I’ll chalk it up to one of the miracles used. Somehow I’m now clipped together with a lot of pins and metal. I’m apparently part bionic woman or something, but I have a spine, a spinal cord and can pretty much function normally. Back pain is normal. Neck pain is normal. When it comes to something like that, there will be a higher everyday pain level.

[Edit: I should probably note that 16 was almost 11 years ago. This wasn’t an overnight fix. I spent a lot of time in wheelchairs and crutches.]

Well, until about a month ago.

Side effect of competitively fighting is getting hurt. You bleed, you break your nose, ribs, bruise things…obvious things happen. So when a girl with a formerly broken spine gets caught in a clench hold and kneed to the chest a ridiculous number of times (hey, I can take that I lose fights. This girl was a BEAST) something is going to happen. Like popping out pins that are holding her spine together.

But its okay! 3 days later I got on a flight to Boston to work PAX East. With back spasms like no other. Thursday I helped out what I could before I had to lay down and take it easy so that Friday-Sunday I could be the best little Enforcer I could be. Outside of a major spasm on Friday I think I pulled off okay. Monday I was well enough that I went into downtown Boston with a fellow Enforcer and friend. During a riveting viewing of Mallard Kombat (this is not sarcasm. Seriously, if you get to see some Mallard Kombat record the shit out of it. Its fucking amazing!) the spasms started again. Then right before the PAX Post Party my back completely gave out. No heels for me that night, and my friends are amazing as the held me up for most of the night. I felt like an idiot for pushing myself so far though.

The next morning for my flight out I used my suitcase to keep myself standing, but eventually had to cave and ask for a wheelchair. Friends on board the flight helped me around the airport, although not going to lie there are some security benefits of being in a wheelchair. Got home, stayed in bed until C2E2, where I used a cane to get around for the whole show. Went to the doctor to confirm that I am in fact, a ridiculous idiot for not going to him sooner. We set up a surgery date to fix the 3 discs that moved, replace the broken pins and possibly broken metal pieces. That next week I opened Marijuanarama! 4: The Best Shit We Got with EEK Theater Company. The show was an amazing success, so much we were asked for an encore show. Sunday, did the All Things Good and Nerdy Podcast with Nerds of the Roundtable, The Adahy and Geek to Me, then went into the hospital.

I can’t tell you what they did besides fix everything and I’m not Wolverine. Its an amazing feeling, waking up not feeling anything below your neck. I wasn’t allowed to leave until after the feeling returned in my fingers but holy shit. I was scared shitless that it wasn’t going to happen. I never reacted well to knockout meds, and thats pretty much what happened. All during the surgery¬†I had the craziest vivid dreams in the freaking world. Besides that, my body just did not want to wake up. I got out Tuesday late afternoon-ish. I still have no feeling below the waistline. But I’m told that everything went well and I’ll be back to normal in a week or so, feeling wise. I’ll have some major PT ahead, but I’ve been given the go ahead to be able to at least TRAIN in Muay Thai again. To actually compete is pretty much out of the question. My doctor hit me with the clipboard when I asked.

I know that it sounds crazy that after a broken spine that I borked by fighting that I want to go back. To be honest, Muay Thai controls the crazy that otherwise would run¬†rampant. It would be just training, so I wouldn’t be getting my ass handed to me anymore. It’s the best way for me to stay motivated to take care of myself. I cannot explain my love for it. Just trust me that I’m not going to completely kill myself doing it.

Okay, now I’m going to nap for like 18 hours because I’m fucking tired.

et cetera