this is just about me

May 02 2017

Hi Listserve,

I have no advice or recipes for you. Maybe you have some for me?

I live alone, I’ve never had a boyfriend, I don’t have a stable career, I’m out of shape, and I don’t have a ton of friends nearby. It’s lonely, and I feel little motivation to get out of bed and go to work some days. I keep myself very scheduled with other activities, possibly in order to not dwell on the things I wish I had. Ironically, my first name literally means “contentment”.

On the other hand…

I earned a Ph.D. in cell biology, and the work that I do in one project will incrementally help us understand how our body defends itself against a variety of major bacterial infections, like cholera, staph, strep, and gangrene. I just finished teaching my first undergraduate course by myself, on Developmental Biology, and it’s given me good experience for the future if I decide to pursue teaching.

I’ve had the opportunity to travel to five continents, and I speak passable Spanish. I skinny dipped for the first time in Loch Ness, and bungee jumped for the first time in New Zealand.

I’ve completed a half marathon in under 2 hours, and who’s to say I couldn’t do it again? An ex-co-worker invited me to join his team for an obstacle course 5K this September, so I have a reason to start exercising.

The reason I don’t have a lot of friends nearby could be that I was lucky enough to move away from home. My educational journey has taken me to both coasts of the USA, and with it came some amazing experiences. I found out I can sing and dance, and I’ve done three years each with gay men’s choruses in San Diego and Boston.

I joined a men’s barbershop chorus here in Massachusetts and have learned that I am a great a cappella tenor. As a member of Vocal Revolution, I’ve gotten to sing a joint concert with local blind students, perform the national anthem at Fenway Park, win our local televised choral competition, and compete at the international level in front of a crowd of thousands. My barbershop quartet, Sector 10 (Like us on Facebook!), just got our highest score in a competition and we are pumped for the district competition in the fall and hopefully some paid gigs.

I guess what I’m really trying to say is (“I hate sauerkraut”, ha, Weird Al reference) that it’s taken me a while to realize that while there are things about my life that are less than ideal, there are also things that are unique and enviable, and I really have the choice as to what to focus on. I want to have my namesake “contentment”, and I have the potential to do amazing things. It’s up to ME to take that initiative. Maybe along the way a cute guy will find that attractive some day. And if he doesn’t, that’s fine too.

Perhaps y’all have figured these things out before now, faster than I did. Well, I’m figuring it out now. And that’s fine too.

It’d be cool to hear from some of you!

Worcester, Massachusetts, USA (but only for now, for now)
[email protected]

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