Lunchtime Poll

LTP: 10/5/11

People love reflecting on the anniversary of an event and I’m no exception.  Yesterday we had our one-year birthday here at Persephone, which has lead me to reflecting on the past year since Persephone came into my life.  For today’s LTP I want to know how your life has changed in the past year -good or bad, small or big, I want to hear about it!This year has not brought a lot of the changes I planned on and was hoping for.  I am still only marginally employed, and still haven’t been able to find a job in my field.  I was thinking that I might be married by now, and I’m still waiting for the proposal.  I’ve had to make some difficult emotional decisions that still have an impact.  This has been a year full of challenges and being forced to face my personality flaws and some of the consequences of poor decisions I’ve made.

There has been a lot of good things in the past year, too, and most of that is thanks to the introduction of Persephone Magazine in my life.  This is by far the best group of coworkers I have ever had and I am so blessed to have contact everyday with brilliant women who inspire and impress me.  The directions and detours that my life has taken in the past year, I never would have anticipated, and I think I will reap the benefits of the personal growth long after my life has gotten back on track.

So how about you, friends, what has changed about your life since October 2010?


By Luci Furious

There are no bad times, only good stories.

28 replies on “LTP: 10/5/11”

This year, I finally moved to a house, which is a huge thing for me, since we’d been in our apartment for a little more than ten years, and I was absolutely miserable there. I got promoted at work, which changed very little.

Two things is a very big year for me. Oh, wait, three things! Persephone took over my life! (In the best possible way, of course.)

1. I edited a book through a publishing house contract…

2. … which released my contract two weeks later

3. I’ve been writing again; not fiction, but articles, which is a real change for me.

4. I discovered Persephone Magazine and its wonderful community.

5. I reached my healthy weight goal (yay!) and feel like a million bucks.

6. Was able to find a mixture of lifestyle changes and very light medication that has greatly reduced my anxiety and depression, making me a more sociable, happy creature overall.

Just over a year ago I moved from a very big city to a very small city, and have been struggling with making friends and finding things to do ever since. I do have to credit Persephone and tumblr for basically providing me with friendships over the past year and keeping me sane. I also, very very recently, got engaged to my boyfriend, so that’s pretty exciting!


I’ve been in the same boat and it is NOT EASY moving to a new place without a support network, especially when you’re moving from a small town to a thriving urban center. I moved from tiny little Snohomish, Washington to Boston just after college; one of the best, most terrifying experiences of my life!

I hope you’re soon-to-be-husband can help make the transition even easier for you. :)

Oh I love reading these comments today!

Let’s see, in the past year, my entire daily life has changed, which I think happens as your kids grow. I’ve completely severed ties with a former employer (good thing, very good thing), both kids are thriving in new schools and my new employment situation is pretty much ideal.

October 2010 wasn’t bad, but in most departments, October 2011 has been so much better!

I basically dropped my previous life and started a completely new one. One year ago, I was a single grad student frantically trying to prepare for a second attempt at passing my general exam and I hated my life with a vengeance. Now I am dating my first boyfriend and I have left the hellhole of graduate school for my first real job. And I can truthfully say I’m happy for the first time in years.

My life is either unremarkable or remarkably stable … definitely one of the two.

There are only to things of any note that happened: 1) A much loved pet passed away last month — Persephone (Percy) the budgie; and 2) I was diagnosed with huge intramural fibroid which made for some pretty stressful weeks until we knew what it was.

Basically though, I have a horseshoe crammed up my behind and I realize I live a pretty charmed life.

Over the past year, I:

1) Got married (I guess I was also proposed to in the 12 month window)
2) Was promoted to a pretty awesome job…
3) …And then laid off eight months later.

I did some traveling (Ft. Myers, Philadelphia, Toronto, Nashville, London) and whatnot, but it’s been a pretty big transitional year that overshadows a lot of the other stuff.

My aunt is taking me with her to Italy in January, which I’m totally pumped about. (She couldn’t find a travel companion who could afford the trip/take the specific time on this super sweet church group deal, so she offered to pay my way for the flat cost of the plane + hotel if I fend for myself when we’re there. She’s been helping my brother out a lot with his college expenses and thought it’d be nice to spread around the love to me, too. And I’m not gonna argue!!!)

And I’m going to DC in February to take the next round of the Foreign Service Exam. My cousin lives there, and hopefully I can crash with her if she’ll be in town then. If so, I’ll probably spend time sightseeing and hanging out. If she’s away and I have to get a hotel, it’ll be a shorter trip.

Also, this has been a huge transitional year for me. So far, I have:
1. Stood up to my family and made steps towards making unhealthy familial relationships healthier
2. Graduated from college
3. Begun to support myself independently
4. Started to come out as queer
5. Moved across the country to Detroit after living in Washington my entire life
6. Got hired for my first non-part-time or summer job
7. Reevaluated and altered my career plans
8. Lived by myself for the first time

It’s also been a fairly stressful year, but I really feel like everything is finally coming together in my life the way it needs to.

This time last year, I was just beginning to feel the rumblings of something being Not Okay in terms of how my senior year was going. I was trying to write a thesis that I never should have undertaken, my supervisor was getting ever more pissed off at me, and I was overwhelmed already.

Unfortunately, I was so wrapped up in the mythology of the Honours Thesis ™ that I didn’t pull out when I should have and so ended up with an E (an E!) on my transcript in that full-year course because we didn’t confront how badly I was screwing up until it was too late.

I’m still picking apart the damage from that grade, and it’s going to reverberate through my world through the next few years as I figure out my next educational step.

Persephone has given me kind of a safe space to admit my fuckups online, to get awesome advice (from you, Luci!), and to disentangle my entire identity from my transcript. It’s still a work in progress, but it’s going.


As a recovering perfectionist and grad-school dropout, can I just say thank you for speaking about how hard it is to “disentangle [one’s] entire identity from [one’s] transcript”? This is a good snapshot of my life a few years ago and it is hard. For me it took distance from academia in general to start looking at my own value as a person through a lens that didn’t assign a decimal average to my worth. Phew. You are infinitely more than your GPA.

Things have gotten harder in some ways – we moved to a different state, and I’m still finding myself feeling like I don’t have a local support network to get through rough days or just have human contact. Sometimes you just want to have friends over to stand around in the kitchen with you while you whip up something tasty, you know?

But we also got engaged, have better jobs, and now that we’re settled in I feel like I have a lot more bandwidth to explore new ideas and hobbies and projects. (Sometimes being around familiar people means that you’re spending a bit of energy keeping up their expectations of you, you know?) Plus, being in a nicer, sunnier, more temperate climate has meant a huge improvement in my overall mood. I can’t stop being grateful for that: that, and I quit drinking in February, which has also been a huge improvement. Big changes, really.

Adding to that my really amazing time here at Persephone writing and interning, and I just feel really lucky, but like it’s been an incredibly intense year. Still, I think intense is how I like it.

Thanks! the idea of having children one day with my dude, and how completely incapable I would have been of doing a good job parenting as I was under the influence, was one of many factors that helped bring me to the point where I was able to say, “Enough is enough.” I’ve been lucky to have a lot of support, and early in my sobriety Persephone was a great place for me to try to be eloquent about the thoughts I was forming, the challenges I faced, and the humor I was finally able to see in the whole situation. I’m really grateful for this community. It’s been essential to my success.

You have had a big year. And I totally understand about wanting friends in your kitchen to stand around and chat while you whip up tasty food for them. I long for that a great deal. I’m hoping we can both have that again in the near future. It means a great deal to social foodies like us!

And of course, I’m really proud of you about saying goodbye to the alcohol. I won’t even pretend I know how hard it is, but I can say I know it takes no small amount of daily determination and perseverance. <3

This last year was my first year of medical school, so I’ve had a lot going on, but for the most part it’s surrounded school and some weird family issues (that I won’t discuss here, cause downer).  Honestly, I spent the first six months of school wondering if I should even be there. I wasn’t happy. I dreaded class. I was so inundated by Science! that I couldn’t see straight. Then, I stumbled upon Middlemarch Madness and the wonderful world of Persephone.  You guys gave my life the balance I need to survive. Because, I really do love medicine. I like what I’m doing and will be doing for the rest of my life. What I can’t stand is only being allowed to use part of who I am in my daily life, but being surrounded by bookish and clever women (at least online) has given me a place where I can go and my random nerdiness (be it books, music, gaming, whatever) is not seen as weird or ridiculous, but rather it is embraced because we are all multi-faceted people who express ourselves in vastly different ways.

This group of people has really helped me re-anchor myself in who I am and who I want to be. So thanks, guys.

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