Why the hell am I here!? Part 2

... this is a continuation of part 1 because I have no self control over how much I write...

So, I left this off pre-groceries with my working a couple random jobs towards the end of my summer sublet. The plan was to take off towards Oregon.

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I was still trying to write on Steemit but with the theft of my real computer, doing so on my pre-historic Acer computer(it literally has a sticker on it bragging that it can get the internet) was becoming quite a task. The thing would freeze when I tried uploading pictures and I would have to reboot; which took about 10-15 minutes. My friend had an old computer he said he would sell me for $70, and it seemed like things were looking up.

I ended up deciding to move into their house. I wasn't financially prepared for my trip, and they proposed me living there and working at the ski area with them. I was in. It sounded like an amazing time.

And it was. To some extent. Things got a little dicey but hey, what do you expect when you put 8 people in a 3 bedroom house. Now, I should mention that during this Steemit learning phase, I was also spending a lot of time trying to learn about and understand blockchain in general. I knew I would have no money to invest for quite some time, and was looking for any ways I could earn crypto without; everything from airdrops to Steemit to faucets to UBI to other rewards based platforms. Eventually I had accrued enough different coins to start moving things around into wallets and what not- even if I was looking at a total of well under $100 other than SP.

But seemingly, all of that was lost. And then something BIG happened, at least BIG in terms of my lost earnings. I found a document on my old computer with a bunch of pass keys/phrases. It did not have my Steemit info on it(something I'd still like to find someday); but it had everything else I had accrued on it. It wasn't much, but it was enough to move around and see what happened. I hadn't done much trading before, but I had been looking into projects and thinking about which ones might take off.

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I moved some things around, but I put a lot of my earnings into Tezos and Cosmos, among a few other things. It wasn't much, and crypto had been tanking at this point, and I had kind of forgotten about it for awhile. Especially when my $70 computer broke. The Acer was no longer functioning properly, my pass codes were disorganized and my confidence was falling. If you've read almost any of my posts before you know about my clinical issues with mental health; and I fell deep into depression and stopped even bothering with trying to use my Acer. I had been living in a closet, working for minimum wage, there were weird vibes going on in the house; I just wasn't really motivated to do ANYTHING. At ALL.

The spring of 2019 I met my fiancee. I've told this story a million times so I'll shorthand it for the sake of the article. She is from Chile, she came to work at our resort as part of a school program. We met, fell in love, and I chased her to Chile that summer. This woulda been PRIMETIME for me to get back into blockchain related things; yet I still didn't have a computer. I don't really remember what was going on in my head at this point but I think I had forgotten all about it.

This "forgetting" was a trend that continued for the next year. Traveling to Chile, back, trying to figure out how to make an international relationship work; finances were tough. I was broke as fuck when I went to Chile. I got really lucky in a lot of situations. Honestly I was half expecting not to be able to afford to fly back, the possibility of our relationship not working as we barely knew each other, and was almost anticipating the reality I could just because an illegal Chilean immigrant due to money. And I was at a point that I was just so fed up with my usual life that that was fine with me. I don't want to get too dark here, but let's just say my will to live wasn't exactly consistent every day..

This time period isn't all that relative to my "how did I get here". Back and forth. I went there, she came here, we got engaged, COVID separated us, plan changes, plan changes, plan changes.. international relationships aren't easy to begin with; let alone when you introduce COVID into the picture as soon as things get really serious.

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Spring 2020. COVID hits. I was working seasonal winter jobs and we were ready to travel to Chile at the end of March and live there for 6 months. I had work renovating a house. Borders close prior to flights. She, as a resident, is required to go home as to not violate her visa. Life changes in a blink of an eye.

So now, I'm stuck in Vermont, thousands of miles away from where I'm supposed to be. There are zero job opportunities at all during this time; this is like the very beginning of the pandemic. I turned my house into a CBD trimming warehouse; quite literally. The entire place was filled with 50-gallon bins of CBD stalks. It was a mess.

And then one day I was writing again. And everything started coming back to me. I said to myself "fuck, why haven't I been using Steemit this whole time? Why haven't I gotten my shit together enough to even buy another computer? For any purpose?*

So I used my CBD money to buy a refurbished MacBook Pro from a reliable second-hand website. I think it was around $300; really not too bad. Although, it is a little older than I thought; which I don't mind! It's just annoying how many applications it can't run that I want. I'm getting off subject.

I enthusiastically went to Steemit. Now, as I mentioned before, the document I found did not have my Steemit passkey on it. So, I created a new account. Almost immediately I realized that something had drastically changed. The content was extremely different than when I had last been on a year and a half prior; or less. I went to all my friends I had made and every single one of their pages showed their "last active" as 3-4 months prior. Every single one. I realized that people must have gone somewhere.

I also took this time to check in on my wallets I had almost flippantly moved my old portfolio into. I was SHOCKED. I apparently made some really decent decisions. I'm not rich, not even close; but I had managed to turn a few hundred dollars into a few thousand. That, for someone like me, is quite literally life-changing.

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And, throughout this last year, that few thousand has been pumping and I have never felt more safe. I HODL, until it's absolutely necessary. But that's what I mean by safe. I've never had any sort of back-up plan. This was the first time in my life, where if everything would come crashing down, I would be able to figure out a way to recover rather than starving or freezing to death. I mean, maybe I'm more resourceful than I give myself credit for; but I guess I mean- the first time I wouldn't be ABSOLUTELY FUCKED.

I still won't touch it. And by "touch" I mean withdraw. Anyways, eventually I discovered HIVE. I was SO happy. And even happier when I saw a lot of familiar names(it's clear to me that no one remembers me despite frequent interactions 😂 which is totally fine, I guess I don't have a good perspective on what it's like to be popular on these platforms so I'm sure people end up interacting with a lot more people than I do. I was the nerdy punk kid who wrote music reviews and horror movie reviews; if that rings a bell to anyone).

So, I had finally found HIVE. And I was super excited. But, mental illness complicated things again. COVID dragged on, I was extremely depressed and scared about what could happen with my new, amazing relationship that's only strain was caused by circumstances out of our hands. I have frequently been called by friends and family the "most unlucky kid of all time", and the pandemic following my engagement really made me start contemplating whether the world was real or if I was just being fucked with.

Seriously. I lost my mind for a little bit. I wasn't open about it but; I really didn't think I nor anyone/thing else was real. At least I didn't do anything stupid.

So, despite my desires to be on HIVE; to be writing, making connections; doing something truly productive with my time.. I fell back into depression. Deep. Dark. Depression. I had taken a job I ended up hating and that made me even more depressed. I thought every day about writing, and never did. I was in a routine of just about hating everything in my life and waiting for the next step; to be reunited with my partner.

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We had planned on getting married in April(this upcoming Wednesday, actually). I was still going to renovate the same house in Chile. I left my job for the wedding; to go live there, work there, start writing again, and figure out our USA return plan while we were there. Everything was about to change, and I couldn't have been more excited.

And, of course, 3 days before my flight, Chile closes the borders again. I was about ready to give up on everything. Time, and time, again, the same fucking bullshit. I did slip back into thinking I wasn't real again; however briefly. I started drinking a lot and just saying fuck everything.

And then I decided I should try to use this opportunity rather than waste it. And HIVE became a possibility for so many things. I have no real social circle left due to the pandemic. OK, perfect, I'll make cool new interesting friends on the internet. Or connections at least. I needed to find time to write and my two jobs throughout the winter, in addition with depression, had prevented me from doing so. So, without a traditional job, and being unexpectedly stuck in Vermont again, I took to "bettering myself".

As I mentioned before, I started drinking a lot when Chile closed the borders. I was just at a loss of what else to do. So I drank. It was dumb, but it was fun. But I wasn't writing, despite my intentions. Drinking started getting in the way of writing. And that's not what I wanted.

So I stopped. Not forever- but for now. As of today, I'm 16 days without a drop of alcohol. A small feat- but really out of the ordinary considering my environment. Isolated resort/manual labor community= everybody's a functioning alcoholic. But "functioning" as in they go to their jobs they hate so that they can later drink. I took a look around one night and decided "this isn't what I want to be"; sadly looking at a lot of my friends who, I'm sure, a couple of years ago probably looked at me and said the same thing.

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I wanted to take a step in the direction of doing what I want with my life. I've been encouraged by a small sci-fi/horror publishing company to submit a novel to them. I've been working on that a LOT but I've never attempted such a large writing project so it's been a bit difficult figuring out if I was writing well or absolute garbage. But, another thing I always wanted was to be a part of a community like this. A community that inspires me to create, to learn, to practice my writing, to make connections, that encourages me to make art and do the things I want to do. Of course, the money incentive is there; I'd be lying if I said it wasn't. But, if it was solely about money, I wouldn't be here. I'd be learning/focusing on trading and working on trying to further out how to turn my "lucky" portfolio growth.

So, here I am. Working odd jobs from Front Porch Forum to survive while I wait to hear the news of when I will be able to go to Chile, get married, and start the next stage of my life. And spending most of my free time bettering myself. Becoming healthy again. Eating better. Exercising more. Testing sobriety. And.. writing. As much as possible. Here, other places, working on my novel-- this might be my best chance of getting a foot in to the writing world. To have things produced. Sure, you might be writing this and thinking "but Herbert, you're the sloppiest writer I've ever read". Yeah, you're probably right. But, I'm also good at editing my slop- and I think I could someday do at least SOMETHING with it.

And that is the very long, strange, whiney, bitchy, boring story of how I ended up here. These past few years have been a rollercoaster of emotions and life changes for me. Like I said in part 1, I still am absolutely flabbergasted all of this has taken place in only 3 years. I honestly thought my introduction to Steemit was at least 5 years ago.

If you made it to the end of this I applaud you. I feel like I owe you something. What a ragbag of whiney BS. But, that's my blockchain story. And, despite everything, I couldn't be happier to be here.

Much love to the HIVE. Thank y'all for being an inspiration to better my life.

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Your current Rank (41) in the battle Arena of Holybread has granted you an Upvote of 23%

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Congratulations @herbertholmes2! You have completed the following achievement on the Hive blockchain and have been rewarded with new badge(s) :

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I made it to the end and I admire your strength. The only way is up. Chile is a beautiful country. Finish this sci-fi novel. you are doing great!

@tipu curate

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Thank you :) Sincerely. It felt good to get some of this off my chest, and reflect upon it. The novel is really difficult for me. I'd love to commit myself to it full-time, but I also need to keep finding as many odd jobs as possible to get by in the meantime.. and searching for those takes up almost as much time as doing them. But, I am confident that soon I will start shaping the life I want for myself.. I hope.

And again, thank you for your ongoing encouragement. It truly means a lot.

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That was intense. There were so many ups and way downs that I think standing up on a rollercoaster would be a piece of cake compared to everything you have endured. In fact my depression and anxiety isn't valid anymore.

How you are dealing with this, is amazing. I am sure eventually you'll be writing about a successful ending from your house in Chile with your wife. You'll teach people how to get over hurdles and plough through. I know what you mean though about questioning if you're real or not. I am so distraught about the current never ending situation that has us imprisoned, that I keep wondering if I'll wake up and tell someone about the bad dream I had. But I keep waking up to the same thing.

I confess I like a lot of wine every night to wind down from working in a restaurant and at my age it's kind of pathetic. The only thing is I am strong because of hard work. You know what they say, if you don't use it you lose it.

Congratulations on your offer to write the sci fi thing. Whether you do or not, it's a good sign.

Hang in and Hive on!

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In fact my depression and anxiety isn't valid anymore.

Ok first of all, I have to say that this is absolutely never the case. Everyone's issues are entirely valid. Always. ALWAYS.

I am sure eventually you'll be writing about a successful ending from your house in Chile with your wife

And this is what I hope for more than anything. Anywhere; we still don't know where we want to live. The Chile plan was only for 6 months or so, and then we would return here for a few years.. but who knows what will happen.

She really has her shit together; in fact I don't think we could be more opposite of people. She/our relationship is one of my biggest inspirations. I'm such a dark person and she is so happy and positive. It sounds strange, but it's a wonderful dynamic.

I know what you mean about the dream thing. My brain sometimes drifts towards The Truman Show style of thought as well. But, I'm aware this is reality.. however impossible it seems at times. There's NOTHING wrong, and especially not pathetic, about indulging in your wine. I love drinking. And it's worked fine for me for a long time. COVID pushed me over that boundary though; not to "out of control".. just I wasn't really recognizing myself anymore. I had no reason NOT to drink, and I think that was a bad situation for me. I'm not a sober-forever guy, I just need to get back in shape and focus on some goals of mine, and drinking was becoming more fun than being productive and motivated. Especially with all this border bullshit. You keep your wine up if it's working for you. There's no shame in that. Whatsoever. And I mean, working in a restaurant... hard not to drink. At least in my experience. There's a lot of alcohol in that environment haha.

I'll try for the novel. It wasn't necessarily an offer; I saw they were accepting short story submissions for a collection they were publishing. The theme wasn't my thing but I decided why not go for it. They agreed the subject matter wasn't my thing haha. But they liked my writing and asked for more examples. I sent them others and they more or less said "love your writing, need to work on a few things, but we'd be surprised if we didn't want to work with you on a novel if you submitted a draft". That's the most encouragement I've gotten, and it put a big smile on my face.

Thanks for reading. You've quickly become one of my favorite people to engage with here. Cheers to you from a different part of our continent!

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You owe me now...a pic of Raiden 😉. A lot of similar stories here more or less. I hear you on a lot of things.

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I know I just mentioned on the other thread about Costa Rica but seems more appropriate here. Meet her there. Piece'0 cake.

This was a fun read, congratulations on the reward.

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Yeah man, I really wish we could. The way Chile handles it is that no one is allowed out either; i.e. she is not allowed to leave. No one goes in, no one goes out. It's smart, but ruins shit for us.

I'm gonna try my luck with the embassy. The US government doesn't like me but who knows maybe the Chilean government does hahaha. We'll see.

Thanks for reading man! Always fun to bump into ya on here.. and by always I mean my month or so being active here hahaha

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