In Case of Emergency (Today’s Moment of Gratitude)

Today I am grateful for a feeling of empowerment I’m accessing as I better organizing my personal affairs. I would likely come across to most people as the type of person whose file drawer is enviable, but the reality of my schema for categorizing documents and the like is that I store most of what I need to function as an adult in my head and/or computer, so there is little evidence of how I manage bills and such that physically exists in my life. I have a plastic bin into which I’ve placed most of my important documents, but it could easily take someone hours to sort through it to find the one they might need.

The realities of the potential for a healthcare crisis (among other threats) in my country has pushed me into the realization that, were I incapacitated, it would be difficult for someone to step into my life and manage things for me. Lacking a spouse and family puts in me in a much more precarious situation than most people, one that has left me inert with anxiety ever time I’ve tried to cross this threshold of preparedness. Now, though, the threat is more real than it’s ever been to me and I feel compelled to take action. I am compiling a binder with all the relevant information necessary. It should serve not only the emergency for which I am designing it, but will also be something I can grab and go if there is a natural disaster.

I am also planning to meet with an “elder law” attorney this summer, even though I am decades off from being considered elderly. I need to know my options for designating someone to manage my healthcare as well as the welfare of my dog, should anything happen to me. What I find bizarre about the whole situation is that I’ve been suicidal more times than I can count in the past, sometimes seriously, but taking these steps of actual preparation feels very daunting and challenging. I suppose I’m not afraid of being dead but I am extremely scared of losing my autonomy and having to rely on others to ensure my safety, so much so that even planning for it feels risky. I’m grateful, though, for the privilege of being able to make choices now for myself as I find the courage to face my fears and am taking concrete steps forward. What is something you’ve been putting off that you’ve begun to address?

Create Symmetry or Alignment (Today’s Simple Pleasure)

I consider myself someone who appreciates aesthetics in physical environments. In spaces where objects have a primarily practical use, I desire for them to be arranged in a way that allows me to use them as efficiently as possible. For instance, I have my medicine and toiletries cabinet organized by function. My clothes are hung according to season and color.

For today’s simple pleasure, I went through my clothes and removed any that I am not wearing on a regular basis. I do this several times a year and cannot recommend it enough as it allows my space to feel clear and defined. I have, however, had a struggle as of late in that I am wearing a much more masculine style than I had in years past, and have felt ambivalent about donating my favorite feminine pieces that I know I won’t be able to easily replace, should I want them again. Given that I am on T, I think, as a non-binary person, it is possible that I will eventually want to wear more feminine styles if my body becomes significantly masculine in appearance. For now, I’ve placed these types of clothes in a bin which feels less cluttered and dysphoric than having all the styles co-mingled on the rack. Symmetry and alignment are not simply represented by what is visually pleasing. For me, they also include bringing the way I show up in the world into agreement with how I see myself internally, a process indeed!