It has been a month since leaving to return to Jersey. How have things been?

I have been at my new job for two weeks and counting now. It is everything I want in it: a full time schedule that’s consistent (with the added benefit I get to work the day shift), it’s permanent as opposed to something temporary or seasonal, working for the company directly instead of through a third-party agency, comprehensive benefits, a comfortable living wage, the ability to wear what I want, and I can access my phone whenever I want to during the day. The cafeteria is not a 5-minute walk to and from; I don’t have to wear earplugs all day, and even when the weather is crappy, I can keep my jacket at my desk to put on to keep warm. It has hours where it’s labor-inducing loading, and periods of downtime where I pass the time by sweeping and cleaning. The team I work with may be more conservative politically, but they are swell people and we all get along well. I finally got my own work badge to punch in, I have my own work-related email, and I also get my own PC and desk?! I haven’t come out yet, but my coffee cup and trans pride wallet should’ve given the hint by now, right??

Despite how much I hate their “concierge” model, I’m back with Plume, as I now have a guaranteed access to my HRT. Until this month, the last 5 or 6 months I have been skipping my daily dose on weekends, because I didn’t have a local pharmacy with my refill on hand, didn’t have access to a doctor or nurse to prescribe me my gel locally or via telemedicine. Missoula, despite being a “liberal haven”, didn’t put in resources to make sure the local LGBTQ population had enough doctors in place who understood our unique medical needs. I actually have to remember on the weekends to put gel on!

As of Friday, I have obtained full immunity again from my booster. While the CDC says it could take half the time to rebuild immunity, it’s better to go with the data from the original vaccine shots just to be sure.

I have endured two snowfalls, but with better boots and access to a snowblower, I am able to clear out my driveway in an hour or so without getting too cold, wet and soggy, or feeling miserable. (Having last employed by DFTBA, with everything else they investing to grow their operations, couldn’t at least invest in a snowblower themselves??)

A new gym opened up, and it’s directly on my route to and from work. I’m waiting for the initial buzz to die down, and then I’ll join.

In the long run, if I have to move to Pennsylvania to find an affordable apartment on my income, so be it. But there are plenty of areas in my state with accommodations within my budget, and I really do not want to pay unreasonable toll rates.

So far, 2022 has been a great start for me. I hope it ends up way better than the shitshow 2021 ended up as for me.

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