Following my "spur of the moment which turned into a get my mind off my breakup" trip to PAX South and the "well I'm single with disposable income again so let's go to Boston" trip to PAX East, I'm excited to announce my "hmmm...the only other time I've been to Seattle was with my ex" trip to PAX West.
If you couldn't tell, all of these trips certainly have a bit of emotional baggage along with them. I planned the impromptu trip to San Antonio for PAX South about a week or two before my ex-girlfriend Catherine broke up with me but while we were still living together. It was a complicated scenario to say the least and the guys in my room ended up being some of the first people I told about the break-up. It wasn't like we had any kind of heart-to-heart about it but they were sympathetic and the weekend overall helped me escape the reality of the situation just a bit longer before I was ready to face it head on back home.
PAX East was first mentioned as a possibility when I was actually hanging out with friends in San Francisco in December at the PlayStation Experience but I ultimately figured I probably wouldn't be able to make it work financially, But on the bright side of the break-up, I wound up moving out of the three-bedroom we'd been living in and back to my old studio apartment, saving myself a significant chunk of change on the rent. So I decided to double-down on this whole "traveling to conventions to network" thing, found a three-day pass on eBay, booked my flights, and started chatting with friends about rooming with them (ending up in the infamous PAX-11 room). And as life would have it, a week before the trip I learned that Cat had started seeing somebody else, throwing me into a temporary emotional tailspin and wanting nothing more than to just be in Boston with my friends already. Fortunately, that trip wound up being everything I could have hoped for and more. Just what the doctor ordered.
Which brings us to today. I got confirmation over the weekend of an approved media badge thanks to some very generous friends helping me out. And as I started to write up a simple "I'm going to Seattle for PAX West" post, it hit me like a ton of bricks that there's this inescapable baggage on all of these trips this year. Seattle's baggage comes in the form of Cat's family lives up there and we spent Christmas there so I'm undoubtedly going to think of that every now and then while I'm in town for PAX and just have to try and not let it ruin or overwhelm my experience.
I've tried to be strong about this whole thing but it's been rough. Some things that I won't get into here definitely left a sour taste in my mouth regarding the break-up. And then today I just felt bombarded with thoughts of her. I had the realization that, in a different life, we'd have been living together for a year this month. Then, somebody at work today asked how my dog was and I had to explain that I lost her in the break-up and try and crack some jokes about it when all I wanted to do in that moment was curl up into a ball. And lastly, I had this whole PAX epiphany as I sat down to write tonight and it all just hit me. I've definitely been depressed recently. A general lethargy has overtaken me in recent weeks as I've slipped once again into my old routine of life as a hermit, mostly staying in and writing or playing video games, when I'm not out at work. I'm withdrawn from local friends and the ones I want to spend time with are scattered around the globe so I'm left only able to interact with them behind computer screens. It has made for a lonely few weeks.
But...I'm going to PAX West to round out my first trio of American PAX events (don't know that I'll be attending PAX Australia anytime soon). I'm excited to see my friends from the Kinda Funny Community. I'm excited to reconnect with the friends I've been making in the industry. I'm excited to have an event in my wheelhouse coming up that I can focus on for a week. This recharge of my batteries can come fast enough.
See you in September, Seattle!