The Tea Lounge ran by La Quadrature Du Net at the 32nd Chaos Communication Congress is being dismantled. 2015 is winding down, with only 28 hours left.

I am beside myself with all of the wonderful things that have happened in the last 364 days. 2015 was a bit of a rough year, yet I'm invigorated with renewed energy going into 2016.

A list of milestones in no particular order:

  • *Moved into a new apartment in downtown Oakland.* This one is bright and airy and close to all the things that make up my world. It's cheaper than my old place, has a noticable lack of cockroaches, and I've fallen madly in love with it.
  • *Visted Portland.* Thanks to an internet avocado, I won free tickets to Open Source Bridge in Portland, OR. Portland has long been a city I'd wanted to visit, having heard Akron described for years as the Portland of the midwest.
  • `Left Ripple Labs <>`_ and `started working at Other Machine Company <>`_. Ripple Labs was awful. After Open Source Bridge's opening keynote, I learned that the only thing left for me to do to change the culture was to remove myself from the system by quitting. I did, and ended up at the most amazing place. I hope to never leave.
  • *Started to build a hackerspace in Oakland.* It's still getting started. Holiday time makes everything slow so not much has developed yet.
  • *My cat Boots finally passed away from lymphobma*. He was somewhere around 12 years old at the time. He is no longer suffering which brings me great peace.
  • Developed a love of my own body. Body positivity has been a thing I've struggled with for almost all my life. After a few years of transitioning, I had an intense moment of self love: Visiting an old friend in Akron who has known me for a few years by now, her first words were "You look beautiful!" and I believed it. I've begun to further develop my own sort of queer hacker aesthetic with the way I present myself that accentuate what I like about myself.
  • Begun some new intimate relationships. E and N are both friends of mine I've known for some time by now. Days apart from each other, it was discussed that the crushes I'd had on them were in fact mutual. I'm very excited to explore where these new relationships will go in 2016.
  • *Learned how to better set boundaries.* Since I'd been involved at Noisebridge, P was a very important person in my life. I'd had strong feelings for him, and the idea of dating had been discussed between us many times. Each time the two of us had walked away thinking that everything was alright and things were good. In reality, we danced around the idea of setting hard boundaries within our friendship. This came back to bite us later when it became too much for me to not be able to express my feelings for him how I wanted and an extended separation occured.

Finally, this year I decided to canonicalize two more rules I live by. For a long time I've been following a pattern of taking off a week every quarter of the year at approximately three month intervals. I'm also not all that big on major holidays of the year like Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, or even my own birthday on December 24th. Sure I'll participate, but I won't go out of my way to plan anything.

The exception to this is for New Year's. The transition between one year to the next is an incredibly important thing for me to celebrate. What usually ends up happening is I plan to have a two week long adventure of epic proportions. My last two holidays have involved going to Hamburg, Germany for the annual Chaos Communication Congress. It starts out with a quiet day entirely to myself on the 24th of December and ends with an intense celebration of the year's accomplishments at midnight on the 31st.

Holiday is a time for me to get together with family, using the meaning of Family that is my own. An opportunity for me to spend time with the people that mean the most to me. The people that know me as well as I know them. We've shared struggles and successes over our time together which makes this all the much better.

2015 seems like the most intense year I've had yet. There is plenty reason to celebrate.

I will kick 2016's ass.