Instant note, there, then, that instead of shaving whenever going to a public place (I don't consider my counseling appointment public; it's basically 'any Y visit'), I'm going to now need to shave religiously every day. (I had been not bothering when not appearing in public, since there's not much of a point; I'm a recluse who spends most of my time online, not doing things where dysphoria'd kick in.)
But the counseling appointment basically went, "What do you want to do to get more money?" And the answer to that is...nothing that is actually a job. I like working at the Y, but I'm limited to 39 hours, am averaging 20, and the pay's basically minimal wage. (Albeit minimal wage in the state with the highest minimal wage.) And they're concerned that's not enough. Yet...frustrating as my experiences there can be, stressful as they can be, I do love my job there and it's the only real job I can see myself getting paid for.
They want me to pursue physical training if at all possible, to increase the amount I'd get paid, but while that'd still be working at the Y, and I might even enjoy the job more, getting to that point's not something I particularly have the motivation to pursue.
What I really want to do.
The question they didn't really ask because it's not the question they're looking for.
Is be a writer.
I want to write professionally, rather than just as a hobby, and while it's been months since I worked on my novel directly, it's the thing I most want to do.
That doesn't guarantee I get much pay, especially given that people are generally not willing to take a risk, and for every big-name author that succeeds, there's a million others that tried and failed. So I might not get any pay. But writing is what I actually want to do. It's my passion. It's what I live for--and I don't mean that metaphorically. Quite literally, at the absolute darkest moment in my life when I was considering suicide, it was the stories in my head that wished to be written and heard by others that saved my life.
They cried out to me, essentially. "You're the only one who can write them." I told myself. "If you die...then they are lost, forever, never to be told, never to be finished, never to be shared, never to live." And I couldn't let that happen. I knew I could never bring them all to life, but I resolved right then and there that I would bring them to life.
So I need to be a writer. I don't care how. I don't want to give up ComicFury, or my mafia life, or my real-life pursuits, or Red Hood Rider. And I can't give up my job. But somehow...I'm getting writing done. I'm going to maximize every minute of my time, because I refuse to let this go.
So while I was left very uncomfortable, and while this is not the conclusion that they wanted from me, the meeting was productive, in that it has reinvigorated, reignited, my passion, my drive, to pursue my highest calling: that of a writer. I'm not letting go of it. I'm refusing to go to bed tonight without writing on my novel; I'm promising that, now. It may not be the first thing I do (I've got a LOT of errands to run), and I might want to work on Red Hood Rider today a bit, but I AM going to work on my novel, no matter what.