Because it feels like the end of the world a lot, here in my head.
(Forgive me this start. I find myself desperate to write something today. Something Good. Something Meaningful.)
I turned 30 years old on May 31, 2019. The summer that followed was among the harder ones of my life. It’s always hard to be mentally ill, but sometimes, wow, it really swings for the fences. I thought that maybe I was tired because of the medication I was on, so I stopped taking it abruptly, which led to a lot of pain. Someone extremely close to me pointed out that a big important relationship earlier in my life was actually abusive, which led to even more pain. There were all these gnawing questions down in my guts that I was too scared to confront.
Who are you? What’s your story? What’s your deal?
Finally finally finally, the fall came, and when I was just out of the woods enough to stop fighting my own supposed happiness, someone dear to me insisted that I sit down and watch Good Omens. And, friends, I just don’t know how to not be boring and repetitive about this, but:
It changed my entire life.
Suddenly, I felt like I was a teenager again, staying up well past my bedtime to devour fanfiction and fanart. And goodness, there is some QUALITY CONTENT in the Good Omens fandom.* I couldn’t stop watching, couldn’t stop reading, couldn’t stop thinking about this angel and this demon who are weird and good and beautiful and bizarre and who love each other so much that they will stand up against Heaven and Hell to preserve the world they tread together.
I’m still thinking about them all the time. I don’t regret a second of it.
In more plain and spelled out terms, I didn’t have the courage to own my queerness until Good Omens came into my life. I didn’t know that some of the things I wanted were even possible until I read about them in fanfiction or saw them depicted in fanart. Had never been confronted with the concept of fluidity in such a positive, open-hearted way.
I had lost such a grip on the sweet, enthusiastic dork that I am before Good Omens. Had started to become awfully hard about the world, and about my lot in it. But then I was reminded of what’s really good and important about the world; good books, extravagant pastries.
My own best friend wrote in her Christmas card to me this year (a card with Aziraphale and Crowley on the front, naturally): “… but now like a blazing sword gifted by a benevolent cinnamon roll angel, you’re flaming like anything and I can’t wait to see the path you light.”
(Thank you, Carman. I love you.)
Good Omens gave me the courage to be true to myself, for reasons I feel that I still can’t really articulate. To quote a great Tumblr post from a ways back, “Did it break me, or did it fix me?”
I wasn’t broken. But I was bruised and very sad. And I needed to be reminded of the brilliant, burning power of love, in all of its forms. Needed to be reminded that the world is always as big as everything or as small as your favorite bookshop, and that it’s worth saving. Needed to be reminded that there is strength is softness.
Again, I find myself flailing for the right words. For the best words. But I do not think the words even exist to fully capture how strongly I feel about the role that Good Omens has played in my life. I hope that I’m a part of this fan community for a very long time. That’s another thing! I’m absolutely a better writer because of Good Omens. I am surrounded by incredible fellow writers and readers, and they make me better, they keep me excited.
I hope that, as soon as I’m able, I go out and get a million more bow ties. Because this is how I love things. I go all in.
And I love this thing so bloody much.
It had been a hard, sad summer, and things had been hard for a while leading up to that point. (Never forgetting, of course, the amazing, bright spots within this time period, because, oh, they were there.)
But I honestly didn’t think I could get back to this exciting place. To this place where my love for a beautiful creation spills out of me everywhere I turn. Where I do not feel ashamed of my oddness, only seen and encouraged.
Welcome to your 30’s, Good Omens. I hope you enjoy them! They’ve been a truly wild ride for me so far, and I am endlessly grateful to you for helping to smooth out some of the rough edges.
Wave your Nerd Flag high, my friends. Whatever that thing is that makes you feel most like yourself, never be ashamed to return to it as often as you need. We know who we are, deep down in our marrow, but it never hurts to have a certain angel and demon assist us in remembering our own goodness. That we were worth the saving.
*Seriously, hit me up if you need recommendations.