I wasn’t sure I was going to Battlemoor this year; it was hard, both emotionally and logistically, and sad and scary.
Of course I went. Of course I had a wonderful time. I had no plans, I had no commitments, and so I was able to spend the entire war (or at least my three days of it) just talking to people, walking, looking at the stars (god, I miss the stars), laughing, holding my apprentice sister’s baby, petting dogs, sharing food and drink. I spent the entirety of Sunday, except for a little bit of shopping, in camp, noshing and day drinking and conversing deeply about SCA philosophy and love of the game and plans for the future, and it was glorious.
And I realize: part of why I’ve been feeling so at loose ends, out of place and lost, is because I’m not doing anything. The SCA is all about the doing. If I’m not researching something, planning and executing something, helping someone else execute something, making something, or practicing something, I’m not playing.
It’s not just since I moved to Denver, although my malaise has been especially deep since I’ve been here. For about a year before Juan died, I’d been working on some creative ventures outside the SCA. After five Battlemoors of turning out more than a dozen new garments over the summer in preparation for war, last year, I sewed one or two new pieces for each of us. Juan was doing stuff, but I was mostly on the sidelines watching and helping him. And after, I had no heart for it.
I came away from Battlemoor with:
- plans for Gulf Wars (six months, y’all) and a (at this point very vague and open) trip to Trimaris sometime in the last half of 2017
- a clear game plan for the next half-dozen high-concept costuming projects I want to work on, that will keep me busy for probably two years
- a couple of schemes to facilitate, collaborate with, and promote a handful of underrecognized artisans whose work I find amazing and inspiring
- a renewed commitment to getting back on the fighting field
- a renewed commitment to do the groundwork research to prepare me for my 2018 trip to Lithuania and Latvia
- a (for now) SUPER SEKRIT motivation for returning to work on the Motiño manuscript
And suddenly, I know what I need to do. I’m still sad, of course, for what’s lost, but for the first time in almost a year, I’m not unmoored. I love, I love, I love my people.