Rae's Record - June 2023

Issue 1

1. Announcements

Welcome to the first edition of my newsletter!

Rae’s the name. Rae Roy, to be more precise. I’m an Ottawa-area author, an emerging screenwriter, a Twitch streamer, a hobbyist musician, a crafter, and a weekend warrior. I’m also a member of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community, a spoonie, and an ADHDer. That last one explains why there are so many things going on in sentence three. For the record, I think it’s a lot too, but I don’t know how not to do it all.

I have been thinking about writing a newsletter for years now. I spent a lot of time figuring out what it should be and how it would be different from yet complement the other things I do like my blog. It needed to add value for subscribers without increasing my workload to the point of distracting me from my goals. Especially since I’m very good at getting distracted.

2. Monthly Goal Summaries

Speaking of my goals, every month I want to give you a brief update on them and maybe this will help hold me accountable, so I can actually finish more of them than I have been. I’m skilled at planning, but terrible at meeting self-imposed deadlines 😬

A) Arts & Crafts

A Strawberry

This is an assignment from the drawing course I’m taking that uses Procreate. It is taking me forever to finish between all the other things I have had on the go, keeping my iPad and pen charged, and having the mental bandwidth for learning new skills. But I’m committed to improve my drawing skills for many reasons. It’s a goal that feeds into my other goals and that is all I’m going to say about it for now.

Fairy Cross-Stitch

A personal project for the home that I work on while streaming TV, movies, or sports like the recent NHL Playoffs. It’s on navy blue Aida, so it has been hellish to work with. I also started out following the instructions, which has not played well with my math issues and working memory. I decided to go back to my old method of choosing one colour to focus on at a time. I’ve started doing that with black, which is hard, but it also outlines a lot of the picture and I think that will be helpful as I continue with it. I think I may need a silver pen or something to help me do the other black areas as an aid to overcome my challenges with counting.

B) Health & Fitness


On June 1st, I completed the second half of the assessment for ADHD. I received the results on June 20th. As I suspected, I have Primarily Inattentive ADHD and a learning disability in math. It turns out that I fell through the cracks as a child because of the time period while having a typical female presentation (daydreamy) and because I was smart enough to figure out my own workarounds to the problems caused by the ADHD. This isn’t really shocking to me. What is? The fact that I couldn’t get a doctor to help me because I could keep a job. The fact that I’ve changed entire careers multiple times or the number of post secondary programs I’ve completed didn’t give them pause. Not that I could fight for myself though. My mind occasionally goes into a mode that is like a deer in headlights.

At any rate, I haven’t been able to complete much in terms of creative projects in the past decade, so I’m hopeful that is going to change now that I know what I’m fighting with certainty. After spending decades learning ways to cope with it without knowing what it was, I’m enjoying learning more targeted approaches to make my life a little bit easier and to help me overcome some of the challenges that have kept me feeling quite frustrated.

Getting medicated will be a challenge between not having a family doctor, having Sjögren’s Syndrome, and needing allergy medicine in the summer. The last two things increase dryness and put me at a higher risk for dehydration. I’ve been planning to start immunotherapy for a while and I was about to order my injections when my family doctor decided to leave the country. Obstacles abound, but I will persevere.

The day I was diagnosed, I felt vindicated as I finally had the answer I had spent a lifetime seeking. The day after, I felt a bit sad. Part of me wonders how much of who I am has been defined by masking this thing in an attempt to appear more functional and “normal” than I actually am. It has been exhausting trying to act like the world isn’t as challenging as it often has been. In essence, I also need to reexamine some pieces of myself that are shaped differently than I knew.

One week post diagnosis felt like I was beginning a new chapter in my life. It was filled to the brim with potential that I may actually be able to achieve after decades of struggling to keep up. Those decades gave me a lot of coping skills, workarounds, and growth, but now I felt like I was finally free to be the truest version of me. I understand myself better and that has given me some peace of mind.

More on this new reality next issue!

Sjögren’s Syndrome

As I mentioned above, I am a Spoonie. That is someone who has an autoimmune condition or needs to manage spoons. Check out the spoon theory if you’re wanting to understand what that’s about. Basically there is a finite amount of energy a person has in a day (measured in spoons), and Spoonies don’t know how many we might have on a given day.

I have an autoimmune condition called Sjögren’s Syndrome. It is pronounced like “show-grins,” which is kind of awful given that it increases tooth decay. Luckily, my case is on the mild side. Dry mouth, dry eyes, fatigue, and chronic pain are the symptoms I face most often, but I haven’t had to go to the extreme measures on managing any of it. Mostly, I end up at the dentist far more than I would like or sometimes I need a nap to get through the day. I also use preservative free eyedrops multiple times throughout the day to keep my vision in good health.

Martial Arts

I participated in a couple of classes of Northern Praying Mantis Kung Fu. It was too much for me and not what I was needing at this time in my life. The decision not to continue it was a hard one because the teacher is wonderful and I truly enjoyed learning from her.

I’m searching for the next thing in this part of my life. Maybe it’s time to do something else like a dance class or yoga as I can’t seem to find what I’m looking for that will work with my schedule. I may have access to free yoga, so perhaps that is what I should do for now.


The softball league I play in is a primarily queer one and I love that for so many reasons. Some friends have asked me what the difference is between a regular league and a queer league. Two things come to mind. There are more dating opportunities and it’s a safe space to be authentically me. But there are other nice things like getting tips that my straight friends just don’t know about like flagging while femme. That is how to be really feminine while having potential partners know you absolutely are interested in dating another woman.

Back to softball. During June, I finally got on base. I had a particularly good night where I made it to base three times and scored my first run. Later in June, my team got our first win, which felt amazing! At the last game of the month, I made it on base several times and we got our second win. The Friday before Canada Day was a day off since attendance would be too low to be fun. It’s good to have a little break to heal from the earlier part of the season. I know I have some shin splints that could use a bit of time before we play again. And I was hoping my contacts would be in for the next game, so that I could see the ball better. Insert the obvious joke about a lesbian wanting to see balls better here.

C) Home & Lifestyle

In June, I continued to bring items to donation in order to reduce the clutter in my home. I made more changes in my bedroom and I felt hopeful that the decluttering will end. Not as soon as I’d like, but I feel like I’m making progress that I can see. Finally. And I’m really hopeful that I’ll be able to conquer it as my ADHD gets treated.

It’s Pride Month and I’m far more at ease discussing my sexuality than I was last June. It has been several years since I figured out that part of myself and I regularly feel happier. I used to be so over eager to pair up. These days, I’m pretty chill about it all. But I do know that I still have to be careful as there are hateful people running about hurting members of the community even in Ottawa. I’ll never understand senseless hate. Love is love and it’s beautiful as long as it’s between consenting adults.

D) Music & Gaming

I’m making slow progress here with learning piano, but I think I found something that works for me. What is it? Playground Sessions. It’s an application that functions quite a lot like Fender Play only it’s installed on the computer and any keyboard is connected. I’m using my AKAI MPK mini to get the basics handled. I can adjust the number of keys to use my keyboard and it will adjust the lessons accordingly. Since the keys on a piano are repeated, I don’t need a large one to learn with. At least at this stage. It’s pretty early as I’m just starting to work with the left hand. I’ve had much difficulty in this area as I’ve stopped and started a few times due to a mismatch between my needs and the various teachers I’ve tried. I’m really hopeful this time will go better and then I’ll be able to get to the larger music goals I have. I’m not ready to talk about those yet as I’m in the stage of acquiring the skills.

I had my first anniversary of streaming on Twitch. As I’m still working on community building, I don’t have much to say about it. I’ve been mostly gaming and I’m planning to do more than that some day. When? Your guess is as good as mine. As you may have noticed, I’m balancing a lot of hobbies outside of work.

E) The Writer's Desk

Recently, I completed a short film screenplay titled The Hoardling. It looks at hoarding from the perspective of a school-aged child. I’m trying to make it a bit longer as most of the contests have a 20-minute maximum. I think increasing its length will make it better. I tend to often write something in a barebones way then add subplots and more description later.

Work continues on my novels and other screenplays at a slow pace. I was going to describe that as a glacial pace, but given the continual speeding up of the melting of the polar ice caps, I don’t think the phrase works anymore. Anyway, as I mentioned above, I’ve been struggling to finish projects. I’ve also been on this decluttering journey to improve my living area and increase my ability to focus. With my case of ADHD, I find the more clutter around, the more my mind gets into problem solving, overwhelm, and/or distraction. Those things don’t help me focus on any of my goals or let me relax and recuperate.

3. Monthly Blog Summary

I thought an overall blog summary for the month could be a good thing for my busier supporters or those with other challenges. This way they can find out how things are going for me without having to wade through as much content.

My weeks are often overflowing with activity. June has been a packed month with softball, the second half of my ADHD assessment, an oblique injury, Lez Go Bingo and Brunch, calendar maintenance, Minecraft, dentist appointments, a tire change, Diablo IV, a new chair mat for my office, a bed frame change, streaming Rise of the Tombraider on Twitch, a new piece of music equipment, an extra long commute, piano lessons, this newsletter, Dino Club, a play, and roller derby. But I also found time to practice some self-care while decompressing with movies and my Fairy Cross-Stitch project. Oh, there’s a Monday to Friday day job in there too.

For a more in depth look at how June went, head over to my blog and read the posts.

4. Playlist of the Month

I love music and it is connected to my writing in a multitude of ways, so I wanted to put something together that would be a musical snapshot of my month. Please note that none of the songs are representative of my beliefs in anything or anyone. They simply got stuck in my head at some point during the month.

5. Special Feature

The most recent writing related activity I did was technically in May, but I felt like it could be part of this inaugural letter anyway. I participated in the Nights at the Round Table Book Club run by fellow Ottawa-area author, S.M. Carriere. Calling this writing related may seem like a slight stretch, but analyzing another’s writing can be quite beneficial for one’s own writing in many ways. It can help you get through a blockage by getting those mental cogs moving. Maybe you will find yourself thinking about how you would do a situation differently. You might be utterly shocked at how the story progressed and learn how to elevate your own writing.

I had to leave a friend's Doe and Doe party to finish reading enough of the book that I was committed to discussing in the livestream that would later be uploaded to YouTube. This turned out to be one of S.M. Carriere’s books, so she abstained from participating. Here is the resulting discussion.

6. Meet Ups

Though I have not scheduled any specific events currently, I do have a home for future events. They will live on my new public calendar.