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No Longer Just About the TARDIS for Me

by Jennifer Brozek 20. July 2017 09:03

My first Doctor was the 4th Doctor played by Tom Baker. I loved the show. There was something about it that struck me as wonderful. To be able to travel through time and space and to be home in time for dinner. To see wonders and fight monsters and to always work for the good of humanity. I loved the show for many reasons. However, as a military brat, I loved Doctor Who most because of the TARDIS itself. For a kid who had to move every 2-3 years, the idea of having a house that you could take with you was beyond wonderful. It was magic itself.

Because of this, I was the kid who kept a packed backpack by my bed. I was ready for when the Doctor came and offered me a place in that wondrous blue box. The one that always knew where to go. I wanted to be a companion because I wanted to travel in the TARDIS.

The first time I saw the Doctor regenerate, I realized that maybe, someday, the Doctor could be female. That instead of being the plucky companion, a girl like me could live in the TARDIS and choose her companions. But, being the cynical child that I was, I knew it wouldn’t happen anytime soon.

I disliked the 6th Doctor so much that I stopped watching Doctor Who altogether. I ignored it for three seasons when the new Doctor Who came out. It took Rich Taylor, one of my best friends, a legion of fans gushing about it, and a music video to get me to watch. I went to Netflix and found the episode “Blink.” Rich had described it as “The episode I would point people to if I had to describe what Doctor Who was without getting into the long history of the Doctor.” After I watched “Blink” and admitted I liked it, Rich told me to watch “The Empty Child” next. That’s when Eccleston became my new Doctor. He’s still my favorite.

At least for now.

After Tennant, I wanted a woman or non-white Doctor. I wasn’t picky. I just wanted the Doctor to regenerate into someone who wasn’t white and male. Someone a tiny bit closer to me. After Smith, I was so disappointed that Capaldi was chosen. (Note: Capaldi did a fantastic job as the Doctor.) The world kept telling me “No.” Once more, I was back to focusing on the TARDIS itself as my favorite.

On this 13th (or 14th, if you want to be pedantic, because of the War Doctor), I wanted a woman or a non-white man so bad. My cynical side said it wasn’t going to happen. They were going to get Kris Marshall and he would do a good job and that would be that.

I did not expect my visceral reaction to the discovery that a woman, Jodie Whittaker, would be taking on the titular role of the Doctor. I felt my cheeks flush and my heart beat faster. I punched the air and ran to the Husband’s office to tell him. In those scant steps between his office and mine, tears sprang to my eyes as I formulated the words to tell him, the new Doctor would be played by a woman. My voice cracked when I told him. It was like the world had changed in some indefinable way.

It’s taken me a week to figure out what that way was and why this meant so much to me: Finally, I’m no longer just a guest in the TARDIS. I don’t have to the companion who will eventually be left behind. The TARDIS can be my home, too.

Now, thousands upon thousands of little girls and boys will see Jodie Whittaker as their first Doctor. The potential for them will always be there in a way that wasn’t for me until now.

I can’t wait for this next season of Doctor Who.

My TARDIS Little Free Library in my front yard.
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by Jennifer Brozek 22. June 2017 12:23
There are a lot of changes going on in my life right now—physically, mentally, and atmospherically. This is a good and bad thing. Change is hard. Change can hurt. Doesn’t matter if everything is so much better when it’s done. Change is life.

Atmospherically...
The Husband and I have decided that, unless something drastic changes, this is our house until retirement. It is a 30+ year old house in decent shape. We are the second owners. There have never been any kids living here. But, it is still 30+ years old and things are slowly falling apart. Thus, we have decided that since we would have to update the house to sell when we move anyway, we should go ahead and update the upstairs bathrooms now so we can enjoy the updated look and feel of the place while we live here.

This means I’ve had people in the house almost every day for three weeks. For an introvert like me who prefers to work in silence, this has been hard. My productivity has dropped. My sleep schedule is all messed up. The cats are unhappy and anxious. It’s no fun. But the master bathroom is almost done. Almost. And it is beautiful. I’m going to love using it. The Husband can’t wait to take a bath in the new tub. It will be worth it.

Of course, next week, the destruction of my bathroom happens. My bathroom is right next to my office. I suspect I’m going get even less done. The work is going to be louder and there will be constant movement in my field of vision. I won’t need to lock the cats up the whole time, so I don’t be able just close my door—not that my paranoia would allow that anyway with strangers in the house. (Change is hard but good for you.)

Physically... I’m definitely getting older. I’m figuring out how to deal with perimenopause. Not fun and total TMI, but women go through it. Just look it up.

I cut my hair off in a drastic (for me) new style that’s gotten good responses. Soon I’m going to see how much gray hair I actually have. I’m so glad I did this. I needed the change. Though, I don’t recommend this to everyone. I have EPIC bed head every single morning. I have to fix my hair every day. There is no brush it once and it’s good. It’s not hard, but it is a change. At this point, I’ve forgotten I’ve cut my hair off and I’m surprised when people are surprised. I will be growing it back out over time. It will take a while and I won’t be going as long as I did before. Probably to a 1920s bob. I do love Miss Fisher’s sense of style....

Mentally... I’ve been thinking about what I own and what I want versus what I need. I’ve been looking at my life. I think Millennials have the right idea with paring down and thinking hard about each thing they own. I’m not going to become a minimalist, but I can see why so many adults—young and old—have taken to the lifestyle. I’ve discovered the more I get rid of stuff, the easier it is to pare things down. It gives me more room for what I truly love.

There is a relief to divesting yourself of those things and that gift you just don’t care about anymore. The obligation to keep what was given, even if you hate it, weighs heavily. I knew this intellectually, but not viscerally. I grew up poor. My parents stored things for “just in case.” I’ve picked up this habit. I’ve learned to converse and to save. Not to my determent. Not really.

I’m not a hoarder or even close to it. I’m much more of a I could use this in the future maybe... kind of person. But sometimes I wonder what I would do if something drastic happened (like a flood or fire) and I could only rescue one or two or five non-living things from the house. My list is simple. Pictures. Laptop. The anniversary book where, instead of exchanging anniversary cards, the Husband and I write each other anniversary love notes in a book each year.

That all said, I do like my stuff. I’m just getting rid of that which I no longer love, want, or need.

I can’t say I’m enjoying this set of changes, but I think I will appreciate them after they are done. As I change, I feel like I’m leveling up as a person. I don’t need to hold onto things or to do something because “that’s the way it’s done.” I am forging a path I wish I’d learned earlier. Ah, well. Better late than never.

September 2017

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