What do you get when you really invest in friendships? What does a healthy friendship look like? Is it normal to come together and drift apart over the years?
Hear it all on this episode of the Queer Joy Podcast; where two relationship therapists explore what it looks like to see joy in queer relationships.
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Reese: like what holds you together is unconditional love and sense of home basically. Or you create home together and like, not just in a material way, but a spiritual way. And I was like, you just perfectly defined it. That's it like, I've never been able to like see it, . Keely: Hello, everyone. Welcome to Queer Relationships Queer Joy. I'm one of your hosts Keely C Helmick . Melisa: I'm your other host, Melissa DeSegiurant. Keely: And we are here today to talk about friendships! Not just romantic relationships. I know we had said we were going to talk about all types of relationships. We've kind of been heavy in the romantic relationship department though. Melisa: I think I'm very excited, especially for this. As everyone knows, we'll do our introductions, but I'm still doing the solo things. So I'm all about friendships and celebrating them. And I'm so grateful to our guests today for being here. So just a reminder that we will be doing some workshops coming up, both in February, March, and then in April we will start a group. So we can talk more about that. Maybe in upcoming episodes, but I want everyone to be prepared to do a little bit more engagement with us. Keely: Yeah. Yes, I'm super excited for the workshops. And I mean, you just got back from taking a little vacation, which is always necessary. So, and I'm just excited. We are all on video. We are not recording or talking in person. And Melissa and I are separate again, we have to record seperate rooms, different rooms, same building, different rooms, because you know this gosh, darn whatever COVID crap you want to. Just not making it possible. So we're being safe. We're doing our due diligence. It's still a thing. It's still a thing. So, I am Keely C Helmick, licensed professional counselor, queer therapist, owner of Connective Therapy Collective. I am a white non-binary gender fluid femme, and I am solo. Still practicing solo. Doing a little bit of the dating thing. It's it's interesting. I don't know. Melisa: Bombs dropped on you on the dating apps Reese: recently. Keely: I know, like, do I even trust the dating apps? I don't even know what this is, but there's way I think the theme and this may come up today is that, we were talking about earlier is how interconnected the community is and how to navigate that as a professional and as a person that just exists in the world. So Melisa you want to introduce yourself? Absolutely. Melisa: I am still Melissa. I am a white gender fluid person. I'm bisexual polyamorous. Also clinician at Connective Therapy Collective. I've said this in other episodes, but it feels important to include in intros now too, I identify as greyscale asexual on the ace spectrum. So ace representation all the way. Yay. That's all for now. Keely: All right. You two, who would like to introduce yourself first? How do you want to start? Alex: I can start. My name is Alex. I use they them pronouns. I am a non-binary queer person who was, I don't know. I just am like, my existence is just really complicated. I've kind of tried to stop labeling it and kind of just letting it be whatever the mess it is. I also work at Connective Therapy. Collective Keeley is my supervisor and Melissa is my co-worker. Reese: I am Reece. Non-binary. My genders include all and none at the same time. I'm white and currently a counselor in training at Lewis and Clark. And yeah, Keely: so we have Connective Therapy Collective and we have Lewis and Clark representation too. I don't know Reese, if you know, I am an alumni from there! Lots of Lewis and Clark representation. Melisa: Forgot to mention the queer community being a small world, but the counseling community Keely: and the queer counseling community, for sure. All right. You two, who was okay. Let's just ask, how did y'all meet? Tell, tell the listeners a little bit, and we introduce you as friends. So people know that, friendship how'd, y'all meet. Tell us a little bit about your friendship and how that started Alex: We met. I think it was back in first grade, actually.2002.Yeah. Reese: So we- Melisa: That's adorable. I won't interrupt too much. Alex: It gets better. It gets like sickeningly cute. Reese: I like the way you tell it a lot, so. Alex: Okay. Well, so we met in first grade and we both have younger sisters and my sister is one year younger than me and his sister is two years younger than him. And actually at first I started playing with his sister at recess. We were playing velociraptor. That was just what I was playing at the time, I guess. And then one day after school, you and your mom invited me to go to Starbucks with you, and then that's how you introduced me to vanilla milk, which I had never had before. And that was my first memory with you. And then our familys just kind of bonded, like really intensely. Like they mirror each other in a lot of ways. So him and I became like best bros. And then our sisters started hanging out and our moms started hanging out and our dads started hanging out. And what we didn't know yet at the time was that unbeknownst to us, our dads actually had property on opposite ends of the river. Like we could almost see each other's backyards.. Oh, wow. Yeah, so it was just like the weird parallels of proximity that we have always had in our lives is a little uncanny, but also kind of in its own sweet way and a little romantic. Drawn together. By very, very strong universal forces, which I think we agreed. We will also talk more about later. Reese: Yeah. It gets, it gets funnier. We got, we did a psychic reading and it was just like funny. It was hilarious. I was like, oh yeah, that totally checks out. But Alex: no one was surprised except for the psychic.. So that's how we kind of met. And then we kind of just became. I don't know, like it wasn't quite unspoken cause we would talk about it, but we just had this closeness that other people around us didn't seem to have in quite the same way. Reese: Yeah, we coined the term platonic life mates. Basically it was just like, I don't know. It just like, or platonic soul mates where it's just like our souls. Just understand each other. And it's a very engaging dynamic. I think it just balances Alex: itself. Yeah. I would definitely say that we're very complimentary, but not at all opposite. Keely: and so... met in first grade and then kind of moving forward, you hung out like throughout grade school and high school and... Kind of.. Yeah? I was going to say just say, how did it kind of morph how did you, has your relationship changed throughout the years? Alex: Well, we hung out a lot in elementary school and then our families actually went through divorces together. Yeah. Like it's not at all. Like, like I was saying, like our lives mirroring each other is like, not at all and exaggeration or hyperbole. It's like very literal in some instances. So after a bit, we went to different elementary schools. And then hung out sometimes. Cause we would go to your dad's dock and like go boating and swimming and stuff. And then in middle school there was a little bit more separation. And then we went to different high schools because I went to like a private, a Catholic college prep school. And then you went to Sher- no, you bounced around a bit. I've asked around Reese: a bit. It was mostly at Sherwood high school though. That's where I did my, yeah. Alex: And then we actually ended up going to college together at U of O on the gender equity floor, which was made four years before us by a trans man who was like, I'm creating a space specifically for trans folk and like their allies, like to have a space. Oh cool. So we were both like, we're very queer and like, what is gender? And then we kind of like continue to explore that for ourselves. Kind of like a little in a parallel way, like throughout college. And then we had. The shit show that was going to school in Eugene together. And like, we kind of just helped to keep each other sane and be like, no, like this is not okay, but how can we be grounding forces for one another? And then we're and there were a couple instances where we just both had to like, really look out for one another. Sink ourselves into, okay. The things around us are kind of out of our control, but we can lean on each other. And it hasn't really stopped since college. Now that we've kind of like our worlds have re met, it's kind of stayed in this place. And then when I finished school in Eugene, I moved up and lived with some family for some time. And Reese at the time was living with a partner and then. Plague hit. And then we were like making plans of like, okay, how can we like access community? And like, keep everyone, like, can we try something new? And then we did. That ended up falling apart, but Reese and I were able to lean on each other and be like, okay, well, at least out of that mess, like we can focus back on what we know is consistent is stable is honest and doesn't undermine our relationship to one another or the other person. Melisa: As you talk about it, it sounds like you've really been anchors that you've been able to come back to for one another. And I think that's part of the reason I'm so excited to have both of you on this episode. So often I'm talking to clients, especially folks that might be newer and exploring their queer identity. About having those kinds of anchors , especially depending on where you are in the world, the, the community around might not be so supportive and reflecting, the values that, that we might hold. So thank you for representing that. And how, like, what kinds of challenges as much as you're comfortable talking about, have you needed to overcome and really leaned on each other? Alex: Oh my God, the laundry list, like where do you want to start? Reese: Oh man. I, I mean, we could just start with like COVID stuff and just like COVID isolation. Cause I feel like with such immense isolation, I can speak for myself saying that you've been an immense anchor to continue that term just like, or a sounding board, just having that stable sounding board to just be like, yeah, you're the voice of reason. And always have been like a very good, solid source of that, that I have come to be like, yeah, I trust Alex's takes immensely. And we have such a great knowledge of each other. And like depth of understanding, it's almost been like a culmination of just seeing through so much together that I'm like, I know you, I know like, I don't know. It's just that like unspoken, understanding of I've watched someone's waves for so long, but it's like, I, of course I know like who they are and like being able to like, be seen and heard continually by that is like a really amazing thing that a lot of people I think are like confounded by and also impressed and like, Yeah, amazed by. So Alex: yeah, I find that a lot too. And I know you and I have talked about this a lot before, too, but like when we tell people about our friendship, they're always like, oh my God, really? Like, it seems so surprising . It's just like aw, that's really, like, I do feel a little sad for them that this isn't more common, but at the same time, like that's also what makes it so special. We have had, like you were saying, like the waves that we've just experienced together, and I also really value your takes. And I know that I can trust you. And I know that if I need to be called the fuck out and be like, Hey Alex, have you ever considered that like, maybe this pattern is repeating and like, maybe that's not so great? That I'm like always done in an honest and direct way. That's still supportive. Sometimes, particularly in our current climate with the world, there's so much, if I bring something to your attention, it's not going to feel like an attack. And like, I mean, I could go on a whole different tangent about why I think that is, but there's so much sometimes when we're attending to relationships, there's still relationship, damage being inflicted. And I don't feel that at all In ours. It's very like, I love you. I respect you. And also I think the path you're currently going down is maybe not the best one so like how can we help each other see like more openings? Reese: Yeah. It's very like, Yeah, just that direct honesty. And just being able to like, say your truth, basically with somebody and know that it never feels like at least, yeah. For me too, it also never feels like an attack. It's just like, oh yeah, this is someone speaking their truth. And like really amazing and special. To one; have that space and to feel like someone can give that to you. So it's almost like a continual gift exchange, basically having you as a friend. It's great. Hey, it's Cardinal your Taurus friend who makes sure you have everything you need before you go out the door. Don't forget your water bottle and wallet and free queer relationship worksheet from Melisa and keely. It'll help you put into action. Some of the concepts we've been covering here on the podcast, so your relationships can have more queer joy too!Things like personal values versus relationship values, identifying power dynamics and improving communication. Link in the show notes. Okay, bye. Keely: Oh, well, so, okay. So you mentioned other people, so you talked about some of the, like how you met and the challenges going to college together now being from Eugene, being in Portland together. And then you mentioned how other people see you. I wonder if you can touch on how other people's relationships with you, whether you're in a romantic relationship, how those interplay and affects your relationship together, how you navigate that? Alex: I mean, I don't know about you, but. Even on new year's when we went to that party, people thought we were dating and we had to be like, no, like we have a very close, intimate relationship, but people conflate that with other things. And it's just like, no, like, I don't know what to tell you other than. You're capable of being deep and connected to more than just one person. Keely: Yes. Intimacy can occur without sex without romance. Yes. Melisa: Yeah, I wonder too, for folks, like if we invite others to foster these kinds of friendships, what pressure might come off of their, in their intimate sexual, romantic relationships? Alex: Yeah. A metric fuckton. Some food for Reese: thought for everyone listening.A network of support? What a concept.Imagine that. Keely: Well, yeah, when you're saying like an anchor and you're talking about your dynamics, it's. Stays more like it's consistent because you're not having those like ups and downs that you often see in romantic relationships that you're like, you have your challenges, but there's that consistency there. Alex: Yeah. Like I feel pretty confident in saying that, like, this is the relationship where I've learned to be securely attached because no matter how much time has gone by, or like how much well but it's so true too, though because. In my like romantic relationships, it's just like, like it's like a full contact sport. And I know that like, I can be honest and admit that a lot of that is sometimes my doing and like, that's not always easy to say, but I just, like, when I throw myself in, I throw myself in fully. I can acknowledge that, but having a different kind of space that will still hold that intimacy, but also have like some gentleness around it. And a lot of the gentleness coming from. Long long time build consistency is what feels different. Keely: Well, I love, I mean, of course, because we're talking to a therapist and a therapist and training, so, but that idea of secure attachment and modeling that in a friendship and, and really understand that in a friendship and then being, are you able to translate. To other relationships or even other friendships, Reese: it truly has never been in the same way. Like I can honestly say, like, I feel with you, it's like, oh, this is unconditional love. Like, that's what it is. Like. And in a really special way, that's like, oh yeah. It's like one soul sees and other, and I feel it's transcended lifetimes. Like in my soul, I feel like we've definitely been together for like multiple lifetimes doing this kind of feeling that I just have not had with other people. Yeah. So it's, it's really indescribable in that sense. I don't know how Alex: you, well, I guess this is also like a good segue into like the psychic Reese: reading that we- um, Alex: because dear fucking God. So I will preface this with we- so me and Reese went to this reading and then my girlfriend at the time joined us because Reese had gone to this person. Like a couple of weeks or like a month prior. And I guess, I, well, you came Reese: up in a reading and I was like, oh, I really want to do a reading with Alex. Cause they were like, there's someone in your life who's been with you for multiple lifetimes that I immediately intuitive was like, oh, it's Alex. Like that's the person. And so I brought them in to be like, Hey, do you want to do a reading with me? I kind of am interested in this sphere of my reading. And so this is what happened as a result. Alex: So it starts with, you know, she draws the cards and there's a section for me, there's a section for Reese. And then there's the section for like the in-between all the cards that came up immediately. She was like, oh, there was definitely a marriage in a past life, like very like, and she was like, whoa. And me and Reese and my girlfriend at the time was. Okay. And then she was like, sorry, awkward, like looking at me and my girlfriend. And we were just like, yeah, no, I mean, that, that checks out. And then she was surprised that we weren't surprised Reese: yeah. That checks out. And then she's just like, okay. Alex: Like even my partner was just like, yeah, no, that makes complete sense for these two. Yeah. So then she was mentioning there and this is where I need help. I don't speak tarot very good. That there was some sort of card where it was like, there was a wish asked and then a wish fulfilled. Reese: Yeah. So there were three columns of cards. And one side we kind of were starting to discern, like whose was whose. And so one tier for like one person, one tier for the other and in the middle is what you create together. And it was really sweet. And I had to stop myself from crying because there were two cards that she drew that were like, holy shit, this is. I know your soulmates are, you are bonded and like in an etherial way, because it was the nine of cups and the 10 of cups, which is the wish and the wish fulfilled better abundance. And she was like, there's like a soul contract where you're like, meant to be together for like eternity. And I was just like, oh, wow. That's amazing. Like, and the other card that was drawn was like like what holds you together is unconditional love and sense of home basically. Or you create home together and like, not just in a material way, but a spiritual way. And I was like, you just perfectly defined it. That's it like, I've never been able to like see it, but she, yeah. Alex: Yeah. And what was the like, connection that you made with the angels? Cause that was really cool too. Reese: Oh, yeah. Oh shoot. I might. And I had to take a second to remember that Michael Alex: and Raphael. Oh yeah. Reese: I, yeah. How do I describe this? I get really into esotericism. And so I was just like, oh yeah, like our bond reminds me of how people describe the Archangel Michael and the Archangel Raphael, Michael being Alex and me being Raphael. And I'm like, Michael is like the angel who essentially escorts people that have entered like the stairway to heaven is a very like blunt, like says it, how it is kind of angel. Also like Archangel of war. Raphael is the healing magician and yeah. And so in the cabal, like there's the tree of life, right. And there's these two. The two points the angels represent when they meet in the middle, it creates like beauty and love basically. And that was just like, oh, that's really sweet. Like, that makes sense. So, yeah, so Alex: that play out too. It's like every time anyone comes into our apartment the first time, without a doubt, they're like, it feels so good in here. Keely: Wait, so the two of you sharing an apartment. Yeah. Okay. That was the COVID thing. So when you're having this psychic reading done, and so at the time, Alex, your girlfriend's just like super chill with. Yep! That's awesome. Alex: At the time later, there was a like, did you two ever date? Cause I'd feel kind of weird about that. And I had to be like, no, we have Reese: literally never dated. Okay, Keely: well not in this life. Reese: However, Alex: in the last, who knows how many, like that's a different story, but in this one no. Keely: So with this closeness, has there ever been with either of you. Romantic exes, or romantic flings or anyone, any kind of jealousy or upsetness? I love the expressions on your faces are for people who can't see, it's the cutest thing. They both are just like, huh? Like this, like looking at, but now have we, I love, that if you haven't, I just think, yeah, Alex: the only one I'm able to think of was in my past relationship. And she was like, did you two ever date? Like, I'd feel some kind of way about that. Well, you were there. I don't know what to tell you. Other than that, I don't not on my end or if they did, I'm not aware of it. Reese: Yeah. I feel like my exes were more, just like impressed. They're just like, what the, what is this bond? This is really cool. Like that's neat. And they kind of were like, oh, I like thought that, but I like, they were more and I'm also like have dated people were also poly. So it was just kind of like, if it was cool then if not, whatever, and they were just like, Honestly, it's just kind of beautiful to watch. So Alex: the, I remember a couple of years ago on new years when I was just like very drunkenly saying, I love you in German. And your boyfriend at the time was like, you know, it's okay if you date other people, like, it's cool. Like we were just in so playful. Yeah. Keely: Well, you too definitely. Ha. Yeah, like it's very obvious watching you, you have this energy and just this being relaxed and you use the word at home and it's really nice to see. And I think you're really emphasizing, you're doing such a great job, emphasizing what Melissa and I are talking about and what we're looking to have further discussion on is this love and intimacy and connection in all different ways. I think it's a good model Melisa: too, like you just said of not having, partners expressing jealousy. I'm so grateful for both of you. That's been your experience. It's totally not been my experience of dating, you know, and that I think different relationships setups that can maybe trigger different things for people. But I don't know. It's just, this is, this is something I would want to highlight and encourage listeners to , really invest in your friendships. As, as though they are as important as any other relationship because they are, you know, and then also on the other side of jealousy is coming up from someone around maybe their partners friends, like really consider where that jealousy is coming from and whether it needs to be there or it's something that just needs to be Reese: worked out individually. high. Hi, it's Cardinal your friendly neighborhood spider-Man one thing I don't have to save the city from is, as you like. They're an eco-conscious body positive, queer positive sex toy shop with something for everybody and every body. Find them online at as you like it shop.com and use code CTC therapy. That's all one word at checkout for 10% off that CTC therapy at as you like it. shop.com catch you later. Keely: So on that, do do the two of you, like schedule time together as friends, or you said your roommates. So how do you navigate? I know and it's COVID so this may even be like a silly question at this point, but do you have a way when you, when you are navigating work and other friends and at times romantic relationships, do you have a way that you schedule time for each other and make sure that you are connecting with each other? Alex: I mean, I see you every day and almost every night, so I don't feel the need to We've gone on like family outing sometimes, or just did actually to Hood. Reese: And also sometimes I want to bring back family dinners actually Alex: more so, but yeah, we've talked about Reese: for sure. We've done that in the past or just having, like making food together and that's been fun, but yeah, COVID. Yeah, stuff has definitely thrown a wrench. Alex: I mean, I'm just glad that like, if I'm going to be stuck in doors with someone or someone that I love so dearly and like, we don't really get on each other's nerves and if we do it's like, a quick address of like, I love you. I need some space. And like, that's just kind of the extent of it. Keely: I wish that everyone could, I love that phrase. I love you. And I need some space and it just happens. Can we just repeat that everywhere in every relationship they're doing, I need a pin that just says that. Well, I think you would just want to word, I think you would just want like, like a safe word. You're like, I just have to say this one word. You told the cute story about when you're in first grade and then you were just saying that you had some like, family, like you'd go on outings together and you used to have a family dinner. Do, do you have a favorite story you want to share as friends? Alex: The story that, well, do you want to go first? Reese: I have to think because I also have stage fright and my mind goes blank when people, would it be helpful for me to go first and totally okay. A Alex: memory that I have that I really like that I think would be maybe could be confusing to some other people, but to us, I think. Was never a big deal. We went on a trip to the beach and at some point you were just like, Hey, do you want to take a bath together? And then we just like stripped down buck naked. And I just chilled in the bathtub together for like, oh my God, I couldn't tell you how long we were in there or what the fuck we talked about. But we did it for like a long time and it was like, completely like non-sexual, but like comfortable. Like it wasn't, I mean, I was having the time of my life. I didn't care. I was just happy to be there. But to like a lot of other people, they'd kind of be like, wait, you guys can just like chill out naked. It's like, yeah, bro. It doesn't have to be a big deal. Keely: It doesn't have to be sexual. I mean, when you, so when you describe that, I'm thinking of when people are at Brighten Bush or like a Common Grounds or where these places where people hang out naked and are in warm water chilling. So that seems totally. Normal to me and this idea again, that we, our bodies don't have to be sexualized and we can be naked. And yeah, for some people that doesn't seem quote unquote normal, but in actuality, it's like it's super normal. It's just that the context, how everything is geared towards romance and sex and sexualizing bodies. That's the only reason why it seems like weird. Melisa: Right. And then shame that's put on by, like I was thinking about little kids. I want to know what's normal. Like they stripped down all the time. They don't care. Like they have to be taught that they're not allowed to show parts of their body because they should be ashamed of them. That's kind of the message we often give, you know, maybe unintentionally. So I won't get too much on my soap box, Keely: but I know like Alex, you told a great story and just got Melissa and I just go in, did you think, do you have a story you want to share about the two of you? Reese: I don't know. I just really love coming home in the evening and like watching anime with you. It's just nice. It's just the feeling of just coming home really. Like that encompasses it for me of just like, there's just joy and calm and euphoria of just being able to. Be silent and be either reading together, having like introvert Hangouts, and like, that's just like true peace for me. And that's definitely something I get with Alex and has not really been a thing with many other people. Keely: Well you too, for the people again, who can't see, you two are just adorable now and you, you have that tree behind you. That's so like, just emphasizes the stories that you were telling. Well, knowing that. We told you we like to end every episode with queer joy. And Do you want to go first, today? Melisa: Enjoy. I got a lot of joy Yes! I just successfully took a trip to see a friend's family loved one, which I say successfully, cause it was really unknown. I was uncertain myself about flying with what's going on right now with the virus. And also flights are getting canceled because there's not enough people to work them. So I got very lucky to number one, get there and get back and not get COVID or give anyone else COVID to my knowledge. I really had underestimated how important it was for me. Like just to even be physically in a room with people that I've known for longer than a year. It's like, oh my God. I got to spend time with my partner who I haven't seen in a really long time. I had a lovely time with my parents and I got to see one of my best friends. The two of you are making me, like, I need to have a friends trip when all of this is over. All my friends are scattered around the country. And many of us have moved during COVID. So I'm. That's going to have to happen, but I'm just buzzing from all of that. And thankfully, somehow managed to keep the mode I was in even though I'm back at work. So I'm trying to just like do this whole easy yeah. I'm working thing, but I don't have to be anxious and caught up in the grind either. So very, very grateful for that break. Keely: Yay. Well, I wasn't sure how much I wanted to say, I'm going to be vulnerable for a minute. And then I do have queer joy and in this story as queer joy, actually, even though it's not happening right now, but um, listening to the two of you and getting to talk to you about your friendship. I have actually been blessed enough to have a friendship like that. And she died seven years ago, but we did, I still see her as a soulmate. And so like, everything the two of you were talking about that I'm like, viscerally know that that's real obviously. And getting to hear the two of you talk about your friendship. I find so much joy. I'm at a place in my grief that it's been a long enough time since her body is not here anymore. And her, she's off somewhere else. That I, that I can see and feel the joy of, of the time I did get with her. I got 22 years with her. And so sharing in the joy of others, we would say in a non-monogamy compersion. But getting to share the joy and that the two of you have within your relationship, I feel like gratitude and queer joy both for the two of you. And then knowing that, you know, I got to experience that and I'm very blessed because you're right. A lot of people don't get to experience that. And even though my person isn't here physically, I know she's still here. And she may be even just hanging out, listening to this now being present. And so that's my queer joy that I did not plan today. So yeah. So now the two of you can, and again, it could just be joy, like just something to make you happy. And because we're all queer here, it's queer joy, right? Reese: I want to talk about mirror lake, that hike up to mirror lake. So we went to hood for the first time, me, Alex, and one of my other long-time friends. I've known them since 2009 ish. And I was really like, I really needed this trip just to like be around people I love and like go to hood, which is a really spiritual place for me since I grew up in Oregon and I've been going there my whole life. And we just decided to stop on the way to like our Airbnb to go on this hike up to mirror lake and. Everyone else had like snow shoes and we were just like, Fuck it! So we're just in our shoes and we all just like took it like what hour and a half, two hours hiking up these switchbacks in just like our shoes and having a freaking blast doing it like so excited adrenaline going up these slopes and we make it to the lake and it's frozen over. And it was beautiful and we just sat by the lake, surrounded by dogs and just like looking at this beautiful lake that's frozen over. And I, I never seen it like that. And I'm like, I've been coming here my whole life and I've never seen it like this and it's beautiful. And it just looked like out of a fantasy novel. It's beautiful. And yeah, that was my queer joy was just sitting with you and Eli just like chilling out and being like, wow, this is really awesome. Alex: Yeah. That's going to be mine too, because I was like, oh my God, just anything. ANYTHING to get me out of Portland for love of God and go be by the trees and just like chill out and like, and like, I walked away from that trip with a couple blisters, but like fucking worth it. 10 out of 10. I love it. Keely: Well, thank you again for joining us and yeah, we have um, anything either of you want to plug or talk about or do not be contacted by anybody? Keep all information private? Alex: Well, I mean, I, I don't know. I guess I'm kind of in a weird boat where it's like, obviously I work with the two of you, so like, if people want to get ahold of me, I guess, they like, can and they know how if they go to the CTC website or if they're just like, Hey, Keely, that Alex person. But like Keely: I won't share your information, just whatever's public on the website. Alex: I mean, like, I guess that's kind of what I meant. Keely: Totally. Totally. Well, thank you. And listeners y'all know how to get ahold of us through our, our website, Instagram, Facebook, otherwise, thanks again. Thanks for listening. And we hope you have a queer and joyful week.