Merry Christmas! Merry happy blessed everything. Truly. As the year draws to a close, my mind ventures along the same pilgrimage everyone’s does– where did I go this year? Was it good? Was I good, and how can I be better? I’ve been so many women in 360 days. I began 2016 as a damsel in distress– contorting myself into a a series of uncomfortable positions to fit into Cleveland, into a city that was never really meant to be more than a launchpad in my life. My mettle matched my desires when I got brave enough to leave. I got a new job, and returned to a place where I could flourish. No one is going to do life for you. I’ve doled this advise out countless times, but I hadn’t heeded it in a while. There’s this misled section of me that hopes fate or life or some celestial force will intervene in so many aspects. But all the good in my life is the fruit of being unprepared, un-calculated, and bravely throwing myself into the arena anyway.
With that, for the first time in my life, I actively dated. Not much came from this endeavor, but I did it. I maturely negotiated conflict with another mature party. I advocated for my needs without an apology. I invested in my health. I indulged. 2016 was a year I did things, as opposed to having events befall me.
In the fall, I got lazy. Comforted lulled me out of my bravery. I got into my groove at work, regularly went to the gym, hung out with my friends– content in my established routine. I dislike myself slouching. I don’t like myself asleep. I want to grow and challenge, and I know I am far too hard on myself. But courage tingles on my taste buds like a craving I haven’t indulged in a while.
Jump starting my resolutions (which I normally avoid because I find them cheesy), I went to a counselor recently. Therapy and I never worked before. I don’t think I’ll revisit this counselor. However, even after my experience with her, I was open to exploring therapy in the future. I appreciated the insights she offered, even if we aren’t compatible. Growth is shit failing and still pursuing the vision and hope. I’m doing that.
I did that with dating. In addition to putting myself out there, I was vulnerable and authentic with men. Finally setting fire to the standards and games and goals and barriers, I (toward the end of 2016) allowed myself the freedom to interact as two people. Connection is a liberation I hope to explore more within the next year.
I’m scared. I’m scared I’m not enough, that I’m too poor, too fat, not pretty, not smart. Those fears won’t dissolve anytime soon. But my courage can be louder. Being whole comes with the bad stuff, but allows the good stuff to speak. I will close this holiday (and this year) in a messy way. I probably won’t get skinny in 2017. That’s not the goal. But I will experience more, fall on my face, get up, be hurt and heal, and make it one hell of a year. Cheers to that. Happy merry blessed everything.