What a f*cking year. I haven’t been writing, which I only noticed as the holiday approached, by the time it came and went, I still hadn’t sat down to write my thoughts on paper. The new year rang in, I thought surely by then I’d have more to say but, truth is, I haven’t taken the time to digest this past year - until now. So here we are, nearly through January ‘20, and I’ve only begun to reflect on my year.
I could lump myself in with the rest of my peers and yell to the hills about how garbage 2019 was, but something about that feels like a disservice. To rephrase, yes, I struggled in 2019, more than I care to admit, but I learned more than any years past. This year, I was taken advantage of at my own will, failing to set boundaries for myself and as a result, allowing myself to be so run down and overworked I would curl up on the floor of my apartment (concrete floors, not meant for curling) trying to catch my breath. This year, I’d find myself pushing my limits, after multiple sleepless nights, overextending myself yet again for no benefit of my own and only to accommodate friends and acquaintances who’d never expect this of me in the first place. I hurt my own feelings, after trusting too easily and expecting too much from people who were in no position to care for me in that capacity. I broke my heart for the umteenth time by holding on to things far from reach that I’ve been reluctant to lose. I spent a lot of this year isolating myself and trying my best to reflect on the ‘why’... Why me? Why now?
Life is not personal, there isn’t a target on my head and surely not everyone around me is the enemy. At the beginning of 2019, I might’ve pointed the finger elsewhere when I wanted to place blame, however, I’m the only person responsible for my experiences. I don’t blame myself or harbor regrets when I’ve learned so much. This was a part of life, yes I made some questionable choices throughout my year (like anyone), but this is what my 20s are for. I’m comfortable assessing risk, risking it or staying within the realms of comfortability, reaping the benefits or suffering the consequences, and learning which outcomes make a risky choice worthwhile for me. The ‘why’ was never important, the ‘me’ was never personal, and the ‘now’ is simply constant, this is life.
Now, thinking back on all of this, you could see how easy it would be to say 2019 was garbage… But I left a lot out. This year I had my first professional audition, I was lucky to have many visitors - including my mother, step father, and best friends, I celebrated my 21st while chugging an irish car bomb alongside all my siblings, father, and his partner Maureen. I came to the realization that my previous roommates were hardly that, they were my family. I learned to set boundaries and limits for myself, to trust appropriately and not prematurely, I learned effective yet blunt communication while remaining true to my nature, I learned to let go of things that I held onto for selfish reasons. I discovered what a relief it was to have a friend knock on your door with a bottle of wine and tissues, holding not even an ounce of judgement when you finally let your walls down. I’ve eaten some of the best food, laughed hard as hell, danced in front of the tv to Sam Smith, and I lived. 2019 was merely another year, and 2020 will probably be the same. I don’t need resolutions, I need more experience.
What will be next?
(Luckily I put all my thoughts on paper just in time for the Lunar New Year, here’s to round 2)