Everyone loves the new year. A fresh start. To plan for better. For new. To become who you want to be, and to do the things you want to do.
A few years ago I decided that, instead of making a list of resolutions, I would focus in on one thing. One word. I’ve cycled through a lot. Words like kindness, bravery, thankfulness, abide, last year my word was connect. The lesson, upon reflection, was not initially what I thought. I originally thought that I needed to connect to others, to be more available, less introverted. So I did, I reached out, volunteered, and showed up. I learned it wasn’t about others, but about connection to self. And connection to self is rough, at least for me.
I learned that I’m not my biggest fan, that I hold myself back a lot, and in some ways, I am down right mean to myself. I learned I set myself up to fail. A lot. And that I’m mad insecure about a lot of things. What I gained was true self acceptance, understanding, grace, and love. As the year came to an end, the confidence within me mentally, emotionally, and spiritually was in the best place that it has been in quite some time. I learned the healing is in the doing.
So what does it mean for me, maybe for us, in 2018? It means giving myself permission to just be myself, and not in a middle finger in the air, people can take it or leave it type way, but I mean in a self awareness type way. Somewhere along the way I started to let things go, put things down, put things off, and basically over the course of years, kind of forget who I was. Life got really boring and slow and the things that should have been giving me life weren’t living up to the hype. You see, I have always been a dancer, an artist, an activist, passionate, curious, and an adventurous person, and I was no longer doing any of these things, and more than that, I was terrified to.
December 30th, 2017 I injured myself to the point where I was bedridden. All my plans for the New Year, even just the celebration of NYE, were no longer options. I spent the first week of the year drifting in and out of sleep, on pain medication, but I wasn’t mad about it. Because my word for the year had come to me. Gratitude. And in that moment I was grateful for basic simple things like breath, movement, and using the bathroom unassisted. I was grateful that I had a moment of silence, of rest, to grasp that this year, no matter what, my heart’s disposition would one of gratitude in all things. I realized that I have a lot to be grateful for already, and one of those things is myself. Because of that, I have the ability to do a lot, and the things I can’t do I just can’t do... yet. All the ideas, the curiosity, the longing to live in a way that I know is possible, lie just out of reach, but you really do have to fight to get there. My injury also made me face some physical health issues that I can no longer ignore. If I can just grasp one thing, and continue until the habit becomes a new way of life, it will be that the healing is in the doing.
I just need to do. So maybe you’re reading this and you needed someone to remind you to go and do. Friend, go. Do. The world needs you, and what only you can do. I’m rooting for you. And for the first time in a long time, I’m rooting for me too.
Writing while listening to: Maggie Roggers, Lord Huron, Ayokay, Hozier, Kodaline, Billie Eilish, Oh Wonder, Lorde, and Louis the Child