5 days into January, I realized that my resolutions for the New Year were going down the drain: I hadn’t written anything, I hadn’t worked out since December, I was no closer to finding a job, and to top it all off, I definitely didn’t love myself more.
This past December, I’d made the decision that enough was enough. You all saw the post about cleaning my room and my life (at least I hope you did. That might just be heedless optimism), and I thought that that was the beginning of a new phase in my life: the glorious, long-awaited phase of ADULTHOOD that I’ve longed for ever since I learned that grown-ups could CHOOSE what they wanted to do with their days. The rest of my childhood comprised looking ahead to these years, which I perceived to be a happy, modernized (but just as magical) version of the Disney movies that I watched all the time.
Unfortunately, there were a few things that I learned before this that got in the way of becoming the happy, successful adult that I saw myself as. The most worrying and debilitating of these was an unfortunate tendency to become mired in self-pity, and use the naturally occurring phases of depression I would go through as crutches for why I would freeze and not be able to make things happen. I knew that something was wrong, that there was a reason why I wouldn’t be able to pull the trigger on decisions and plans, but I didn’t realize what the problems were until, in my last semester of college, one of my meanest and most brilliant professors sat me down and told me, in no uncertain turns, that I did in fact have control of my life. It was up to me to make the choices that would steer my life in the direction I believed would make me most happy, because one thing was certain: allowing others to make decisions for me was not going to make my life what I wanted it to be, and if I was too scared to take the reins and wanted to resign myself to making excuses for my dissatisfaction, that was on me. At least if I tried to take control, I’d know that my choices had been mine, and wouldn’t have that awful “coulda, woulda, shoulda” feeling. So, thanks Fletcher*!
This Groundhog Day, a month and a day into 2016, I’m poking my head out of the ground long enough to admit my faults and, even more rare for me, forgive myself. This is not the years’ past saying “it wasn’t my fault! I was sick, I was down, yadda yadda yadda.” This is me saying “I was sick, and I could have done more.” There’s always tomorrow. The nice thing is that I actually started today. I wanted this blog to be a consistent project for me, but it took me a while to get to that point. Fortunately, I have incentive, a brain, and compassion enough to get me along. Now I’m going to be a barista and learn how to make pretty lattes, and I have a platform to spill rambly thoughts on, and stories to tell. Best of all, I have tomorrow, and I have myself.
If you got to the end of this post, thanks! I hope there’ll be more interesting things to come, but if not, that’s cool. At least there are words here, and they’re mine.
*Name has been changed.