as promised and as expected, i've been doing a lot of reflecting over the past year.
reflecting can sometimes feel like a slightly traumatic experience if something didn't go as well as you'd like. you think back and either you are slammed with memories you'd rather not remember or your brain is blank. let's just say that reflecting this time last year was a much brighter experience than it has been this time around...
in trying to remember this past year, i notice that my brain sorta shuts down when it gets to the beginning of september. where the last three and a half months are vivid, the other months of this year are a blur of events. unfortunately, i seem to only remember times that were sad and frustrating the best. they are clear as ever, but the good things...they are dim and lost.
i get that. i get what my brain is trying to do. it is protecting me, on one hand, because to remember the happy things is to remember certain people and situations that are not a part of my present anymore. it is easier to only remember the bad stuff (makes me think of this) and that hurts. it hurts to avoid pictures on instagram and FB and to turn off the "on this day" feature and change emergency contacts and...as in the case of the photo above, crop people out.
but guess the fuck what? i can crop and avoid and pretend shit didn't happen all i want. but it did. it happened. the memories are still there. and if i really want to reflect, i have to actually fucking reflect. on those people, those situations, on the truths i'd rather not deal with or admit, on the things that made me happy/sad that i no longer have and on things that made me happy/sad that i do have.
point being...it also hurts to forget that the good things. just because it is a little painful to dig through the memories doesn't mean you should avoid the digging all the time.
and so i dug and wrote a list.
and i know i am missing a lot of good things that happened before september, but i am okay with that. those memories will come flooding back eventually. i probably should have handwritten this list, but, alas, we live in age of blogging and so here it is...very far from complete, but a start:
actually buying and wearing perfume (i do that now, folks. it is crazy. for me). going to mexico with my ex and his parents. running my fifth half marathon. applying and getting into grad school. all my short plays that went up. my second one woman show. buying too many jumpsuits. working with kids again. becoming the person with nine plants in her house who gets excited at how much her orchid and succulents have grown. finishing 52 books. going to a winery. christmas tree outing with EST. taking my first wine class. dancing until 2am. that day, after a week away, i fell asleep on the couch while my ex stroked my arm and i never felt so whole and warm and loved. holding two get-togethers at my apartment for the awesome women in my life. taking long walks with george to the dog park. falling in love with the korean bbq place downtown. getting back in shape. redecorating my apartment and making it feel like a home. watching my ex's sister graduate grad school. becoming a soulcycle convert. committing to running a half and full marathon next year. spending time near lakes and oceans. recognizing the amazing friends and family that i have. all the readings that i had. six months straight of yoga and sometimes being able to do a headstand in the middle of the room. all the lobster rolls. connecting with old friends. not being afraid of crying and answering the question 'how are you?' honestly. going back to therapy. bonding with my dad over the topic of loneliness. taking myself on theater dates to plays and flamenco performances. all the wine. all the hot toddies. all the brussel sprouts. nights out with my fellow mfa peeps. a solo trip to the brooklyn botanic garden. new professional photos taken. nail art being a thing that i know about and get done...to my nails. buying real jeans for the first time in years. family dinners. the feeling of my friends' hands on my back when i was inconsolable. knowing heartbreak again. learning more about myself.
yup. even some of the sad stuff is good stuff. because that is the way life works, folks. and there is more. i know there is more.
because this was a good year. it was.
it also sucked.
but it was also so fucking good.
and i have to remember that. reflect on that. no matter how scary or painful it is to sometimes to remember the joy.
you should do that too.
p.s. stay tuned for intentions/resolutions/some things i'd like to keep in mind for 2016.