2016 was a whirlwind. I can’t even characterize it as “good” or “bad”…it was somewhere in between, like purgatory (which doesn’t exist anymore apparently, but whatever). Or maybe, it was that time between seasons, when it isn’t quite winter anymore, but not quite spring yet. It was like the change of seasons.
It was winter and I started the year off trying to make up for things lost. Grief transferred over into the new year; it lasted from September to April. Typically when love leaves, I try to fill the empty well with bad water. This time was no different. Winter was tough, and not just because I suffer from seasonal depression. It was harder this year because I kept returning to the cause of the wound, which in turn, kept the wound open & fresh. And I had plenty of salt in my own hands.
Eventually, though, I ran out of salt. The wound healed, slowly, painfully. But nonetheless, it went away. It was nearly spring and I had done other things than just try & get over things. I got my third tattoo, wrote a lot, got a few poems published, went on my annual Florida trip, and even watched my own choreography come to fruition. I tried making the most out of the year that started off so strange.
As summer approached, I felt I had come back to myself. I became an aunt to the most precious human being (love you, Remi); soaked up experiences in my favorite city; won Legends of the Hidden Temple with 3 strangers; caught the bouquet at my friend’s wedding; learned how to play darts (& play it well); went to Firefly (& nearly died in the 9th layer of mosh-pit hell); caught a shark while night fishing; traveled to Italy again, then to Cleveland on a whim, and finally to Colorado; and I dined in all white at Philly’s 5th annual Diner en Blanc. And finally, as summer ended, I found my peace.
My calm helped summer transition to fall. I witnessed Remi grow; went to my first Eagles game; was asked to be a bridesmaid in my best friend’s wedding; met the members of Grouplove; and moved into a better apartment. More importantly, I spent time with my people and with myself. I stopped trying to fill a well because, throughout the year, it had filled itself without my even realizing it. It was as soon as I stopped putting my time and energy into the wrong people that I somehow found myself with the right ones.
Now, as winter approaches again, I look forward to what 2017 has in store (I actually mean that, too). I hope to start learning a language, pick up the piano again, get a few more poems published, travel to a new place. I want to work harder at listening to listen & not just to respond. I want to appreciate my work & my kids and be a good teacher to them. I want to be as selfless as my parents are. Above all, though, I want to be more present.
Thanks, 2016 for letting me feel all four seasons.