If the twenty-third year of my life were a person, she’d be a cruel old woman. The kind of woman who kicks you when you’re down and then tries to take the credit when you stand up on your own. If it were a bug, it’d be the angriest hornet you ever did see. Twenty-three was getting splashed by a car in the rain, while you’re wearing your finest cashmere scarf. It’s finding a well in the desert that’s gone completely dry. The twenty-third year of my life, was in the long and short, the hardest year so far.
Over the past year, I’ve experienced tremendous loss, deep heartache, consistent fear and discomfort and have come to think of myself as the color grey, when I used to be a bright shining yellow.
It’s not to say that everything has been bad, because that’s not true at all. I have traveled a lot, found new freedoms and learned an incredible amount about who I am and what I want. It’s just that, the lows have been the lowest of them all and the highs haven’t really been all that high. I spent the better part of the year in a dark chasm of an emotional “rut,” from which I have only begun to transcend. Even still, in a conversation with a friend a month or more ago, I spoke of how my rut might actually be a sort of crossroads instead of a vast canyon I couldn’t climb out of, to only a few short days later, receive the worst pain and heart ache of the whole year. A rut is a rut indeed.
The beauty in birthdays though, is not the 120 Facebook friends who wish you a joyous day on your wall, nor is it the gifts you may receive or the meals your people take you out for. The best part about birthdays is the fact that you have a once-a-year opportunity to consider your slate as fresh. Out with the rut, in with the shining chariot, no? It’s the chance to “cut the shit,” if you will. You can leave the past behind. The silly non-existent, unchangeable past can be a little smudge on the windshield rather than the whole car. Your single “get out of the rut for free” card, should you choose to use it. The trick is that you have to wholeheartedly decide to let it go. You can’t just say it, you have to mean it. Really mean it.
Here’s to a new year, with its own set of adventures and incredible changes, experiences, growth, healing, hurting and most of all, a year full of love in all forms, positivity even when it feel impossible and a renewed thirst for all of the complex human experience, good or bad, I can obtain.