2018.

if you’re thinking i had a great 2018, just based on my top 9 photos on ig (above), well, then, you wouldn’t be too far from the truth. i did. there were some really great memories made. and i didn’t intend to do a recap of this year, or talk about how i’ve grown/learned/experienced life in 2018. honestly, it was the farthest thing from my mind in the last few weeks/couple of months. everything lately has been a whirlwind, and then suddenly i was sick and laid up for two weeks, and my mind doesn’t fare well when i’m still.

all of a sudden, everything felt incredibly difficult. and it was hard not to spend the last sunday of the year crying in bed, begging the universe to just give me a break, and a sign that everything would be ok. i finished a book. i snuggled with riley. and finally i went for ole faithful – the notebook in my nightstand.

as i was writing, i kept thinking, no one will want to read this (maybe in my mind it went more like, “no one should want to read this”). there’s too much sadness and hurt here. and you probably wonder why i would want to share this. i don’t – i’m a little embarrassed. but i am sharing it because it’s my truth. and one day, i want to be able to share that with my kids (if i’m ever lucky enough to have any). i want them to know it’s ok to feel a certain way, and that sometimes you have to let it off your chest to feel better.

so here we go:

i wish i could go back 14 years and do things over again.

i’m lying here, feeling sorry for myself. sad, lonely. i miss my friends. i wonder if i’m a good person or if i just think i am.

and it always comes down to “how did i get here?”

i’d do so many things differently. that softball tryout. i would’ve tried harder. gotten in shape after my surgery. i didn’t know i’d figure out 10 years later how much i love to run.

i wouldn’t have said that ugly thing to “d” at our last formal. i don’t even know why the words came out of my mouth.  she’s still my bestest friend.

wouldn’t have broken up with “j” in the way that i did (it was so wrong). still would’ve dated him. he was a sweetheart.

idk if i would do the “e” thing over again. there was a lot there, and he gave me Nola & riley. i definitely wouldn’t marry him. that was a mistake.

grad school, or law school, immediately after undergrad. i should’ve gone into publishing. i don’t think that would’ve brought me home though.

i should’ve come home that one thanksgiving. corinne was so upset. should’ve spent more time going to the movies with my sisters.

should’ve found collin before cz found me. should’ve found him before he went to arkansas (although maybe he needed that change of scenery). maybe we weren’t ready for each other then, but i wish i could know that for sure.

why does the world give you regret? and why does it hurt so much?

these are just a few of the things i have to forgive myself for. i’m know i’m not the only woman, or human being, or living animal in the world who feels like i’ve made my life exceptionally hard. i take full responsibility for the holes i’ve dug myself, leaving me in this funk of “when will it get better?” truth is, i don’t know. i don’t know if it will. maybe i’ll always feel tinges of regret (or, more accurately, guilt) for the things i did or didn’t do in my past.

so yes, while 2018 was a great year in so many ways, it was also a hard year. it was a year where i had to really look myself in the face and say, “ok, yes, this is where you are at now, and it’s so far from where you want to be, but you can get there.” i had to relearn to put my faith and trust in myself, and in my partner. i had to give a little more of myself than i was comfortable with in my relationship (and i’m really glad i did). i had to learn to take a step back for things not meant for me (walking away from backroad has been hard, but it’s really for the best) and stop putting so much pressure on myself.

i also had to realize that you can love someone with your whole heart, really want the best for them, even be willing to “take a bullet” for them, but you can’t continue to have a relationship with them if it feels toxic for you. constantly being told you’re not living up to their (incredibly high & unfair) expectations, being nitpicked all the time, feeling like they’re constantly judging you and your actions/interactions isn’t a great way to live – and sometimes you just have to let that person find their own way.

and now, i’m off to go find mine – here’s to a better 2019, y’all.

wishing you each the best 🙂

new year’s day.

you can’t wait to wash the curls out.

they don’t feel like you.  you’ve always been more of a wave, slowly rolling, over and over, pushing some things out, pulling some things in.  you like your hair to match your spirit – wild, messy, not too perfect.

you thought the curls would lift your spirits, but they just made you feel less like you.  it was the perfect cold weather occasion, but you couldn’t shake the thought that you weren’t where you were meant to be.

so you’ll rinse the curls out, stand under the scalding hot water, let it strip away all the secrets you tried to hide in your hair, and start fresh.  isn’t that the way it’s meant to be this time of year, anyway?

#MondayMantra: happy new year!

“for what it’s worth:  it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be.  there’s no time limit, stop whenever you want.  you can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing.  we can make the best or the worst of it.  and i hope you see the things that startle you.  i hope you feel things you never felt before.  i hope you meet people with a different point of view.  i hope you live a life your proud of.  if you find that you’re not, i hope you have the courage to start all over again.”

-f. scott fitzgerald

i resolve to change nothing.

2017 was a year i could be proud of.  i said yes when i wanted, or no when i didn’t.  i traveled, and loved, and laughed.  laughed a lot, actually.  that’s part of the reason i chose the above photo from our trip to l.a. to do this post – i was laughing so hard at my sister because she was freaking out that i jumped up on this tiny ledge just to get a pic with the city in the background.  it was a chance, and a memory i’ll probably never forget.

this isn’t to say that i didn’t struggle.  because i did.  a lot.  but the struggle never outweighed the lessons or the memories.  i feel like this is the first year (and i hate to be so cliché about this, but it is what it is) that i really felt like myself.  part of it is that i stopped taking birth control in 2016, so my body is finally my body and i don’t feel as on edge as i used to, but there’s also the part that is that i wasn’t wasting away in a relationship that wasn’t meant for me.  if my 20s were about being in fruitless relationships, then i hope that my 30s are about this feeling i have right now, sitting alone in my bed, reveling in the knowledge that i can create my own happiness.  and by that i mean that if i never fall in love with another guy, i can still have all the things that i want and i can still leave the legacy that i wish to.

f. scott may have been a crappy husband and father, but he certainly knew his shit.  we are completely in control of ourselves, if nothing else, and that is enough.  there were a million times that i wished i could’ve been in a different situation, but i had to accept what i had to work with and just live.  and evolve.

so, instead of resolutions, i instead intend to live this next year with resolve.  i intend to continue to take chances, to put my heart on the line, to write, to love, to travel, and, most importantly, to grow.  i intend to live with a kind heart and an open mind.  i intend to live in such a way that when my time comes i leave this place better than when i arrived.  i intend to live a life i’m proud of.

happy new year, y’all.