My biggest fear

My 2017’s list of resolutions means I get to grow and change and explore.  This is the reason most people make lists for themselves.  We all want to improve.  Two years ago the most important thing I did for myself was that I took ownership in all my feelings.  If I felt mad, I’d ask myself, “What about this actually irritated you?” or “Why does it matter, how will it affect you?”  If I felt sad, I’d ask myself, “What it was that made me feel this way and how could I change or prevent it in the future?”.  Or even questions to myself like, “Is it okay to feel like this, even briefly, to learn something?” (I know what YOU are thinking right now,  this is too deep.  BUT those questions are helpful when you’re an over-thinker).  Typically, I’m in great control of my feelings and emotions.  I get angry sometimes, but it passes quickly.  I learned at a young age that anger doesn’t serve me any valid purpose beyond what it was exactly that upset me and how I can move on.  I never liked that feeling of contention that settles in your stomach when you are angry at someone, something, or most importantly, yourself.  I never enjoyed that loss of control feeling from overexcitement, sadness, and even bliss.  I avoided it as much as possible to prevent myself from an emotional upheaval.  It’s time to change that.

Last week I had two quiet hours with my friend.  We discussed lots of things like the past and the future and our children and our hopes and our plans.  I had a small issue (and by small, the kind that brings me to tears and I never talk about because, well….. I avoid it) and needed to sort some things out in my head.  One of the only true disadvantages of being single is making every decision on your own.  I have no one to always bounce options or ideas off of and so my friend got to be my sounding board for the night.  To tease you just a little, my problem involved running away from something because it was causing emotions.  The easy way out would be to ignore and forget and remove myself from the problem.  But in reality, I was the problem.  My feelings were just too big for me to acknowledge.  Running was the easiest thing to do to avoid being hurt.  I knew that if I ran, I wouldn’t learn anything. I wouldn’t experience any growth.

I remember that urge to run right before I jumped out of the plane when I went skydiving.   I didn’t hesitate to get into the plane.  I was calm and relaxed the entire time we were gaining altitude.  But the moment the instructor asked me to step out onto the wing while my feet were still safely planted on the inside of the aircraft I lost it.  I was visibly shaking, the blood rushed from my face and I thought, “How could I have been so stupid?”  then “What is wrong with me?”  I urged myself outside anyway.  The goggles were anti-fog but not anti-tears.  I was crying against my will and the moisture slowly created a film along the edges.  It wasn’t a sobbing but the terror consumed me.  In a total of maybe 10 seconds, from stepping out to jumping off the wing, I pushed past the edge (literally and figuratively) from my biggest fear to one of the most exhilarating thing I’ve ever done.  I was flying without a care in the world.  It was magical.  But if I had let the fear stop me, I couldn’t have experienced the thrill.  That’s not say that the whole jump was perfect.  I landed and vomited twice before I could stand up.  I was still shaking for a while after and I made my friend drive me home.  I suppose it was because I was so worked up with emotion and the fear was so great that my body just reacted that way.  But one thing I knew;  I had done it.

It hurts to even write this, knowing I’m declaring out loud this resolution.  My heart feels squeezed and perhaps I have a punctured lung because my breathing is short and shallow.  My friend told me during our visit, “Just let it be. If it hurts, it hurts.  If it doesn’t, it doesn’t”.  I screamed “NO” at her, but only in my head and then sat quietly for awhile.  I want to feel stuff.  I’ve lived being numb to most things.  I can testify that feelings and emotions are so much better than nothing.  The thing is, I’m scared.  Being brave.  Standing up for myself. Standing up for others.  Doing what I know is right when everyone else thinks it’s wrong.  Chasing my dreams.  Being nice when I am not treated the same.  School. Making mistakes.  Work. Free time. Love.  Being loved is paralyzing.

I’ve got a plan.  I’m going to Face My Fears this year.  I’m going to jump off the wing over and over again.  I’m going to make tons of mistakes doing it and will most likely get hurt a lot.  But for the few times it’ll work out, I know it’ll be worth it.

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2016

Falling in love in 2016 felt like tripping while my hands were tied behind my back. Then landing with a hefty face plant onto a sidewalk covered in glass. It happened fast and was completely unexpected. The recovery from that was comparable to how much time it would take for a human to regenerate an organ. In other words, I’ll never be the same person. On the bright side, I’ll never be the same person.

I learned a lot in 2016. *I hope I never stop learning. While 2015 was all about fun and new, in 2016 I discovered lots of new angles to my thought process. I care less. Love more. But still haven’t figured out how to sleep. I read the least amount of books in a year for as long as I can remember and enjoyed more Netflix than I’m proud of, spent a month eating zero sugar, took more quiet time to myself, and got 3 sunburns; all within one month.

I tried having a boyfriend. It was wonderful and he was sweet. But, it wasn’t love. At least not the kind of love to be in a committed relationship. Distance was hard for us too. We have huge amounts of respect for each other and always will though.

I accomplished 4 out of 5 of my resolutions. My favorite was a solo trip to Scandinavia. I made it to 13 concerts for the year. I enjoyed my birthday at a music festival with my best friend from high school who took me to an En Vogue concert for my birthday our senior year. And I have a millisecond onscreen with one of my favorite actors where I was paired up with some friends for life.
I have no complaints for 2016. None. It played out perfectly. Farewell 2016, I’ll remember you fondly.

  • New Years Eve 2016. 

Oh New York. You were perfect. 


My favorite thing I did for myself in 2016 was take a spontaneous (secret) trip to New York. *when you find round trip tickets for barely $100, and have a free place to stay, it’s hard to not go.)


I stayed in SoHo. My room had views of the Freedom Tower and sunsets on The Hudson. I looked at the concrete city in all it’s wonder from the One World Observation Deck. I strolled across Brooklyn Bridge. I had my aura photographed. I ate cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery. I people watched in Times Square. I found a few tiny graveyards. I listened to jazz at The Roxy. I laid in the sun in Central Park. I had a 99 ice cream. Watched street performers. Met up with one of my favourite people. And when I came home 65 hours later, my face hurt from smiling.

Luckiest person alive

I usually hate the 15th of every month. So, this morning before I got out of bed, I tried to relax and meditate for a minute, but my mind kept going to all the bills I have to pay because it’s the 15th and if I wait any longer, I’ll get late fines. I thought, for a brief second, if I could wish for anything this Christmas, it would just one month without a million things to pay. Not worrying about money or saying no to my girls when they have something ridiculous like a fundraiser for band or cheer or soccer. Or tickets to the Nutcracker.  Or another white elephant gift.

When that moment passed, I got out of bed and started my day. I worked a little this morning. I shampooed my carpets.  I took nearly everything out of my closet and rearranged it. Caught up on dishes, did some laundry, went to the post office and sent out some packages. I ate lunch with Sara. All accomplished by noon.

I stay extra busy on the 15th to keep my mind occupied. But today small miracles happened. I opened an unaddressed Christmas card and in it was a receipt from someone who paid my electric bill for the month. Someone knocked on my door and brought me a ham.   And I was informed I have a credit for new tires waiting for me at the tire shop.

I don’t like that I sometimes feel greedy and sorry for myself.  I don’t like feeling like I need things when I have so much. I especially don’t like asking for help. I live in constant survival mode and it wears me out. But I’m happy. And I’m healthy. And days like this, when small things mean everything, I feel I am the luckiest person alive.

November


Election Day. Hiking. Valley of Fire. St. Thomas. Zion. Sydney. Thanksgiving. Slumber party at mom’s house. Eggnog pie. Fantastic Beasts. Golf range. Putting. Dueling Pianos. Veterans Day Parade. 11/11. Soccer banquet. Turkey. 

September

I woke up and it was October. 


Soccer. Work. Indoor soccer. House of Blues. Ri Ra. More work. IheartRadio Daytime Village. (The Chainsmokers. Sam Hunt. Panic. Cage the Elephant. Alessia Cara. DNCE. Hailee Steinfeld. Good Charlotte. Cold War Kids.) Greek Festival. Shelley.

October 


Harry Potter marathon. Phish. Pregnant costume. Enormous balloon. Chocolate Frog Card. Cher. As if. Soccer. Indoor soccer. Sundance. Wedding celebrations. Zipline. Utah. Sisters. Hot tea. Hot tubs. Friday night football games. Cornmaze. The 1975. Jodee. Boulevard Pool. The Cosmo. Top Golf.