AKA the hardest, most emotional year of my 24 years. When I envisioned the end of this year, I would have never guessed I would be where I am now. Lately I’ve caught myself laughing and saying, “thank God it’s almost over!” Sometimes I feel as if I am actually willing this year to finish faster. I replay the rough moments in my head not as a way to torture myself but as a way to reflect on what I am most proud of: that not only did I make it to the end of this year, but that my heart is intact and my spirit is alive. I am once again so cheerily hopeful about the future.
If you know me or have read some of my posts before then you know this is a big deal to me. I spent the first half of the year fighting to keep alive something that had no chance of recovery. The other chunk of time I spent in denial, feeding this toxicity as if an addiction. Then some other stuff happened like having to move out of my house and then breaking my wrist. Point is, emotionally this year was challenging. Mentally…it was devastating. Well, almost devastating. Because what I am trying to explain is that yes, this has been the hardest year of my life, but 1) I survived it and 2) in reality, a breakup (although as serious as thinking it was the “one”), being kicked out, and breaking a bone were my 2017 hardships. And I am lucky to say that. So if I’m being truthful, yes, this year sucked, but no, it wasn’t nearly as hard in retrospect as I truly thought it was while going through these things. At the time, everything was compromised: my body, my spirit, my health. So I have to ask myself: am I healthy right now as I type this? Yes. Am I whole right now as I type this? Yes. And am I constantly healing, even now as I type this? You’re darn sure I am.
So in a nutshell, it took me 12 months and a few days to finally realize and accept that not only did I survive this year, but I flourished. I am flourishing. I am stronger than ever before and that means all the crummy times in 2017 were somehow…worth it. So worth it.
So what have I learned this year? Well here are just a few things:
1) Date someone kind. Someone who remains kind over time. Someone with a kind heart. When they are no longer kind, leave. You deserve someone kind.
2) Never underestimate how important a good friend, a kickass, empowering movie, and venting are for the soul. (when I told Analeise about everything she took me to see Wonder Woman and it was the best thing for me)
3) As much as relationships are incredible, don’t lose yourself in them. Those goals you want to attain need to come first or you will always think, “what if?” The right person will help build you up and help you reach those goals. They need to be your number one fan, too.
4) When all else fails, get some perspective. For me it was snorkeling with manta rays in Tulum and hiking up mountains in Peru. You will see there is a world outside of heartache.
5) A support system will help move mountains. Trust in the process, trust in the Universe and that it knows what It’s doing, and trust in those around you. Don’t lose that trust that makes you kind.
6) Cry and scream if you need to, but never ever ever lose your faith, whatever it may be. This is all happening for a reason. (I truly believe this)
7) Move on when it’s time. Forgive, not for them, but for yourself, because you need it. Because it is what’s right.
8) One day, without even realizing it, you will be free again.
And you will care for someone again. And they will be kind. And you will once again be kind.
What I consider a really hell-ish year was made so much better because of people like my parents and sisters, Analeise, Edmar, Charlie, Kris, Laura, Sarah, Bubba, Brianda and everyone who let me vent, traveled with me, or just cheered my well-being on.
Like I said, a support system will move mountains and in 2017 it helped me move on from my biggest one.
Until next time, friends
(Which will be a lot happier of a post because it’s about my 2017 travels! Yay)
Hey Mary Anna, thanks for sharing this post. I love your truth here, your writing feels so raw – I love it. You say this year has been mentally devastating. You came through it optimistic, stronger and perhaps even more gracious. In my opinion, it sounds like a year that was mentally challenging, but mentally strengthening.
I love your truth. I think this sounds like a year that was mentally challenging, but mentally strengthening. You sound more optimistic and gracious.