I don’t recall the last time that Mike and I went somewhere for New Years. Oh wait, 3 years ago we went to the Wolf Hotel, in Ellinwood late after we closed the door at work and arrived at 10 pm or so. It was nice. But typically we go home and crash. Last night we drove to the Lake of the Ozarks for the off season deal. It is one of our favorite get-away places that brings so much peace. The lake lights shown off the water like a million Christmas lights and were so beautiful. There was no loud music, hustle and bustle, boats in and out, but rather an eerie quiet of peace. As I’m writing, Mike is taking a generator to our friend Charmaine in Eldon, and I am looking out at the marina that is all but empty. It’s lovely.
I get very nostalgic as I recall the outgoing years. I can’t help it. New Year’s will always leave a hole that can never be filled. My dad and I had our thing. It was just our thing. Four o’clock phone calls to make sure we made it. 2014 was the last one. Every year since, I wait. I know it’s not coming. It will never come. But regardless, I still have the need. This morning I woke up after a very intense dream about him. We walked and talked and he was just out of reach. I know what it meant and what he said and I still woke frustrated. I still feel an incredible array of emotions. Grief. Anger. Love. Resentment. Pissed. You see, it’s not linear. Grief morphs and as situations arise everything realigns over and over again. So much has been revealed since he died that sometimes I don’t know where I ever fit. It doesn’t change the love. But it does change how I process things. I am learning that one emotion doesn’t negate the good things. I have learned that I can hold and feel two emotions and sometimes more in the same place. It’s ok! It is a process.
2022 was an enormously challenging year for me physically. I could not walk. I was in the most physical pain I have ever endured. Emotionally I was sorting through and healing from emotional trauma, childhood trauma, narcissistic relationship issues and all the while trying to not succumb to the darkness that surrounded me. I remember thinking, many times, “I can’t do this anymore and even death would be more humane than trying to navigate a healthcare system and the people who I have always loved who do not love me.” I didn’t have any option except to get up every day, try to shower (which sometimes went days unable to) and most days make it back to bed. I couldn’t do more than I could do. It’s a miracle that I was able to avoid relapsing into addiction. I am an addict. I am an addict. Ugh. I was addicted to alcohol for years. I guess I could just say the words (this is hard to put in print). I am an alcoholic. I started drinking at age 13-14 and at the same age I started smoking. Chain smoking! I haven’t smoked in over 7 years, but I still want one. I have now not drank in 2 years. The truth is that I couldn’t drink one drink. If I had beer, I drank it by the 30 pack. I used alcohol to escape, to numb and to try to forget. It didn’t work. If you don’t face your pain, you can never release it and move on. Now that that’s out, I will say I still have fun, I just feel good the next day. I am only saying this because in the past year, the unheard, un healed me would have dived head first into any substance that would have numbed every bit of physical and emotional pain that I was dealing with. I’m beyond grateful to Mike and the kids for walking with me. Hell most times they were walking for me and picking my ass up on the many days I wanted to quit. Last night Mike said to me, “Can you imagine that had you not gotten in early for your surgery you would still be waiting 25 more days?” Wow. I am six weeks post op on my hip and the pain is so minimal that my brain has moved on and blocked the horrible parts. I am so grateful.
All of that is only part of the the entire year. That certainly doesn’t include watching things happen with my kids and people I love that challenged them. They each had their share of pain, regret, abuse from people, moments that were supposed to be precious that were ruined by others, disappointments, highs, lows, fears, drought, sobriety, theft, learning who they are…all the things a Momma wants to fix that are all just part of living the mortal coil. They are all at different points of healing and learning. They are discovering who they are and doing the hard work of becoming who God has called them to be. I am constantly reminding them that there are people who will always try to drag them backwards when they see them healing and becoming better. For the life of me I will never understand those people who want to remind you of your lowest times. Maybe you lost your temper or spoke up for yourself; no worries, in their eyes you are always going to be the forever asshole. Then they will happily recount it all to their friends, and anyone else who will listen, that you are an asshole, all while never mentioning the part they played in pushing your buttons!! Thank Heavens none of us are who we were yesterday. Some get better and some get worse, but still not exactly who we were yesterday! There are always going to be those who live to remind you that you are never allowed to grow up and be better!! There are also those who want to “remind you where you came from”! Well, where you come from and where you are going should be two different things! You are going to strive to do better!! It’s kind of funny, those are the same people who don’t make improvements or never experience new things that force growth. You know them, they are the ones who would rather talk about people or their kids rather than seeing the good? Yeah. Those. Rise like smoke and don’t engage. Best advice I got.
I suppose my point is that as you reflect on your year, look at how far you have come! Even small steps are forward movements. Do what you can and when you can’t, bless your body and your mind for the miracles it performs to keep you alive. Reflect on the loving people who remember you when you are struggling. Bless them in your prayers. Prioritize your life. It isn’t your business, your job, and it isn’t the person who others think or say you are. You know the truth. It’s the small voice of your soul. The voice that will never lead you in the wrong direction. It’s also the people who truly love you. It’s the sunshine, the water, the wind and the Creator of all things. You are here because you have a purpose. I don’t believe that you always have to find your purpose, or that it has to be huge and earth shattering. I don’t believe It has to be some big thing that you makes you change the world!! For those that find that to be their truthful purpose, then that’s awesome!!! For me, an average sojourner on this astral plane, I think mine is just to keep making improvements and to love those who love me. I’m supposed to spread some kindness and do good where I can. Yeah, I think that’s it.
So with all of that, Happy New Year 2023. May God bless you all. May you heal from hurts. May you acknowledge what you need to to show accountability. May you grow in your heart your self love and may you find all of the joy you can handle. May you remember that you are worthy of being treated with recognition of your growth and be encouraged. If they can’t support you and see you for who you are becoming, let them go.
I love you. I do.