So, I was all set to post this uberpersonal blog about great love and home as sanctuary and life — what I had, what I lost, what I wanted, and all the hard work I’ve done so far to get it…and I don’t have it in me. I really don’t. It was a pretty damn good post — might have even made you cry — but I’d be posting it as a kind of catharsis, hoping it would somehow make a difference. It won’t. I know what I’ve accomplished, and where the holes in my heart still are, and it does nothing to share all that now. This year has less than three hours left to it, and as someone once said, it’s a night to forget about things, to let things go and look ahead.
I think part of what makes me feel ungrounded sometimes is that I find too much pain and insecurity in the past, for reasons this post would be dragged down to explain. Suffice it to say, as most people in the world can attest, sometimes the past is better left in the past. But in having no past to look back to, there’s nothing to show for where you’ve come from. You’re always in the present, hoping for the best right now and wondering about what’ll come next. Worrying about it, maybe.
Not to say that looking forward isn’t a great thing most of the time. Living in the past stagnates people. It keeps them in the same goddamn routines which have hurt and damaged them for years. It keeps them unable to see open doors, even when those doors are right in front of them. Some people don’t have the strength to break out of that, or the desire, and in the end, I believe it beats them down. They were so close to the end of the bridge, and instead, they jumped.
But I understand how scary it can be. Looking forward gives you something to hope for, to aspire to. But it also means you’re always a traveler, always a stranger in a new place.
And isn’t that kind of what the new year is, every year? The cosmos burning the bridge to the old and familiar behind you and pushing you ahead, toward the far, strange shore and its inherent pressure of making the future great, of changing and growing and learning, of becoming better, of becoming more than you have ever been before.
Can you be at peace with yourself, be strong and yet still be sad sometimes? In the immortal words of the Ancient Aliens guy, “The answer is yes.” Can you be happy and still have holes in your heart that aren’t fixed? Absolutely. You learn to patch them up as best you can and learn to live around them. See, when you’re traveling, everything about you and the road you’re on is varied and complex and multi-layered. It goes beyond shades of gray. It’s shades and hues of colors. Looking to live in a black and white world means you lose out on so, so much. No one and nothing is that simple. Accepting that has been step 1.
I don’t mind being a traveler, if it means looking ahead more often than looking back. But the journey is sometimes exhausting. You lose things along the way. It’s inevitable; you can only carry so much, and when, over the course of things, more complexity is thrust upon you…no matter how strong your hands are, you can only hold so much.
The trick is to know what to let go and what to hold onto, what you’ll need further on down the road. That has been step 2.
I think I’ve worked pretty hard this past year, especially these past few months, to figure out what I’ll need, and I have some damn good ideas. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but I think I’m off to a good start.
So…I guess that’s where I’m at. I’m up to figuring out where to go from here. Putting plans to see new places and learn new things into action. Unpacking the old insecurities and depression and anxiety that is weighing me down and packing the confidence and self-assurance I need for the future. Climbing to the tops of hills and looking down on what needs to be done instead of wallowing in valleys. My feet hurt and I’m tired and my heart is worn thin, but I’ll be damned if I stop moving forward.
It’s not the destination, they say. It’s the journey. And I’m ready to go.
Happy New Year, folks. May 2013 bring you all the best and greatest the journey forward has to offer.