It's the last day of 2013, and I'm happy about that. I don't say that lightly, because in general I look at life as far too short. Terrifyingly short. I'm one of those people who'd like to live a few centuries and then reevaluate (without the whole bloodsucking, fang flashing lifestyle if possible.)
But this year, this year sucked. It just did. There's not a better term, and eloquence causes loss of feeling. 2013 SUCKED. Serious reasons. Non-serious reasons. Stupid reasons that were barely reasons and shouldn't have even mattered, but because of all the other reasons suddenly the smallest and stupidest reasons were impossible to brush off.
There have been many instances where I even found myself sitting alone, especially over the past month or so, where I just screamed out loud "F*** THIS! F*** YOU! F*** ALL OF IT! F***F***F*** IT!!!" And then I got a little less coherent after that.
It's a good thing that I live in the country, because even the cows and chickens took no notice of me.
That's not like me. I'm angry that things have gone the way they have. I'm angry that I felt like I was pushing giant boulders up a hill and it was raining oil down and making everything slip backwards, crushing my little toes underneath (the little ones hurt more.) Totally out of my control, beyond my influence, out of my reach and not my fault - yet I had to take whatever was dealt out and just be terrified, or in pain, or flat out burned.
I am a powerful woman. I'm smart. I'm strong. I'm savvy. I can make things happen. And I couldn't do a thing to fix anything that went wrong this year. Nothing. I was powerless.
Just, RAWR! Dagnabbit!
Weight and fitness? Yeah, I barely made that register this year. I actually had to make an effort to focus on it, and it was such a negative thing that it was a relief to be mad about that and my own choices instead of feeling helpless.
I believe that is my greatest problem when it comes to my weight: learning to let go of the one and only problem that I can self-create and self-remedy. When everything else is going wrong, you can look at your weight and fitness and be upset about that instead, because it's all up to you to fix it - and you CAN! If you were healthy all the time, that ready made problem and solution is entirely out of your reach. Which should be a good thing, if I were... you know, normal.
This is, of course, the very model of unhealthy thinking that will probably launch a fleet of college psychology papers somewhere. I mean, I've had the whole physical trauma in my past where hiding behind an unattractive body is the safer thing and I've gotten past that (mostly, but put me in a situation where I get noticed and I tend to head to the nearest closet or potted plant.) I've gotten past using food for boredom. I'm working hard on the whole anxiety angle of using food to sooth not feeling talented enough to work on certain projects, beating myself down with food, and then being miserable enough to work (I'm not sure why that happens and works, but it's a real pattern that is crystal clear for me.)
I know I can move past all of those things... except letting go of my ready made problem and solution set. It used to be enough to get up at the crack of "OMG, elves making shoes aren't even awake at this time" and exercise. I used to think to myself in my shower that I had accomplished something before the sun is even up that most people won't manage all day long, and feel motivated by that the rest of the day. That wore off. Oh, I still get up and exercise, I'm just not impressed with myself anymore and gloating while conditioning my lustrous locks with what I hope is actually conditioner and not some concoction my son has made of lotion, toothpaste and Nair in an empty bottle (I thought there was less in there yesterday, weren't we almost out? Was this minty before?)
It is now clear to me that in order to regain control of my health, I have to let go of being able to fix things. I need to learn how to appreciate what's not broken, rather than looking for something - anything - I can fix. Because life isn't about being in control. Life is a freaking mess, and it likes to mess with you. If you do have a problem you can actually fix, it's like hitting the lottery because most of life's little curve balls are about you surviving the wave and seeing what's left afterward. It just is.
Which sucks, just to reiterate.
In truth, I understand that we are like sculptures. We start out as these blocks with the potential of being anything. We could be a unicorn, a teddy bear, a fairy, a mouse. We simply don't know what's hidden in the raw material, we can only guess. We have some direction in mind with our life, somewhat anyway. But then the process begins and sometimes pieces are chipped off that we didn't intend and we are changed forever. There is no going back. Part of creating a beautiful sculpture is destructive. It's harsh, and violent. There are hammers and sharp edges and clouds of dust that are our tears mourning the process of change. Sometimes we think we're going towards that unicorn only to find a fracture in the material changes the course... but at the end we find something even better underneath. We find what we're meant to be, even if we never saw it coming.
However, we only become what we're truly meant to be if we keep going. We only reach our potential if we allow the change and don't give up. We have to allow room for ideas that we never considered before, we have to allow for the pain to make way for something new... and we must let go of what was, relinquish all control, and let the magic happen.
That's life, artist perspective edition. I can't help it, it's what I am. The world is color, shape and form - and in the end ALL things are beautiful. Destructive, dangerous, scary, maybe... but dynamic, challenging, and unexpectedly lovely.
This is who I am, and I've been fighting the process far too long, even though I should know better. So... at this last moment of 2013 I hereby wave my white flag. I surrender. I'm not giving up, I'm giving way. I'm letting go of what I've been using to hold myself back in order to give myself a false sense of comfort and control.
I can't fix it, and that sucks. No one can tell me different, because they would be wrong. But in the end here, at the last, I realize that it is OK that it sucked. Yes, there were good moments of my year (hello, dolphins! Oh, and I won a painting competition a few weeks ago that I didn't mention but it was a big deal and very exciting! Those were good things!) Not everything was bad, but I don't have to be Pollyanna. No one expects me to look on the bright side of every situation, and if they do they are not my friend - rather they are someone who wants to control my feelings. It's perfectly acceptable to say that this year was not a good year overall, because it simply was not.
That, thankfully, is not the last chapter in my book. This is the last page of 2013. For good or ill, it is done. It is how I see it, because it is my year. I accept that it is not what I would have chosen in most cases. Bless and release, right?
I now move forward into 2014. I have plans and ideas and dreams, but I also am making room for the unexpected. I am going to allow for the changes, the cancelled plans, the unexpected accidents, the hurt and the pain. This sounds negative, but it is not. I cannot control things. I cannot make everything good, and interestingly I cannot make everything bad - which is rather comforting, don't you think? More, letting go of the illusion of control by holding onto the few things I can manipulate makes room to allow me to change the things I truly do not like. I may like that I can manipulate my health and weight, but I don't actually like being unhealthy. It's time to make that a neutral item in my list, and just have "good and stable health" checked off as done. A non-issue either way because it's taken care of.
I surrender 2013 and all it's woes to the past, and I send with it my mistaken actions, thoughts, and feelings with the hope and conviction that I will do far better in 2014 and make more room for life in general by eliminating the space this silly self-made one has taken up.
Bring it on 2014! I'm ready!