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And If The House Just Keeps On Winnin’, I’ve Got a Wildcard Up My Sleeve

Updated: Feb 25, 2023

It's almost March, I've been working on this goddamn New Year's post since before Christmas, and I STILL don't think it encompasses all I want to say. Happiness, peace, love.. freedom and fun, laughter & adventure & progress. All things I want to focus on in 2023, all things I felt deprived of in 2022, yet I think I've landed on an intention for myself this year: Trust.

I'm learning to trust myself again, to trust other people, trusting the universe and that maybe the world really does have more good than bad in it. Even though this past year felt like the foggiest, most painful, heart-wrenching existence.. I can see now that I can and should trust myself. I've managed to overcome a lot of hard things, get myself to the next day again and again, and create the things I need most within myself. Why on Earth would I question if I could trust myself or not?!

Well, there are reasons, but those are more Hell than Earth. Life can be a real bitch sometimes. Which brings me to my need to trust others and the world in general. It's like a zigzag, ping pong, whiplash of 'what the actual fuck.' Who can I trust? Can I trust that things will work out fine and not try to control everything? When the world delivers heartache and trauma and abusers, how can I not hate myself or hate everyone or hate life?! But my heart is too big for that. I have sadness and hatred, but they can't begin to compete with the amount of love I have in my heart; a pinch of the love I carry in my heart is more powerful than any abundance of despair and anger. I can trust that.

2022 was a legitimate shit show of a life for me. Endings, beginnings, and a fun new diagnosis of PTSD! Go big or go home, am I right? And in my case: have no home for a little while, too.

New city, new state! New home, after no home.. New dog, new job. And then no dog... All this "new" doesn't take away the pain of missing the old, the belonging, the certainty in myself. God I just want to feel comfortable enough to get one damn night of sleep. I miss sleep so much, not even great sleep, just the sleep I used to get and not the 35 minute dozing off spurts piece-mealed together.

But, I'm not here to bitch and moan (well, maybe a little), I'm going to try and flip the script on the year of 2022. Every single day has hurt. I've learned more "lessons" and dug deeper than ever before. I ended a long term relationship. I left my home. I left my job. I left my cat. I moved to a new state and spent a month on the beach begging the waves heal me. I remembered things, ugly things. I've faced my flaws and mindsets and patterns and anything that holds me back. I went like 4 goddamn months without getting my hair done! I let my skin breathe, I let my cute little stress rash be the star of the show on my face. I remembered. But I forgot things, too.

I lived in a camper for a month, it was my soft place to land at the time. This was not without difficulties, but I won't get into that here. Then I spent another month on an air mattress, more difficulties.. After finding the perfect apartment and finally gathering some "new" belongings, I threw a curveball right back at the universe and ran away to the beach. Once making the decision to move I had a home. Not my home and not the home I knew before, but my parents gave me a room with a bed and a dresser and a TV and... a fresh start.

Somewhere to sleep and food to eat and fur babies to love. Sand to sink my toes in, Sun to light up the darkness.. An ocean to fight with, to dance with, to bend & break with. That beach will forever be my solace, my church.

And If Love Keeps Giving Me Lemons, I'll Just Mix Them In My Drink

Now that I've made a home here, have my own place that I've filled with hand-me-downs and discount furniture, I am dedicated to gratitude. I always tried to see the bright side, naturally looking for silver linings and joy in the mundane.. but now my gratitude has more power. It's less avoidant and more observant. I focus on the things I'm grateful for to offset the bad stuff, not to cover it up anymore. I don't have much, I left it all or lost it all. But I have everything I need within me.. I have created safety for myself, I've cultivated strength, and if I keep letting my heart lead me I'll find more things to be grateful for. I'll create more things to be grateful for. I trust myself with that.

No New Year's Resolutions, no pep talks about the lessons this past year taught me. Just trust for 2023 and gratitude to the pieces of love that 2022 has brought me.

Dear 2022,

I am grateful for:

My friends, my Army of Angels. Who haven't quite kept me sane but have kept me alive this year. Phone calls, FaceTimes, zooms in the middle of the night. I could write a book on the subject of my friends, but I'm keeping these sentiments to myself to cherish selfishly.

My family, who gave me a place to sleep and fed me when I forgot how to take care of myself completely. The family that loved me when I refused to love myself, that loved me when I was quite possibly the most unlovable version of me.

Living at the beach. Ain't nothing like the Carolina Coast's sunsets and sunrises. Those pinks and purples with blues and yellows... Sitting in the sand with a book and a beer, jumping in waves and splashing like a kid, the smell of salty ocean air, the warmth of the Sun.

The South, where people actually take the time to talk to you. Where strangers become friends in a day and everyone stops to smell the roses. We chase the Sun down here, a race without competition or enemies. We run into blessings and let go of what we were desperately running from.

And if the whole wide world stops spinning, and all the stars go dark; I'll keep a light on in my soul keep a bluebird in my heart...

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