Most people have markers of where they would like to be in their lives, some have full fledged plans with timelines and possibly glitter, but for the most part I think the average person has a general idea. I also think that we can all collectively agree that 2020 has been a bit of a poo show in many, many aspects. For me, it has been the continuation of a shedding of skin of some sorts, which began in 2018/2019 and in some ways I could say it’s the slow blooming of seeds planted. This week on the blog, especially as the end of the year is approaching and my birthday, I can’t help but be a little nostalgic and look back at my progress, but also as a way to encourage myself because I have come a long way!
2019 was a rough year for me, I have hinted ( maybe more than a hint ) at it throughout a few posts this year, but it really was a difficult year. Of course there were many happy moments in 2019. Along with my siblings, I got to help my mother reach one of her life long dreams to see the UK. I was able to see family after over a year of being apart, and we got to make some amazing memories. In that same space, I stepped away from a relationship I was in for most, if not all, of my adult life. I came to the realization the other day, that partially because I am ever the optimist but also because I fully expected a change- I probably remained 4-5 years longer than I should have. Feeling stuck and overwhelmed, but mostly because I believed no one would ever love me, especially not as a single mother. 2020 has allowed me a lot of time to think and reflect on so much and one of the biggest shifts in my mindset is the fact that I’ve realized; I am capable of giving and accepting the right kind of love. That I am worthy of more, that the feelings of self-doubt were in my head and that changing my environment would have major positive impacts on my overall mental health. I had gotten used to be being taken advantage of in some respects, that I didn’t really see myself for the catch that I am. And trust me, it may sound big headed, but I am a catch. I stand firm in that. I don’t see any reason as to why I am not a great partner to be with, yes I am not perfect- no one is, but I am hardworking and I put my all in everything I do. I don’t give up easily, I love hard and I cherish and support my tribe with fervour. All that to say- when I am all in, I am all in.
This year, like for so many- it has been a year of fresh starts and many 1sts, I have my name and only my name on the lease of my car. I have a place of my own again, for the 1st time in about 15 years (Neveah doesn’t count she’s a 2 for 1). Everything in my apartment is mine, I paid for it out of my own pocket and I do not owe any money to anyone for it. And yes, while it’s still a work in progress and there are things I still need to get- moving and furnishing a whole apartment during a pandemic was something no one could have predicted. I slept in my own bed alone for the 1st time in a very long time and if I’m being honest- I absolutely hate it. Out of all the things single-hood could have prepared me for, this one was the hardest for me. The silence that descends at night was almost deafening, and while I know there are people I could reach out to, I most definitely didn’t want to come across like a sad puppy or needy- I had chosen this fate. If I was going to feel the wave of loneliness eventually, the pandemic and quarantine definitely sped up the feelings and in some ways made them more profound. But, healing isn’t linear, it comes in waves- feeling the loss of something/someone who is still very much alive, just no longer the same as the memories you had of them, is a strange type of mourning. Having deep deep joy and in some ways confirmation that I made the right choice, all the while wishing change didn’t have to be so violent, harsh and so finite. I landed the job of my dreams in a role I can grow into, I am finally settling into myself as a person, as a mother and as a woman. I have learned that love can open you up to so many things and the right kind of love can reconnect you with parts of yourself you may have left to cobwebs.
2020 has taught me that I cannot and should not expect to do it all, I can ask for help and this doesn’t make me a failure of any kind. Most of all, it has forced me to accept the help, to sit back and let things play out on their own, to give Neveah space to make her own mistakes and her own triumphs. Breathing in and also letting it all go, not trying to control everything as a way to protect myself from harm. I have had to have many many internal conversations with myself overthinking things that haven’t happened yet. Or worrying about how I may have perceived something and oh was I wrong. Letting things play out at its own pace has been one of my biggest lessons and in some ways I have to thank the pandemic for that, because it is completely out of my control. So, all that to say- 2020 has definitely been a year of expanding. How has your year been?