Some years are better than others. That’s life, right?
Well, 2016 was one of the worst of my life. I can say this in full confidence now that there’s a day and a half left of it. 2016, you’re a damn mutha fucker if I ever saw one, the biggest of bitches.
Thinking about 2016 gives me similar feelings of falling into quicksand (which still seems like it should be a much bigger issue in life since all the television I watched as a child had someone dying in quicksand) or peeling the stringy part of the banana off and actually having to eat them, like some gross, twisted version of string cheese.
2016 was the pits.
2016 twice gave me hope of something great and then smashed it on its head. It gave my mom hope that her cancer was shrinking from her procedures done in Tijuana. It gave me the grandest proposal ever.
Both of which ended in utter chaos, dread, doubt, sadness, etc, etc, the list goes on.
I was proposed to on June 27th. My mom died on June 28th. A few months later, the proposal and ring were gone, like they never existed. The man stayed, and I am so thankful for that, but going from fiance back to girlfriend is something I never thought I’d have to do – and it sucks. It totally sucks. Things are like ten thousand times better but there’s still that annoying voice in my ear telling me “this fucking sucks” on the daily. Because girls are judgmental, even of themselves.
I could honestly say that losing my mom was the worst thing that will probably ever happen to me. I can’t imagine a greater pain. And I’ve survived this. I didn’t fall off the roof of a building at Trinity College, no matter how romantic it sounded to toe the edge with a bottle of wine in my hand. I didn’t get alcohol poisoning the night I found out she had passed (I just threw up my guts, and spaghetti – worst drunk food decision of my life). I didn’t stay in Ireland, disappear into a crowd.
I came home. I put on my big girl panties. I was sad, unbelievably sad. But I survived. And maybe my engagement was a casualty of sadness. Maybe. But coming out of the other side has been brighter than anything else. Our relationship is stronger. We are happier. And although I’m happy 80% of the time, there’s still that 20% where I find something that reminds me of my mom and I become a blubbering mess again. But it’s okay now. I have the support I needed before.
I have been quiet about some things because I don’t like admitting my own failures. I mean, can you blame me? Does anyone? But I know that my readers are some of the best, and I’m so thankful to have such supportive people on my side. Seriously, you made my 2016 a bit more bearable.
There has been some good, though. I have to at least credit 2016 to me finally completing my YA novel and starting querying again. I was published in Huffington Post, Elite Daily, Thought Catalog, Parent.Co, and Matador Network. And I even had a short story published in Imagination Magazine, a story I was really, really proud of. I quit my job mid-year and started working as a proposal writer (finally the word WRITER is in my job title!). I went on travel adventures with my beau and my son. I got to explore new cities and countries.
All hope hasn’t been lost. Although, it really started to feel like it there for a while. I’m happy to say that even Jude is starting to grieve easier. He’s been wetting the bed less and less, and he doesn’t point out that I don’t have a mom anymore nearly as often. Time is healing both of us, it seems.
2017, I am so ready for you.
I’m ready for new beginnings with the man I love. For my son to start kindergarten. For my boyfriend’s sister to have her sweet baby she’s always dreamed about. For more time with friends I love so much. For making my dad feel better when I can. For finishing my thesis and getting my MFA in creative writing and hopefully getting a literary agent. For going to Barcelona and hopefully taking Jude to Paris. For a year free of death and of heartache.
I’m ready to be the best version of myself, and help the ones I love be the best version of themselves too.
I want to be powerful, goal-oriented, sexy, beautiful, adventurous.
I want to feel like myself times ten.
And I will. Because a lot can happen in a year.
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