Thursday, January 3, 2019

Leap Year: 2017-18 in life lessons.

I missed a year. It was the first time in over a decade I missed a year of lessons.
I kept thinking that I’d make it up some time along the way. It irks me in that annoying “add it to the list of things I have pending” kinda way.  I disappointed myself. I’d stare at the post-it note on my desk and just think “write the damn thing” but then I’d get distracted watering any of the other gardens I tended to.

It’s not that I didn’t think about what I’d learned in 2017.  To some degree it felt like I was still working through a lot of it. So without further adieu, I offer you what I learned the last 2 years in no particular order.

  • To mute myself less & love more.  When we withhold love & when we filter ourselves, we’re only dimming the light that naturally wants to shine from within us. Go big. Love big.  Wear the fucking outfit you want to wear… say what you feel. This means you 100% won’t be everyone person and that 100% is okay.

  • Where my parental limits were. Raising a toddler while battling pregnancy hormones, raising a toddler while learning a new human and then raising two small people hasn’t been easy.   I’ve been pushed to my absolute point of breaking more than once. I’m not proud of the person I am in those moments but I’m also learning to pull back and cut her a little slack. There’s some pain behind the anger and I’m finally ready to start looking at what’s there.

  • To seek the community I was craving. It’s easy to feel isolated working from home and in a small team.  Over the last two years, I’ve become fearless in my pursuit of connection and relish the amazing people I’ve met as a result of making the first moves.I have found that people don't always know what to make of my forwardness and that's okay. Those aren't my people.  

  • The value in civic engagement.  My world opened up the moment I got active in my community in a real way. I have this unique opportunity to live in a small town within a big city.  It’s made me a better human. It’s changed my understanding of politics. It’s challenged me to step up. Thank you, West Hollywood, for letting me love you.

  • To relish those moments of divine inspiration and to lean into whatever is pulling me into a direction.  This year, it pulled me into organizing something I had no business organizing but did anyway. Successfully. In 8 weeks. With a group of women I now consider sisters.  I still don’t 100% know what’s next, but I remain committed to honoring the voice that pushes me into crazy-sounding scenarios.

  • To face failure.  I bombed a campaign. It was awful. It was the single biggest failure of my career. It fucking hurt and a lot of it was my fault.  The view from falling square on my face has altered my perception of success and of myself. I’m better for failing and no longer fear it because I’ve faced it head on.

  • Feelings are often not one or the other. There’s a LOT of gray area and most of the time, I live in that space.  Empowered yet alone, ecstatic but anxious, angry yet full of love.. The list goes on. Lolly’s birth took me by surprise. She came quicker that we thought and it resulted in my partner missing her birth. There’s so much beauty in my memories of cutting her cord & the intense bond we share as a result of the experience but it left me sad, nonetheless.  It took a long time to sort out and give space to both experiences.

  • That I am magic. My kid thinks I’m magic. I’m officially choosing to believe him.

This year I hope to:

  • Be more selective in the gardens I water…and to deepen the connections that are blooming vs spreading myself so thin.  

  • To leave more space for play in every aspect of my life.
  • To rediscover who my partner is and what our connection looks like after 4 intense years of grad school, 2 babies & demanding jobs.
  • To write down recipes vs always subscribing to the “fuck it school of culinary arts”
  • To rediscover who I am without a baby attached to my nipples or growing in my tummy… or impacting my hormones.