2015 in Review

Now, while we’re on the subject on 2015, and before it gets too late, it’s that time again. The time of year when we reflect on the twelve months just gone. Like every year, 2015 had its ups and downs, but there were some definite extremes for me this year. It has been a year of change and growth, and most importantly (and perhaps vaguely clichéd) a year of personal development and discovery.

As a whole, the year hasn’t been awful but certain aspects of it have sucked beyond measure. For example, this has been the worst year since 2013 for my mental state. Two years ago I went through one of the worst depressions I had ever experienced. This year blew 2013 right out of the water, and in the worst possible way. I have had long bouts of crippling self doubt, both in regards to my writing and my worth as a person. And when you start thinking that you have no value, your life starts to feel less and less worth living. It’s a slippery slope and it’s hard to drag yourself up from. In between feeling useless at my job, feeling bogged down by life, and feeling generally stressed out about adulthood, there was this voice in my head telling me it would be easier to just jump off the literal and metaphorical cliff and be done with it. Pulling myself back from that ledge was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.

I had a learning experience about mid year, when months of subconscious bottling up of emotion came to a head quite unexpectedly. Things that I hadn’t even realised were affecting me came literally spilling to the surface, and I had an emotional breakdown. I had to confront things that I hadn’t wanted to confront. I was ashamed of myself, and embarrassed by my perceived weakness. But then I realised that emotions are not a weakness, and being able to express them is part of what makes us human. Since then, things have been easier. I’ve gotten better at not bottling up my emotions, and at actually talking about the crazy things that are going on inside my head. And it really has helped.

A lot of this year for me has involved feeling stuck. Stuck in my home town. Stuck in a job I don’t really love. Stuck in situations I had hoped to be out of. So I moved out of home, in the hopes that it would help. And for a while, it did. It was good to be in my own space and not have to worry about anyone else. But before long, the novelty wore off and the itchy feet were back. I started researching other towns and cities, other places I could move and live. I started daydreaming about just packing up everything and running away. Of course, doing so would be a completely unviable option, and so I remain where I am. And I love living on my own, don’t get me wrong. I just want to be living alone somewhere else. Especially considering the house I moved into, which I fell in love with when I first saw it, has proved to be more trouble than it’s worth. Go figure.

It all sounds pretty sucky when I put it down like that, but there were some good things too. And for the most part, the bad experiences I had always had some kind of lesson or silver lining. Which I know sounds like a load of crap, but it’s true. With three days left of the end of the year, I can say that I am in a better headspace that I have been in a long while. And even though there is a lot about my life that I am not overly thrilled about, I know that everything is within my power to change. It’s just a matter of how long it takes.

2015 has taught me a lot about myself. I’ve had to grow up and be an adult, and yet I’m still  a child at heart. I’ve discovered that despite my weaknesses, it is the strength in me that ultimately prevails. I have done stupid things, and had rare genius moments. I have started a micro business, developed my sewing skills, been able to stick with something and not get bored of it for a change…though that being said, there’s still the unresolved issue of the three instruments I own and still can’t play. I have stuck at a job for over an entire year, the longest I’ve been at a job since Collins. I have met some famous people, got my first pets, crashed my car and financed a new one, gotten so drunk I vomited for the first and only time in my life, been to three weddings and one funeral. It has been one turbulent year, that’s for damn certain. And throughout everything, the shit times and the good times, the bawling uncontrollably and the laughing hysterically, the madness and the misanthropy, there was my best friend. He more than anything is the reason I made it through this year, and I couldn’t imagine my world without such a rad dude in it. Here’s to you, best friend. And here’s to 2015. You were a jerk, but you taught me things so…I guess, you’ve been alright. And to you, readers, I’ll see you all in the new year.

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