This was the year.... the year that I found my voice, found my drive, found my self-esteem. This was the year that I decided I wasn't going to take crap and stay in toxic places. This was MY Year. Not everything that happened was fantastic. In fact I started the year in a VERY toxic place in a VERY toxic state of mind. But I am ending it in a totally new and different place. I am happy with where my life is. I am not running from crush to crush wondering who might be there to walk with me for life. I have put value in my singleness. I look forward to going to work everyday. I have sacrificed time and energy to spend time with people this year. I find myself focusing more on being a better, kinder and more loving person. I have patched up some broken relationships and let go of some toxic ones. I have decided that I don't have to be liked by everyone, I just need a few good people in my life that love me and want to cheer me on. I have walked through some tough moments where I doubted my self-worth. I have forgiven those for past hurts, and I have said hello again to some old friends. I have realized that in life we have to say we are sorry. We have to give up control, and we have to let other people know how we feel.
I spent most of January and February volunteering for Room At the Inn. An experience that showed me a different side to the homeless population. An experience that opened my eyes to see just how caring and loving our CoMo community is. I'm thankful that's how my year started. I am thankful that I was able to experience those long cold nights, and meet people that I later would pass on the street. They have names, they have stories, and they need to know they are valuable.
The end of February brought True/False into my life again. So thankful for that film festival and what it means to this community. Thankful for the people I have met because of it. Thankful for how it has changed me, and how it continues to change me every year. The films are amazing, and I know that they change me.
March and April were confusing months for me. Do you ever feel betrayed by someone that you thought was a long-time friend? They lead you on, and then all of a sudden they are not in your life anymore in the way that you hoped they would be? Well that happened, and it made me so sad. The loss hurt, it was a very big disappointment, but I moved on.
My sister and brother-in-law also got their foster daughter! We were able to meet her, and I am so glad that she joined our family even if it is temporary.
In June I was able to get together with my sisters, and cousins for a fun trip to Michigan. It was a lovely weekend full of great conversation, good food, and a great last visit with my uncle. We didn't know at the time, but he would pass away in August.
July was moving month! Yay! No longer in a place where I didn't feel welcome. I left behind so much anxiety that I didn't even know I had. I also started a new job. The new job would prove to be one of those jobs that you just don't know are going to be super awful until you are in the midst of them.
August brought the death of my uncle. It was a very tough loss. I still have moments of just crying out to God of why it had to happen now. I ended up going to Michigan for a quick trip to be with my aunt and cousins. I will never regret that trip. I'm thankful that I am at a place in life where I can just go.
September brought Roots N Blues. So many great artists this year. A Blues Cat once again. I'm so thankful for a music festival in our city. We also had the celebration of life for my uncle. So many memories with him and my cousins. So many good stories. So thankful for his life, and what he taught so many people.
October brought a new job search. My old job was proving to be more toxic than I even realized. Gossip, and backstabbing right and left. Also, I realized that I was not working in a place that I believed in. So, a new job it was! Got hired, and recruitment for GS is the right place for me at this time!
November was Thanksgiving. A time spent with family and reflecting on all that I have. I'm thankful for my family. We may not be perfect, but we are there for each other, and we enjoy each other's company. For that I will always be blessed.
December was by far the greatest month of 2018. Mostly because I was able to spend so much time with friends and family. I was able to travel to Michigan again, then Pennsylvania, a quick stop in Ohio, and then on to Kentucky. So thankful for that road trip. Thankful for 2 whole weeks off of work for the first time in a very long time. I don't have a lot of money, but I sure do enjoy traveling, and being loved by people. Another highlight of December was time spend with family. Sisters, nephews, mom, dad, step-mom, brother-inlaws. So thankful for each and every one of them!
Lessons learned this year:
*Time with friends and family is worth the sacrifice
*People are greater than things
*You don't have to stay in toxic places
*Life is hard but count your blessings
*Serve till it hurts, because what you get in return is worth it!