With 2015 drawing to a close, I put up a post on Facebook about my top four highlights of the year: joining the Song Talk Radio team, becoming a member of Cavaleiro Farm, going on my first solo camping trips, and singing at my first gig.
It has truly been a year of exploration, creativity and pursuing my passions. And the momentum is only growing as the New Year approaches.
What I didn’t mention though were some of the lowlights. For one, enduring some pretty stressful months at a job that I had gone into with my usual passion and gusto, but that ended up draining my spirit with its bureaucracy and politics.
I ended up getting laid off in the spring. There wasn’t enough funds to continue with the position, I was told. Fair enough — but all of the events leading up to the news and the way it went down made for a pretty demoralizing moment.
I was sent home — cardboard box full of stuff in hand — and retired to my couch, emotionally drained at the end of a (not so thrilling) rollercoaster ride.
Fortunately, it didn’t take long to conclude that the lay-off wasn’t even a blessing in disguise. It was simply a blessing. I had been miserable and losing hope that I could make the difference I wanted to in the organization — yet I was planning to stick it out until I could figure out what the heck to do with myself.
The lay-off was a kick in the ass that said: Go forth and figure it out NOW.
Life is truly too short to be spending it in limbo.
There was another, much bigger, event of upheaval in my life. It meant losing someone so important to me. And it also felt as though I’d now be returning back to a situation of instability that I had spent a lot of time in the past crawling out of.
There’s really no “but” to the first part — sometimes we just need to take the time to be sad and both grieve and honour our losses.
But to the latter, we also have to give ourselves more credit and believe that we can manage to be stronger than we’ve shown ourselves to be previously. To think otherwise is to concede that we haven’t picked out the important lessons we’ve needed to learn from all of our past trials and tribulations.
Life is truly too short to not be learning how we can do things better.
Within a year, there will be the good and the bad. What I’ve gathered is that there is so much that is out of our control, but what we can choose is to respond to what’s thrown at us with honesty. Honesty to ourselves and to others.
Sometimes that means growing a pair. Sometimes that means letting down your pride. Sometimes that means not looking so far ahead into the future and just asking ourselves what is the truth for me right now?
With only a few minutes left to go until 2016 is ushered in, I want to just focus on the “right now” — which finds me sitting in a quiet, empty house in this comfy, red sofa chair, glass of wine on one side of me, guitar on the other, reflecting and writing.
In a way, this snapshot of my evening represents what’s honest for me right now and this notion of “honesty in the present” is the only intention I’m setting going into the New Year. Everything else will follow.
Wherever you are in the world, whatever you may be doing, I wish you and yours a very wonderful New Year.
~ Cafe (a.k.a. Janice) <3