I always reflect on the year as it approaches its end and then I start visualizing what I want out of the following one. There is always something therapeutic for me about this process. But this year, I was wary of doing this (I'm sure many of you can relate) because...well ok, here we go...
What can I really say about this year?? Oh where do I begin...Well, first off, this was definitely the year of curveballs. From losing both of my jobs, dealing with family drama and judgements, handling rejection in the music business, having to rethink (over and over again) my approach to parenting....Not to mention having to cancel and rework events time and time again (cause...Covid) discovering more unsupportive and racist friends and family coming out of the woodworks (I see you now), having no more live performance outlets (tears for days) the political circus and conspiracies (oh lawd) The list could go on. But I refused to panic. I was determined to figure out how to deal in this new onslaught of change and chaos. There were a lot of trade offs I discovered. Some sacrifice, some loneliness, some unexpected amazing surprises...But that was only a portion of my 2020.
The hardest thing though honestly, was that this year FORCED me to really look hard at where I was at and reevaluate, cause all of a sudden, I found myself with a lot of time on my hands. But that was fine, I could handle that. I took pride in not being an "avoider" and these were just more problems that I could solve. I was always ready to confront the issues and deal with them ASAP. Or so I thought... (cue God laughing)
" Surprise, surprise...I actually was an avoider"
I hid behind busyness, obligations, social engagements and a sense of duty. I used those as excuses to put off taking better care of myself. I would put off things like prioritizing my health, pursuing musical aspirations, planning for my future, working on relationships and dealing with my sour attitude and low self esteem in different areas. So all this newfound alone time with my thoughts, HIT ME HARD. I found myself in emotional slumps with zero desire to do things. I became more unsure of my future, my faith was taking a backseat and I was feeling helpless.
For so long, I let my worth and my purpose be defined in the things that I did. I sought validation from those I was around. So when things shut down and I was forced to be at home and the things and people disappeared, what was I left with? A whole bunch of hard emotions. I didn’t truly understand what it meant to have self love or realize my value. But I’m learning now and realizing that I need to always love myself and know my worth. Period. No matter how many people approve or disapprove of me, no matter how many times I do a gig or lose a pitch, no matter how many times I try to do it all and be the best mom and fall short, no matter how many stretch marks or love handles I try to hide. I'm human and that is a beautiful thing. All of it. I needed to start seeing myself the way God sees me, always having value and always worthy of love.
Part of loving myself will mean finding that balance of yes and no’s. Like the surface things of saying yes to wearing that crop top, or saying no to feeling bad about playing Animal Crossing for hours. Saying yes to putting work aside and spending time with family, and sayin no to that outing I'm really not feeling. And for those below the surface things, like saying yes to sharing my music, saying no to second guessing what I can give. Saying yes, I am enough, and saying no to that, “you’re not ready” mindset.
So, this year was not a wash. It had its hot mess moments, but what year doesn’t? There was definitely more change and growth smushed into a short span of time than I had experienced in quite a while. Did I cry a lot? Yes. Did I get out of my comfort zone a lot? Yes. Do I need a vacation? YES! Did I get frustrated. Oh yes. But I made it. 2020 has made me a more confident, healthier, stronger and more honest version of myself. It took a lot of hard circumstances to get me there, but I wouldn’t change a thing.
There is always some good to be found, if you look. Some days though, we don’t have the desire to look. I definitely had those moments this year. Life will still go on. Good times will come again. But life will always be a roller coaster. Sometimes we enjoy the ride, sometimes we wanna get the hell off...but I thank God that I’m still riding.
So here's to finding more balance in 2021, holding onto what we need and letting go of what we don’t and to always having love.
Much love, cheers and God bless,