Well it's Christmas again. The Hellidays have come and I am still standing. I am not medicated and I am sober. I would hazard to say that I am clearer headed than I have been in years. Are you frightened yet?
This time of year I generally take stock of my life and look at the checklist I made for myself in my head to see how I have progressed. This year has been a stiff learning curve but for the most part I have made great strides toward sanity. Well not necessarily sanity, but some semblance of normalcy that I haven't had in almost four years. I am working. I get up every morning and walk out of the house into the public spectrum. I leave my sadness and grief on the floor of the bedroom like my discarded pajamas. I smile. I laugh. I don't feel guilty. Not everyone understands me or the way I choose to live my life and that is fine. I make no excuses. I make no explanations. I am unafraid to say "This is well and truly none of your business." I am who I am.
All of that being said, there is a sadness to me that will probably never leave. I have lost much. I have grieved hard. The other side of that coin is that I love hard. If one has never known true sadness how do you recognize true joy? I feel deeply. I love boundlessly. This will necessarily leave me open to deep pain. I have come to acknowledge that my tears will never completely dry. But they are not always tears of sadness. I cry in joy almost as easily. I am blessed to be in touch with my emotions. This however comes with a temper and a sometimes harsh, unapologetic tongue if I am defending someone I care about these days. I have no urge to defend myself. I have no need. I know who I am and what you think of me has little to no bearing as to what I will or will not accept. I do not require your approval or permission to be happy.
This year has taught me to open my eyes. I see selfishness in people. I see childishness and pettiness. I see lies and alibis. I see people who will only love me if I meet there expectations of whom they have painted me to be in their mind. I see people who would try to exploit my weaknesses or my shortcomings. I choose to turn and walk away. I will not arm you to hurt me. I am polite and courteous. But their time in my life is coming short. Unless you can support my dreams and love me where I am, I have no need of your companionship. I am done with the drama.
I am blessed with a few really good friends. Those truly close to me are a small handful of extraordinary people in my eyes. They hold my hands when they are shaking either in brokenness or in fury. They know me to be a faithful friend. They know me to be an unwavering advocate for those I love. They know I will stand with them whether it be behind, beside or between them when they need me. More than that, they support me and they support my dreams. They believe in me. They wrap their arms around me when I am in the floor of my heart to pick me up and start again. They cheer for me when I am on the ceiling. I have come to know that they believe in my heart to fight another day. They believe in my wisdom to do what is right regardless of the cost to me personally. If I can face myself in the daylight with the decisions I made the day before, I'm good. I'm real good.
The apple of my eye is Drew. He is my heart in another body. But I have relinquished my Mommy role. I am his Mom. He makes my heart soar. I am so proud of the man I raised. He is funny. He is tenacious. He is heartfelt. He is wise. He is a good man. He is a lot of his father. He is a lot of my brother. But he is all himself. I cannot take credit for who he is. I am honored to have him in my life. He allows me to be a confidant. He allows me to be his friend. I see his strength. I see his struggle. I see his heart. He is not jaded. He is not bitter. He is my true north.
I am looking forward to 2013. I see some doors closing and more swinging open wide. I have thrown open the windows of my heart. I can need people again. I can surgically remove you from my life without regret as well. My feet are firmly planted and I am reaching. I am accomplishing many things that for me are monumental. Others might see them as nothing special but if you had walked a mile in my platforms, you could see the extraordinary steps I am making everyday. This is what I want. I want a life less ordinary. I want to love with great passion. It can be for 2 weeks or for 20 more years. But I deserve it. To hold some of my heart in reserve is to be less than I should be in my eyes. I will leave it all on the table every day. I will live with abandon. To do less is to do a disservice to the people who are not here to see me fly. They loved my strong spirit. They loved my fighters heart. They loved my willingness to jump off the cliff and soar or sink. I will live my life on my terms. The Belle is back and she is fearless.