January 1, 2018:
Hi 2018. You’re new here…I’m not, so I’m going to fill you in on a few things. 2017 was kind of a dick…to a lot of people. Not sure what we did to 2017 to make it think “Hey y’all I’m here and you can’t change that so…ima just fuck up EVERYTHING mmmk?” and then it did. So: I’m going to ask that you, 2018, remember that I recognize that I can’t use the force (I am the force and the force is with me) to direct and bend you to meet the needs I think I need or want, I can’t make you better just by being hopeful and positive, I can’t decide somethings: instead I can be accepting and prepared and more cautious; and I assure you 2018: I will be.
Last night at 9 pm I closed the book, literally, on your predecessor: I wrote in the journal that I had begun writing in April and then I shut it for the last time. I wrote my last entry in that emotion filled book. That book is full of pages and pages of attempts to reconstruct time that I could not remember. It’s filled with my heart ache and my fears. It’s filled with letters I have written that can’t be mailed; there is no forwarding address when someone leaves this earth you see. It’s filled with letters to those that haven’t the right any longer to know me in the way those letters would allow. It’s full of questions that have yet to be answered. It’s full of wishes and prayers and asks for guidance that were also left unanswered. It is a book of a painful journey till now. Last night at 9 pm I closed it for the last time after carefully and cautiously penning a 9 page letter to myself for the first time. I made my promises and forgave who and what I could. I set my ground rules and made careful choices and decisions about what I, the decider of my life, will carry with me and what I will let go.
Dear 2018, When I closed that book that was my outlet and my lifeline some nights for the very last time; I packed it in a box. I packed it and some letters and books and pieces of me that are too heavy to hold, in a box and I shoved in the back of a closet with the spiders and dust balls I don’t care to vacuum up at this point. You see, I hate spiders so I just ignore them and they ignore me. The spiders that scare me can keep myself safe from retrieving that box anytime soon. At 11:38 I had finished this task that I did not set out to complete. The need to preform this task hit me suddenly and urgently and felt like life or death so I acted on it. It did not feel freeing or courageous: it felt scary and sad and lonely and hard: it felt just like all of things I packed in that box: but times a million.
Dear 2018, I am tired: life tired. I have very little left of the “me” I was 365 days ago. The “me” I am is a stranger to me. The pieces of me that are left are kind of weak. They are suspicious and infuriated. They are disjointed and brittle. There is strength and beauty in there too; I know there is and I have to l do whatever I can to to let THOSE parts of me speak louder.
Dear 2018 I have to be OK. I can no longer not be OK. I spent too much time last year not being OK. The things I was asked to carry last year were heavy. Most of them weren’t mine but I took them anyway. I did not get thanked for these acts of love and kindness. I got hurt: I allowed myself to be hurt. I don’t want to hold them anymore. I can’t hold them anymore. They are too heavy for me and it was unfair of me to be asked/expected too hold them: I am one very small person after all. I won’t carry them with me anymore. I don’t want to give them back and cause anyone else to have feel what I have had to endure: Their own pain has been hard enough. Instead, I will pack them away.
Dear 2018 : Please be kinder to us all. Please give goodness and peace to those who lost so much last year: It wasn’t just me. Please give them healing and love and forgiveness. Help me find the ability to trust and not be afraid. Help me find peace in my loneliness. Help me to stay strong and be brave. Please help me learn to be patient and forgiving.
Dear 2018 I’m excited to get to know you; I know you have your plans already in motion but please don’t be a dick.