Shedding the Year of the Snake by Conlee Ricketts
I’m taking a few moments before the end of the year to bid it farewell, say good riddance and put to rest this most difficult year.
Ten days into 2013 I broke my wrist requiring surgery complete with titanium plate, screws, and no health insurance. A few weeks after that (unable to lift things) the apartment above mine broke a pipe and poured gallons and gallons of water down onto my living space. It drowned my desk, electronics, furniture, and carpet because I couldn’t lift and move things fast enough to save them. Once I could get writing and typing again I was able to enter a few writing contest. My novel entry made it past the first round of eliminations and became one of 30 out of the 150+ entries. This felt like a victory in itself but ultimately I didn’t win either contest I entered. I ended a relationship which was very painful. We moved into a small rental home in a new school district, and I finally have reliable transportation thanks to my brother and his wife.
So here’s what I have learned:
1. Appreciate your ability to turn a door know, do a push up, and actually gaze into the palm of your hand
2. My ex-husband’s girlfriend is one of my best friends. She saved my sanity and dignity after having a horrible reaction to my pain medication for my wrist. She’s also driven me to doctor appointments, my daughter to the orthodontist, and urged me to get out and pamper myself
3. I can survive a broken wrist without pain medication
4. Entering writing contests builds excitement and motivates me to keep writing
5. Losing contests hurts my feelings and can stop my forward momentum if I let it
6. I let fear dictate too much of my life in 2013 and I paid a heavy price for it
7. Being honest with myself is ALWAYS the best choice no matter how much it scares me
8. My daughter lovers her new smaller school
9. I can be creative
10. I need to learn how to ask for help
As I say goodbye to 2013 I thank you for the pain, tears, and moments spent sitting alone in terrified silence. You gave me many moments to pause and reflect on my life and my choices. You gave me many lessons each an opportunity to learn from. I have survived you and am still smiling.
I have a great deal of uncertainty ahead of me for 2014 and I am not scared. If I can learn to put fear aside, ask for help, and trust the universe to keep an eye on me, than I will be just fine. I have family and good friends who are here for me when I need them, and as I venture out into this new year they tell me that the world is my oyster and that I should dream big because great things are in store for me. I appreciate their encouragement and faith, and while I hesitate to believe them I will the let the seeds of hope I plant in January grow at their appropriate pace, smile, and enjoy the ride.