It's been a little while since I've last updated this blog. I'm hoping to write more regularly in 2014, but I've found it strange how the pressure to create content on a more regular basis has, instead, made me freeze up. I'm not entirely sure what to talk about that will feel honest enough, and yet not overly vulnerable.
It's a weird balance to strike- I feel too fragile for vulnerability, yet I also know that being in that space means the best content. I veer wildly between being extroverted and introverted these days, wanting to go out and see friends and then feeling so seized by anxiety I struggle to leave the house just to go grocery shopping. I don't know really where this sudden desire to burrow into myself comes from, or why it changed so quickly, but I do know that to be true to myself I need to make space for both aspects of my personality.
I wonder if part of it comes from the realization that I'm turning 30 this year. It feels like such an adult age, so distant, and yet here I am, still colouring in books and watching My Little Pony. It's been a tough year, full of heartbreak and financial worries. I've had excellent jobs and lost them to budgeting, watching as my work gets squandered by people who don't know he value of what I've brought to them. It's been demoralizing. It's been depressing. Honestly, it's been one of the hardest years of my adult life.
I typically do a review of my last year, but this time I want to let it go quickly. 2013 was a year of hardship. My partner lost his job. I lost my job. I moved to a cheaper flat... an hour away from my social life, and became withdrawn. My car broke down irreparably. The government cut off unemployment benefits over the holidays. This year was filled with death, and injury, and stress, and tears.
But it wasn't all bad, not really. I did follow through with my resolutions- I traveled, I put my career first, I fully embraced my inner manic pixie, I asked for and accepted help when needed instead of struggling until I broke. I adopted a cat, Foucault, who is the fuzzy ginger light of my life. I had a beautiful Christmas with my partner. I started a Patreon account so I could be paid for my writing. I survived. I made it through. Sometimes, that's enough- sometimes, that's everything.
I think the one thing I want to work harder on for 2014 is letting myself have space for hedonism. I don't tend to relax enough, and this was the year my libido died. I want to open myself up for more dating, more casual sex, more foodie adventures, more experiences for the sake of experience. Freelance work can often mean little time off, so I want to be better about that. It's about time I stopped being on the survivor track and allowed myself to just live a little, right?
I'm grateful for the assistance I've gotten through IndieGoGo, the presents I received for the holidays (we have many plans for the crock pot and toaster oven!) and I can't be thankful enough to the friends who made space to talk me down when I felt like I was going over the edge. I think it's taught me a lot about community- what it means, what it can mean. That's a post that's forthcoming, when I have my head around it.
But vulnerability. That's what 2013 was, just endless confrontations with my own vulnerability. I expect I'll write more on that, but I'm relieved, at least, that even when it's terrifying to be so raw and exposed... it's endlessly better than pretending. Thank you for being here with me for the journey, and let's hope 2014 brings better things for everyone.