Sunday, December 31, 2017

Architects.

It's almost 2018, you guys.

I know two posts a day apart are unlike me, but maybe it's the crippling anxiety I feel in my throat as 12:00 approaches that made me come here. Maybe it's because I know so many are feeling the same and I hope we can all sit together, wait it out, hold virtual hands until it passes, and hope that 2018 can be a better year.

2017 has been bad for a lot of us on a lot of levels.

Hurt.
Loss.
Pain.
Struggle.

I cannot say I know anyone who has not been touched by any of the above this year, and I feel that as we get older we experience more and more but I am not sure we hone our skills to deal any better.

I started to burn out in 2017. I know that makes a lot of people roll eyes, snicker and question my strength, but I did. It happens.

I'm not being self centered or selfish when I say I care a lot.

I care a lot about the industry I am in and everyone in it.
I care about those I love and I love with all I have.
And I care about things I have no power over and let them consume me.

It's who I am.

And though I make promises, have hopes and try to prepare myself for when the clock strikes 12:00, I know that there are emotions that will overwhelm me and a wave that will consume me while I try to stand strong against its force.

And I will, I know, but I hate that feeling.

The choking, smothering feeling when you feel like you're drowning and have to muster up the strength to say, "NO! I'll fight you off and I'm going to get through this to start anew. I'm going to be great and I'm going to get there."

I know I'm not alone.

So, for anyone who might be feeling the same - the dread, the anxiety, the worry, the pain, the hope, the begging the universe to just let things work - know we are all sitting, hoping, wondering, wishing, and that none of us are alone.

And I wish you all peace, love, kindness, and that all your wants and desires come true for 2018.

You deserve it.

We deserve it.

And maybe we're all due our moment.

"Do you still believe in all the things
That you stood by before?
I hope they're on the front lines
Or at home keeping score
Do you care to be the layer of the bricks that seal your fate
Or would you rather be the architect
Of what we might create?"

Saturday, December 30, 2017

All my Mistakes...

Tomorrow is New Year's Eve.

Everyone is doing their writing and jotting now, thinking about what a piece of trash 2017 was and how we'll all make 2018 better if it kills us. We're filling notebooks and flashcards and blogs with hope and regrets and promises to the universe that we are convinced we will put our minds to and make happen to make it all a little better.

I guess this is my turn.

2017 was a piece of work.

Things looked up.
Things fell down.
Things grew in different directions.
Things moved away.
Things moved closer.
Things changed.
And things started anew.

I've never been one to be retrospective on time or years. I've always considered it a futile exercise since it is a constant repetition and cycle of one shit year coming to an end and hoping the next will be better, yet it follows along and so it goes until we ring in the next one and watch for our community on the NTV New Year's Eve roll.

But here I am. I guess 2017 has been different on a lot of levels and I feel like it is coming to a close in a way I never expected it to - with a lot of hope and promise.

Or maybe I'm just getting old and this is the type of shit you do when you're old. Either/or...

I've learned some lessons in 2017, some the hard way and some that just come by the way life tends to run at us like a freight train and makes us question if there isn't some weird sequel of the Truman Show happening.

Some key lessons 2017 taught me:

- People change, paths change, and that's okay. There will be damage, scars, hurt and things left in the dust with a lot of questions but it will all work out. Every ding in the armour just helps shape it and make it yours.

- If there's something you're missing that used to be a part of your life and made you happy, go back there. Lacing up my skates again this year was mine and I don't know what I would do without the sport and the people it has brought back with it. If a piece of yourself is missing, go get it back.

- Happiness must be paramount.

- There is ugliness in the world (okay, a damn load of it), but there is also good. Find it.

- There are people out there whose paths are waiting to be crossed to make you feel like your world is being blown up, and all of a sudden they're the most important people in your life. And that initial explosion will make you ask a lot of questions and wonder who is writing the script, but you'll never want to change a thing and know that this is where you are meant to be.

- All our idols are mortal. They're going to die. And it sucks.

I know there are more but that will do for now.

For 2018 I'm not going to make any huge resolutions or commit to any big life altering "self care" regimes because a previous blog post should tell you what I think of all of that. I'm healthy, I'm fine, I eat well but I also like to eat shitty and I drink a lot so suck it, resolutions, I'm happy with who I am.

What I will do is throw a bone to the new year and ask it to be:

Kind.
Forgiving.
Peaceful.
Not a tire fire.

And if the new year could answer that tiny wish I've been tossing out to the universe for the past while I wouldn't be opposed to that either.

What?

I'm allowed to be a bit of a hopeful, optimist sometimes.

And throw in a threepeat of Pens Cups while you're at it.

2018, you don't have big shoes to fill, but that doesn't mean you need to be a slacker.

And I'll even be cheesy enough to say I have a feeling this year will be the first year of the rest of my life.

"But I can't go back
And I don't want to
'Cause all my mistakesThey brought me to you."

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Sanctuary.

Tomorrow I head home to my cove. I've never been one to turn off, take vacation, reset, unplug. I've decided to do it this time and I cannot wait.

A month.

Christmas.

I'm not ready for Christmas this year. Like so much, it has come at me fast and I'm not ready. I'm just going to let it happen and try to get through. It's all I can do, really.

Up goes the armour. Deflect! Deflect! Deflect!

Christmas is a hard time of year for a lot of folks. Over the past week I've seen some important posts from friends, read about loss, mental health, struggle and pain. And Christmas seems to amplify all of that with a thousand swords.

I get it. It's a brutal time of year with the pressure for perfection. Picture perfect. Everyone is perfect on here, eh? Funny, that.

I'm not.

It's been a long couple of months. A lot of changes, a lot of new, and lot of different. I still can't say I understand it all or know where everything is going but these past few weeks have been especially different and new.

The old adage of the world working in mysterious ways is far too real now. There are often things that come at your like a freight train that you could have never predicted but would not change for anything in the world, no matter how difficult or challenging.

Sometimes those things come at you hard at vulnerable times but make you realize you're ready to fight for something and be stronger than you thought you were.

And there's promise. Promise in those wonderful things. So much to look forward to and I know it will all work out, even though it might seem like the universe is throwing everything for a loop and tossing in every wrench it can.

Power through.

Maybe I'm being too positive and hopeful.

Maybe I'm watching too much Nashville and getting caught up in storylines of what haves and what could bes and devotion.

Maybe.

I don't know.

All I know is I'm going to get through Christmas.
I'm going to get through new years.

And 2018 holds promise that 2017 has only sparked.

It's going to be good and I know it.

This is it.

"Turn the light off, go to bed
Tell me all about the day you had
Lay beside me, it's time to rest
You can close your eyes, you've done your best

Let me be your sanctuary
Let me be your safe place to fall
I can take away your worries
The refuge from it all

All this time
We have together
Is our shelter from the rain
I will share the weight you carry
Let me be your sanctuary."

Monday, December 4, 2017

Self care.

Well, buddy, it's been a week, let me tell you.

The house is in shambles and my brain is in shambles and life feels like it's in shambles sometimes but it's time to take a deep breath, focus and clean it all up.

But there are some good things. Hopeful things. Things that make me happy when I wake up in the morning and make me believe everything works out in the end.

When life comes at you hard and things change, isn't it funny how many Ann Landers-esque folks crawl out of the woodwork to tell you just exactly what you need to do, or should do, or what you should eat/listen to/watch/do/drink/join.

B'ys.

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, I know, but knock off.

#unsolicitedadvice

Know what grinds my gears? "Self care."

Whatever self care is, if we could bottle it we'd cure the Israel-Palestine conflict, apparently.

Self care.

"You need to take time for yourself! Get a mani-pedi! Take a bath! Go get yo' hurrrrr did and be fierce!"

Well, guess what, Susan, those of us who don't get mani-pedis on the reg, and shower quickly and shave our legs while we're eating breakfast halfway in and halfway out of the shower if we eat breakfast at all, do not generally do it because we choose to not take care of ourselves.

I take care of myself.

I run hard, train hard, beat the crap out of myself at hockey and eat generally well. I also drink a lot of wine and eat dip in the shed.

Shit depends on us and, quite honestly, having a $75 set of gel nails won't make me feel like I have my shit together.

And I am fierce. And I get my hurr did. Every 8 weeks and my roots are out right now. It doesn't bother me.

So, please, do not suggest that, for some reason, the fact that things are a little upside down means any of us do not take care of ourselves. The concept of "self care" is subjective and what makes you feel good is not necessarily what care means to the rest of us.

And nails are a stupid waste of money anyway.