I was at my weekly therapy session a couple of weeks ago. I was having a down week. I was feeling so anxious and spent. Like Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, I was having The Mean Reds.
Holly Golightly: You know those days when you get the mean reds?
Paul Varjak: The mean reds, you mean like the blues?
Holly Golightly: No. The blues are because you’re getting fat and maybe it’s been raining too long, you’re just sad that’s all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you’re afraid and you don’t know what you’re afraid of. Do you ever get that feeling?
Paul Varjak: Sure.
This was not the first time I have felt this way and I know it won’t be my last. I am not bi-polar, but I do have periods of time when I am productive and energetic and others when I am absolutely not. During the not times I experience a major dip in energy and inspiration and a spike in angst and fear. I used to think I was somehow defective and if only I was perfect (and that idea of perfect varied based on my age and who was in my life) I would feel content and accepted. Presto!
Ebbs and flows are part of nature and I finally realized that having strategic self-care helps me find my place and pace in them. Being perfect and being accepted is no longer on my to-do list. Now I know that the most important person who needs to accept me is me. It took me 41 years to figure that one out.
During my therapy session a few weeks back what helped with that acceptance was to look at the year that was. Oh, 2012, you were a heavy one and I have good reason for feeling stressed and spent at times. I dug deep and took some major action.
In terms of my home I moved out of my old place which was a bit of refuge during the early days of my separation, but it was also a physically toxic place. I think there was a mould issue. I had serious asthma and near constant colds. People who visited me had much the same experience. The building manager was also a very unpleasant man. The apartment stopped feeling safe for me. It cost me a fair bit to move and I am in even more debt than before, but it was worth it. I have felt so much better in my new place.
Then there is my work. I redeveloped my site and started working on associated projects based on what I learned in Marie Forleo’s B School. There is still a ways to go, but I am very inspired and pleased with the new direction I am heading in. I thought about shutting it all down and starting a whole new career, but I like the new twist I am giving to my online adult industry career.
As for my personal life, well, I finally ended my toxic rebound for good. I spent much of the fall hating on myself for it. Not for ending it but for how long it took me to end it. I was so humiliated with what I tolerated and what I kept going back for. It was not a matter of thinking I deserved this awfulness. I was not even settling. I thought that the mess was all that was available to me. Then I finally came to terms that being alone, totally alone, was better for me than that poison.
These were all big things.
The biggest thing that happened to me though was that I fell in love – but not how you think.
My niece was born at the end of August. When I saw her a few minutes after her birth I was astounded by how instantly I fell in love with her. My heart felt like it was exploding. I have never felt anything like it before.
Now, each time I think of her, see her photo, watch video of her laughing or have a visit with her the love deepens. I feel so blessed for having her in my life. Being an aunt is such a gift. I am thrilled each day thinking of my niece and I can’t wait to get to know her more and more.
So yes, many big LOVELY things happened in 2014.