2015 is the Year

I’m trying to understand where an entire year went. I increasingly feel like 2015 is like a piece of paper folded in on itself so that each end touches one another. All the things from this year compressed in on themselves and instead of having lived another 365 days I am walking across them from one December 31st to another. A phrase I have used a lot this year is “I just don’t know where time went.” It feels like I have lost days, weeks, and even months where I know things happened, I know I did things but instead they all seem irrelevant or non-existent.

I am taking this moment to make it all relevant and exist.

2015 is the Year I Advocated for My Mental Health

This is the big one. After two very specific years and many others before that, I have struggled with depression and anxiety. I have struggled silently and alone. I thought it was a character flaw. I thought I was broken. But this year I advocated for myself. I told my nurse practitioner how long I have been suffering and she prescribed me SSRIs that have changed my life. This daily pill brought me back to me. I also started weekly therapy this year that is so emotionally hard but also amazingly rewarding. I started sharing my experience outward and the response has been overwhelming from friends and strangers who become new friends. I am at a lack of words to express how grateful I am for everyone’s support and honesty about their own mental health struggles. I’m not alone anymore.

2015 is the Year Gary Died

Gary was a cat like none other. I miss him. I’m still sad that he suffered without my knowing. I still wish I could have done more for him. I wish he was here to curl up with me and read books with his quiet, loving nature wrapping around me in kitty loveliness. Gary loved love – a notion that I strive to live life by.

2015 is the Year I Reconnected with Home

Until this year, I had not spent any significant time in my home town for six years. My feelings about home are complicated by lack of contact with my mother but growing relationship with my father. Visiting him this year has taught me that home can be safe, accepting, calm, and non-judgmental.

2015 is the Year I Claimed My Bisexual Identity

I spent a lot of time being scared about this. I didn’t come out to myself until I was already in a committed, long-term relationship with my husband. I wasn’t sure what he would think of me, what others would think of me, what I thought of me. I wondered if it was worth being open about. But, like so many things I try to keep secret because of shame, I knew I had to embrace this for myself as well as others. This is who I am. Bisexuality is important. My queerness isn’t attached to who my partner is or not. My queerness is about me and what I know to be true about myself.

2015 is the Year I Read 39 Books

That’s 9 more books than my goal!

2015 is the Year I Watched 121 Movies

Of those movies, 35 were written by women and 23 were directed by women.

2015 is the Year I was Paid to Write

2015 is the Year I Lost My Job But Found Another

2015 is the Year I Valued Making Art

2015 is the Year I Embraced the Power of Selfies

2015 is the Year I Biked Further and More Often than I Ever Have

2015 is the Year I Dyed My Hair Purple

2015 is the Year I Decided to Live With Intention

2015 is the Year I Asked for Help

2015 is the Year I Learned I am Resilient 

2015 is the Year I Valued Self Care

2015 is the Year I Started to Challenge Shame

There is more. There is always so much more. But these are some of the things that stand out in my mind. 2015 was the year that I fought for myself shoulder to shoulder with people I love and who love me. I want 2016 to be the year of love. I want to accept love and give it and know that the more I do that, the more I will understand I am deserving of love.