My look back at 2018 is disappointing. I reflect on the anger I dealt with after I hit publish on my cathartic blog post about losing my first love and my personal failings in my blogging journey. This year didn’t go as planned, but it was a year of lessons and laying a foundation for what’s to come.
Reflection: consideration of some subject matter, idea, or purpose
I can’t help but feel hopelessly cliche about my reflections for 2018. I feel like as we approach the end of the year – every year – the tweets and the status updates are sprinkled with sayings of how that year broke someone, taught them lessons, made them stronger – the typical year look-backs, it seems.
Sure, I’ve had years that were tough when I looked back at them, but I’ve never had a year where I felt like it broke me – until 2018.
This year was nothing it was supposed to be. Everything I imagined, expected, and believed would come to be seemingly went up in flames.
I thought I would get the ball rolling on my blog and, like, actually feel like I was a blogger and not someone chasing a fantasy. I thought I was going to have a boyfriend – a boyfriend who lit up my life and made me feel adored and like the most beautiful girl in the world.
I thought 2018 was going to be the year where my life went up a notch in every possible way, but it was about weak spots. I had to look in the mirror at my own flaws and see how I’m in my own way. I had to see what distracts me and occupies my thoughts while stealing away hours of my day. I found where I leak and crack, and I need to do something about it.
I already made a big post about Losing My First Love, so I’ll spare you the big details. I want to talk about some of my conduct after I hit publish.
I thought for sure the first month or two were going to be the hardest, but I’d say it was more like the first four. I thought things would only get better after I published my blog post. I would have this beautiful, blossoming journey of self-love and independence because I got my feelings out.
Well, I didn’t. My blog post was composed. It was all true and authentic to my heart, but I wanted to share what would be relatable to people. I still had a lot to say I purposely left out of the post because it was all ugly, cruel, angry things.
I tried to keep it my anger at bay, but I inevitably submitted to wrath. I was a scorned woman. The anger broke my filter and let me have a full-scale emotional breakdown on Twitter – repeatedly. I said all the ugly, cruel, angry things I didn’t allow myself to put into the blog post.
I mean, fuck. I went for it. I tore into him in thread after thread. Our whole not-relationship was always a secret, a whisper, a thing we didn’t talk about to people, so I finally wanted to scream about it. I wanted to air all the bullshit I kept quiet for him because fuck him.
And I can’t even say I’m sorry because I meant every word I said.
Yeah, I was a bit unhinged and not as eloquent as I could have been, but the things I said were things I meant. Even now, six months on, I can only shrug and say oh well.
I was prisoner to the rage while I was going on these character thrashing threads. I vented my feelings freely on Twitter, but I carried that negativity in me constantly. It influenced my behaviors, every interaction, and outlook each day. I cried morning ’til night because I was scalding with fury and didn’t know how to not be angry anymore. I was scared I’d be angry forever, but I was eventually able to breathe. Sometime in October, the flames died down to a soft, crackling glow.
My only regret after it all is I may have damaged people’s perspective of me. They might think I’m totally insane and the crazy in don’t stick your dick crazy. I hope people don’t think less of me for how I coped, but I can’t do anything about it.
It’s hard to get over someone when they’re always on your mind, but you slowly fill your thoughts with new experiences, memories, and day-to-day happenings. The terror of how to move on subsides as it comes naturally to you. I don’t love him anymore. The thought of him doesn’t send a stabbing pain through me. I don’t have “bad days” because of his absence.
How I’m Going to Move Forward
I want to be unattached for a while. The past eight years of my life have almost always had a guy distracting me. They weren’t my partners or my equals. Our connections felt one-sided and often stacked against me. I’m not doing that in 2019. I’m finally going to be the picky, overly-critical bitch I’ve been afraid to be seen as.
I’m going to enforce standards of the quality of person I allow to get close to me. I’ve always been happy to be proactive in going after the guys I like, but now I see there’s something to being chased. I’m not saying I’ll never chase again, but I’m stepping back for a bit.
I have my little dating profile set up, and I’m open to going on some dates; but I don’t expect anything beyond that for 2019. This year isn’t going to be consumed with thoughts of inadequate, sad men and how I can help them shine. It’s my turn.
Blogging and Coaching
Welp, it hurts to say, but I’m damn near in the same position as I was this time last year. I’ll be the first to say it’s embarrassing and upsetting. I can’t help but wonder if I’m wasting my time and money and stressing myself over something I shouldn’t do because I have no chance.
I came out the gate real strong. I signed up for a blogging program and an Instagram course. I went to my first blogger event in March. I was all ready to network and immerse myself in the local blogging communities.
But I was starting to become more upset with my boyfriend-to-be, my grandma died, I noticed my body had changed from a working out all the time and being at a busy serving job kind of body to a sedentary for a majority of the day in an office kind of body, and I was upset with my day job that seemed to sap more of my life from me with each passing day.
I was discontent in my life, and it took away my ability to focus on creating and thriving. I know my life doesn’t have to be perfect to encourage others, but I felt too phony telling people ways to be happy when I was becoming more miserable.
I thought things were going to be better in June when blog was relaunching and properly coming to life after a thorough clean up and redesign. I went on vacation during the month, which got me all refreshed and refocused and ready to throw myself all into my life again. I had a game plan for my blog, my diet, and thought I was about to enter a long-awaited relationship. It felt like my life was coming together the way I had wanted it to. Then I got blindsided with my breakup, which, as you can figure out, took up most of my energy until the crunch of Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and now New Year.
It felt like every time I tried to make things happen for myself, my life found a way to flip things around and throw me the finger. My passion and desire has never wavered, but my world wasn’t accommodating. I didn’t plan for disaster at the start of 2018, let alone disaster on disaster on disaster.
How I’m Going to Move Forward
My biggest problem with making this dream come true isn’t the expenses of going to blogger events or the intricacies of my personal life – it’s me. I’m not managing my time properly or keeping my priorities in order. There will always be variability and unforeseen circumstances, so I need to train myself to work through my shifting surroundings. I need to be more prepared and have content ready in advance instead of right before it’s suppose to go up.
In 2019, I need to stop rolling my eyes at advice I think is repetitive and allowing the work to take backseat to whatever is easier. My goal for my blog in 2019 isn’t going to be about views or followers – it’s going to be about doing the work.
How efficient can I be, how productive can I be, how much can I accomplish, how far can I go, how can I do more?
I get so hung up on my weaknesses I don’t allow myself to grow. I first got into blogging because I’m a writer, but I’m not a photographer, marketer, graphic designer, publicist, podcaster, or model. There are so many things I have no talent at, but, like, I know it’s possible to make it work. I don’t have to wear all the hats. Sure, I do to a degree, but if I do the work, I’ll be able to surround myself with people who do have these talents.
I wanted 2018 to be my year of abundance and vibrancy, but I had lessons to learn first. I haven’t had the work ethic of someone who wants success. I haven’t been strict about how I want a romantic partner to treat me. I’ve wanted a fruitful life to fall into my lap, but that’s not how it works.
The lessons of this year hurt, but boy, were they effective. I have a different set of expectations from life than I did at the start of the year. I’m not going to stick with only dreaming hard – I’m going to work hard, plan hard, and play hard.
Obvi 2018 wasn’t all doom and gloom. Positive memories were made and I had good times too. I’m ready to move forward though. I’m ready for this clean slate and new beginning.
I’m ready to shape my destiny and fucking shine.