I've been trying to write this post for the past week, but can't seem to capture all the different things I'm feeling in words. It's come out in chunks of messy writing and half-finished thoughts, all typed on the go or grabbing me before I fall asleep.
(That is an awful lead-in sentence.)
I'm a bit of a Tumblr junkie and one thing that I saw on New Year's Eve has stuck in my head. It's a simple concept, a basic truth:
If you're alive and reading this right now, you made it through 2015.
Think about that - how many times over the past year have you thought this was what would kill you? How many circumstances have stopped you in your tracks out of fear? How many times did you swear 2015 was out to get you?
How many times did you think you wouldn't survive one more thing?
But you did. You're reading this right now and I'm so damn proud of all of us, I could burst.
When the fireworks were going off at midnight, children and adults alike marveling and celebrating, I had a Moment. You see, all this time is Bonus Time for me, time past when I was ready to check out and leave. And at times, I find myself so In The Moment that I reflect on the thought that I almost missed all of this.
Here's what I know: it takes hard work and determination, plus a positive attitude, to get through many of life's struggles.
2015 showed me all the things I could live through. A major car accident. Detoxing from oxy. Suicidal thoughts & a psych hospital. Losing my mother. Being without a home. No job & no money. All of these things were Huge and Big and Scary, but I lived through every single one of them. Not only that, I flourished. Sure, I had a few setbacks, like a broken foot and sometimes Bad Fibro Pain, but I realized that the little things I used to worry about? Not all that big anymore. I'd hear people talk about things in their lives that were big roadblocks and found, with the perspective of Surviving a Lot of Shit, that the solutions are always there if you're willing to make big changes and do the work.
About a week ago, I was presented with a big turning point in my life: keep my job at Target and work full-time on my feet, or switch to a job where I'd be doing video and graphic design work - no standing for long hours, less hours but more pay. It sounds easy enough, but I found it hard to completely let the Target job go. I love working there. I love my coworkers and our crazy family in red. I was doing good and getting more responsibility. Why leave that?
Of course, I've been balancing both jobs for about a month and a half, and let me tell you - I'm not made for that. My body rebelled and I was constantly in pain. People would watch me walk and wince (it was baaad). I thought maybe I could do the new job full time and the Target one a couple of nights a week. Right?
But then I got a couple of emails from readers. Emails that made me cry. Emails that showed me, in black and white, the positive influence and inspiration I share with the world that actually catalyzes people to find their joy. They reminded me that this is what I'm supposed to be doing - making art and sharing it, and my life, with the world.
(And with two jobs, I wouldn't be able to.)
I took the leap, made the choice, and committed to the new job & my love of art and blogging.
So look out for new stuff from me. I've been working on stuff without blogging, my art and approach shifting and changing along the way. I have so much to share. And I can't do all of that in this one blog post, so I'll just share my new journal - it's the first I've bound in years and I'm already having a blast getting back to my roots. The following pictures are of the cover and inside the front.
And now, if you'll excuse me, I have 30 minutes of art to make and post on Instagram.
More later & with love,