On the observation deck at the Edmonton International Airport sit a number of cardboard boxes with “Christmas Decorations” scribbled on them in sharpie. Trees, garland, lights and other festive items all boxed up waiting to head into storage for another year. The slow march back to “normal” begins, January a time of resolutions and reflection.
2017 was hard. January 13 will mark a year since I disappeared on my friends and family in a selfish act that I still cannot fully explain. More importantly, it will mark a year from rock bottom, a point where I finally realized that my own brain/mind/plans whatever was happening was not a clever, controlled life but rather a hurtful, cowardly, dishonest web that kept me away from being happy and hurt the people I cared about most.
A year later and I am still struggling. I am struggling a lot. Rituals and traditions become a part of us, and for me, it hard to break from the habits that were my norm. Honesty does not come easy; it comes as a process of thoughts, feelings, doubts, shame and finally acceptance. Being open about my sexuality has not been easy, I still feel like an outcast, like I am less than, that I will never measure up. So as this year moved on, each holiday felt different, each brought its own sense of shame for me as I remembered things that I had said or done in the past. Celebrations were difficult, and watching the world move in a familiar way while everything inside of me felt out of place was unbearable at times.
I haven’t blogged as much as I had intended. I enjoy writing, but my ability to articulate my struggles had me pause before I hit publish. Looking back on some of these posts, I do find some of them to be dishonest or disingenuous. Many of them are self-serving, an attempt to communicate something that I thought I was feeling. None of my post really conveys the anger and sadness that has consumed me over the past year.
I don’t know how to blog about anger. In the past, my anger has felt like those boxes of Christmas decorations. Categorized and stored out of site until at some point they get pulled out and this explosion of feelings plasters everything around me until something comes along a puts a lid back on that stuff. But now everything is out, permanently out and while I have times where I pull a box out and try to stuff a few items back in, this weird mish-mashed reality that I am moving through is my life.
Happy New Year.