The recap of 2017. Things that happened, things I learned, things I became.

1. I got old. I’m sliding down the back side of 35. Maybe that doesn’t sound old but it is. This is the first year of my life I have felt like a grown up. I’m an adult. Maybe it takes the death of a parent to steal your youth. I don’t know. I just know it is gone. My face aged 20 years. Deep wrinkles appeared in my brow, and around my eyes and lips. I feel like I’ve aged a quarter century in 365 days.

2. I got selfish. I used to get so much joy from doing things for others. I’ve been so caught up in my own little bubble that I’ve done little to help anyone else.

3. I grew more detached. The first time I experienced the ability to remove myself from my body for lack of a better explanation was when I was 14, being raped by a “friend”. That day, I floated out of my body and stayed up on the ceiling to watch. But I felt nothing. There was no pain or sadness. Just an emotionless soul watching a movie and waiting for it to end. Now it’s almost second nature to me, I have trained myself to leave my body and just watch life happen around me whenever I don’t want to feel. Being able to disassociate like this is a nice skill to have. I feel like someone could chop off my leg and I could watch and not feel or react. But it’s almost like a drug and I’ve used it way too much. Observing life but not living it has become my default existence.

4. You can’t rely on others to make you happy. You must make your own happiness. And that is hard work. 

5. Even if you work hard, you might still fail.

6. This might be everything.

7. If you play with fire you will get burned. 

8. Being safe and being loved is all that I need in life.

9. Parenting is not an inherent human skill set.

10. Kids are more than just little people.

11. Sometimes I think too much about things and sometimes I don’t think enough.

Every year I tend to think, boy we had some really tough times this year. I’m looking forward to next year. And the end of the next year rolls around and it’s the same thing, the tough times overshadow the good. Is it just about perspective? Surely I know I am blessed with so many things that others only dream of.  I used to think if only, fill in the blank, then I might be happy. But it never happened. Im out of fill in the blanks. I can’t think of anything that would make me happy this year. Maybe that’s the saddest part of this year coming to a close. I am working toward nothing. I have no resolution. I am ambivalent about what will happen next in my life. I used to picture my life marked in chapters…childhood, single adulthood, married life without kids, life after kids, but I have a hard time seeing any more chapters. Maybe this is my last one. Maybe this year my story might even end, and that doesn’t sadden or excite me. Hello 2018, maybe the powers that be will find me a purpose, will give me some clarity, but I’m not out seeking it and life doesn’t just drop what you need in your lap.