I hate sap. Seems so insincere, or, at the very least, Pollyanna. Facebook's 30 days of gratitude makes me hurl, then temporarily block you. I always launch the holiday season with hope that ultimately gets dashed since life doesn't take a vacay in December. The constant bombardment of media images that don't look anything like my life makes me question my choices. Single people are lonely sots. Only a romance can rectify that condition. Or a couple cats.
I actually am grateful this year. 2012 flattened me. The turnaround started about this time a year ago. Things aren't exactly the way I want them but they are better. A lot better. After some violent hormonal swings, I've leveled off and gotten into a comfortable routine. Sold a painting for a boatload. I never thought anyone would pay that much for something I made. Invitations to jury and critique. Starting to build a following at the BBAC; very happy with this developing relationship. A trip to Austin, TX that was an opportunity to rekindle a friendship with a soul sister, make a little money and open a door to more work. After a year ½ hiatus from dating (frankly no desire due to full on survival mode), I've taken a couple chances. They haven't worked out, but I seem to have rallied some interest. To my closest friends' delight, I'm much more pleasant to be around. I'm knocked out by their ability to hang in there and I love them more deeply than ever.
The result is I'm much less afraid and self-centered. I give without thinking (ok, a little bit of hesitation before I throw some change into the Salvation Army bucket or write a check. I may need that!). I'm so happy to be up off the floor and walking again, I want to pass it on. I don't know if this mood will last. (I better decorate before it does or it won't happen.) I have some holiday plans I can't wait for. Hope. There's a fine line between hope and expectation. How do you keep it going without hope? It's damn near impossible. I'm going to try and remember how good I have it despite its imperfection. One of the hardest paths I've taken is truth. My truth isn't necessarily your truth. But it is someone else's truth. You are never alone if you look for kindred spirits. They're there. I do accept the consequences of my choices. Even if they weren't what I thought they would be. I have the wisdom to know what needs to be done. And the courage to do it. I've got a ways to go still, but it's lookin' good y'all. Gratitude from the darkest corner of my soul. Thank you for being there whether you knew you propped me up or not. You did. And I'll be here when you need to lean in.