Birthdays Are Amazing But...

Birthdays are amazing in that you get to surround yourself with friends and family who love and celebrate you (which I got so much of, thank you!) but they also have a way of turning you into an introspective nutcase. Well, at least it did for me.

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You know the kind: severely self-analyze leading to focusing on things you don’t have yet or where you are in life instead of focusing all that you have gained and learned in the last year. In other words, I got in my own way and almost didn’t get this post up because I started to fall victim to all of that.

Plus, the next day drinkin’ blues (it’s a thing, more on that here) from an epic karaoke birthday shindig I hosted for myself last night didn’t help. Not that I regret it at all. It was one of my most memorable birthday celebrations. So, I’m taking the advice of my awesome friend Cynthia and focus on all that I’ve accomplished and learned since last year.

This time last year I was working at as a senior editor, giving an ex another chance, planning my once a month travel adventures (more on that later) and overbooking myself like it was no one’s business -- which I have since stopped because I was wearing myself thin.

Then, in the summer, I got laid off from my gig due to budget cuts, the ex didn’t work out, and I had to put many travel plans on hold. And, I was freaking out because I couldn’t land another steady gig. It felt like there was some bad juju in the air. But, I didn’t go hungry, I upped my freelance writing game, started selling what I didn’t use anymore on eBay, and, tada, I started Uber driving. It took me a while to admit that last one because for a while I felt embarrassed to tell people that I had to Uber while job hunting. But now, I just don't care.

Lesson learned: If someone judges me on hustling to pay the bills by Uber driving, that speaks volumes about them, not me. And, I should note, all this was going on and I still worked on the podcast with my friend Nathalie. Not to mention launching this site to make myself more marketable when applying to new gigs.

And, after MANY job interviews last fall, I landed a gig as a content consultant for a start-up. Something I’ve always wanted to do but never thought I would be ready for until I had to get ready for it. It actually turned into my now steady gig as head of content.

Lesson learned: The problem may not be you but the way you are thinking. I was ready for the challenge but if I didn’t believe in myself then who else would? That’s when I realized I suffered from imposter syndrome and needed to get rid of that shit quickly. I changed my thinking, it changed my life.

Finally, the love life needed more attention. Getting back together with the ex didn’t work out because of so many reasons. So I decided to give someone else a chance. But the short but impactful relationship with him ended this past February, mainly because he was an energy vampire. That led to so many other issues that came out one night and I cut him off immediately. It was the first time I didn’t second guess myself. And, I’m proud of myself for that.

Lesson learned: What I took from being with him was that when it came to romantic love, I was confusing honesty with vulnerability. I learned there is strength in vulnerability. Even though it was a short relationship, I saw all the good stuff that could come from letting that part of myself open up again. People come into your life for a reason, season or a lifetime. He was most definitely only for a season and that’s okay.

I’m grateful that I was able to let my friend Cynthia, who thinks I am super awesome, know that I wasn’t feeling very awesome when preparing to write this blog but then she reminded me of all that I have done in just one year. I’m patting myself on the back for pushing through even when things seemed grim, adjusting when shit hit the fan, and not feeling bad about letting go of energy vampires. I appreciate how much I’ve grown in the past year and cannot wait for what lies ahead.