Yes, it’s not technically the end of the year. But It’s Christmas on Tuesday, and the end of the year a week after that. Between rushing a writing project, my school’s recital and Christmas, I doubt I’ll feel like musing the end of the year anytime soon.
This was such a year, 2013. So many awesome, exhilarating highs, so many devastating, unbelievable lows. In between, so many lessons learned. I’m smarter today, because of this year, and wiser too. Smart and wise are not the same, but I know I’ve leveled up in both. To illustrate:
I have finally pinned down the right theories on which to anchor my research on ballet as an art form in the Philippines. That took a trip to Bangkok, many downloaded books that I sped-read on the Kindle, and deathly revisions on a paper I lovingly nurtured for a year.
In the end, I decided, “This isn’t any good.” And went back to the breadth of my resource materials, and looked for worthy points of interest, never mind that it meant starting from scratch. Which was also very brave of me, wasn’t it?
There are many other examples. But how do you condense an entire year into a blog post? I will say that going after your dream when there are risks of financial insecurity involved is not peanuts. Especially when you’re coming from such a high monthly take home pay to basically nothing. Suddenly, everything you used to take for granted is a big deal. And yet, could I really regret leaving all that money? That was maybe the biggest life lesson this year.
In the past couple of years, I got reacquainted online with this guy I knew from college, and found him inspiring and hysterical, profound and irreverent. I loved seeing his tweets, his twit pics of today’s outfit, his cats, his opinions on politics, on the inept government, on the misuse of artistic and cultural resources. He was freelancing and when I left my job, I looked up to him as a role model. Instead of a position and company, his FB page says he works “at improving himself.” I was devastated when he suddenly passed away just very recently; especially since he is younger than me by two years. But I was reminded that going after my dream was the best choice I made the last 4 years. Many were sad when he died, but I like to think it was because of how happy he was when he was alive. I now wish this for everyone.
I learned a lot, too, about my body – its limits, its capacities. That I need sleep, that I have to stop eating chips and fries, and drinking ten cups of coffee each day. That I need more than the regular warm up and cool down that I used to diligently do when I was 30 and thought my body was old. That despite all that, my body won’t accept a life without dance. And again, good thing I didn’t have a 9-to-5 job to keep me from it.
I fell in love a lot this year. That sounds bad, doesn’t it? But I’ve gotten over feeling guilty about attraction and enjoying the moment. One of the things I’m wiser about this year is embracing the haliparot that lives within, but never taking her seriously. Okay, so maybe I didn’t fall in love a lot this year; maybe it’s more zohmygod there are so many boys. A few of them very, very fine, standing out, too.
But only one that consistently made me happy. With whom I fell in love with over and over again this year. No matter what madness I found myself in, he met me in the eye of it and I felt at peace.
When the new year starts, there will be a lot that will change. Again. Another year for the books. I can’t plan it yet, though, there are things I have to wait for. I’m not used to not planning my life, so you can imagine my impatience. And yet, I have no choice but to be patient. I have to see through these next few weeks, waiting, yet ready.
Boy, am I ever.