I thought it would be a good idea to start this final post of 2016 with an old photo from 2015:
In a prior post about returning to Instagram for the second time, I talked about my participation in a Photography Project and the Instagram Essay assignment. I thought after this long, bitter, difficult year that was 2016 that it was time to share that essay here:
“I am a work in progress. Coming from a community college to a school like Smith during my final two years has been a journey I’ve realized I needed to take. I had hit rock bottom with everything in my life when I came last year, and over a year later I am still recovering from my pain, accepting my imperfections and trying to find myself again as a writer, student, friend, daughter and child of God. Why do we hit rock bottom at the worst time at first? Why do we go through the things that we do? Sometimes, we will never understand those struggles. I know there are some things I will just never understand no matter how much I try. Pain, wondering if a dream you have fought for since you were a teenager could still be possible with how much the world has changed. Trying to find peace in a world that has become so sad and violent, heartbreaking to families, survivors and the like.
I’m realizing I need to be OK with not knowing every single thing that will happen after college and this chapter of my life. I love to learn and gain new insights, but I shouldn’t beat myself up if I’m wrong or make a mistake. Life can get difficult, and sometimes, you need to look at yourself in the mirror and say “who are you really?” The past year and a half has been an experience of learning about myself, my dreams, life and reflecting on how far I’ve come when I believed life would have ended so differently at one time. Here I am, with my flaws, internal scars on my heart, trying to heal. I am healing, mending and learning.
I am changing for the better.”
My final two years of college became a reflective time for me on my future and where I was at that point in my life. We all have had our struggles, heartaches and unimaginable pain, especially this year. In 2016, I dealt with a difficult job search, a bacterial infection, losing my faith in God to the point I stopped praying and talking to Him altogether, the voices of everyone around me thanks to social media, fansites and this recent election, my dreams of seeing and meeting David Archuleta once again being put on hold because of location, money and timing, still living at home and feeling like this isn’t my life…and rejections writing wise…and feeling nobody cares what I have to say, think or feel.
That I’m just useless.
2016 made me tired: of people, of being ignored, of fans, of fighting and arguing, of everything and everyone you could probably think of.
Add in the sudden and/or sad deaths of Gene Wilder, Doris Roberts, Alan Rickman, Harper Lee, Christina Grimmie, Garry Marshall, Leonard Cohen, George Michael, Debbie Reynolds just two days ago and a day after Carrie Fisher suddenly passed…and I am an absolute, depressed, hopeless wreck. (Note: Too many deaths to recount that’s how awful this year has been!)
There had been some good though: graduating from Smith College, getting this blog up and running, writing more, my residency at Wellspring House, having supportive family and friends, my church to name a couple things.
I just can’t wait either way for this year to end. I am sure you all feel the same.
But I am trying to be hopeful. I guess that’s what’s great about the end of the year; a new one to start over, begin with, be hopeful, and try to do it right as best you can.
To all my fellow writers and artists, friends, fellow human beings, the fluffy cats out there, readers and followers, Happy New Year. May God Bless us all in 2017.