It’s December 5th. I know this is premature.
Last year at this time, I was happily in a relationship. I was working at a tequila bar while finishing up my last semester of interpreting school, swearing on my unborn children that I wouldn’t find myself working in education come graduation. I was living by myself in a shitty studio apartment in Uptown Minneapolis and honest to God when the wind blew hard enough, I thought the windows were going to explode. One time the plaster on the wall above my bed chipped off in the middle of the night, completely unprovoked, causing the curtain rod that was drilled into the wall to come crashing down on my head and in that moment I truly thought it was the end of my life. Despite my healthy relationship at the time, emotionally I wasn’t me. I hadn’t written in months and I was still angry at God for killing off half of my family in a matter of two years. We’re still reconciling, but things are on the come-up.
I have accomplished a few things since then:
- I am no longer in a relationship. That’s okay.
- I work in education. Sorry unborn children, hopefully things pan out.
- I moved back in with my parents for a few months and wow what an awakening.
- I got a nicer apartment and a dog. Hopefully the walls stay in tact but if they don’t, I won’t watch my life flash before my eyes by myself this time.
- I started drinking red wine.
- Another family member died. I’m serious.
- I stopped cussing so much.
- Emotionally, I’m starting to feel like me again.
Things I’d still like to accomplish:
- No one else fucking dying.
- Stop cussing so much.
My list for 2019 is much more concise. It’s weird how we put so much pressure on kicking off each year by starting over. Think about which year you’d want to go back to and start over from there. 2000 sounds nice. We could enjoy going briskly through airport security one last time. I could ask my mother to hold off on giving me bangs. My five grandparents, Sam, and childhood pets would still be alive. And oh boy, if I could’ve had the knowledge I have now, I would’ve spoken some serious wisdom into 2000 Amy…
Don’t dye your hair black when you get to high school. I know you’re trying to be emo but your hair will never be the same again. Be nicer to Mom. She’s going to go through a lot. Be nicer to yourself. You’re going to go through a lot, too. Everything you could ever think to ask Grandma, ask her. You’re right, she is the best woman to ever live.
The rest of my words of wisdom wouldn’t have been suitable for 2000 Amy. She was still so sweet and naïve. She didn’t yet know the versatility held by the word “fuck.” She still picked Jiggly Puff in Super Smash Bros. She didn’t know a single dead person. Maybe 2019 will be the year I channel that version of myself. We can always be nicer to our mothers. I can revert back to the days where my “swear” of choice was shut up, Scott (my older brother). I can start picking Jiggly Puff again in Super Smash Bros. I’m not getting bangs, though. I’ve been so many versions of Amy that I started to compartmentalize myself as if I’ve lived several separate lifetimes. Maybe instead of entering each year with the “start over” mindset, we work back in the best parts of who we’ve already been. I can reabsorb the verbal innocence from 2000, the naïve belief that I can be whatever I want to be when I grow up from 2005, the edginess and kick ass taste in music from 2010, and honestly, nothing from 2015.
A year ago at this time my life was so incredibly different. I was so incredibly different. This year I’m not viewing that as a bad thing.