December 31, 2015
If there's one thing I can say about 2015 with full confidence, it's this:
2015 was the year when light started breaking through the darkness in my life.
I've written before about how a friend's untimely death began shifting my attitudes towards life. Much of 2013 to that point was about finding gainful employment (and pursuing further schooling towards certification at DePaul); much of 2014 was intermittent work and building a fledgling writing career.
But 2015 - much of that paid off. Semi-consistent work over the past twelve months. (Much of it freelance, admittedly). Publication for several companies and invitations to participate in select anthologies. (So much so that I acquired a fringe benefit that I didn't expect - an Amazon Author Central page). Realizing that freelance and consulting might be a better, more realistic work option, I formed my own marketing consultancy. (And you can also find it on Facebook and LinkedIn). It means a little bit more hustle and creativity, but it also means that I have more time when things happen...like health issues with Mom.
(She's fine. Spent the holiday with her. And she's moving forward on her health).
Much of my new free time has been the result of letting go of volunteer activities. Realizing that I was driving myself into the ground, I made the decision that every year, I would get rid of one or two of my volunteer commitments. (Not out of frustration, but with the realization that I can have anything I want, I just can't have everything I want). Some of those endings were out of my hands (like Comic Related closing its doors), but it provided me with not only more time....but also more opportunities to use that time wisely.
(And part of using that time wisely....may consist of assembling an e-book of all of my reviews for the site. I think they're that good)
But part of that time has also been spent going out with friends....and with dates. Yes, I actually spent a lot of time dating. Even went out with someone for a few months...it didn't work out, and ended very amicably.
All of that was tempered with a renewed optimism - it's not the overly sunny, think-no-evil approach that's prevalent in our culture (which I've written about long ago and far away), but it's a more realistic appraisal about the outcome. It's not that things will work out for the worst (although I am reading a book with precisely that premise), but I understand that things will work out the way they will work out.
I don't have to like the outcome, or approve the outcome, I just need to accept it.
But I'm in much better spirits than I have been in the past two years. Things are still as unsure and uncertain as they were before....but I think I'm approaching the New Year with renewed clarity and insight.
And that's all I can expect.
Happy New Year, everyone.