I get it, 2016 was a shit show for a lot of people. The majority of the North American population was glad to see it go. We lost a lot of music legends, actors and personalities that many people had grown up with. It was also shitty for a lot of people personally. And obviously, Trump happened. For me on the other hand, things went pretty well.
The year started as usual. I hit the after Christmas slump that I’m used to. Once the lights come down and reality sets back in, I tend to get pretty blech (that’s a word, I promise). My birthday is early January so usually after that things go back to dull reality. Add to that the fact that I turned 30 and I was even more shook up. A 30-year-old living with mom…nice.
I had bought an electronic keyboard in hopes of learning to play. I found out shortly after that lessons are expensive as fuck. Luckily, the internet exists. I subscribed to a few teachers on YouTube and even bought a subscription to a midi based learning program. I had every intention of learning, I just never managed to find the time. The internet sucks as a teacher, there is too much other stuff to look at. I started to drift away from it. I didn’t have the motivation. I just wanted to be good, not to have actually work at it. I’m part of the instant pay off generation. I want it and I want it now.
Later in the year, I made a resolution that I would either learn to play piano or learn to drive before the year was over. I highly expected the one I would achieve would be learning piano. I didn’t have a car and I sure as hell didn’t think my anxiety would let me even attempt it. In May, I bought a car so it would be easier for mom to get to and from work, later that month I went for my learner’s license. In October I took my test to get my Novice license. I don’t think I have ever accomplished something so fast. My mind is still blown that learning to drive was what I accomplished. How insane is that?! This is something that I thought I would never be able to do because of money and anxiety.
I also managed to snag a promotion in 2016. I went from getting paid by the line to getting paid hourly. That made my income shoot up dramatically. I have never kept a job for more than about three months. I have kept this job for almost 2 years now. Insanity. More money leads to a car which leads to a license which leads to independence and spending way more money so now I don’t have money…What a circle.
I also jumped off the imaginary anxiety cliff and went to a concert. I wouldn’t have risked it for any band other than Twenty One Pilots. They were worth the risk. That led to more concerts, Awolnation, Alice Cooper, Rob Thomas and have USS coming up in February.
Of course I couldn’t have done a lot of this without my mother. She has been a constant throughout all of this. She is by my side when I need her and reassures me when I feel like everything is ending and horrific things are happening (when in reality, I’m lying in bed having a panic attack).
Having said all this, the end of the year was rough. I had all the usual stress of Christmas and family coming over but I also had the added stressors of a half ripped off eaves trough from all the snow we have received this year (which still hasn’t stopped) and Daisy’s vet bills skyrocketed in December. She had some issues with her paws and then more seizures and she is due for her vaccines and all sorts of things happen with her in December. Christmas snuck up on me. I was still wrapping the night before.
I finally feel like I’m starting to relax after all that mayhem. I have finally been able to just sit on the couch and veg out to crap TV. Daisy is back to herself, the eaves trough is back up, I have my license, I have my mom, I have my animals, I bought a new bed so no more shitty sleeps, I have managed to pull an incredible amount of bravery and confidence out of myself that I didn’t know was there.
To think that all of the changes I made this year started with a bored day on the couch listening to Spotify is insane. Here’s hoping for an even better 2017 (for all of us).