I woke up on January 1, 2016 and I felt different. I just felt lighter, more motivated and that inkling of “me”–the person I was before overwhelming grief. the person I was before where I didn’t question every decision I’d ever made. The person I was before where I didn’t feel an overwhelming guilt. Even now, 25 days later I cannot quite put my finger on it. I’m still grieving. Today proves that–I’m having an angry day. I still have those moments where I question the decisions I made. I still have a lot of regrets. But, my outlook on the future, what I want to do with my family and what I want to accomplish professionally is suddenly clearer again.
I’ve found myself in the last 25 days reaching out to my friends again. Over the last year and half I just simply didn’t have the energy. Not that my friendships take a lot of energy. They don’t. I have a great circle of women who just let me be. They understood. They knew I needed time. They didn’t take it personally. They loved me from afar. But, even just picking up the phone and trying to explain how I was doing was a task. I had no words to explain. I couldn’t talk about how I was really doing when I couldn’t explain it to myself. I turned inward toward my family–those who knew and loved my father best–and just sought their comfort. I needed that and now I feel stronger and more able to articulate my feelings.
Hubby and I are making plans again. We are thinking toward the future and the kind of lives we want to lead, the experiences we want Munchkin to have and we are actively pursing those. We are taking steps to make our shared dreams come true. We are actively seeking new adventures. We are excited about potential opportunities.
I’m excited to start the semester. The last two semesters I had no excitement of being back in the classroom. This was nothing against my students. I just didn’t have the energy like I normally did to give them all they needed. I beat myself up for it. I hated feeling like I was giving less than 100% in the classroom a place that holds my passion. I hated feeling like I was putting on a show and going through the motions. But today, 3 hours from my first class of 2016 I am energized and ready to go.
I also feel Dad saying, “Good for you!” As much as I miss him. As much as I want him here. As angry as I sometimes feel that he’s not with us–I know he’s encouraging me to have a new start and take what I’ve learned about myself in the last 18 months and do good with it. As he always said at the start of football season about his beloved Buffalo Bills, “This is our year” and in many ways I feel this is mine. To continue learning to live without him, to enjoying my baby girl to the fullest, to continue going after dreams with my hubby and to be a good daughter, sister, niece, cousin and friend.
Here’s to 2016 and all it may bring–whether good or bad–I’m ready to tackle the future with a fresh, clear outlook.