6am. 7 degrees outside. Heat broken. Seems like a fitting end to 2017.
It is most certainly time to send off 2017.
The year started in Bucks County, with an argument, a lot of drinking, and a bruised knee. I tried to tell myself it wasn’t an omen for what was to come.
I took a job at a local school district in hopes of moving forward with my life in Pennsylvania… staying near family, cultivating friendships, and ultimately, saving a romantic relationship. Two weeks after I took the job (and canceled any plans for Boston), he broke up with me.
I’ve said this before, but I never expected Hatboro-Horsham School District to save me. I’ve been through three jobs this year, with a possible fourth on the horizon. That one was by far the most transformational. It put me back on my feet. When I think about all the mistakes I’ve made, surely canceling my plans for Boston was a big one, but when I think about my job at HHSD, there is something that has been redeemed.
In the midst of all this, I saw a friend whom I hadn’t seen in a long time. I wish it had been under better circumstances; I wish we hadn’t been grieving so deeply. When her heart aches, mine aches too. We have mirror neurons but I believe we have mirror soul-stuff too.
Through the redemption that good friends and a good job offered, I was able to reassemble my life and my plans for the future… I saved money, planned my escape from Bucks Co, and acquired a job in Lexington, MA. I left PA in the middle of the night, with a heavy car and heavy heart. Boston or bust.
And the first half of 2017 was over.
Somerville was a lovely reprieve… I spent a lot of time on my fire escape, watching the sun set and convincing myself that it wasn’t a dream. I began playing guitar and painting again. I worked at my new private practice with passion and grit. Set better limits and ended toxic patterns. I acquired a helmet and rode my bike to Spy Pond. I went on dates. I laid in lakes and walked downtown on weekends.
It was so lovely that I never went back to NJ/PA until Thanksgiving. And to my surprise, I was overwhelmed with gratitude and love. Shortly after Thanksgiving, I read some old emails between my mom and I. She loved me SO much. And I was finally able to let go of all the hurt and anger. I remembered my best friend… I hadn’t seen her in so long.
On the job front, there was more uncertainty… brothel-gate and the prospect of losing what felt like everything. Be absorbed or bust. I cannot believe how bitter and warped some people can be… I cannot understand how someone drops a bomb in their lives like that. The effects continue to ripple outward… to family, practitioners, interns, schools, neighboring practices… It seems like it will ripple forever. There are some things that only God can forgive.
I cannot describe the wave of depression that hit me after I realized that once again I might have to re-evaluate (and re-organize) my career. I am so tired of rallying. To the friends that stood by me, I am infinitely grateful.
Christmastime, a promising relationship and more gratitude. More love. In addition to seeing family, I got to see some of my favorite people… Laura, Justin, Carmen, and Dean. My heart is full even if it is broken and hurting.
It is most certainly time to send off 2017. And welcome in 2018.