Merry Christmas Eve Scribblers,
How goes the festivities? Are you done with your Christmas shopping? I’m betting some of you are still scrambling in the department stores and malls. Please, don’t let me keep you. 🙂
This one final push will contain sort of a year-in-review, goals for the New Year, and the usual Jocelyn babble that you’ve all come to know and love.
Shall we start with some babble then? OK, fine, what about a song?
Although I didn’t get 25 Christmas-y posts out this month (I suppose I *could* keep going until New Years…), I’d say I did pretty darn good. I tried my best to not miss more than one day at a time. I slacked a bit this weekend and didn’t post at all. I think my body is slowly sinking into hibernation-mode. I’ve been sleeping quite a bit, eating quite a bit (oh, sweet chocolate.), and overall, just kind of loving myself — gaming through the afternoon, early pizza delivery — you know, the usual.
This morning, er, it was like noon, I dragged my sleepy self out of bed on this wondrous Christmas Eve, and made myself some hash browns. There were eggs too. I didn’t just eat potatoes, but I probably would of, you know, if there were no eggs available for an omelette. I put a pot of coffee on and sat at the computer.
A cold chill came in through cracked windows, and it didn’t take long for my little finger tips to disapprove. I shut that window, and sat back down, scrolling through Twitter. It was there that I saw my dear friend, Sequoia, share photographs of a traditional Yule spread from Sweden. There is something special about sharing these traditions with the world, and even just for a moment, getting a glimpse into the lives of others — especially during this magical time of year.
I think, for me, that is what I love most about Christmas. Regardless of the reason for the season, whether that be Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, or the Winter Solstice, we all feel something special in our hearts. Isn’t that what is most important anyway? That we’re all feeling some kind of magic.
I feel magic in my heart, and I hope that you do too.
If, for some reason, this is a sad time for you, I wish you peace and mercy from that hurt.
Now, for some quick attempt at offending someone:
So many blessings have been bestowed upon our tiny little family this year. I feel like the holes in my heart have been filled. And, although, some of that pain inflicted, still remains, there is still a greater joy, a greater love, that carries me through it.
Everything just started falling into place this year. In truth, I just needed one good reason to keep going, and instead, I was given a dozen. Believe it or not, we started 2018 with hearts filled with hope. Finally, we were on our way to being housed after nearly a year of homelessness. I met our broker, Jay, right after the holiday season. For months, we looked at apartments. We viewed a variety of places, including basements and fancy elevator co-ops. After being stood up by a scammer, thinking we may not find a place to live, we met our landlord, Rose. She was warm, and I felt it instantly. She offered us the apartment on the spot, without even an exchange of bank statements. I couldn’t believe, as we stood there, in the hallway of our new nest, with these two angel who would change our lives.
The first few weeks, even months, felt surreal. I was personally working through a lot of difficult emotions, as you can see here:
Who would have thought that walking into the kitchen at 4:30AM would be an adventure of itself? When you haven’t had a kitchen for so long, a kitchen becomes a big deal. Now, everything is a big deal. Every moment that is I feel safe is a big deal. Every moment that I feel comfort is a big deal.
And, so now, whenever I stand there, in the kitchen, washing dishes, I remember the many nights I bribed a guard just to let me in, so I could finally eat.
I don’t have to do that anymore.
I can eat when I want to, even at 4:45AM, with no worry of repercussions, with no punishment.
I don’t have to worry about being written up and kicked out for eating, or looking at a guard the wrong way, or having a bad day.
Note that several more chapters of Scar Tissue can be read under Writer’s Corner –> Projects.
Eventually, a healing I didn’t think was possible, began. Eventually, I started settling in. I started setting goals again. I started writing again. I even started working along side Mark, founder of Invisible People, a non-profit that strives to change the narrative of homelessness.
I started taking better care of my mental and physical health, and being honest about it, too. I starting looking for a job that I actually wanted to do. Within a few months, I was sitting on my boss’s couch, in an interview. Now I coordinate a support center for a local community college that I love. I was then hired by the university’s research foundation to assist in a grant program. Eventually I made a decision, a commitment really, of where to go next in my education, in my career in academia. Claiming that goal will require studying and teaching and trips to each and every faculty event — and several I have shown up for in December alone.
I started taking better care of my finances, with a few slip ups here and there, of course. (I’m often tempted by pizza and video games, as you know.) But that didn’t stop me from saving money and raising my credit score 50 points this year. That did not stop me from packing a well-balanced, full lunch, each and every day. That didn’t stop me from meal-planning and pantry-filling. That didn’t stop me from shopping local markets as often as possible, and even spending some time at our campus urban farm, and, overall, just making more conscious, ethical choices in my day-to-day life.
I guess my goal for next year is to simply keep this up — to hold fast through the difficult months, because there will always be difficult months.
My biggest goal of all is to live more intentionally. Although I cannot control everything in my life, I can push really hard into it. I can put up a fight.
I believe, in some way, God, or the Universe, did necessary work this year. Regardless if intentional in any way, or what it’s reason may be, I feel it necessary to honor those blessings regardless of how or why it came to be.
I have an inkling of an idea — I began to stray from my path, from my fate, from what must happen, and this sharp turn was required to get me back on track, to fulfill whatever it is I must do, am meant to do, in this life.
But perhaps, I’m over reaching. Perhaps I’m underestimating myself, my power, and your help. Maybe it was all me. Maybe it was all you. Maybe with the help of others, we simply manifested each and every blessing. Maybe this is reassurance for me, that we, together, can do so much.
Merry Christmas, friends. Thank you for all you do. For being here. For reading; for entertaining a stranger.