Every end of the year, I reflect on what transpired over the course of the past 365 days. I am a naturally introspective person, so I enjoy examining these events and the effects they’ve had on me.
Living with depression, it’s always the default to see things in extremes, i.e. this year has been terrible. My perspective is skewed to look at the shitty parts of life, so in this post, I’ll do my best to be as rational as possible.
This is the year I’ve actively tried to be closer to my mom and my stepdad. I sat down more often at family meals. I even initiated a few conversations with my mom about how I was doing or feeling. When I got drunk, I told Mama how much I love her, and that I know she does her best.
Of course, there are still times when we argued, but I’m beginning to realize more and more that there is no such thing as a perfect family. Our parents are human, and thus flawed. Me accepting that fact makes it much harder to be angry when things are less than ideal.
I’m currently in a serious relationship with a guy I met online. We celebrated our one-year anniversary a few months ago.
It still strikes me odd that we got together – we have very dissimilar hobbies, personalities, and love languages. I’m an MCU nerd; he hasn’t even watched Doctor Strange yet. He’s really chill; I’m a giant ball of anxiety. I express my love verbally (and often); he’s conservative with his words of affection.
These differences make for a very interesting relationship, since we have so much to talk about. I love our arguments precisely because we don’t think alike.
However, these same differences also mean that there can be friction. We have different needs, and definitions of fulfillment. We hit a rough patch, but we resolved to compromise better. After everything’s said and done, we do love each other enough to make this work.
I spoke about the app You Need a Budget in my blog, and I can say that it helps me stay on track with my finances. It helps me see how much I’ve budgeted for what, and it tracks my payments as well.
I’ve been much better about spending than I was last year. I could definitely improve on controlling my urge to splurge, but I’m happy that at least I’ve made progress. Hopefully I’ll pay off my credit card debt sooner than later.
So… I got a new domain! My very first domain was Stealing Your Sunbeams, which I deleted in a fit of regrettable rage (don’t ask). After that, I went for The Sunbeam Thief, which I also deleted because it didn’t feel like me. I finally settled on my name as my blog domain, because hell, how can I possibly change my mind about that?
Writing has always been cathartic for me, and having this blog is a savior on many days when I’m feeling like shit. It makes me productive on days when I have nothing to offer. Since it’s a lot of work (content, images, comment moderation, social media), it gives me something positive to focus on. That’s good because lord knows the depressive mind always looks for catastrophe.
This was a better year for my mental health than the last. I have had considerably less episodes of cutting and overmedicating. As the year progressed, I also needed less therapy appointments. Heck, I even managed to go three months without meds.
If you’ve been reading this blog, you’ll see that I still have depressive episodes every so often. In fact, I have an upcoming appointment with my psychiatrist in January. Still, I soldier on with all the self-care I can muster. That’s the only option I have, especially since I’m trying to make peace with the fact that I will likely struggle with mental illness for a long time.
It’s been another year, and I’m still not done growing. But will I ever stop trying to be a better person? I sure hope not.
I leave you with this quote that speaks to me:
Anyone who isn’t embarrassed by who they were last year probably isn’t learning enough.Alain de Botton (@alaindebotton) November 5, 2013