Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A Review of 2014

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

To say that 2014 was an eventful year for me would be a colossal understatement.  The only other years that rank so significantly in my life are 1982 and 2013.  As I have recounted in my blog 1982 was the year I can now clearly identify as when I began to show a very distorted face to the world.  I had nearly lost both of my parents before I turned nine years old in September, 1982.  I spent much of this past summer trying to more consciously remember that summer of 1982 when the darkness of my pain, alienation and anger began to blight my sense of self and the world outside my skin.

Thankfully eighteen months of therapy has done wonders for me.  Though my professional life is only marginally more satisfying now as compared to how it was at the beginning of 2014 my health is so much better.  One of the most astounding consequences of the therapy I have done is the renewed appreciation I have for my vision and the beauty of the world my eyes bring to me.  It's as if my artist self has been reborn.

Below is a recounting of the high points I experienced in 2014:

(If you want to know about the low points you can go digging around in my blog)

January, 2014: My therapist conducted a reassessment of my health status and determined me to be sub-clinical for PTSD.  This moment, which happened in late January, was one of the best moments of my year.

March, 2014: I went back to work.  My return to the working world marked the ending of nearly nine months of not actively participating in the world of recognized work.  I add the term 'recognized' because I consider the personal work I have done in therapy to be a very important form of work.  Throughout these last eighteen months I have been laying a foundation for a new self and a new life.  It's been arduous at many points in time but I would like to think I am moving in a positive direction.

May, 2014: I assisted with the Allina Health Hospice Foundation annual fundraiser event.  I enjoyed the evening very much.  It was nice to be out and among the living and healthy people.

May, 2014: I attended the International Mister Leather event in Chicago, Illinois.  This was my first time attending this event.  I began exploring my interest in leather during the previous year upon my return from my fellowship trip to Germany.

July 2, 2014: I reached my one year anniversary in my commitment to my blog writing.

September, 2014: I celebrated my first birthday without a clinical case of PTSD.

November, 2014: I competed a second time in the local Mister Minneapolis Eagle contest.

December, 2014: I decided to apply to the Nancy Foster Scholarship Program as a means of supporting a possible course of studies I am currently exploring within the University of Hawaii system.


As for this day, Wednesday, December 31, 2014 I feel a mixture of joy, relief, wistfulness, anticipation, sadness and grief.  Yes, the grief is still there.  Perhaps it will always be within my heart in some form.  And yet throughout 2014 I have found myself slowly but surely emptying out my heart which had long been overflowing with grief and sadness.

I wrote in a recent post about how the Pope's attention to climate change is, in a sense, his tacit acknowledgment that the laws of physics really do apply in the realm of the atmosphere.  I had to take a lot of physics in my undergraduate education.  This is only natural considering my undergraduate major was atmospheric science.  If the laws of physics also apply to a person's emotional life (as I believe they must since we walk the planet inside bodies which are subject to physics) then it would seem to follow that emotions which exist and are never acknowledged don't actually disappear.  You can't rid yourself of grief by ignoring it.  You can't rid yourself of sadness by ignoring it.  And you can't rid your life of the problems that bedevil ignoring them.

If you want personal freedom you must attend to that which haunts you.

If you want personal freedom you must attend to the wounds you carry.

If you want personal freedom you must be willing to go into the darkest recesses of your psyche.

And yet it is okay to enter the darkness.  There is no darkness stronger than the light of love.  I have to believe that this is true.  And my life experience tells me this is true.

I lived in such fear when I was a kid.  I was anxious so much of the time regarding my father and his penchant for making really poor choices.  To unlearn fear is the quintessential life project for many of us.

Healing is a process.  The reward of healing is both the journey and the destination.

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I invite you to accompany me as I document my own journey of healing. My blog is designed to offer inspiration and solace to others. If you find it of value I welcome you to share it with others. Aloha!