Thursday, February 21, 2013

Bend don't break, a letter.

Reflection, in any form is important. And this final week before I begin my journey with hospice has provided me with a great opportunity to think of where and what I have done or accomplished or grown from, since graduation in May. So... the letter to... myself.

Dear Whitney,
Well, here it is.  It's about time. The last couple months have been quite the journey, and let's be serious, the journey isn't over.  But you're taking a new step, and you should be proud of yourself.  A new job, in the same city, in the field you've studied, interviewed and researched. It's time to be on your feet.

It's scary though.  The past few months have been well... a reality check. You took a job quickly, without a whole lot of research because it seemed good and seemed cool and appeared to be the right fit. Turns out, it wasn't.  You got fired. Remember that. In fact, it's a good message for everyone. You are replaceable.  It sucks, but you are.  Deal with it. Make yourself so important and do what you need to do so that no one wants to replace you. But remember. It happens. Mourn it, sit with it, and learn from it. And then? Move the hell on.

You went back to bartending.  On a permanent, "pay your bills through the bar" sort of way. And while it worked for a while, it wasn't sustainable. Well, it wasn't sustainable to also maintain the friendships and relationships you were also cultivating. It's great, it's a solid set of skills, but you have more to give. Give it. Plus? You were living with like zero dollars, at any given point. Don't be a fool.

You have a great group of friends and family. Over the top, phenomenal, sarcastic, hysterically funny, sassy, loving, supportive, challenging, bottle-of-wine-drinking, hours-on-the-phone-when-you-need-it, friends. They love you. Don't forget that. They support you, your visions, your tears, your laughter and your craziness. They're great. Appreciate them more. And say thank you, and tell them you love them as often as possible.

You are ready. You have surrounded yourself with positivity, solid and supportive people, and you are ready. You have grown. It's going to be hard, it's going to be draining, and it's going to be sad.  But death, unlike anything else in life, is a guarantee. And people deserve to have someone who is there for them the whole time. Be present. For their moments, their memories and their journey. But remember to keep time and space for yourself. Boundaries are there for a reason. Keep working on them, they are a daily work in progress.

It hasn't always been a pretty journey. But hey, what in life ever really is? Life is messy. (Like your closet, so seriously, clean it out). Life isn't clean. It's complicated. Keep growing. Keep challenging yourself. Keep learning. Don't settle. Remember that you've worked hard. Keep working hard. Celebrate that. Celebrate each day. Love. To the fullest extent. Each and every day. Be thankful, be appreciative and don't be afraid to speak your mind. Don't give up the pieces that are you. Compromise. Bend, don't break.