Good-bye, Twenty-Thirteen.

Folks, I will admit to feeling less than stellar, as these past weeks of holidays have been both nice and draining on many levels. It is a bittersweet irony that one must suffer in order to celebrate, what with the shopping, the cooking, and often being away from those you most love (which I can only hope it was not your case). We brave it through if only to make the days of those around us worthy of being called celebrations, be it with our presence or with more hefty contributions (those who cook deserve a medal), and as we recover from the so-called holidays we will go into the New Year with (hopefully) renewed dreams and a reinvigorated desire to take the world by storm. At least, that is what I intend.

Everyone shifts to an introspective state of mind to reflect on what the year that departs left, and what the new year (we hope) will bring. Oh, so many dreams often hang from those fresh twelve months ahead of us. How intently we try to pierce the mist and find out… will we make it this time? Will we fail yet again and come crashing down with the pain that it entails? Today I will give you my perspective of past and future.

The past

This year, my good folks, was life-shattering for me. It was over the course of this twenty-thirteen that I began writing for the first time in nearly two decades (I kid you not). I began working with all the might I could muster to find my voice. I can’t say it was a huge success, but I am more than happy with the handful of readers who have stuck with me thus far, some of whom even poke me when I go a week or two without posting (which happened over the holidays).¬† All in all, I am happy with this blog. Besides being a staggeringly accurate barometer of my shifting state of mind over the course of 6 measly months, it also provides insight into the deepest corners of my mind, my beliefs, my dreams, my fears and woes, my successes and joys. It is not storytelling, it is thought-sharing. It is what flows the easiest for me.

Along that effort I got into Twitter, and that has been another uphill battle in assuring myself that my rambles are worth sending into the internet void packed in 140-character snippets. Sometimes I tweet because I have stuff in my mind that I wish to get out there in the open (#MentalVagaries , if you want to find them), sometimes just to broadcast the new post fresh from the presses. I began with 4 followers, and ended the year with about 8. Most of them are previous acquaintances, but two are big shot bloggers who began to follow me out of the blue. I never dared to ask them why, but I am content to have been noticed. And it’s not even been a year, who knows where Twitter will take me going forward.

I was already in Facebook, as I’ve been there for close to three years now (that’s under my real name so I’m keeping it hush hush for now), but I began using it more with my friends from abroad, specifically from WoW. I do not have everyone that I wish as FB friends, because I am shy and I don’t think I am close enough for them to want me in their feeds, but perhaps I will get over that sooner than later. I also use FB as a tool to tell folks of my blog and subsequent posts. It is, in fact, how I keep my little audience updated on new posts, as few if any have me on Twitter. From their likes and comments I draw strength and encouragement to keep writing, to be assured that, even if this little work is not stellar, it is at least somewhat entertaining. And that makes me happy.

On a more personal level, I ended my marriage. It was a very, very tough decision. It is heart breaking when you look into the distance and know, just know, that it is bound to crash. And that if you do not address it now it will be ten times worse. It is mind-numbingly painful to shatter what was to be your future, and that of someone else. Oh, so often I would wonder, did I do the right thing? And every time I would answer to myself, yes, yes I did. I am much more at ease now, it’s like a colossal weight is now gone. I can breathe again. And for that and other reasons, I can rest easy knowing that I did right.

I will say that I was much luckier than the average man in that my divorce was quite painless, as divorces usually go anyway. There was no quarrel over assets, no recriminations, no cold shoulders, and we ended in very amicable terms. Even so, it was painful, for the reasons stated above. I had to battle that feeling of guilt which even though I knew it to be irrational, it hardly helped to make it more manageable. That is all but completely gone though, for it is true, as they say, that time helps heal all wounds. If you let it, that is.

And last but not least, I had my faith in humanity shattered to smithereens, in such a brutal way that I shall not speak more on the matter. Names have been stricken off my record, rendered unspeakable, and every single memory ground to dust and buried ten feet under, beneath a slab of granite. Like a noxious miasma they insist to waft to me and haunt me, and every time I slam them back to their dark, forgotten grave.

But even the most violent harm can leave you something positive. It is not easy, no. It largely depends on your will to carefully weave out the golden threads from that corrosive fabric, and it will sting, of course it will, but in doing so you will score a small victory. Or that is how I see it. It is what I did this time, and the sores it left me with were well worth the golden strands I kept.

And as I picked up my broken pieces, as my faith in life and people plummeted… it was held in midfall by people who probably will never know what they did for me. And it is not for lack of me trying to convey my gratitude and fondness. I understand though. I am the same. As someone once said of me, and I can’t but agree, “I underestimate people”. I underestimate their ability to appreciate me, to remember me, to value me. I am trying to overcome that flaw; for it is clear that, while my faith in humanity is not completely gone, it is also not complete.

In thanks to those kind souls whom I hold in high regard, I move on from the past to…

The Future.

It is thanks to these kind souls (in spite of them often not acknowledging) that I regained, and now have, something without which any man is already dead: a purpose. I know what I want. And what I want is to love and be loved, to hold and be held, to know the joys and hardships of raising a child. I want to write more and more, and make a living out of it if fate would so allow. My resolution thus is, to make dreams happen. I know not if I will make it, I know not if I will fall. But I will still march out and bleed for what I want. I am scared of failing and being crushed yet again, but I will not let that stop me. I will give it nothing but my all.

Because I refuse to be turned (completely) into a misanthropic asshole. I refuse to give up on humanity and on seeing the good in (most) people. I am broken and battered, but I refuse to give up. Thus, I say as did the legendary mariner:

Though much is taken, much abides; and though we are not now that strength
Which in old days moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are,
One equal temper of heroic hearts, Made weak by time and fate,
But strong in will to strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

From “Ulysses“, by lord Alfred Tennyson.
See you next year.
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