I don’t like making New Year’s resolutions. I don’t see the point. But I always hope I’m a better person than I was the year before, that I’ve grown/evolved, and learned from my mistakes. I figure if I do that, then the rest will fall into place.
That’s my approach year in and year out. Still, 2017 was a strange year for me.
On the whole, it was a good year. I’ve accomplished some incredible things in my career, my family and I have been happy and healthy, and life—in general—was relatively smooth. But something on the inside has always been tugging and pulling, this way and that. I’ve been wrestling with that inner confusion ever since I was little. And this past year, it felt more intense than usual.
This being human thing is a messy endeavor. We strive to be good people, do the right things, stay on the straight and narrow and still, things always go awry. We lie, even though we don’t try to. We are selfish, even when we don’t intend to be. We congratulate ourselves and then in the next breath, feel ashamed. We are perfectly imperfect. There’s no remedy for the human experience. It can be beautiful and downright tormenting all at the same time. And that’s the point, I suppose. That’s what the sages have been talking about for years. Living, in all of its ugly wonderfulness, is an incredible miracle. The key is to not get bogged down by the ups and the downs, but to take them all in stride. And then there’s the good old ego to contend with.
I’ve never been good at the taking things in stride part. I get stuck in the mud from time to time, and sometimes I don’t get out of it right away. Sometimes I sink in further. I self sabotage. I watch myself make decisions and choices that I know I’ll instantly regret and still, I make them anyway. There are habits we all have, things we all do—that we’ve done for years, ever since we were little—that just keep going around and around like a merry-go-round. And even when we try to jump off, we don’t. We can’t. Or we get off for a spin or two and wind up hopping back on.
There are things and habits I have that I’d love to change. I wish I was less anxious. I wish I had less difficulty letting go of people and the past. It can be so unhealthy. But still, I find it incredibly challenging to do. I wish I had better boundaries with people. I wish I was less impulsive. I wish I thought through my reactions to people and situations instead of responding instantly from a place of emotion. On that note, I wish I was less emotional. I feel things so deeply. So deeply. It scares people sometimes. It scares me, too. I wish I didn’t care that some people aren’t as emotional as I am. I wish I didn’t care what people thought. I wish I didn’t analyze things to death. I wish …
I’d love to change so many things about myself for 2018, but the truth is I can’t. They are me. I am inherently them. Without them, this human being known as Lyndsey wouldn’t be who she is. Like it or not, some of the habits I have are two side of the same coin. I am able to write things that resonate with people because I am so emotional, because I feel things so deeply. And sometimes holding on to people, on to the past, can be a completely healthy, beautiful thing. And impulsivity can sometimes work in my favor, especially when I’m just going with my gut and emotion.
So, as I head into 2018, I don’t plan on making any New Year’s resolutions. I won’t try to change or alter things I know I can’t. But I will continue to try to understand them better. I will make appointments with my therapist and continue to talk through it all. And maybe I’ll learn to be a little better here or a little more understanding there. Maybe I won’t. Maybe that will make me sad or angry. Maybe it will make me laugh. I don’t know. The older I get, the more I realize that being human is a game I’ll never win or get completely right. I don’t think that the’s purpose of the game. I think, the purpose is to just play.