To say 2014 has been a tumultuous year would be an understatement. And it’s been a roller coaster of a ride through life. There’s been good, bad, ugly and beautiful. There have been heartbreaks, losses, experiences that blew my mind, and memories built.
The clock rolled over into 2014, and unlike the previous year where the dear friend I spent it with and I breathed a sigh of relief that the year was finally over, we looked at one another, wished the other a happy new year, and toasted to the hope things would be better.
But for me, 2014 was a year of trade-offs. For every good thing, there would be something else to counter balance any sense of relief or joy. The largest hurt of the year was and always will remain the death of my father.
We often start talking about new years resolutions in December. What we’ll do differently in order to make our lives better. For some people, it’s simply their promise to themselves to eat healthier and lose weight. Others, it’s quitting smoking. Or getting a better job. Or finding that special someone, having a baby, buying a house. Just something new or better for ourselves to achieve during the next year.
I sometimes make my goal. This last year? Didn’t make any of them.
This years resolution is to stop putting the rest of the world first and start putting me first. If I have made one mistake continuously, and without fail, in my life it’s that I often put the rest of the world ahead of me even when I am at my breaking point.
It occurred to me last night, after a day filled with people asking me for things, people tagging me on Facebook for things, and people blast emailing me asking me for things that not one of those people who had asked for my help has ever, without an exchange of goods, money or services, actually ever helped me. Not one of those people has given me the benefit of the simple question: “Hey how are you doing?” And if they asked, the answer would be, “I’m doing horrible. My heart hurts from losing my father. I’m struggling to balance homeschooling three children, running two businesses and a non-profit, promoting my creative work, working on my own education. I’m depressed to the point that I attempted taking an anti-depressant again, except it didn’t work and landed me in the hospital. I’ve had medical struggles out the ass this last year and am scheduled for two surgeries in January.”
I’m still breathing. But I’m barely surviving. I’m pulled in several different directions, and so rarely does it seem that anyone bothers to see how I’m doing. And I don’t care how five years old this makes me sound: My father died this year. My brother and I had to make the decision to put him in compassionate care which killed us both. I miss my father terribly, and the pain isn’t easing up. I need someone, ANYONE to step back, think and say, “Hey Amber, what can I do?” Because the answer is going to be simple: just spend time with me without it being a trade for something I can do for you.
So until further notice, I’m Out of Order. I like being able to help people if and when I can. But right now? I can’t get my feet back underneath me, and I need to prioritize my life. My kids and everything related comes first. My job(s) come second because I need the income. My education comes third. Those are three full time jobs. When you’re working three full time jobs yourself, and can balance adding in helping everyone else, then feel free to ask me to lend a hand.
I’ve put me on the back burner for far too long. And me is struggling. Me is drowning. Me is actually scared of how things are going and how depressed I feel right now. So I’m shoving Me to the front of the line, right behind my children, until I can start breathing again. I’ve given to the point I’ve been drained dry, and all it’s done is left me in tears and exhausted and feeling isolated and alone.
And if you have a problem with this post? You’re clearly not a person who genuinely gives a shit or is a true friend, because if you genuinely gave a shit and was a true friend, you’d be reading this going, “Finally. It’s about time she did this for herself!” and asking me how you can help, and you’re also sitting there smug in the knowledge you’ve been there for me and haven’t been a selfish asshole. And if you have a problem with this post? Do me a favor: remove me from your friends’ list on Facebook, stop following me on Twitter, delete my phone number, lose my email address, and please go fuck yourself.