It’s New Years Eve and I don’t know about you, but 2017 really kicked my ass. It was a fantastic year, full of the fruit of positive manifestations, but I am exhausted: mentally, physically and spiritually. I started the year off working 24/7 to save money, trying to minimize my belongings and looking for a place to live in North Carolina with my boyfriend. After more than a year of planning and dreaming, we moved to Brevard, NC on March 27th with our 3 cats (which, let me tell you, is the most chaotic thing I have ever done).
This year I moved 4 states away from home into a completely new lifestyle, I turned 30 and I got my business up off the ground…and all of that was so exciting! However, all the moments in between were a mixture of being totally awestruck about how beautiful nature is and being left completely alone with my thoughts, which is where the exhaustion comes in.
Feeling The Feels
Something you should know about me is that I have had a journal since I was 9 years old; all I do is catalog and explore every feeling I have ever felt. With that in mind, moving away from my entire social life, going from having 4 jobs to working from home, topped off with living 30 minutes away from civilization meant that I was by myself…a lot. Like, all the time. Just me and my emotions, hanging out alone. If I’m being honest, things were so much more difficult than I ever expected them to be.
When we first moved to Brevard (from Jacksonville, FL), I had this grand idea that this new mountain girl lifestyle I had been dreaming of was going to be second nature to me. But after a few months, shit got real. I got homesick and missed the hell out of my friends. I started going stir-crazy from working from home. I gained weight from drinking beer and not working it off. My skin started breaking out and I threw out any discipline I had with diet and exercise. I was in a solitude-driven funk that, up until recently, I could NOT get out of. Even though I got to spend 100% of my time on art and nature and peaceful solitude, I still got wrapped up in a really negative mindset. Like, some of my thoughts got pretty fucking dark. And I think, after a while, I realized that looking back on mistakes, missed opportunities and over indulgences isn’t a good way to grow. In fact, it won’t help you grow at all… it only feeds your self-hate, and that’s really hard to bounce back from. After this year, I truly believe that in order to be happy, you HAVE to be healthy. And that requires discipline. And discipline is easy to lose and hard to gain. Lesson learned.
With that said, there was some REALLY magical moments that happened this year! One of the craziest things was that we got to see four real-life seasons change. Growing up in Florida, there is only one season: hot. Sure, there are a few weeks of beautiful weather here and there, but for the most part, the heat is miserable. We moved to NC at the end of March, so it was still pretty chilly. But a few weeks after we moved, the leaves started coming in and before we knew it, we were surrounded by a lush canopy of every shade of green you can imagine! And there are Rhododendrons EVERYWHERE!! It’s beautiful. Things warmed up a little and summer rolled in. Normally I dread the summer months and the nasty heat, but we live at 3,050 ft and it never really got hot. In September, autumn arrived and I cannot tell you how beautiful the weather was!!! The leaves changed over night, the air was crisp and we couldn’t spend enough time outside. I think some of my clothes will permanently smell like bonfire. Our first snow came earlier this month on December 8th. I had no clue how enchanting watching the snow fall could be. After putting on a million layers of clothing, we went outside and made sledding trails and explored for hours. I haven’t played that hard in YEARS. Seeing seasons actually change like that does something to a person’s soul. It was so magical watching it happen right in front of our eyes… I will never forget it.
Aside from the amazing weather, there was a list of awesome things that happened after we moved. We went hiking in search of beautiful waterfalls, made friends with the native white squirrels and hosted a hurricane relief party when Irma tried to drown my friends in Florida. One of my best friends saved my 30th birthday from being a total disaster (thank you, Shrimp), we learned how to make (legit) carnitas and we got to watch the eclipse, during totality, on top of a mountain. Even the simple things were amazing: eating at home 99% of the time led us to learning how to make some badass recipes (hence, the carnitas), we had a steady day-to-day routine and I actually had time to read books on a daily basis. I forgot how important those small details are to me, how vital they are to my well being.
So here I am. It’s the end of the year and it took me almost 10 months to START, to get the hang of this new mountain lifestyle. Even though I got a little caught up on things, I’m really grateful for being able to hash some shit out with myself. I think I struggled with having so much free time because I was so accustomed to having an extremely chaotic work schedule. Moving here was definitely the best decision I have ever made. And, it totally helps that my boyfriend was born for this sort of life (meaning: he removes spiders from my presence and has no problem “taking care” of the mice in the garage). So now, I am finally ready to kick some ass in all areas of my life. Life should be enchanting and magical and I won’t settle for anything less.
I never really make New Year’s resolutions, but I always start the year with a mantra of sorts, something I can tell myself to stay on track. For 2018 it is this: “Ask and you shall receive”. A reminder that: what you think, you get. I want happiness, self love and artistic inspiration. Magic will be my mindset.
Happy New Years!! Sending all of you my love.