Home > Uncategorized > The Thing with Feathers

The Thing with Feathers

This time, last year, where were you? What was your life like? Is it very different than it is now?

A year can make such a difference. The list of things that changed is rather long. This time, last year, I was in a different state. I was in a completely different place in my life. I had made bad decision and good ones, and sometimes it’s difficult to tell the difference. I had hope, but it was the foolish kind. I had fears, but they were trivial. I had a shoddy little life plan that evaporated shortly after December ended.

On January 1st of 2010, I remember writing, “This is going to be a great year! I can feel it.”

Apparently, it’s unlucky to do that.

It was not a great year in a lot of ways. Things went wrong. Horribly wrong. Wrong in so many ways that sometimes I wonder about the nature of life. Have you ever just wanted to shout into the void, What the hell? Or You’ve got to be shitting me! Throw in a few curse words, a smattering of interesting adventures, lots of tissues, some packing paper and bubble wrap – and you have a partial visual of my life, this past year.

So much changes in a year. In a moment, really. One phone call. One lack of a phone call. Awkward words, or no words. The things said and unsaid, the roads taken and the roads abandoned. Each little thing is a leaf of a tree, and sometimes, that tree turns out to be pretty damn ugly.

I consider myself a fairly strong person, but I hate change. Hate it. I wish that some things would stay the same forever (this is probably why I still wake up at Ungodly O’clock on Christmas morning, only to painfully wait for my lazy bones siblings to emerge from their ridiculously lengthy slumbers).

I’ve had to get better at dealing with change. This isn’t a maybe. It’s a necessity. It’s been a crash course in a lot of ways. But I still hate it as much as I hate Brussels sprouts, which are vile and should not be considered an edible vegetable. I think I’d rather eat cabbage, and that’s saying something.

I don’t know exactly what this next year will bring. I don’t know what will happen tomorrow, or three seconds from now. No one does. We try to hold to the illusion that planning represents certainty. It doesn’t. All it represents is an idea. Ideas change. Life changes. Everything is subject to influence.

I suppose I’ve learned a lot. I’ve learned that even if other people are flat out morons, I can put myself out there. I’ve learned that sometimes you have to talk someone into letting you help them. I’ve learned that the little things, like making someone a cup of tea in the morning (even though I don’t drink tea), can make a difference. I’ve learned that I can’t stop making jokes when I’m upset or uncomfortable. I still hate to cry. I don’t always expect enough from people. I can still be surprised, and sometimes that’s awesome. I know that people don’t often change, and even if they are capable of it, often don’t want to. Love is, and it isn’t, all it’s cracked up to be. Raising a puppy is like falling in love – it’s messy, trying, and you need nearly infinite patience.

This past year wasn’t entirely bad. I have a lot of things that I’m thankful for. I hope, for everyone’s sake, that this next year is full of magick. I hope that inspiration and joy are waiting around every corner. I hope that life surprises everyone, but in a good way. I have a lot of hope.

And that is one thing that never changes.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Jessica
    December 8, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    Oh darlin’…

    I’ve been seeing a lot of these types of blogs, because I guess it’s that time of year for some retrospective-ness, and hindsight-is-20/20-ness. I’m sure I’m going to write one in the coming days. Nothing ever ends up the way we expect it to, does it?

    I don’t know all of what went on in your life in the past year, but I would agree that you’re strong, regardless of whether or not you’re good with change. I think that it takes a lot of strength to be your own person in the face of what everyone else wants you to be, and to be aware of your own strengths and weaknesses.

    At this point, I have to honestly believe that we’re all gonna make it and we’re going to be okay. Just, ya know, maybe next year.

    • Ali
      December 8, 2010 at 1:48 pm

      I’ve had this post in the works for a while, and I have an entirely different version of it filed away. I almost didn’t post it, because it feels very…generic in a lot of ways. But it’s been on my mind, so I figured what the hell? 🙂

      You’re right: things rarely turn out the way we imagine and hindsight’s kind of evil. Lol

      Thank you for the compliment, Jess. And I’d say right back at you, because I think you’re strong, too. You are following what you want, even though it’s not an easy road. I admire that.

      We’ll make it through. It might be a littke rough now and then, but what isn’t? Here’s to next year! 🙂

  2. December 8, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    You know… I just stopped doing stuff like saying: this is going to be this, and that is going to be that. I don’t make new year resolutions. It’s not that I don’t plan – but I found it easier to face both the good and the bad with my eyes and my mind wide open.

    I can tell you that whatever it was that did not work out for you this year did not make you any less of a fantastic person that you are. You are fabulous, talented and inspiring – and I am sure you’ll keep it that way.

    • Ali
      December 9, 2010 at 8:55 am

      I never make new year’s resolutions, either. Thank you very much, Maria, for that wonderful compliment and appraisal. You’ve made my morning, and I appreciate your praise and your confidence. 🙂

  3. December 9, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Ali, I do the exact same thing when I’m upset or not happy. I make lots of jokes. This results in a very ironic event at parties. Someone will call me funny or want to be friends with me, and I will then push them away because I am so upset. Then about an hour later the storm will clear, and I’ll say “Wait a minute, did I just tell that woman to go away? Her?!” hahaha. It’s quite the social curse, but my does it end in amusing moments.

    2010 quickly became an episode of “Be careful what you wish for” for me, ha.

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