This is for anyone that sets a goal and pushes forward, only to look back to see they aren’t as far as they’d like to be.
365 days ago, I moved to California in search of, well, I didn’t even know at the time…freedom? purpose? dreams fulfilled? Hell, I had no idea what I really wanted!
But I knew that I would find it here, or at the very least would lead me in the right direction.
To describe it briefly: sensory f***** overload. Thousands of thoughts came in at once, like a dam had been built up and it broke down as I stepped off the tarmac at John Wayne Airport. With a cousin and uncle and a job to hold me up, everything else was up to me.
I really did feel like a boy in a candy store. Or, for 9-yr old me, the largest L’eggo store in the world. I really could do ANYTHING I wanted to do.
When I moved, I thought I was going to have everything figured out in a year.
In a year’s time, I’d have the first draft of my book done, I’d have a following of readers on my blog, of which I’d be posting at least once a week. I’d be doing free-lancing jobs left and right, all the while writing my own essays and articles about whatever interested me.
I’d be in shape, sporting a six pack, walking around with a strut, but still humble. But if I had to take off my shirt for any reason, why not, right?
I’d be the king of my own kingdom, and my body, mind, and soul would be my temple. I’d be at a higher place spiritually, going to school and working on my thesis.
I’d be prolific in writing and be living up to my pen name, Soul on Fire.
Next year is today.
Far from where I thought I should have been.
While I can sit here and type out, it’s what you make of it, it doesn’t help me as I sit back to evaluate the last 365 days.
I’m not writing an article a week, or even an article a month. I’m only about 16 pages into my novel, I’m not living up to the ink itched into my right arm, a reminder that I had within my this fire that’s been longing to burn wildly and gasping for air.
And I don’t feel closer to finding out the Why? that I asked myself a year ago. As I type away and further chastise myself for my inadequacies as I always do, I stop.
As humans, we are our own worst critics.
When we look back at our progress, we sometimes get muddled by the details and get hung up on what we did not achieve instead of evaluating what we have done. It’s easy to do, and we make it harder for ourselves to push forward.
Only by stopping and looking back briefly can we fully re-examine all that we have learned on the journey and appreciate that we are stronger, more resilient, wiser than we think.
What have I done?
I’ve gone to San Francisco, Las Vegas, the desert, Mexico, on countless hikes, trails, and have met many new people.
I came face to face with addiction, and came out with a clear head.
I’ve stepped myself out of my comfort zone
I’ve run thousands of miles on the beach.
Most importantly, I’ve gotten in touch with someone I forgot about, someone who has since been a constant friend and confidant, whom I’ve listened to more fervently, who has gotten me out of many a jam, who studied with me, kicked my ass when I needed to, picked me up when I’ve fallen, and whom I’ve gotten to know and understand more than I ever have: me.
Here’s to another year.
Here’s to more spontaneous adventures, harder workouts, longer writing seshs, epic-er jam sessions, smoother open-mic performances, crazier road trips, higher mountains, bolder coffee, sexier sexy times, farther runs, deeper conversations, rowdier parties, heartier meals, bigger problems with bigger solutions, clearer epiphanies, funnier stories, livelier dances, and …
to a soul on fire.