Saying goodbye to 2022

The Christmas tree at Bridge Park, Dublin, Ohio

I’ve decided I’m logging off my social media today until Jan. 1st.

Usually I’ll write a year in review post about the previous year and the great things that happened, as well as reflect on the challenging times. I have no shame in admitting this year has been more tough than happy, although I’ve certainly had happy moments throughout this year.

I got to run in Kentucky and West Virginia, now making it four states I’ve ran in; after three years of the “maybe somedays” I rode 57 miles to raise money for cancer research in Pelotonia, with hopes to do it again; and I crossed off the bucket list item of hiking the Grandma Gatewood trail out and back in October.

But like I said earlier – and you all are probably tired of hearing about it by now – this year was tough. I used to say 2021 was my worst year because it was one heartache after another – going in unemployed, trying to find a job, dealing with an unsupportive boyfriend in an unhealthy relationship, ending things with said boyfriend in unhealthy relationship, getting back to work, thinking I was finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel and bam! – Grandma going into and coming home from the hospital to be immediately followed by Grandpa dying.

2022 proved me wrong about 2021. It turns out multiple heartaches that can get resolved (finding a new job, ending the relationship) is easier for me to deal with than the one albatross of grief that’s determined to hang around my neck and poke its head back up at horrible or inappropriate times.

My family and I started off 2022 having to bury Grandpa on Jan. 5th in a graveside service that was beautiful, but rushed in planning. Mom and I planned the service with Grandma as the final say. I was devastated and feeling raw, and at the same time ready to deck anyone who tried to tell me grief was the price we have to pay for love. Or anyone who was happy when I was reeling inside.

Frankly, looking back over 2022 as a whole, I haven’t done well with handling the albatross at all. Comfort eating caused me to balloon up and be uncomfortable in my own skin; mindless spending for the sake of feeling better got my finances out of order; that guy I was very briefly seeing earlier this year wasn’t a bad guy and I don’t regret meeting him, but my headspace was so jacked up that I had no business meeting anyone in the first place. Grief counseling from April to late June helped, and so did finally going to a doctor in October to get my depression under control. Granted, I’m still irked with myself that I didn’t call a doctor sooner, but I suppose the adage about “being better late than never” is the best one to view it with.

I’ll spare you all the details of what triggered it, but the past few days saw a massive emotional flare up. Dec. 30th is the one year anniversary of losing Grandpa. Mentally I keep going back to last year, only to switch back to the present and realize it has been almost a year, with the sadness that comes with that realization.

Needless to say, I’m ready for 2023 to get here. I know it won’t be a perfect clean slate, but putting all the sadness and “firsts” we had to get through in 2022 behind me is going to be so nice, and I feel like calmer days are going to be here again.

So with all of that being said, I think it’s time for me to take some quiet time with my family, take care of myself and get through it the best I can. In the meantime, I hope all of my reader-friends who celebrate it have a very merry Christmas, and you all go into the new year happy, healthy, and with starry eyes for what the future can hold.

Yours in writing and life,

Allison

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