I don’t know what I want for 2017. I just know that I don’t want to have adjust to another new medication. I don’t want another surgery. Most of all, I don’t want to have to write another obituary. I know I won’t get my wish for the first two but please let this be a year without a death.
I think I started doing “years in reviews” in 2004. They were not formal posts but more like inventories based on the notes in my appointment book from the previous year. They were fun back then.
But then the deaths started and they weren’t fun anymore.
I started writing official “Year in Review” posts in 2010 because that was the year I started making a conscious effort to pull myself from the pit. I’m a list-holic and whenever I’m struggling I make schedules and lists. The YiR for 2010 is literally broken down into such quotidian landmarks as “Made it to the gym three times”. Ironically the events that stand out most are ones that make this year so difficult. I didn’t realize until I just checked now that it was 2010 when I got Kira spayed, and when I began the Feast of Seven Fishes.
So, 2015. What can I say about you? Do I hate you for how painful you have been, or do I love you because you were the last year that I was complete? I don’t even know what to say anymore. You’ve even taken my words.
345 sleepless nights.
5 blood tests.
And a stray cat in a fir tree. ♫~♪~♫~♪~♫~♪~
(Oh go on and sing it, because you know you want to.)
It was a year ago today that I made my last entry–(365 days…345 sleepless nights—Do shut up, Kat!) and as I had mentioned then, I had made a major decision and decided that it was necessary to take a different road on the path which I had been currently journeying.
Um, I mean, I didn’t change the path, just that the road I had been using to reach the path to the goal had been a bit altered because, after all, a path and road aren’t necessarily the same but they can both lead to a goal upon said road reached by a path and/or other road which…and…and…and…
So, there’s that.
Anyway, I think what I’ve been trying to say is that the thing about being a “writer” is that it’s this odd balance of experiencing a fucked-up world and all of its completely mental-shit crazy situations that will be thrown at your poor unsuspecting ass, and yet being alone enough of the time to hear the quiet and process them.
So am I saying that my absence was because I needed more experience with the fucked up world in 2014, or that I needed more time alone to process it all.
The answer is neither.
I did not set out to purposely experience the world like some fucking high school graduate taking a sabbatical through Europe to find his asshole self before he starting college, and I certainly did not need more time to listen to the quiet in my head–mostly because there is never any quiet in there–but because everyone, even writers and other–ahem–etherial(?) beings, sometimes just have to do what they have to do. And in the end, if you’re lucky, you will take something from that time and it will make you a better person, and in turn a better writer.
So, on this last night before the last day of the year, I could muddle through a month by month list of the previous year’s events as I had done in the past, but I don’t feel that they would give anything to you, my dear reader, only because I have selfishly kept them to myself for the past twelve months. 2014 was, as someone who shares her musing on a blog** would call, a “cornucopia”. Not only is a cornucopia appropriate for the holiday season, but I truly do feel that it embodies this past year for me: a bit of sour, a bit of sweet, but all nourishing, and–if I want to be a bit megalomanical, which I totally am not above being–providing strength and ability of a Greek pantheonic level.
“A very Merry Christmas,
And a happy New Year.
Let’s hope it’s a good one,
Without any fear.”
Happy 2015, peeps. ♥
I don’t think it’s a surprise to anyone who has been reading my blog for any length of time that I haven’t been feeling like myself for several months now.
For one thing, I just cannot get used to this new site. I know you’re probably all sick of hearing about it, and I know that I should get over it all, but this new format just will not work correctly for me. Every time I come on here it’s a fucking reminder that I failed, that there is something that I didn’t do correctly in that motherfucking stupid migration and it’s just shitting all over everything. There are several elements of this site that aren’t working correctly on the back end, which make things more difficult for me personally, but I’ll be honest and admit that the biggest thing that pisses me off is knowing that as I write this that I have about 2,000 feed subscribers and nearly 1,000 Google subscribers who aren’t having my new post show up in their feed, and it fucking sucks!
Whats more is that, since not seeing my own post in my own feed (seriously, it doesn’t even show up in my own fucking feed) sets me stupid, I haven’t looked at my blog subscriptions for over two months, and therefore haven’t read your posts either. Yes, I admit it: I suck. I might not have always commented on your posts, but I stayed up to date with at least reading them and I haven’t even done that for almost two months. Feel free to boo and hiss at your leisure. I completely deserve it.
Besides my hangup over my site not working which is affecting my mental state and create output, the other shitty thing that recently happened is that my mother was in a car accident in October. She’s relatively okay considering that her car was fucking destroyed, but “relatively okay” isn’t exactly great, and it has most certainly mucked up the wiring in my brain. And while it has affected my immediate state of writing, it has more importantly been a contributing factor in making a major decision that I have been wrestling with about the current road I have been traveling.
But that decision, and what will become of it, is a story for another post.
This post is… me saying I’m sorry? A confession? An explanation? I don’t even know. Whatever you want to call it, whether it justifies my absence–my lack of creative activity, my failings–or not, it is what it has always been. It’s been me.
I was once told that the most important lesson in writing is to tell the truth, and I’ve always tried to maintain that despite the predominantly autobiographical nature of this blog. I had originally planned to end this “Year in Review” post at May lest it sound like I was descending into some sort of maudlin pity party, but then that wouldn’t be very truthful would it?
And so I present it all. My year–my life–as I have always offered it: without pretenses or censorship. Just me.
That said, my dear reader, I would not blame you at all for skipping over the ugly bits which begin to surface in May (or the following of this post in its entirety for that matter because…bluuurrrrrgh), but I will however make a concentrated effort to read your 2013 Year in Review Post (because you know you will do one), or whatever post you have deemed fit to end this infamously Fibonaccian of years.
You were supposed to be mine own.
In a true illustration that the best ideas do NOT come from Pinterest, I set my ass on fire with in a ginger detox bath. I then did the Polar Bear Plunge in Wildwood to benefit the Special Olympics. (<SHAMELESS PLUG!> Incidentally, I’m doing this again because I’m not so selfish as to not realize that there are those who have heavier cross to bear than my own, and I could really use your support in meeting my pledge goal. Please pledge here!</SHAMELESS PLUG!>)
I had an adventure with the home vet involving projectile shit and it was just as magical as it sounds. For her birthday, I made my mother a comic about her love/hate relationship with Farmville. Then I had a run-in with the self-harm bitch as a precursor to Kira’s forthcoming surgery. At the time I told myself I was being ridiculous and that Kira would be fine. Lesson learned: never ignore your instincts as we will see next month.
Kira nearly died during dental surgery.
I cannot express the anger that I still harbor for the vet that nearly killed her from an overdose of sedative. It is in fact very, very difficult to not wish something fucking horrible on the stupid fuck-cunt that nearly killed her.
I adopted my “son”, my boy dog, the one that I always knew I would have yet didn’t know how it could be possible, and who makes 2013 end up in the “plus” column despite everything.
I love you, Seamus the Horny Boy.
I did not write about this but my coworker’s husband passed quiet suddenly on June 1 while they were on their way to South Carolina. In fact, he died in a manner very near to my father’s sudden passing and between this similarity and an overabundance of empahty, this affected me a lot more than it should have. It resulted in working double shifts at my “part time” job all month while my coworker was out in mourning, but that didn’t upset me nearly as much as thinking about what she was going through.
In mid-June, I went to a Derby themed bridal shower, and it was as pretentious as it sounds, though the truly spectacular absurdity happened when I went to buy the fucking hat for the stupid event. And in related news, I joined Instagram. There was also a flash of “pretty fucking awesome” when I was informed that I was referenced in the Alternate History aka “Steampunk” textbook being used in Universities all over the world.
I made a handy-dandy insult sheet which, despite a spelling error, has been repinned about 300(?) times on Pinterest last I checked. (And yes I know that this isn’t exactly a “viral” pin, but it’s pretty fucking brilliant to me so I’ma celebratin’ like WHOOOAHHHH!) I then had a battle with motherfucking huge ants which resulted in a Game of Thrones pun that landed me in the official Game of Thrones paper. Finally, I took my new family of two furry children, plus our family pup for a total of three furry creatures, to the beach…and it was a disaster from Hell.
Another loss came when my dear Celia had to say good-bye to her beloved Audrey. This, again, was something that upset me more than a normal person should allow.
The worst though? The thing that I did not write about yet alluded to? I had a literary agent, and my long-talked about novel was about to be locked down for print, but she decided to drop my manuscript in favor of focusing on the Young Adult genre. I honestly cannot blame her for making a constructed career choice considering all of the recent blockbusters have been based on YA books, but the other part of me has added her name to the list of people I will scream “I told you I was worth something!” to when my stupid fucking work is published and doing well.
(Fuck me, I’m just praying I can really say that one day.)
I ripped apart the overgrown garden in my mother’s yard. (You can already see the mental slide there). AND THEN! I fell into the ultimate pit of I’m-Going-To-Destroy-Everything-I’ve-Worked-For when I decided to migrate from a third-party site to a self hosted one and fucked it up in a truly spectacular fashion. During that migration I adopted a Foster Baby Sparrow. I had her for a week until that fucking asshole, Death, came and took her.
I, personally, destroyed your chances of ever finding Chicken and Waffles Potato Chips again, which pissed off my mother quite a bit. I also let go of trying to fix this site. (Only not really since, as you read above, I can’t even look at the fucking site without wanting to throw my computer across the room.)
My mother was in a car accident.
My biological grandfather died. Again, shouldn’t have been upset, but was not for nothing else than he was husband to my grandmother, Kathryn.
I celebrated publishing 200 posts which was a fucking miracle considering my attention span. I decided to use the occasion to celebrate a cause that’s dear to my heart, animal rescue, by inviting readers to share their animal rescue stories. I received so many wonderful stories that I had to create a second part of the 200th post.
Again, death came calling when another coworker’s father lost his battle with ALS. And once again I’ll admit that I felt too much empathy and sank further into the pit as I talked with her about what it was like to lose a parent too soon. Given my current mental state I recalled my previous experience with seeing a counselor. That entry actually is kind of a big deal since it was the first thing I’d written in a long time without worrying about if it was properly “bloggy”.
The alternator went on the car I found for my mother. We also agreed that she couldn’t keep working with her head and neck injured as it is from the accident, and I came to the decision to seek a full-time job in a previous field. I’ve an interview today in fact.
I made this post which you are reading.
On to the future
So, in closing, I’m not going to be sad that 2013 was a terrible disappointment, and I’m not going to feel like I’m taking a step backward. I’m going to be thankful that 2014 means that I have an opportunity to do better, and that I’m still going forward toward the goal that I want. The path has just changed a bit.
Best wishes for 2014 to you, my dear peeps.
The year started with a trip to Boston, and in typical Kat fashion I arrived late, damp, cold, drunk and having locked myself in the train station bathroom at one point.
February was a weird month, and it culminated in the decsion to move out of my apartment and crash at my mother’s place for the time being. In hindsight I can tell you that, true to what I had mused in the post where I announced my decision to move, this choice fit the mold in that it was extremely difficult at the time but ended up being the right one. And of course since once I’ve made a decision to do something I have to do it immediately and by the end of the February I was packed, ready to move and leaning on Bestie and my brother to help me get my shit out of my old place and into my mother’s. Naturally the move was done with the usual fanfare that erupts around me and so it included my mother smashing apart an entertainment center with a hammer and me nearly knocking myself unconscious. All in all though I accepted that I had closed a chapter but that something better was coming.
Less than a week after I moved I broke my hand in a most spectacular fashion and was subjected to the world’s shittiest doctor (whose time will come when the new doctor’s office down the road from him opens and takes his patients). I was still adjusting to living with my family on top of being in pain and it inspired this short story which I wouldn’t usually included in a Year in Review except that it becomes important in another moment this year. I also got a kick in the chest with some personal shit that I didn’t talk about on here and though I realize now that I kicked ass through it, March was a difficult month.
For a number of reasons, not the least of which is that I just like to torture myself, I did a Seven Day Detox “diet”. I’d probably list this event anyway because this was not an easy task and I still feel a bit gloaty that I made the week, but this is something else that plays a more significant role in a later month. While my paw was still healing I somehow managed to design the Writes Like a Slut logo that I had been talking about doing for over a year. I finished the month by sharing one of the wrongest stories ever which has resulted in some really, really fucked up search results landing here.
May was a huge month. Not only did I receive my “Writes Like a Slut” shirt, and my dear Jewels receive her shirt and become the first member of the WLAS Posse, but I also gave you some kick ass zombie survival advice all month long, and became a contributer to the new site The Indie Chicks. The hilarious thing is that my first article was about makeup, and somehow the beauty section has since become my li’l niche there. Despite all of this brilliance though, there was a dark moment in May with the passing of M.C.A of the Beastie Boys and how that much affected me.
For the halfway point of the year I did some more graphic designing including the “Tequila is Cheap” and the “Dirty Stay Out”. I also did a rare serious, activist type post where I threw a holy fit at Urban Decay for deciding to allow animal testing on their products. The month concluded with a post on cell phone etiquette and a link to my newest article at The Indie Chicks on what to expect during that Seven Day Detox I did in April. The article received 10,000 hits within the first week and remains (I believe) the most popular article on the site. To date I know that it’s been stumbled over 63,000 times and thus is the most widely read piece of my work (so far).
I got my first professional Brazilian bikini wax…at a Jewish Community Center because that’s how I roll. I also created Facebook Fan Page for this site because I’m so hilarious. Finally I did something rather bitchy, wrote about it, and it has since because one of my most popular stories because everyone has had a guy or girl treat them like shit and my act of nastiness was for us all.
I let the ocean water touch me for the first time since I was eighteen years old and I did it even before I was given a watermelon full of Everclear. This was a major accomplishment for me even if I haven’t actually made it into the water again yet. I also met a Tolkien character at Home Depot which is another incident that comes back later in the year. Finally I followed up on the wrongest story post because one wrong turn deserves another.
I got a wretched eye infection thanks to eye strain that resulted in my dog taking over the blog for me, and then I celebrated the year anniversary of my getting BONed and held my first giveaway.
This month saw my first (and relatively minor in the big picture especially since it won’t be my last) disappointment as a writer. The story that I had mentioned writing back in March had not won either of the contests that I had entered, but this is another blessing in disguise since it was a serious piece and probably not the best representation of my usual style. The East Coast was then attacked by Frankenstorm aka Hurricane Sandy, however we were very lucky and did not sustain any damage. I also created a youtube channel where you all got to hear my muddled accent in my first Birchbox video. (And yes I have noticed that you all watch the bloopers reel more than the legit product and no, it honestly doesn’t surprise me since I’ve build a readership based on WTF so of course the popularity of videos would reflect this.)
I had a bout of depression because… it happens. And tat’s the beauty of depression is that it often comes for no fucking reason just to rattle my monkey tree. I do know that part of my problem was that my formerly broken hand which never healed properly was feeling the ache of the cold weather and I was having some particularly exhausting cardiac flares. Luckily God sent a door-to-door meat saleman to my house and since traumatizing others always makes me feel better it helped to snap me back to my so-called normal self.
I held my second giveaway and the prize didn’t even require crossing dressing on the part of the guys if one of them won. I also developed an obsession with Elf on the Shelf which you have to be on Facebook to fully appreciate. My mother, brother and I went to the Show of Lights together for the first time in years and it was pretty brilliant to revive this tradition that spanned back to when I was a kid. I was the honored as the Featured Writer at Studio 30+ where that trip to Home Depot when I met Gollum came in handy since for my article I wrote about how to Blog Like a Bitchin’ Rockstar from Mars. (That’s not exactly the title but it’s what I would have used if I wasn’t trying to censor myself somewhat.) Finally I announced that “Writes Like a Slut” is now on over half of the continents in the world. Not a bad way to finish out what was a pretty fucking amazing year in writing for me.
The really, really final major event of 2012 though?
Writing this year in review and for the first time since 2007 not looking back at the previous twelve months and feeling that I was leaving with a deficit.
I’ve a vlog I’ll be posting later hopefully, but in closing I just want to say thank you all so much for reading and supporting me this year. Right before I started this entry I looked at my stats of visits, retweets, links in, ect and I am touched beyond words at how much you all have helped me grow this year. I seriously could not be doing now–writing, which has and always will be my true love–if it were not for you guys. You’re amazing. From the bottom of my heart, thank you!
Best wishes for a Happy, Healthy, Prosperous and Kickass 2013!
PS-There were a few other major events that I didn’t mention, but that’s because they are actually precursors to really major events and I don’t want to jinx it. Don’t worry, as soon as it feels solid I will be screaming my face off about it.
I usually avoid writing about events that I know every other writer is talking about on their blogs, but I’ve been doing the Year in Review thing for many a New Year’s now, so I’m making an exception. I’m actually happy that this is a blogging trend and would probably follow it even if I had not been doing it for years because I’ve really loved reading everyone’s reflections on the past year. This Year in Review is a little different than the previous years though because it was it was one year ago today, I started seriously blogging. As a result, I don’t need to chronicle the events of 2011 in detail since most of the major ones are listed in the archives, that thing to the left that I call the “Athenæum” because I love ridiculously obscure words. Instead I’m going to reflect a bit on how those events affected me.
Oh dear God she’s going to get introspective.
Yeah, this is likely gonna be one of those entirely skippable entries since I’ll babble and emote to the point that the entry will be just a squishy mess of fucking feely mushy mush that will make your teeth hurt. Don’t worry, the next entry will be back to holy-shittery as usual though. To those wise peeps who are jumping off at this point of the entry, I just want to say Happy New Year! Thank you for helping make my year rock out with its cock out.~
Now on with the mushy-mush, heavy, thinky shit.
WARNING: LAST CHANCE TO RUN BEFORE I START SENTIMENTAL BABBLING!
Writing has always been a huge part of me. I was about four years old when I began drawing pictures and making up stories to go along with them. Unfortunately, since I seemed to have a natural gift for writing pretty well, I took the skill for granted and never pushed myself to become better. I think this had to do with my most hated emotion and the one that I seem to be fucking constantly battling: fear. I was afraid to find out that “pretty well” was the best that I could do. I was afraid that, while I might be a star in the Little League, that I could never compete in the Majors. I’d done too much stagnating during the past five years though, and it was time to either face the truth if I sucked, or to stop making excuses and write like I’ve always wanted to do. For whatever reason, I chose to blog as a means to figure out if my writing was shit or not, and it’s one of the best things I have ever done.
I’ve experienced several devastating losses in 2011, the first and the one with the largest impact was losing the job I had held for nearly ten years. To fully appreciate what a loss this was you would have to know how impossible it is for me to stay in one place for very long, let alone ten years. That alone is indication of how much the place meant to me, but also, losing my job resulted in the loss of many things such as a steady income, health insurance, several friends who I would no longer see every day, and just security in general.
2011 also saw the loss of a dear friend, one whom I still go to text when I have an urge to say something stupid and be called mental. I could say more about her loss, but honestly it’s one that I’m still dealing with and don’t want to talk about. Suffice to say it’s been pretty shitty.
If I had experienced either of these losses in the previous year, they probably would have been enough to send me spiraling back down into the walking ghost phase that I had been living since 2006, but fortunately this year had been enriched in ways that I could have never imagined.
What I’m getting to in a much longer route than I had anticipated was that this blog has made the difference for me this year. Oh my God that sounds so fucking sappy. On a writing level, it helped me to maintain a better–though still not brilliant–writing schedule. It’s also given me some confidence that my writing might not be completely crappy given the amount of positive feedback that I’ve received about it. My writing even led to my blog getting BONed, a honour that I’m still reeling over. And if someone had told me that by the end of the year that I would have 800 people following my writing, I would have called them a filthy name. It makes me think that perhaps my writing doesn’t suck.
On a personal level, I have formed some fucking brilliant relationships, and that is as amazing, if not even more amazing given my guarded nature, than the writing progress. Jewels, Randy, Nicki, even S.O., and quite a few others that I’ve mentioned in past entries (see my Blog roll for more), were all people that I did not know a year ago, and cannot imagine not having in my life now. They, and all of you dear readers, are a blessing that I never, ever saw coming.
I’ll wrap this squishy package up by saying that while 2011 punched with some heavy fists, I was also held by some gentle hands. The glass of Tequila is always half full.
Unless it’s my glass, in which case it’s empty.
Not because I’m a pessimist, I just love Tequila.
Best Wishes for Happiness, Health and Kicking ass for you all!
Slàinte! (<—Scots Gaelic spelling, as opposed to my usual Irish version, in honour of Auld Lang Syne)