2013 – Year in Review

Here we are at the end of my first full-year on this blog. It’s ended in a more distant way than I would’ve expected. I mean, I had’t anticipated going on somewhat of an ‘exile’ from my own pages for much of the final few months. But I can recall back to last year’s post without entering any search terms and in this post, I’m going to reflect on my intentions for 2013, along with trying to summarise my achievements and realisations.

A year ago, I set out with the main New Year’s Resolution of being totally honest with everyone. This has proved to be perhaps even harder than it may sound and for the first few months, I think I executed it exceptionally well. But at that time, I was tracking each situation and making a mental log or record of it (success or failure). That, in itself, felt quite exhausting so, after a while, I learned to just let it go a bit and I soon found myself able to to honest in most situations. It takes a lot to trust yourself, as much as the person you’re seemingly up against.

I’m not setting any resolutions for 2014. There are things I intend to change this year (my job and ‘career’ direction; hopefully I can travel somewhere as well) but that’s more about what I do and less of the ‘who I am’ from the last time.

In 2013, I’ve discovered the power and true meaning of friendship. Those you make an effort towards repay you in equal value. Or something like that! Having spent so many years without reliable friends, it’s still quite a surprise to realise what I have with me now. But as much as I would like to thank them, I must also praise myself for making the effort. Because friendship can only work in two directions. That’s one of the hardest facts I’ve had to accept this year.

Where I once held a candle (and perhaps more) for someone I have often referred to as ‘May’, it’s fair to say that the light has now burned out; gone with the wind. Where as it began to flicker in the early stages of 2013, I think it first lost its light around September time. On two occasions following that, I have attempted to relight it but it’s continued to flicker and more recently, I’ve found out that the wick isn’t strong enough to hold.

‘May’ is someone who has always had the control in our ‘friendship’, as much as I’m reluctant to use that word now (acquaintancy?). If we made plans, she would be the one to bail on them. Once things began to turn sour between us, she would be the one to activate the block button (only on social media sites, leaving my phone free for texting). So, she would only restore our connection when the timing was right for her… I had to begin to ask myself; ‘What about me?‘. Time and time again, I would only hear from her when she was down and needed a lift. As much as I have sympathised with her for being a victim of domestic abuse, the lies and secrets just make it all too much for me to bear. I’m in a position now (after more ‘news’ last night) to finally delete her number from my phone this evening. It’s still ingrained within my memory and I’ll no doubt keep it safe in a Word document somewhere but I’m distancing myself from the direct contact options.

It’s again that old adage about not being able to help someone who won’t help themselves. Because we all can, regardless of how afraid we are. There is always that choice.

Several bloggers have commented on my posts regarding this in the past and I do agree now that she is selfish, for whatever reason. It has always been about her. I realised recently that my feelings were perhaps nothing more than lust. As my self-esteem has improved, I’ve found less significance in making an effort for her (yes, for; not with). There is care on my behalf but it hasn’t been love. I think I began to realise that when I met someone else in June and, on that first day, after weeks of intense, stimulating conversation online; I was comparing her to ‘May’ (my standard, at the time); looking for similar traits and making every slight comparison… For which, of course, I naturally felt disheartened and made the mistake of seeing less within ‘Angelina’.

But as these months have progressed, so has my love, admiration and appreciation for ‘Angie’. I don’t get the same intense feelings that I’ve had with physical attractions of the past. But I do find acceptance and appreciation from her; a will to indulge and invite me in to a part of her life. I mean, I’ve just spent a part of Christmas with her family! To me, that’s huge!! She remains adamant that we don’t have the ‘spark’ to make a relationship work and, in my head, I wonder whether that’s partly because of her past (being hurt by someone last year and setting him as the standard, as I have done…) and perhaps also, because of her future, from which she doesn’t want any distractions. I’m aware that in what I feel for her, I don’t feel it reflected back but I still enjoy her company, her friendship. But even staring this “rejection” in the face and, having been somewhat active on a dating site for the past month; I’m not looking to meet anyone new.

Along with my two other friends, she offers me the acceptance that I didn’t find in 2012. Accepting yourself is the first step, I think, which might explain the ‘why now’, with the self-help courses I’ve completed this year. Twelve-months ago, I had the beginnings of two great friendships. And now, here I am, sitting comfortable with three close friends. 🙂

If I have one major fear for 2014; it’s not of suicide, wanting to hurt myself or even the real thought of escaping from my job… It’s of ‘losing’ two of these friends (one being ‘Angelina’) and I use the term loosely because it won’t be fuelled by hate, it’s more to do with individual ambition. Different people have different goals in life. We’re all moving in the same direction but along different paths. I can say with certainly that she’ll be leaving the country for at least one-year and my own other friend could face a one-way trek across the UK. We’d stay in touch, I’m sure of that. Right now, we mostly talk by e-mail and text but having just spent warm times with each of these friends over Christmas, I am going to miss that social connection, when the time comes.

I don’t think I’m prepared to cope in that kind of situation and maybe this is what I’m afraid of. I wouldn’t like to think of ‘replacing’ anyone, so to speak but I can only think of how hard it would be to be able to trust new people. After finding them, of course, because although I do not wish to use dating sites as an on-going solution to my social isolation, I portray myself at best through the power of the written word.

Okay, I feel I should now bring this post to a close. 2013 has been a great year for me personally. There are so many small achievements that I haven’t even touched on here! I hope it’s been good to you as well and I hope you’ll join me in continuing to push forward throughout 2014! If we have to look back, let’s not linger for too long and just try to recognise our achievements. 🙂

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