2019… what?

2019, what can I say?

It’s hard to sum up a year, any year, but especially this year. 2019 was loaded—for better or worse. I thought, how about a list? Maybe a list. I’m good at lists…

1. Stained glass! I had a decision to make this year… I had waited a couple years before taking the plunge into glass land. Hey, it’s a big commitment, dollar-wise and all. I mean, what if I didn’t like it? What if I couldn’t do it well? But I’m so glad I took the risk. A special thanks for Glenn Greene for believing in me and showing me the ropes.

2. I saved up for and bought my first motorcycle, a Suzuki TU250X.

3. I fell on my first motorcycle and injured my shoulder, but luckily not the motorcycle. Thank god for that AAA membership and Alex, who legit took care of me in that moment in a way I can’t even describe (three words: King Size PayDay).

4. Someone who I consider family and who I love a whole lot (one of my soul people, in fact) was diagnosed with cancer this year. Claiming this on my list feels strange and selfish or something, but when you love someone that’s just how it goes. FYI: she totally kicked its ass, which is probably the best thing about this year for me.

5. I bought a house. On paper, this is a win, but getting there was a lot more sad and stressful. We were kicked out of our home/apartment in Regent Square by a greedy 25-year-old rich white boy and his daddy who bought the building. They gave us 45 days to relocate. Maybe I should be rejoicing that I had the money saved up to make this happen, but there is so much more to this story. (Like how his family was in the yard out front the next day saying things like “God brought Tr*mp here to heal the country” to our Jewish housemate.) We almost went to court too… an uncertainty that was drug out for too long. To be honest, I think I’m still processing all of this. Luckily, though, we got a much better spot… and we never have to deal with being displaced that way.

6. “At least, you didn’t die at Walmart.” Sure, Abbie and I didn’t die at Walmart. Lucky us. Instead we were running for what might be our lives while gunshots rang out from behind… literally 3 days before we were moving. In hindsight, it feels dramatic, but in the moment, we were all terrified. The worst part about this event is how it felt like everyone used this afterwards to console us as we struggled through house buying and homeownership. Blah.

7. I said goodbye to Meredith Baxter Birney, the Scion. After 10+ years, a new transmission, some rust, and finally, a leaking head gasket, it was time to put her to bed. As you know, my luck with Meredith wasn’t great. In fact, she only had 117,000 miles on her when I discovered the leaking head gasket that drained my oil. That said, no more Toyotas for me. I moved on and leased a Honda CRV LX. His name is Frankie, as in Frank O’Hara. I needed something to haul my art and show stuff, and it has been a great choice so far. It’s so fancy. And the heated seats? Woo. Way luxurious. 

8. The pain. It’s not something everyone knows about, nor is it something I talk about too often. Before I experienced it, I never thought too much about chronic pain or nerve pain, etc. I’ve been trying for almost 4 years now to figure it out. I’ve spent thousands and thousands of dollars, wasted so much of my time and energy… and hope. It really is more maddening than it is painful. But if you have any sort of persistent pain, you know what I mean. At the beginning of the year, I tried to take another path—I went to someone who has experience with my particular issue, TOS (Thoracic Outlet Syndrome). Though he taught me some valuable things, he did not fix my pain. Actually, it got worse. This could be a much longer bit, but let’s just say I’ve got some new hope today—where foolish or otherwise, I’ve been finding some relief. So here we go, 2020.

9. 1flychicken creationsIt’s hard to explain what this small business means to me. What started as a hobby, then a side hustle, has turned into something much bigger and much more meaningful than I could’ve ever imagined. (I have all of you to thank!) It came out of my love of giving (making/finding) the perfect gift for my people. This is the heart of all I do, because let’s face it, thoughtfulness might be the best gift. It’s not so much about the physical thing as it is the time and energy and love behind it. Being able to make and offer those unique items (as gifts for others and for shoppers themselves) is the closest thing I’ve felt to pure magic. For real. And making things? It’s almost necessary for me to function at this point. Being creative and being productive are two things that keep me sane. And while it’s some of the hardest work I’ve encountered (both physical and mental), I am so very grateful to have the opportunity. Here’s to 2020 continuing the pace. (Did I mention all the amazing folks I’ve met along the way?)

10. Not sure if I’d survive the world—especially this past year—if it wasn’t for Happy Family. This is the name I have given to our lil’ collective of cats and humans. As much as I am an independent person, who probably annoys Abbie with my pride and drawn lines, I am wholly grateful for her love and support and supreme belief in me. I mean, she probably thinks I’m like 45% better than I am, which drives me bananas, but I’ll let her keep thinking that for a while. Ha! Need I even tell you how much my cats mean to me? I hate it. I hate loving something so hard and so helpless. But just looking at them makes me heart pee, you know? 

Man, after writing this, it still feels like there is so much more to talk about. AWP, poetry, losing my grandfather, new friends, old friends, art events, the fall semester, almost teaching a poetry workshop, etc… but I’ll stop here. Maybe tell some more in photos soon…

What was your year like? I hope through all of the challenges in your year, you can take from it, grow from it and give yourself everything you need to kick some 2020 ass.


mt

2 comments

  1. natasha says:

    Pain. UGH. Sorry to hear it remains. Sympathy as a fellow chronic pain person. Yes, eviction by a Trumper is basement under basement ugly. Stay on your seat. Sorry for your losses. Be flexible with those lines. 45% is damn good. Take it. Visited UHAUL about boxes. Love to the furballs.

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