I remember the day that I decided 2014 was my favourite number. It was grade 7, and I wanted to be different. I remember thinking how grand a number it was, how grown up I’d be once it was on the calendar (I should take this moment to tell you that my 2014 calendar is a Pacific Rim calendar– bit jaeger heavy, if you ask me. Kaiju are marvels of technology too, you know). I knew 2014 would be important.
Last year I remember thinking how despondent the 12-year-old version of myself would have been had she seen a glimpse of who she would become. A brittle thing still controlled by the same fears. Still puppeted by the strings she thought that time would snap. I didn’t know it then, but I had decided to give that little girl’s dream another chance. I was going to fix it.
Shoveling 20 years worth of garbage out of your soul is exhausting, and messy, and once you start doing it, you’re stuck doing it. Therapy was supposed to help me un-stick, but I was finding myself more hopeless than ever. I wondered if I would ever start believing in myself, or if some people were simply incapable of that confidence. The only thing I believed in was trying everything that I could to feel better. Not because I thought that eventually I’d find “The Thing That Worked For Me”, but because I thought that before I could say that life wasn’t worth the trouble, I needed to be able to say that I did a lot research to come to that conclusion.
Looking back now, I can see how these moments were the start of something grand. Here I would compare myself to a newly-formed butterfly if they weren’t so freaky– not much happening, until suddenly some awkward twitches, lengthy periods of inactivity, and then– yuck! A colourful thing flittering unpredictably toward your face. Now, if only the one-year-younger version of myself could have seen a glimpse of who she would become.
Then again, maybe she did.