It’s daunting to return to a project after a prolonged hiatus. Over the years, my homecomings to eatingatme have been cloaked in a self-inflicted pressure to create content that elicits a reaction from readers similar to the first time they heard Darth Vader cry, “Luke, I am your father.”
I can tell you with certainty that this response isn’t what I’ve yielded. This blog’s been a mediocre endeavor at best.
I’m not going to attempt to unpack the treasure trove of booty and trash that was 2020 – and its ostensibly sluggard cousin, 2021 – right now; this will take time and collaboration. But it’s eatingatme’s ninth birthday today, and I can’t think of a better opportunity to examine a gem from the dumpster fire prize chest, and give this space another go.
When we hit January 1, 2021, all I knew was that I didn’t want the second half of my life to mirror the first. Since growth and comfort rarely co-exist, I separated from the familiar and seemingly safe. I took a hatchet to the icehouse I’d built and dug deeper into my foundation than ever before.
I’m naturally inclined to be a hermit, but 40 days of consistent solitude was alchemic. I faced lifelong demons; celebrated achievements I didn’t think deserved acknowledgement previously; looked long and hard in my eyes that eerily resemble those of both of my parents and discovered who I am.
I’m my own best friend. I’m my own best lover. I’m my own best provider. I’m my own…warrior.
I hadn’t been able to say this before with absolute certainty. I hadn’t been able to pinpoint what exactly had been eating at me all these years. But, finally, I knew how to move forward, and how to be a member of the human race.
Introspection and reflection yield some pretty miraculous shit. I became clear that we can’t heal collectively until we heal ourselves. For as long as I can remember, I’ve danced co-dependently with all the important people in my life, even when they didn’t realize or ask for it. I truly didn’t know how to exist without someone else’s existence leading the way. This realization came as both a shock and a relief.
It’s imperative to me that I fulfill my soul contract…independently. Choosing not to have children leaves the duty of legacy to fall on the binding of my written word and other creative endeavors. In unearthing my desire to do my part to help others share their truth and feel connected, I realized how frighteningly out of touch I was with myself. What little respect I had for myself. How clueless I was on how to love myself.
So I slashed prices. Stopped, dropped, and rolled. Grabbed my journal, a healthy supply of Kleenex, and my Maker’s Mark. I felt, thought, and wrote my way through childhood, breakups, death, destruction, and all that glowed.
And here I am, today. My own best lover. I’m so jazzed about it, I (collaboratively) put it on a tee shirt.
More to come. #eatingatme #iammyownbestlover #margevirginia