AT LEAST NOT ALL OF THE TIME.
And not to the extent to where I don't want what I do have: ample thighs, a creatively stitched together life and a vibrant local community.
New Year's was always my favorite holiday and not just because I loved stumbling face first into the gutter with my best dress on. Because I did! I loved the wandering, stumbling, reckless, drunken adventure that replicated so many other nights of the year...but with semi-high heels and glitter! Until I had to wake up the next morning.
Wishing that I was a new person in a new place surrounded by new people with a new personality and new clothes and a new face and a new brain and a new plan to act out that would make me rich! skinny! and famous!
On New Year's Day, no matter how hungover I was or how bad the other days of the year were, the opportunity to turn over a new leaf in a brand spankin' new calendar made me tingle. 1/1 was an annual opportunity to reinvent myself, start fresh, clear the slate, pretend a large part of the night or year before had never really happened and wallllllah! Everlasting eternal over the top happiness. It was such a hopeful 24 hours.
But then 1/2 would roll along and I'd be right where I left off on 12/31 but worse because I was 3 days older and even further away from achieving my very fucked up goals for success.
I'm not sure exactly when or how the idea that I can be who I am and like it, that I do fit into this package that is my life and my skin began to sink in, but I know I can't find the exact moment in any of the pages of my calendar. Maybe it was around the time I started looking at my addictions (getting rid of a few, trading in some for others) or when I began to put in the slow, hard work required to build the stuff of life that has brought me actual joy-- the very stuff I overlooked when I had my eye on the top rung of the imaginary ladder. The day in, day out, 365 day-a-year work required to acquire bylines and best friends and more black in the bank than red. Taking more creative than destructive risks. Asking for help-- and accepting it. Revealing my shame and mess and tangled knots rather than pushing them down and wrapping them up. Because that stuff, the stuff I used to snub-or fear- kicks ass. Every day of the year.
The truth is I still wish I could squeeze into a tiny pair of skinny jeans and find my flawless face plastered all over People Magazine for small portions of the day, but not all of it. Right now I would rather find ways to actually love my actual self than invent ways for people I don't know to think they love who it looks like I am. But that's just today. We'll see what tomorrow brings when it gets here.