New Year, Now What?

Updated: Jan 8, 2021

We all have so many feelings about 2020 and what the New Year will mean for us, but have we truly sat and considered our relationship to 2020 and what that means for 2021?

I can certainly relate to the fear, rage, loneliness, confusion, and uncertainty I think we all felt at least once this past year. I absolutely raged all year and only sometimes directed it in the right direction. (Shout out to my fabulous partner who gently checked me when necessary). I live with my partner and two pets, but still felt lonely more than once. All this to say, yes 2020 was trash, and I'm so ready for it to be over, even though nothing is really changing overnight.

Saying good-bye to 2020 for me felt a bit like looking at the year thru rose-colored glasses. My year started by continuing my battle with a liver that was failing, hard. I was in the hospital over New Year's and just hoped for a transplant in 2021.

I'll never forget dozing off in the hospital bed with my partner as 2020 rolled in. January for me was slow, dark, and scary. I wasn't sure what my future would look like or if I even had one. One day I stopped into a local PDX shop, Roots and Crowns to drown my sorrows in buying queer witch things. I found an amulet made by the shop owner that was "For Protection" and shared my story while paying for my haul. Not only were the owners so sweet, they blessed the amulet and put it around my neck saying they felt this was my year for a transplant. "I feel it for you," they said as I left. It felt important and so special. I felt less hopeless.

My partner, Faris and I at OHSU on NYE 2019. So tired. So scared. So jaundice.

They were right. Almost one month later, I was going into the hospital to get prepped for surgery. A liver came in and I was to be the recipient. All I can say about this is that it's all a blur. I stopped eating and drinking at 2pm and didn't get water until two days later! Getting a bottle of water from my nurse in ICU was the happiest I can remember being in 2020!

As much as I'm ready for a New Year, I know that 2021 is dragging so much baggage from 2020 along for the ride. Celebrating this New Year's Eve felt a little strange, so I decided to snuggle with my family; which consists of Faris and the pets. In the days leading up to NYE I used movement to mediate on my intentions for 2021, journaled, and spent lots of time with my partner.

Meditation on grief in movement in my favorite place, the tub. See full video on my Pateron when you become a patron.

All of this has me considering what energy I need to bring and release. Are goals or intentions even worth setting this New Year's? In a world obsessed with lofty and unattainable goals how can we move from under this pressure to "better ourselves" to focus on what is best for us? For me, it was choosing to not really set intentions for the New Year, it was to choose focusing on what I needed in the moment and each moment going forward.

Choosing yourself and what is best for you is a form of radical self-love and care. Radical self-love/care is the ability to choose YOUR needs rather than needs based on body hierarchy and beauty standards set by white supremacy and patriarchy. This does not mean that that bath your body needs can't be radical self-care, it means that you choose that bath because you listened to your body. That bath is about you, your body, and your needs, not wants.

Listening to your body, removing that pressure of body hierarchy, and doing what you need can be difficult. It's a skill that was built for me through chronic illness and recovery. Doing the work of movement as healing is about survival and eventually thriving. The work is beautiful, long, and rewarding. As you move into 2021, know that you can always choose yourself and your body, it just takes some listening. Your body has a story it's eager to tell. I'm here to help you listen.

Happy New Year, y'all!



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