I’m attending a lunch today that has been running for >15 years. It’s a group of mates that get together and have a good laugh. Or even a good cry.
Most of the day is beers and banter but the lunch is somewhat progressive for a bunch of washed-up ageing blokes. During the course of the meal, everyone takes a turn and delivers their highs and lows for the past 12 months. The finest part about this annual end-of-year wrap-up is that everyone is candid when it’s their turn to chat. It’s not uncommon for one of the boys to shed a tear in reflection of what might have been a tough year for him.
I’ve had this lunch weighing on my mind as the year has hastily been coming to a close, not because I’m the nominated chairman and have to organise the location and the detail for the event but because I really didn’t want to stand up and say my year had been a disaster.
At least years lunch I kept my delivery positive. In reflection, I had nothing bad to say. I felt that I had been managing my family’s journey through grief extremely well. I was still an open wound but I was happy. I was extremely excited about 2022.
2022. My year started out great, It was on fire with optimism and fun, it went rocky around April and then by June it had gone to absolute shit. Everything I had envisaged fell apart.
When Lou died, I had a hole that developed in my heart. It made me fragile and vulnerable. It was raw and unhealed. I met someone at the conclusion of 2021 and the void was healing for me. Scar tissue was forming and I was feeling the warmth.
Life isn’t always what you foresee though. My damaged but healing heart was put in a blender and the blades were turned on slowly. I was overwhelmed and my emotional pain turned physical as I couldn’t keep myself together.
But you know what? I bounced.
I am back and I am feeling like me and I love me.
I worked really hard on healing. Family and friends were there when I needed them most, I sought professional help and I got emotional support from an unplanned relationship that was a remedy in my mending.
Today at the close of the year and chairing a lunch of reflection, I can conclude that my life is good.
I am loving my newfound practices of holistic healing; breathing techniques, ice baths, meditation and herbal tea. I’m more fond of the ocean and its healing power. My diet and hydration are the best its been since I was an athlete. My exercise routine is consistent. I have created more me-time. I am exploring the literature of varied guidance. I am conscious of discovering who I am to myself, to others and who I want to be.
I’ve scraped by having better months than bad months this past calendar year so let’s dust off the broken ones and build from the rubble.
2023 is a journey for me to be young. To think about and do things that defy my age.
To be happy, healthy and strong.
To love life.