Blog, Journal

32 Years

M.A. Brotherton

I turn 32 today.

Your thirty-second birthday isn’t really a milestone, but for me it is. Every birthday feels like a milestone. Another year older. Another notch on the cosmic bedpost. My human score goes up. I get closer to the epic levels.

I always get reflective and nostalgic this time of year. I go in search of accomplishments I can be proud of. I worry about all of my failures. I think about the past too much. I obsess. The manic-depressive roller coaster has a lot more hills this time of year. My emotions rise and fall faster than the dramatic tension in a bad teen drama. It isn’t a good time to be around me.

 

A brief look into the last four birthdays on this blog shows how much I waffle back-and-forth between loving and hating the day. I go soul searching or I hide.

I suppose you can guess which way I’ve slid this year.

 

Regardless of my emotional stability, birthdays are great times to look back on the year and reflect. I need to focus on my accomplishments and learn from my failures. I need to, otherwise, I’m never going to be able to let go.

So, what did I accomplish this year? What did I learn?

Let’s start with the lessons.

This week, I learned I definitely need to find a new editor. No surprise there.

I’ve learned “fake it until you make it” isn’t just a saying. It works.

I’ve learned–at least intellectually–to step back and think through my words before I toss them out into the world. Otherwise, I might come off as “intense and overbearing.”

I’ve successfully managed to write and publish three books and a short story. It isn’t as much as I would like to be able to say I have accomplished, but I’ve learned I need to relax and let my story come. I’m probably not an outliner, even if I really, really want to be.

I’ve learned the truth behind the trope of eating ice cream while crying. You can’t cry while eating ice cream. Ice cream will not allow it. The crying comes when your body painfully reminds you that ice cream does, in fact, contain lactose.

I’ve kept my sanity.

I’ve paid off roughly 1/3 of my debt. That’s an accomplishment.

I remember to love
the structure of poetry
written with strict rules

I have managed to write every day for 64 days, at least 750 words. It is a start to much more.

I’ve learned being the best isn’t always the best for me.

 

I’ve learned a lot this year. So many hard lessons, but just writing them out in this post has flipped my track back out of the emo-spiral. I’ll probably flip tracks a few more times before the week is over. A few more days of riding the epic highs and bottomless lows of my own psyche.

 

And then back to work. There are too many lessons left to learn.

Published by M.A. Brotherton

M.A. Brotherton is a writer, blogger, artist, and fat-kid from the suburbs of Kansas City, Missouri. He’s tasted a little bit of everything the Midwest has to offer, ranging from meth-tweaking rednecks in massive underground cave complexes to those legendary amber waves of grain. When he’s not writing, he spends most of his time screwing around on the internet.