Welcome 2016

By 12:29 PM

Me and Amber Rose

I'm back after taking a short hiatus to sort through my life. All of those reading this, this means you've made it into 2016. Welcome!

The latter part of 2015 was filled with mixed feelings for me. In the early part of the year, shortly after securing my new job, I lost a friend and past classmate, Anthony. Shortly after that, I lost another, Romero. Just as things were looking up, I lost another in December, Anton. Between all of these deaths, I was hit with a phone call that a very close friend now has stage 5 kidney disease and may need a transplant.

Suffice to say, 2015 represented the best of times and the worst of times sprinkled with lessons. Today is Anton's funeral. I have yet to reconcile his parting and often find myself browsing through his Facebook page looking at past photos and memories. It was this death that I realized how trivial Facebook was to some sorts. There was no point of posting "RIP" on his wall, or mine. To what avail? It wouldn't bring back my big little brother. 

At the end of 2015, as I struggled to think of gifts for those close, I finally understood the fragility of life, the importance of prayer and the greatest gift you can give someone - that is time. All of the friends above mentioned, I had allowed life to get too busy and fall out of contact. I would peep here and there on Facebook to check in on their pages to see if all is well... but I failed to meet up and hang out or call. At least with Anthony, I saw him a little over 24 hours before his tragic accident... but still. You never know when it is going to be the last moment nor how unprepared you're going to be for it. 

Throughout 2015, I met many folks speaking of God and spirituality and trying to get me into church. By the end of 2015, after all that trauma, I finally opened up to being receptive to prayer. I finally started seeing changes in my life. I made the effort to send a message to those close more often. My friend who's very sick, is thankfully, still alive. It's hard but with life there's hope and I'm eternally grateful of each day that myself, those that I love that come to mind immediately, and those that don't, are still here with me fighting the good fight.

Aside from all the deaths, there was much internal family turmoil. However, somehow, someway, it has all worked out. I've graduated from crying in the bathroom in my office from all my worries to quietly saying a prayer of thanks for life and protection of their spirit, wherever they are in the afterlife.

Despite all the tragedies that caught me off guard, I was privileged to be able to meet lots of wonderful people that helped shaped who I am and my experiences like the staff at the dive shop that became like family. The new family formed at my current workplace. The two little fluffy bundles that have entered my home (one is in the picture above). 

I must say, getting the pups was a decision that I had to toy with for a bit since my past two had passed away. However, I must say, I have no regrets. There was one scare when my pup Snowie became very ill, very suddenly, but thankfully the vet was able to save her and she survived the ordeal. The two of them have brought great light into a dark period and have continued to be a source of happiness for everyone in my home, bringing great laughter and cheer from their many antics and strong personalities.

The funeral is happening as I type this; I'm at my desk in my office tearing up. I feel guilty for not going, but not sure if that's how I want to remember Anton. In December, one of my other little brothers from the group messaged me shortly after the death and told me that's what he'd like me to draw, Anton. I didn't know how to respond so I didn't. But I think that's what I'll do today in his memory. I think I'm finally ready.

And when I get home, I know those two bundles Amber Rose and Snowie (aka Snow Belle) will be there to topple me with love kisses and bites and remind me that despite all of this... it's ok and be thankful.

On a positive note, I am finally at a the proper starting point I desired to be with my art. In upcoming posts, I'll finally update you guys on what happened with my art while I was busy being too preoccupied with life to update here. 

2016 is a wide open road full of endless possibilities, hope, change and opportunity to love. Plan well, act well. This is the year to get your dreams started if you haven't yet. My mom insists leap years are playgrounds for what you'd like to make it.

Let's make it a great one, if not for ourselves, then for those we've lost along the way in honour of them.

What did you learn in 2015?

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  1. beautiful post full of reflection and gratitude. Thanks for sharing such intimate lessons ❤️