This year’s resolution came about while working on my most recent birthday show where I wrote duets with my friends. My 2017 show was all about my path to independence; for my 2018 show I wanted to honor the people who helped me get there. And so I wanted to continue this theme of gratitude throughout the year with my Birthday Resolution and write letters to the folx who’ve made a difference in my life. Since there are so many influencers in my life, it only made sense to write a letter everyday this year! And believe it or not, that’s not enough days to express thanks to all my inspirations!
So I took an extra day this week to write my letters. One in particular demanded more time and focus as it was dedicated to The Ex. I wanted to make sure his letter was full. But it’s difficult to put into words the emotions, feelings, and power that he bestowed upon me. There’s no one in this world that has had an impact on my life like he had. We may no longer be boyfriends, but his influence on my life is so grand and everlasting. And that can never be taken away.
Well…I wasn’t quite so successful at planning out dates for myself on a monthly basis this year. I did, however, take myself out by myself on occasion, but usually impromptu and for only a nightcap. Which is one of my fave things to do at this cute local cocktail bar.
I also went out quite often with friends, both on planned and impromptu outings. I realize that’s exactly what I needed. I wanted to celebrate life with loved ones. My chosen family. Last year was all about my path to independence and this year was all about spending time with the ones who helped me get where I am today. And my annual birthday shows reflected that the past two years respectively.
My favorite part of the night of my birthday show was making everyone feel like royalty, literally, and watching everyone find the perfect crown just for them!
As for my 35th Birthday Resolution, I’m going to write a letter each day to a different person, place or thing that has inspired me in some way throughout my lifetime.
Well I’ve done it again. I’ve just ignored my dates the past two months. Its not that I haven’t treated myself. Believe me I have. I just haven’t taken the time to plan out a date with myself. I know that in May, I at least woke up one Saturday morning and thought to myself “if ain’t nobody around today, Ima do brunch around the corner and have bottomless bloodies and mimosas by myself. It’ll be my date for May.”
And so that was my date as I sat at the bar and chatted with folks around me and with the bartender who also happened to be a philosopher.
However, I did just get back from a pseudo-planned solo trip to Cali for this month! It’s a mega-date with myself. I’ve always wanted to take a solo trip, even when I was with The Ex. And now I’m finally doing it. I’ve traveled alone to go meet people before, but this was a trip just for me. I didn’t meet up with anyone. I didn’t set any plans in stone. All I knew upfront was that I wanted to speed by some of the landmarks and focus on just exploring LA and San Fran. That’s right! I’ve always wanted to visit both places. I have preconceived notions about each city, but I had to make up my own mind through my own experience. I was nervous that I might not be as extroverted as usual and I’d be too shy to meet new people. But right off the jump I was already meeting people on the plane and riding the shuttle into the city together. I talk led to locals and dove bar bartenders for recommendations and did some of their suggestions. But in the end I mostly relaxed and walked within a 5 block radius of my room. I stayed in the gayborhood in both LA and SF. And drove up part of the PCH to view the scenic route. I could barely afford anything. And at first I got mad at myself for not exploring more, but I did explore and relaxed and found inner peace and tranquility. I learned a lot about myself which is for me and no one else.
I’m already ready for my next trip!
February was another month I was extremely busy with planning an event for over 700 guests, so finding time for myself was not easy. I planned to go see Black Panther and take myself to dinner, but then I decided to take The Ex to the movie on his birthday instead. He did take me out for a $100 sushi dinner for mine, so it seemed right. I know a lot of you might think I was headed down a very dangerous path by taking him out after all the things I wrote about him doing last year. But it’s hard to let go of 12 years together. But I am cautious enough to keep him at arm’s length.
I did go out almost every night in February. So I definitely treated myself, but I’m trying to make a conscious effort of planning one night to spoil myself. I’ll make a stronger effort next month.
Well I survived 2017, but it wasn’t easy. Amazing things happened throughout the year as I claimed my independence and freedom as a single person. I tried to document my journey along the way, but it was a lot harder to document while still processing the emotions than I realized. Yes, writing helps me process but it also forces me to think about the situation which I wasn’t always ready to do. My last post was in August, and a few weeks later would’ve been mine and The Ex’s official 12th anniversary. Ironically our anniversary of becoming exclusive was 9/11. That should’ve been a sign.
It was also difficult to write about the loved ones who hurt me while also respecting their privacy. But then again, why should I hold back from sharing factors of my own truths; they haven’t considered my feelings.
I made mistakes. I battled a double heartbreak. I was faced with discovering who I really am. Do I enjoy and respect that person? I tried to be honest and open with my chosen family and my lovahs. I gained new friends. I met new lovahs and lost other lovahs. I embarrassed myself. I was proud of myself. I earned a grant and produced a show. I worked hard and played harder. I created a demo for an EP all about my road to independence and performed those songs and some stories for my annual birthday show. It was one of the most healing processes I’ve ever gone through. That really does just prove the power of art. And now I understand the strength and popularity of heartbreak albums in so much more depth.
My experiences inspired my current Birthday Resolution which I realized I haven’t announced yet. During my 34th year I am going on a monthly date with myself. Taking myself on dates is something I’ve been doing for years, even while dating The Ex. But this year I wanted to make a conscious effort to do so regularly, so stay tuned to hear all about them!
I had to go over to The Ex’s to tie up some loose ends the other day. While there, I had a cocktail and caught up with him and his friend. Then he walked me to the bus stop so that he could vent a little about this friend. Apparently this friend was betraying his trust and sneaking to read his text messages. I was totally confused as to why this friend would be all up in his bitnass like that.
Me: There’s no reason for him to be in your personal stuff like that. (as we continued down the block, I stopped, stepped back, and threw my hands up). Unless he’s your new boyfriend.
The Ex: Well he’s not over at my place helping me clean for no reason. But we’re not there yet.
Okay, now he’s being honest and open. Okay, this is a good thing, as I don’t want to lose him entirely. We spent our entire adult lives together thus far.
Me: Oh ok. Well, he still don’t needa be prying like that. We were together almost 12yrs and I still never invaded your privacy. Well, not until the very end because you was lyin’. We not gonna get into that right now, but you know you was lyin’.
Then we both laughed. He didn’t deny that he was runnin’ around behind my back actin’ brand new. He opened up to me. He admitted his betrayal.
So then on Monday I performed one of my stories from my personal repertoire at a weekly event. I was booked last minute so I didn’t really invite anyone to come. Then The Ex called me on the day of the show. When he found out I was performing, he promised to come. Well, I gave up on his promises long ago, yet he actually did show up. I was the first to go on, and he literally left right after my performance. So he was there just to support me. That’s sweet. He also convinced TENB (The Ex’s New Boo) to come watch as well, but he was late arriving so he missed my performance and missed The Ex. So The Ex text me after he’d left to ask me to keep an eye out for him since his phone died and he wasn’t able to let him know that he’d left. What the fuck! How did I end up chatting over a drink at the bar with TENB?! ONLY IN MY LIFE! But I’m glad The Ex and I can move forward peacefully and with love.