I had the worst of days yesterday. It began with an empty (missed to refill) coffee jar, burnt dal because I miscalculated the cooker whistle, snapping at my mom, work-induced brain fog and the nip in the bud was the accidental fall of my favourite ceramic pasta bowl. This is neither a rant nor an 'I have had better days' article, this is in fact my burnout self accepting that it might not go worse than this.
Last night, my doom scrolling led me to a reel discussing how important it is to draw up a 'Year Review' sheet. Do this activity alone or with your partner to highlight the highs and lows of the year gone by and to 'plan' the year ahead. The purpose of this activity is to build goals, be it financial, professional or personal. But the closer I get to my 30s, I realise the significance of the New Year starts to change as one age, however, my year review is nowhere how my teenage self would have planned.
Unfinished drafts of 2023
To be honest, if I had to prepare for my Emotions Wrapped 2023, it would be a mix of feelings that can only be described as a cocktail of nostalgia, regret, and a touch of existential dread. This year, I had 250 'what am I doing here' meltdowns, lost my cool at work 86 times, cried (with loud sighs) 164 times, changed my therapist twice, went off-grid for 40 days straight, and missed my mom all 365 days.
Earlier this year when I was promoted at work, I was excited to get onto new formats of storytelling, lead my team and even challenge myself. I did not expect it to be easy, and it wasn't supposed to be either, but boy did it test me. The changing dynamics at workplaces tested my faith, patience and skills every single day. I suffered major imposter syndrome and had bouts of 'Am I even doing the right thing here.' Despite external evidence of competence, ever-supportive colleagues and a job that I prayed for, I had constant thoughts of being inadequate, and internalized fear of being exposed as a "fraud" or worse a 'bad leader'.
Work concerns aside, health troubles worried me constantly. The classic "I'll exercise regularly" resolution which I undertook last year laughs in a corner of my work desk as I slouch on my chair writing this. My PCOS flare is at an all-time high and it doesn't help either that I am every time body-shamed when I visit home to meet my parents. 'Any good news?' nosy relatives inquire as if for godsakes a woman can't even look bloated without raising suspicions of being pregnant.
But not all was bad though, if you ask. I travelled a fair bit with my loved ones, we celebrated my father's 50th birthday, welcomed my ever-smiling beautiful niece and I stepped out of my comfort zone to become a part of a book club. Somehow, I managed to find little pockets of happiness amongst my special ones. Things are still not easy, and maybe they won't be this coming year either, but perhaps that is what life is about.
Embracing our flaws, quirks, and, our inevitable failures but riding along and hoping for the best. Here's to a year of laughing at our own shortcomings and finding joy in the chaos. After all, if we can't take ourselves too seriously, who can?
Views expressed by the author are their own