dear 2021 I had my heart broken, got my shit together, changed my hair color(that was a lot), started therapy, made healthy boundaries, got a second dog, but most importantly…I broke my foot. The broken foot has nothing to really do with the story, but it was on the list of firsts for Bailey 2021 edition.
Lost Letters. 4.
What a wild year to become my best friend. I knew from the second I saw you that I liked you…it was probably the resting bitch face that we later bonded over.
Dear 13 year old me,
hey b, This letter is coming at you from a version of you that you haven’t met yet. So, hi! How are you? That’s a trick question - I know how you are; confused and angry, but just trying to hang in there. This isn’t a ‘hey, maybe don’t do this’, but more so a ‘hey, you’ll be okay’. You will take on so much that was never meant to be yours to carry. So, we can set it down whenever you’re ready. Which I know when that’ll happen cause I’m writing this from the future, but that’s not relevant.
Dear 2020, The expectations and plans I had for you were filled with a lot of firsts and unknowns. Most of those so called plans were major changes to what I’ve known thus far, but probably for the first time ever since I’ve come into existence I was excited for that ginormous amount of change. That’s until the world came to a screeching halt because of COVID-19. I’m not going to lie, I was very excited at first to just simply get a break. I was overworked and exhausted in every way possible so, my outlook on the world shutting down looked more like a blessing in disguise than anything else. That is until, unemployment never came and I got bored. Then the anxiety disorder that I didn’t think I had, became assigned to me like a role in a play and every mental issue I neglected for years shortly came to the forefront. For the first time ever, I had no distractions or excuses. I actually had to live with my issues and enjoy my own company which needless to say I hated every second of it. It also made me wonder how I have any friends because that shit was not fun. I knew I needed help, but I excused it for being busy. Having to sit with myself everyday with nothing to do, nowhere to go, and nobody to see really forced me to work on the relationship I had with myself. It turns out the most important relationship in my life was the one I neglected the most. I had a lot of anger and trauma that needed to get handled properly and in a healthy manner, which meant that I actually had to take the first steps in getting help and not just say that I’m fucked up and go on with my day like I didn’t start a war with my closest loved ones. I said last year that I was going to make my mental health a priority and I’m happy to announce I finally did. It only took a pandemic for it to happen, but beggars can’t be choosers. So, I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned over this past year was being content in your own presence is the most powerful thing you can do for yourself. 2020 has been a shit year for literally everybody, but I think it’s been a key year in everybody’s life regarding growth and change. It’s not the year anybody wanted, but it’s the year we needed. 2020 is exactly like 20/20 vision. This was the year of seeing everything for EXACTLY how it is. It was for seeing, that there is beauty in everything falling apart at the same time. We all survived the chaos not because it doesn’t throw us off or because it doesn’t hurt. We survived because we shift, we re-evaluate what’s important to us and what needs our attention. The “little” moments aren’t actually that little; they’re the things that have saved us, always mattered, and held weight despite us making it out like they’re just little things we happen to do everyday. 2020 has felt like a sledgehammer to the head a million times over, but it has actually been the best year of my life so far. It’s made me face challenge after challenge that I’ve learned to adapt and overcome. This year has forced me to grow exponentially whether it be emotionally or mentally. Definitely not physically because if you know me personally you know I haven’t grown since maybe my sophomore year of high school. This year has also brought back a true ride or die and has allowed me to make a few new ones who mean the absolute world to me. You know who you are…*clears throat* best bitches. So although this year has been horse shit for everybody in its own little way, nobody would be who they are in 2021 if it wasn’t for 2020.
Lost Letters. 3.
I’m not sure how exactly to start this, but anyone that knows me knows you bring out the absolute best in me. When we’re together, we’re on a different level and EVERYBODY notices. You are an amazing friend, my truest, and for that I’ll cherish you forever. Other friends may come and go, but you and I, we’re connected. It’s probably because we have the same crackhead energy. I know I have a lot of growing to do, but you’re always there to help me through all the growth and change. You take me for who I am and push me to be a better person. I think the main reason we’re best friends is because you just get it. I don’t have to explain anything to you or worry if you’ll get the joke. You already got it and are on your way to making the next one. We’re best friends because you love me even when I’m terrible. It’s easy to love someone when they’re doing well, which I never have been well for the entirety of our friendship, but you’ve stuck by my side through it all. You’re always there for me, even when I don’t deserve it. We’re best friends because whenever we’ve gone long stretches of time without talking and it hasn’t damaged the relationship. We always pick up where we left off. You’re always happy for me, you’re always supportive. You’re my best friend because you’re not afraid to call me out on my shit or disagree with me. I can’t get away with anything when I’m with you. You’ll tell me the things that I need to hear, but everyone else is too afraid to tell me. I am so lucky to have your honesty. We’re best friends because you make me feel less alone in this messy and confusing world. It’s crazy how often you can feel disconnected from people. So many people can betray you, or fail to understand the words that are coming out of your mouth. When I see you, it’s a burst of reassurance that I’m not the only one who looks at the world the same way. There’s someone else and that someone is you.
An Open Letter.
As a white person in today’s society I understand my privilege. I have never been afraid of what would happen to me if I was pulled over. My parents never had a conversation with me about what to say or do if I get into any kind of encounter with the police. I’ve never been minding my own business and get called a racial slur from a stranger. I’ve always felt safe in my own home. I can have a cellphone, sell CD’s, play loud music, read a book in my car, go for a walk with my grandfather, go for a run, walk home with skittles, shop at Walmart, fucking breathe. I can fucking live and it’s because I’m white.
Lost Letters. 2.
I’ve known you since I was one. You’ve changed quite a bit, but so have I. After 20 years, there should be at least a little change. It’s only a natural thing to happen and change should be embraced. While we’ve changed in many ways for the better, some change is just simply out of our control. In a short time, part of you will be underwater which is something everybody is trying to cope with. It’s a change that nobody really wants to deal with, but we’re forced to. Throughout all the change that has come with us over the years you still make me feel the same exact way I did when I was little. You have loved me when I’ve felt unlovable. You know all my secrets, even the darkest and deepest. You were there for a lot of laughs, but shared some tears with me as well. You’ve had your fair share of natural disasters and I’ve had mine. I guess that’s why hurricanes are named after people. Yet, we both come back better than ever. You’ve definitely helped me and been there for me after all the storms, but I don’t think I could say I’ve done the same for you. Some people say home is a person and others say that themselves is what makes a place home. To me, you’re home. I knew this is where I always wanted to be since I was a little girl, but at that time I didn’t know the words to express that. It took years of finding myself and going through some shit to realize just how much you meant to me. More importantly recognizing how you made me feel and knowing that you were my place. Through any and all bullshit, I knew I could come to you without any judgement. You have a way of bringing me back to reality, but without everybody else’s opinions and views. You give me a crystal clear vision about everything, always. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t scare me shitless to think that one day that vision might get clouded. If I were to pray to any and every god, it would be that you never lose your sense of clarity. I recently read a quote that said we have the same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, tying us to the ocean. I don’t know how true that is, but maybe that is why I feel so connected to you or maybe I was a sea turtle in my past life, whichever it may be…I always find myself coming to you for some sort of advice and clarity. You keep me humble and in today’s world of social media that seems like an impossible task. You bring me back to myself, even if I didn’t feel lost. What you do for me is so evident that others have suggested when it’s time for me to give you a visit. There’s this extraordinary energy about you that consumes and calms me all at once. The way you dismantle my defenses and challenge me to think about situations from a different view helps me become a stronger and more passionate person. I feel capable of anything around you, okay almost anything legal. One of the greatest gifts you could give someone is accepting them for who they are with no judgement and you do that with ease. I get very bored very quickly so, normal people would think I would get tired of visiting you, laying on your beach, and watching the sun set everyday, but the reality is I could never get tired of those things. You make me feel like me which that feeling is something I can’t find anywhere else. It’s a feeling that I crave. Some said seeing you everyday would be different than just once in a while, but they were wrong. I’ve fallen more in love with who you are. The people you surround yourself with are some of the nicest assholes you’ll ever meet, which is probably why I like them so much. You’ve been home since I could remember. Thank you for being you and allowing me to be me.
I thought past years had tried me, but man was I fucking wrong. When I think back at the year I think of all the heartbreak. The moments where I thought I’d never be happy again. Or the moments where I felt so lost and like I didn’t belong anywhere. I had thought I had already hit rock bottom, but it turns out that there was a basement. If the Bailey at the end of 2019 was to tell Bailey at the beginning of 2019 where she’d be…for lack of better words she’d be suspicious. It’s a cliche thing to say, but cliche’s are cliche’s for a reason. 2019 was the year of heartbreak, but a big year for personal growth. By the time 2019 had rolled around it was time for a new me. The one that needed to find love for herself and focus on finding her own happiness. In the process of growing through heartbreak I changed the parts of me that needed to be changed and learned about some other parts along the way. Genuine happiness was something I didn’t know anything about. The last time I was genuinely happy from within was probably when I was a baby and it was because my mom handed me a cardboard box or some shit. But let me tell you, getting told “you look happier” from people who have witnessed you at your worst is an elite compliment. Through months of focusing on myself and making myself my number one priority I had found genuine happiness from myself; not from some food or friends or a significant other. Those other things just fill a temporary void and it’s unhealthy because when those things leave or are gone, you still feel empty. There’s the saying that you need to love yourself before you love anybody else and I was one of those people that believed in that. Until I realized you need to go through heartbreak to learn how to love yourself. Although I found self love and happiness, my mental health wasn’t the best. I might preach sometimes that it’s important to take care of yourself, but I’ll be the first to admit that I actually suck at doing that. My mental health was a struggle this year which made me realize my mental health has to be a main priority of mine. I never want myself to get that low ever again. Although this past year was filled with one too many lows, there were oh so many highs. Not only did I go to my first concert ever, but I went to a couple more after that. Including one that I took my mom too, which was fun watching my mom sing along to Shaggy. I made so many memories with my best friend that we still laugh about to this day. Later on in the year I spent a good amount of time at the beach which always helped me from being committed. I’ve also met the love of my life. I couldn’t have even dreamt of a love like this yet, here I am. Some might say it’s too good to be true, but I could only hope that everyone has a love like this in their life. A love that is simple, secure, and safe. So although my 2019 definitely felt like two different years, I’m beyond thankful for every up and down I had. If there’s one thing I will most definitely take away from 2019 it’s to truly love myself, flaws and all. It’s okay to not be okay. For the love of everything good in the world, just cry. So, 2019, you’ve been one emotional year…but thank you.