“How was your 2019?” a friend asked. And all I could think of was a roller coaster.
2019 was heartbreaking but beautiful. It broke me but also mend me in ways I couldn’t have imagined.
It knocked me down to my knees but also lifted me high in the blue sky. It almost robbed me of life, but also gave me a reason to live. It pushed me to a dungeon with millions of dark thoughts but also set me free and made me realize that I could fly again. It reminded me that I was the Great Butterfly and that there was nothing I couldn’t conquer.
I don’t know how your year was but despite the happiness and sadness, the success and failures it brought forth, I’m glad it has come to an end. All good and bad things always come to an end.
I learned that no matter how bad things are; even if your world comes to an end in the evening, and the sun sets, it will still rise again in the morning. 2019 taught me that life doesn’t have to be beautiful and sometimes, It’s the ugliness in it that makes it beautiful.
I’m not a motivational speaker or anything, I can’t even get my sister to listen to me, but I hope you learn a thing or two from my lessons in 2019.
The world doesn’t care
This year, the statement sunk in deeply like an anchor in the ocean.
The world doesn’t care. It doesn’t care what you go through. What emotional, financial or physical issues you are battling with, it still expects you to wake up and live.
Your Boss will expect you to show up for work, your landlord will still expect his rent money and life will expect you to move on regardless of how you shitty you feel.
The world won’t stop spinning just because you’re not okay and no matter how broken or crushed you feel, you have to wake up every single day and live.
Even the strongest souls get exhausted, and that’s okay
The world breaks everyone, even the strongest of souls. We are humans, we hurt and sometimes we reach our breaking point and that’s okay.
This year taught me that it was okay to remove my brave face and admit that I was not okay. It taught me that it was okay to seek help. People tend to attach some kind of weakness to people battling with certain issues, but there’s nothing shameful in that.
Life breaks us and sometimes we break beautifully.
Sometimes your journey doesn’t have to be about love
We are always scared of being lonely. And sometimes, we end up making bad decisions just because we think we need someone by our side.
This year taught me that your journey doesn’t always have to be about love. Sometimes, it’s about yourself. People confuse attraction, attention, and like for love. Just because someone likes you, doesn’t mean that you should get into a relationship. Interest doesn’t get you anywhere. What happens when the butterflies die and the attraction fades away?
At times, you have to learn to embrace your loneliness.
Not everything in life has to make sense
As humans, we love attaching meaning to everything, even to things that don’t make sense at all.
We love looking for answers to questions that are simply not there. We spend so much time questioning life and figuring out how things are supposed to be, that we forget to live. Sometimes life is the way it is. Some things are meant to be just the way they are. Nothing more.
Staying alive is a win too
My biggest accomplishment this year, is that I got up every single day and made my bed.
People attach a lot of importance to job titles, status, power, fame, accomplishments, but do you know what else counts? Waking up. Making your bed. Washing your face. And dressing up. Congratulations to all those people who continued to choose life every single day, those who chose to smile even though their souls were bleeding. You made it this far. I’m proud of you.
Learn to walk away from people or situations that don’t give you peace.
From time to time, we hold on too tightly to people or things that cause us pain. Why are we always afraid of letting go?
I realized that having peace of mind and of the heart was very crucial. This year made me realize that I was very important and that I loved myself so much to be in situations that caused me pain or left my heart messed up. It’s never easy to walk away, but your happiness and the state of your heart matters. Sometimes, you have to choose yourself over other people.
You can’t live your life according to someone else’s clock.
Timing is one important factor that can be hard to understand.
At some point, I tried to hurry life and chase after things that were not meant to be mine. I got hurt when I failed to get some opportunities or people. I got hurt when I felt as if nothing important was going on in my life. I came to find out that we can never be on the same page.
Some people will always be ahead of you, others behind you. It’s like a race and all of you can never finish it at the same time. Timing teaches you to be patient.
There’s beauty in the struggle
I used to be ashamed of myself and most of the time I felt so bad if I couldn’t afford some things or visit certain places.
Little did I know that all this was part of the process and that it was moulding me to become a better person. 2019 taught me that it was okay not to live a certain lifestyle. That it was okay not to drive a car, not to have the dream job or wear designer clothes. Timing.
Always be prepared, life can change in an instant
The good or the bad thing in life is that it never gives an assurance to anything or anyone. Anything can be snatched away from you anytime.
You can lose your loved one, your job, your wealth or health in a span of a second. Things can change from good to worse or from bad to good anytime. Nothing is permanent and you always have to be prepared and accept life as it comes.
You deserve better
Sometimes we settle for less than we deserve. Sometimes we keep up with a lot of shit from people and for what? Love?
I can’t give any relationship advice but all I know is that if you have to settle down, you deserve to have someone who chooses you, someone who makes you a priority and someone who stays. You deserve better than reminding someone how to treat you.
You deserve more than someone who leaves you falling asleep confused every night. You deserve more not just in relationships but in every sphere of life.
There’s nothing wrong with being selfish or putting yourself first.
You deserve to prioritize yourself because you matter and at the end of the day you only have you.
It’s okay to be selfish, it okay to keep your heart to yourself because not everyone deserves it. Not all people come to your life with good intentions, some come to cause storms and it’s your duty to protect yourself from such people.
As we step into 2020, I hope you know that you are enough, that you matter and that you are a fire that cannot be put out. You are not your past and neither are you the mistakes you did. Leave all the burden behind and remember time doesn’t heal you make a choice.
Have an amazing 2020 and thanks for being part of the Butterfly’s journey. God bless you.
By PAULINE KETETHYA I have long thick strands of hair around my nipple. One day, I combed …