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Karma and Me.
A new years resolution.
I had one.
But who didn't?
Who doesn't buy into the "this is my year, I'm gonna change" bullshit?
Who doesn't make big promises or create false dreams for themselves?
On that day, and maybe for a week or so after, we're all chasing our dream.
But 99% of the time...
The walls break down...
The cliffs erode...
And we're right back where we started.
Well... I did the opposite.
At the beginning of this year, I decided my resolution was to become a better person.
A better son, a better friend, a better employee, a better human being.
And... well... It got off to a rocky start.
I won't say what I did, but I will say that I hurt several people, unintentionally, but selfishly to kick off the new year. I was confused and overwhelmed and I let it affect myself and those close to me.
But in late February, I kicked it into high gear.
I started being more sincere, more level-headed, more compassionate, and kinder to people.
I began to believe that empathy was the most powerful of human qualities and one that should be embraced by everyone.
Did a million dollars fall into my lap? No.
Did Bleacher Report call me up and ask to sign a big flashy contract? No.
And did I feel better about myself? Kinda... But nothing too crazy.
That's when the wheels started coming off.
Literally. My car broke down at one in the morning.
It was the beginning of a very long, and very painful month.
I hit rock bottom.
I started fights with some of the most important people in my life, I was being abused by and eventually let go by my job, I wasn't speaking to the majority of my family, and those I was were incredibly cruel and heartless to, and I lost my very best friend in the whole world.
Suddenly, I found myself unemployed, overweight, single, and unmotivated, drunkenly staggering across the beach.
At this point, I'd like to say that I was strong.
That I handled myself with grace and picked myself up, without help from anyone.
But I'd be lying.
I hit rock bottom, and it hit back... hard.
And I folded like a cheap plastic chair.
I found myself getting comfortable in a place of endless self-pity. I went to the person who I thought could help me find answers, and was punished with more questions.
Trapped inside of my own head, I began to think about the end.
I began to believe there was only one solution to my temporary problems.
I mean, why would I keep going?
I felt so inadequate.
People kept screwing me over when all I did was try to help.
I was trying to be the very best Ryan that I could be on this earth and I was being punished.
What was the point?
Well. After about a week of doing relentless damage to my liver, I hit the lowest point.
I drove off, into the darkness, with the intention to stay there, to never return.
But, oddly enough, that's where I found myself.
That's where I re-discovered something I had misplaced three years ago.
Now, this isn't going to turn into a cheesy religious post, because that's not where I place my faith.
I rediscovered my faith in myself, in humanity, and in the glorious unpredictability of the universe.
Somebody once said that control is an illusion, that safety is an illusion.
And they were so right.
For the longest time, I tried to dictate how things would happen.
I got seriously burned and I was choking the life out of everything I held dear, trying to prevent it from hurting me like I had been hurt before.
I became so afraid of life, that I allowed myself to become content with something less.
That's when it hit me.
I had so many people in my life, who sat there, by my side as I made an absolute ass out of myself. When I lashed out at them for getting too close, they didn't blink, they didn't run, they didn't cower.
Not all of them.
Some people didn't seem too concerned. Some people got too angry. And others just rolled over and went back to sleep.
But I realized that I had so much in my life that I held onto because it made me feel comfortable or safe, that were actually doing the most damage.
There were people I was defending or keeping around who did awful things to me, without a single concern for my happiness or emotional health. I'm not blaming them, or saying they were wrong. To err is human, and I certainly have done some erring in my time. But those people were people that I relied on, that I loved, that I needed, and they took advantage of said dependence and used it to hurt me. Not cool.
And that next day, I woke up, feeling like a million bucks.
I got a group of my friends together that I hadn't seen in months and we just goofed off like a day hadn't passed. And when I went home? I fell asleep.
I didn't toss or turn or cry or weep, I just lay down and went to sleep.
What a terrible rhyme, I'm so, so, so sorry.
The day after that, things started coming together for me.
I got a job offer at a place that treated their employees much better than my previous job.
My best friends offered me the opportunity to move in with them in a couple of months.
All the working out I was doing was finally starting to show.
And, well, some other things happened, that I don't wanna spoil by talking about too soon.
As I said earlier, I'm not a religious man.
I don't need to pray or wish for good luck.
I don't believe in luck.
Luck is for losers.
But... When I sat down and started doing things the right way, all of the poison, all of the venom left my system. It didn't leave comfortably or without a fight, but it left.
And now, I'm left with all I've ever really wanted.
A clean conscience, a fresh start, and nothing but a pocketful of dreams and a great group of friends.
I'm not saying I found my happily ever after, or that those even exist.
I think, what I'm trying to say is that I'm finally in position to grow naturally, healthily, and in the right direction.
I don't know where that leads. Or to whom that leads. But I know, finally, for once in my life, I'm going there.