Release and Resolve, Part 3: Lightening Up

These last few years have felt monumental. I spent a lot of time thinking. There’s a lot of internal philosophizing you have to do when you are trying to figure out who you are and what you want to do with your life. You go to some deep, (sometimes) dark places.

It’s not light work, introspection; it’s heavy.

And in the last few years, by virtue of that philosophizing, I’ve finished 2015 feeling the emotional weight of it, and it’s aftermath. I’ve spent so much time trying to ground myself, that I feel a little too grounded.

I feel—matronly. Stodgy. Staid.

This year I want to emotionally ease the load. I’ve found the deep hedone. Now I need to find the sillier and lighter variety.

So, when I asked myself How can I make myself happiest next year?, here’s what I got:

Nail a Passable Scottish Accent

Bear says that whatever is coming out of my mouth when I try right now is bad—really bad. In my own defense, I don’t think he is the best judge for it. His Irish accent is a horrible caricature and he likes to think it’s better than it is. I plan on watching a lot of BBC and laughing. A lot. And then, when I’ve knocked this out of the park, I will rub it in his face.

Play the Ukulele

My dad bought me a ukulele for Christmas five or six years ago. For a long time, it was just something I had to pack with the rest of my stuff whenever I moved, remaining unused and dusty. But, after picking it up for the first time a few months ago, I know three chords. Three chords! Now I just need to learn some more of them.

Get My Next Tattoo

I’ve been planning tattoos three and four for some time now. This year was going to be the year of putting money aside to pay for them. But I don’t need to after all; Bear gifted me tattoo number 3 for me for Christmas.


I have a pair of hiking boots, and a dog. I just need to pack a lunch, maybe a beer, maybe a friend, and then head out. The Pacific Northwest is just waiting to be explored. And considering how long I’ve lived here, it’s exploration overdue.

Read What I Want

Every year, I come up with some rhyme or reason to dictate the books I read. Sometimes, it’s for motivation, and sometimes it’s just to help me traverse a particularly long shelf of To-Reads. I’m going to let fancy take me where it will this year.

Go Out!

I live a 10-minute walk away from a single screen movie theater that has $5 matinees. I live within walking distance of restaurants and bars. I have access to public transportation. Portland is a big city, and there’s plenty to do. (I feel compelled to admit there is some irony of writing this while I am sitting in my pajamas in my bed at 1 pm, but it just snowed, and I don’t wanna go outside, which brings me to my last resolution…)

Don’t Feel Guilty If You Don’t

It’s my life. And a good life needs balance. Sometimes balance is a day in pajamas. Sometimes it’s going out. I don’t always need to be productive. I’m going to go with my gut, and work on ignoring the guilt my head convinces me I should be feeling when I’ve chosen to do something else. My head can just shut the fuck up.

Happy New Year, Everyone.

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