At the end of every year there is a segment of the people I follow on social media who believe the year approaching the imminent end, is in fact the worst year they have experienced. I personally will say… FUCK THAT SHIT… My 2016 was LIT!
Yes, culturally it was shitty. Much of the year was plagued by petty politics, Petty Police, and the petty perishing of our favorite Celebrities. But as far as what was going on at the #mylifeofkai ranch, I spent much of my year getting to know myself, my limits, my likes and my travel preferences.
I spent a lot of time in my head this year. A lot of time trying to understand myself and my relationship to the people around me. I questioned the depths and validity of my friendships. I questioned (quite frequently) the necessity of my career. I even questioned the value of family. And while I, did a lot of soul searching and drunk texting to find the answers that my soul seemed to want to know, I didn’t walk away with many new answers. Just a stronger affirmation of things I’ve known all along. So as I try to do every year, here are a few of my most memorable takeaways from 2016.
- Friendships are not perfect. For some reason we go through life with the expectation that our friends will be the perfect family members that we wish we always had. We say things like Best Friends Forever, without realizing that in that duration of time (should you choose to except) will consist of moments of anger, jealousy, pain and just general pissed off’ness”. With all of that beautifully packaged up into a beautiful box known as Friendship, its important to understand the evolution of a friendship. With as much love and loyalty you may exert for your favs, it’s important to understand they are human. They will fuck up. You are human too, and you will fuck up. But if your friendship is as valuable to you today as it was the day you decided you would ride or die for that person. Put the bullshit behind you and move on.
- You can’t repeat the past Gatsby. Shout out to all the TV networks over the decades who created the story line of happy mom, happy dad, happy kids, happy people. Family isn’t like tv. It’s real. So real, that it’s important to love the imperfections within them. I’ve spoken to so many people this year who have cut off communications with family members because they don’t feel like they’re playing the roles assigned to them, correctly.”X" person isn’t acting sisterly. “Y" person isn’t acting motherly. Dad is more like my child than my father, and the reality is yes. Family roles are arbitrary. Family is what you make it. I personally had to come to terms with the beauty in the dysfunction of both sides of my family. Everything is not going to be the way it was 20 years ago, and thats fine. As life is so limited, it’s important to create the moments today that you want to cherish tomorrow. If we’re stuck worrying about how things aren’t the same as they used to be, we’ll be stuck missing out on how amazing things are today. So yes, your Mom is trifling. SO WHAT! Yes, Dad married the neighbor’s daughter. SO WHAT! That part isn’t your or my business. What is your business is being able to experience that person in the most loving way that you can, so that when it’s all said and done, you have no regrets about the time you spent together.
- When the opportunity presents itself, go ahead and grow. Have you ever had a situation go so good for so long (work, love, money, etc…) that you couldn’t imagine how life without it? Well… thats sweet and all, but the reality is nothing and no one are promised to you forever. When it come’s to your own life, you need to be willing to do what’s best for you. There may always be people who care for you, but there will never be anyone who can care for you the way you can do so for yourself. That job thats been working out so well for you for the past 10 years, will have an expiration date before it’s time for you to evolve. That relationship you’ve been in for a few years, will also have it’s expiration date. THAT CHEESE YOU’VE KEPT IN THE FRIDGE FOR 2 WEEKS NEEDS TO GO! CHECK THE EXPIRATION DATE. The point is, when there is an opportunity to grow you should take it. And sometimes, this opportunity may not involve the people or the environment which you’ve become accustomed. Don’t sit around and wait for shit to go bad either. No one likes to end things on bad terms.
- Before anything fails, Have Faith. I know some people say when all else fails, but the reality is before shit hits the fan you need to already believe shit will work itself out. The key is being able to be content (not happy because I don’t think thats realistic) with the fact that most times in life, things won’t go down the way you want it to. You left your home in west bumble fuck middle America to move to NYC live in the big city work at a high paying firm and live like Sex and the City. Instead you ended up in a basement apartment in Queens, you work as an office manager at a start up and you visit the city on the weekends. It worked the fuck out! Not how you expected but its not far off. The goal is to keep pushing. Disappointment is inevitable but what can vary is how you respond to it and how you bounce back with your next move.
- Pay attention, be cultured, be informed and speak your truth. The fuckery that was 2016 in America (and many other places in the world) was pretty depressing, soul crushing and ulcer building. It was easy to get caught up in the news headlines, the TMZ videos and the latest trends brought to you by: -Insert Your Favorite Magazine Here. But with the saturation of information and opinions, the biggest take away from 2016 was to Pay attention, be cultured, be informed and speak your truth. If something seems like a lie, learn the truth about it, when you know the truth about it, try to see it for yourself. When you know the truth for yourself share it. Because when we know better we do better, and there are a lot of people out here that need to do better, these days.