day 1: new year part twenty-four

I looked at myself in the mirror one morning and asked if I am happy, truly happy. I was answered by blank dark brown eyes with dark circles underneath, and the slight downward curve of my lips. There I realized: It was just so normal.

It was just so normal to have that downward curve of lips that I have to choose to smile to bring it upward and make my eyes look cheery. That happiness is a choice. That I can choose it every morning, every time.

My past year was my most challenging year yet. When I was twenty-one or twenty-two, I knew who I was going to be. I traveled almost every month, kept my camera in my hands all the time, all eager and giddy with the newfound freedom of being a working young adult. I had dreams and goals being crossed out the list easily. They were my wonder years, all pretty and smiley. Twenty-three came, where I chose to shake my world, to take a big leap from my normal routines. Attraversiamo, I heard the still, small voice saying to me. We crossed over.

I was mostly happy the first months of transition, but then I felt like I was stripped away the choice to do my passion on my free time and it became a burden afterwards. The weekends cut off to do my own art, I started to become depressed. Although it was the similar form of art, I felt like it was a job and at that time, I knew that I cannot reduce the value of expressing myself to just a job. I craved my usual corporate surrounding, left and found myself a new job. The rest of the months spent there was mostly a burden, each day I let pass. I still traveled and did the things I do despite the challenges, but I decided that I didn't deserve to be involved in all the politics in that place, I left.

During those months though, I read and read about traveling, writing, mostly dreaming up again, to escape. I had time to plan shoots and do them. But I can't ignore the fact that I was wasting time being involved in a company that stabs you in the back. And so I prayed, and God worked His magic.

The last few months of my twenty-third were adjustments. A new work, a new team that I learned to be comfortable now, and lots of new things and ideas springing out. It made me realize that even though the first half was challenging, it was a season needed to change and prepare me for the better things coming.

Right now I'm still healing, but I'm dreaming and smiling through this year once again. I promise to choose it.