So, where do you see yourself in five years?

Published December 31, 2022 by Malia

I hate that question. I despise that question. And the next time I get asked that in a job interview, I’m tempted to go full Phoebe Buffay.

If you had asked me that question on 12/31/2012, I’d have stared at you like a deer in the headlights. Possibly, I’d have mumbled something about having a job. And if you’d asked me that on 12/31/2017, I’d have gone full panic mode while I scrambled to come up with something to convince you that I wasn’t just drifting aimlessly through life.

Ten years ago, nothing could’ve prepared me for what the following decade would bring. If you’d told me even a fraction of those things were going to happen, I wouldn’t have believed you. I might have even laughed at you.

And now? It’s the end of 2022.

It has been quite the year. I’m ending it in a much better headspace than I started it.

I spent the first two months in such a deep depression I could barely able to get out of bed. If I hadn’t had the dogs to take outside, I wouldn’t have left bed at all.

I began writing. Really writing. There are a few novels worth of words that have managed to leave my brain and take physical form.

I had to put Groot down in September. I don’t know that I’m ever going to truly heal from this loss. She was my closest companion for five years. Saw me through some of the darkest times of my life. I miss her more than I ever thought possible.

I end this year knowing what I want to be when I grow up. I’m not sure how to accomplish it, but I’m going to manage it somehow.

I have plans for 2023. I’m back. The blog is back.

That said, there are a few things I should mention before I proceed into this next year.

I’m not the same person I was 12/31/2012. I’m not the same person I was 12/31/2017. I’ve changed quite a bit. Mostly for the better, I think. I know that there are those who will strongly disagree with me about this. I spent decades being a person that pleased everyone else, and I can’t be that person anymore.

I have opinions now. Actual opinions. I’m no longer thinking the thoughts I’ve been told I have to think because they’re the only thoughts God wants me to think. God gave me a brain and I’ve started learning how to actually use it.

You must tell the truth if your dialogue is to have the resonance and realism that Hart’s War, good story though it is, so
sadly lacks—and that holds true all the way down to what folks say when they hit their thumb with the hammer. If you
substitute “Oh sugar!” for “Oh shit!” because you’re thinking about the Legion of Decency, you are breaking the
unspoken contract that exists between writer and reader—your promise to express the truth of how people act and talk through the medium of a made-up story.
-Stephen King On Writing

This is one of the most important lessons I learned from On Writing. Why do I bring this up here? It’s because this entire blog has not been truly honest. Oh, the posts are all true. I’ve never lied in what I’ve shared here. The posts have all been honest, but what you’ve read up until now has been the extremely sanitized version. I never wanted to post anything that might make people uncomfortable or that could be considered even the tiniest bit offensive.

The truth is, I cuss…a lot. I’ve been going through intense religious deconstruction, and I’m filled with thoughts and questions. My mental health is a constant battle. I read and write romance. Sometimes what I write is explicit, but it’s always respectful between consenting adults. I have handled many things in my life poorly. I’m neurodivergent. I screw up more than I succeed. I’ve hurt people and been hurt by people. I’m a flawed human being.

Think of my writing and me like pineapple pizza. Some people are going to love it, and some people aren’t. I’m slowly starting to be okay with that.

The days of people-pleasing, bland, non-offensive writing are done. If that’s the kind of writing you’re hoping to continue seeing here, you’ll be very disappointed. I completely understand if you’re not interested in sticking around because of this. Thank you for the support you’ve given me over the years. I have read every comment and felt a rush of happiness every time I’ve been sent a notification that a post has received a ‘like’.

So, 2023. Let’s do this thing.

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