A year ago today, the man I had been spending almost every day (for two months with), told me he was engaged. He did it in a super casual way that made it somehow hit even harder than a truck like that would already hit. “Oh, I think I forgot to tell you“…Yes, yes you did forget to tell me. It was rough. I pretended to not be bothered, not feel stupid and then distanced myself. That distance lasted a millisecond, because I love mistakes and I love cycles. The next day, I made my resolutions list for 2019.
The older I get, the more I realize how weird the year ending and holidays are for me. It’s like this forced revisit and reflection of the past nearly 365 days. For some reason, we love to dwell on the negative, more than the positive. Partly because it’s important to; reality is reality and we can only learn and grow if we properly reflect and progress, and partly because most humans love feeling sorry for themselves.
One thing I know about myself is that I’m not really big on feeling sorry for myself. I’m usually a “dug my own grave, let me sit, lie, sleep, wallow and chill in it”, kind of guy. Why Netflix and Chill when you can Wallow and Chill? Pros and cons to that as well.
The cons: Depression is a real thing. So real. Wallowing definitely does NOT help that.
The pros: I’m pretty realistic in how I decompress my feelings, actions, and emotions in situations.
The middle ground: What middle ground? I only live in extremes like a sociopath.
Why don’t we check in on what Peter’s 2019 resolutions were and how he did, shall we?
1. Get better at IG’ing
Check. Ish. While I’m terrible at making posts and am yet again unable to make a top 9 IG collage (maybe next year), I finally grew to love the app and my IG story game is on point, y’all! Omg, you don’t follow me? Unacceptable. Fix it. @yourboypetey
2. Write more
Check. Here we are!
3. Be better. Do better. Lift others. Every day.
I think this is a check for me, and one that I am proud of. Most of what I do is surrounded by lifting others, at least when I do it at my very best. It’s something that gets me out of bed every day, and it’s one of the affirming things that makes me think that no matter how small, I may indeed be doing something right every now and then.
4. No. More. Fuckbois. Bitch.
I plead the fifth. Fuck off.
5. Get your diet and fitness back in check
Uh. 2020. I see you.
6. Cut out toxic relationships
I cut out a large amount of them, and for that I am proud. When toxic relationships and emotionally unavailable men are your addiction and kryptonite, it’s hard to break it completely. However, in 2019, I did make a good amount of progress. Were there weak moments? Yes. Were there strong moments? Fuck yes.
I remind all of you, in the immortal words of Lizzo, you are all 100% that bitch. Be that bitch, but also be a good person while being that bitch.
7. Learn to fucking sleep
After almost two decades of being an extreme insomniac, I am finally making progress on it and learning to love sleep and the ability to. Probably cause I’m getting older, but also because I’m forcing myself to. Rain soundtracks are fierce, and so is forcing yourself to stop working cause you can’t sleep, and just forcing yourself to be alone in your own thoughts until you can.
8. Own being an artist and a performer more
Progress. Small progress, but progress.
9. Call your mom more
Fail. Hard fail, and it’s absolutely unacceptable.
10. Choose those you want to keep close. You can not be everyone’s friend. You’ve seen your energy deflate, and your energy is too good to allow that to happen.
Baby steps. I have definitely become more selective in those I call friends, and more importantly, those that I call chosen family. I was always someone with herds of friends, and while I never sought validation from it, it definitely did help me fill my time and aided in me not having to deal with problems head-on. I just don’t have the time or energy for that anymore, and quite frankly, sometimes I love too hard. So learning to harness that love, and realizing my love and light may indeed have a ceiling, has been one of the most important things of my 2019.
So that was 2019. What is 2020’s you might ask? I’m asking myself that too. So, let’s see:
1. Meditate daily
I started meditating late this year, and it very honestly has been life-changing. I don’t sit alone in silence and in my thoughts often, and I don’t focus on my breathing nearly enough. I carry a truly insane amount of tension in my body at all times, and I’m tired of carrying that. While I haven’t had the discipline or ability to maintain meditating daily yet, the days I have have been almost phenomenally superior, and I deserve to deal myself the best mental health cards I can. So do you.
2. Write daily
You got this.
3. Get your diet and fitness back in check, boo.
It’s time, Peter. It’s been time. Your metabolism looked out for you for longer than it should have. Also, think about all those endorphins you (desperately) need. Get. It. Together. You’ve also now publicly shamed yourself in a public forum, so like, think about your pride and realize you can’t fail these people or yourself now!
4. Be honest with everyone about your feelings, that you should be honest with. You deserve it, and they deserve it. Be respectful to yourself and to others.
This is a huge one for me as it is the thing I think I’ve failed the most with this year. I’m a pretty outspoken person. In work and in most personal relationships, I have no problem with honesty and with confrontation. However, In romantic situations or situations where my heart is invested in that way, I have problems opening up conversations in person. I can write it, I can send it, but making eye contact with that human and saying how I really feel in person, is extraordinarily, overwhelmingly hard. And I find myself in situations that I do not belong to be in, or that others do not belong to be in, simply because I can not be honest. I am currently in one of them, and I am wishing for the strength to be open and honest with this person about how I think we need to currently not be in each other’s lives. I’ve tried twice now in vain, because making eye contact with a beautiful human and potentially breaking their heart, is really fucking difficult. But sometimes we have to do it, and being a real adult, involves those difficult conversations. So, grow up, Peter. In the long run, you will be better for it, even when it hurts.
5. Be more on top of checking in and visiting your mother. You will regret it otherwise.
I realize as I write this, that my resolutions are not in a particular order, but if they were, this would without a doubt be my number one. My mom is the greatest human being on earth, and there is never an excuse, and life can never possibly be so busy that I cannot check In with that human being. There have been some scares this year that have shown me what I already know. That it would be my greatest life regret if I were to ever lose her, and feel like I wasn’t present enough. It’s unacceptable. I remind you all, we are never too busy for the people that are the very most important to us, and to the people who have dedicated their life to our happiness and to our opportunity. Figure it out, get yourself together, and make it work. It is literally impossible to pay back an incredible parent. Strive every day to show that gratitude.
6. Take a fucking vacation this year. Fuck that, take two. Maybe even three, for the three years it’s been since you’ve gone on one.
This. This. THIS. It’s time, Peter.
7. There’s only one of you, and you are not invincible. Stop forgetting that.
Preach. Listen and preach. To yourself. LISTEN. 🏿 PETER. 🏿 Honestly, this is the other one that I very genuinely and wholeheartedly hope you all listen to, and apply. I also hope I fucking listen and apply it too. Realize that you are special. Realize that you have a light that is so specific and particular to you and that when you shine that light, it moves some people. It warms them, and it makes their hearts smile. Take care of that light. Take care of you. You are the only you, and there are people who love you for exactly who you are, flaws and all.
Thank you for taking the 2019 ride with me. Thank you for being a form of therapy, and thank you for listening to this cynical dreamer all year go through his cynicism, his dreams, his ups, his downs, and everything in between.
I’m still standing and I’m still breathing, and guess what? So are you. Happy New Year to each and every one of you.
Peter William Dunn is a born and raised New Yorkers, who is currently a freelance writer, producer, director and sometimes actor in the city.
His professional passions include: film, music, literature, helping other artists thrive and all-around storytelling
His personal passions include: puppies, babies, black and white milkshakes, and attractive men with accents (he has an extra-strong track record for attracting emotionally unavailable men, but don’t tell him we told you that, and don’t yell at him for speaking in third person right now).
His current loves are his dog, Domino, a whiskey neat, and in case you didn’t know, his mother is the greatest human being on earth ❤