Sunday, 2 January 2022

A View from the Stacks: a 2021 Retrospective

How to even begin summing up the year that was 2021. What a whirlwind, what a shitshow, what a year. 

If 2021 was anything, it was a year that defined what was really important to me. Whether it was a reminder of what doesn’t work or rediscovering that taking a leap of faith isn’t as scary as it seems, this year pushed my boundaries so far out of my comfort zone that I’m not sure we want to (or can) go back. 

Things that resonated with me this year:

I read a lot this year (even if I didn’t meet my reading goal), but the book that’s still on my mind is T.J. Klune’s From Under the Whispering Door. Contemplating death, love, and finding a new lease on life (yes, in that order), its themes have definite 2021 vibes. We can blame my Scorpio moon placement, but books about death are a sharp (and much needed) reminder that I often need to keep redefining life as I go along. 

My soundtrack for the year alternated between my Scorpio Season and Summer Vibes playlists (regardless of the season), but the track that seemed to be on an infinite loop more often than not was Sum 41’s “Fat Lip.” What can I say; being a punk was never a phase, but sometimes I need the reminder that “I’ll never fall in line, and become another victim of your conformity.” I may work an office job, but the “A” in Archivist also stands for Anarchist.  

Weekly episode drops for shows are the new bane of my existence, but to be honest I’m kind of loving the ritual of mixing a cosmopolitan and sitting down to watch the latest episode of “... And Just Like That” on Thursday evenings. Thursdays have always had good vibes for me, but seeing the continued adventures of Carrie, Miranda, and Charlotte are a perfect blend of new nostalgia that hits just right. My prediction (and hope) for the show: Samantha will be back eventually, because it’s just not quite the same without her sparky sense of humour and sexuality. 

The big leap:

Besides spending a lot of time reinvesting in myself and setting boundaries in my relationships with the world at large, the big event of the year was getting on a waitlist and following through on a surgery. Those of you who have known me for years know that having children has never been part of my life plan (and to the rest of you, FYI! haha), and I figured that now was as good a time as any to get this out of the way. So I scheduled the appointments, talked to the doctors, and booked a date to get my tubes tied at the end of July. Weird coincidental timing with the guy I was dating at the time, general fear of medical procedures, and extended recovery period aside, I’m glad that I finally made this happen. When I got the go ahead from my surgeon back in February a friend asked me: “How do you imagine you’ll feel [...] afterwards?” and I finally have the answer: fucking amazing. Fullstop. 

Vibes that we’re bringing forward into 2022:

Being more of a Carrie, and less of a Charlotte. Don’t worry, we’ll always be a Miranda at heart, but a bit more sparkle and a bit less domesticity is a lot more fun. 

Choosing sunlight when we can (and moonlight when we can’t), since we never know when it’s going to disappear under a cloud of smoke again. 

From the media we ingest to the stores we choose to shop at; from our social media etiquette to our interactions with the world at large: more quality, less quantity. 

Howling more at the moon. Maybe it’ll be out loud, or maybe we’ll keep it to ourselves, but being silent was never really our vibe in the first place. 

The summary: 2021 was obviously so much more than these brief glimpses, but it’s funny how things kind of crystalize in retrospect and the big things become smaller while the small things become bigger. Tomorrow we might be looking back on different moments with different thoughts, but regardless we’ll still be moving forward. So here’s to whatever 2022 brings.

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