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Bliss sprinkled with a dose of anxiety, a 2023 reflection

Highlight. The word highlight dates back to the 1650s, describing the brightest or most illuminated parts of a painting.


Our current understanding has expanded to include the figurative definition of an especially significant or interesting detail of an event or a period of time.


Usually, we only focus on the “positive” or “good” parts as highlights. But doing so is not an accurate use of the word, for significant or interesting parts of something can, and often are, the hard, dark parts.


So, my highlight reel includes varying textures and qualities of significant events from 2023, in the order that they are coming through me, onto this page, right now:


A couple eloping in the woods

Getting married barefoot, the woods, by the lake to my favorite human (and by our best friend)


Being vulnerable in a new way with friends that first felt like the best high and then the next day felt like the worst come down, complete with 2 days of crying, not getting out of bed, a thought reel of shame and self-loathing, and a lack of desire to ever do anything again


Writing as an almost daily practice, which sometimes feels like I’m ovulating, dancing naked in the mirror, being turned on by myself, and other times feels like I’m still naked but this time in my luteal phase, standing on a stage where I am not supposed to be naked and everyone is staring, judging, and making fun of me


At almost every overnight social gathering I was at (which was a lot this year), not sleeping the first night because I was spiraling in anxious thoughts about everything under the sun


Developing an awareness of my disordered eating


Meeting two of my best friends’ babies and just being so in awe of my friends as they step into their roles of mama and in awe of the female body


Three best friends on a dock

Going on my first overnight solo backpacking trip where I spent the first few hours having a very annoying conversation with myself in my head, then settled into the quietness, had a peaceful evening by the creek, went to sleep early and then had sleep paralysis where a racoon was attacking me but I was paralyzed and therefore powerless to fight back


Taking L$D for the first time in four years, which really meant conquering my fear of myself, and having a pretty smooth trip, which was capped of with an EPIC hour and half nose bleed at the end



Creating and leading my first 6-week group coaching experience, House of Wild, and learning how much I both LOVE leading group spaces, and how much they exhaust me, mostly because I still have a belief that I have to be perfect and if i am not perfect, then I have let everyone down


Picking twelve quarts of strawberries with Ev in June, freezing them and using all of them in my morning smoothie because I love my morning smoothie and also because I couldn't get my act together enough to do anything more creative with them


Seeing Frank Ocean at Coachella. Pure bliss. Evan and I started dating two weeks before Blonde was released in 2016 and it is part of our Sunday ritual to listen to this album. Seven years later we got to witness this artist in the flesh


A bachelorette party

Hosting nine of my favorite women in the world in Oregon for my bachelorette party aka Wild Woman weekend, and feeling so much love and connection and gratitude for my friends, and seeing different iterations of me reflected in each of them


Making it through a very hard January, February and March


Witnessing the outward expression (marriage) of love and commitment of two dear friends, being all in my emotions, crying on the way home, in love with romantic love and friendship love and the fact that being a human is so hard, yet love still blossoms


On my gosh, how could I forget seeing three nights of PRETTY LIGHTS in colorado. Pure bliss. But this time by pure bliss I mean purse bliss sprinkled with a healthy dose of anxiety about everyone else’s experience and insecurity about my relationship


Friends at a Pretty Lights Concert

Starting to unpack past relationships in therapy, moving beyond the belief that “it wasn't that bad”, and trying to release shame for some my my past actions and choices


Okay I think I have to stop here 😃





These are only a few of my highlights. There are so many more important events and learnings from this year that I choose to protect and keep close to my heart.


I would LOVE to hear from you. What highlights are you honoring and reflecting on from 2023?


XO,

Teresa


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