Mashed Potatoes For Breakfast

So the last year has really been an ass-kicker, yeah?

I have not come across a solitary soul who has not felt the fear, doubt, sting, shame, upheaval and frustration of 2020. And just when we thought the turning of the page into the next year would optimistically turn this rusty jalopy of a clown car around, 2021 said “hold my beer”.

We’ve lost and gained weight and jobs, friends and family members and freedoms. We’ve seen character reveal itself in its most inspiring and stomach-churning forms. We’ve cried and jumped for joy. It’s been a rickety old wooden roller coaster of bumps and thrills….but mostly the latter.

In my personal life, I have seen some of the hardest few months in succession in a long time, and likely thus far in my 40 years. I’ll save the sob story because this blog post isn’t about pity; it’s about redemption, diligence, confidence and fortitude; much sexier than dejection and my soft blanket of ennui.

I realized I needed a change when I was sitting at the breakfast bar in my house, eating mashed potatoes with ketchup for breakfast. (Yes, I know, the ketchup was repulsive enough, but don’t be distracted by my discerning palate.) That may not be an epiphanic moment for anyone else, but I knew right then that it was time to start anew. I was not fueling myself, in any area, the way I need to be fueled. It was clear – personally, professionally, emotionally, physically, mentally, not to mention dietarily – it was time.

I have never doubted my skill set. I have never doubted my heart for service. I have never doubted my capacity for hard work, dedication to learning or the absolutely humbling village of people supporting me or my sphere of influence.

Maybe that moment wasn’t a realization so much of what I should become but the catalyst towards an UN-becoming; a removal of the chains, anchors, disguises and facades of years past. The pandemic has taught us more about priorities than anything else in my lifetime. It has made us see what we need versus what we want and there has been a conscious and subconscious stripping down of many of these things. What are we doing for a living? With whom are we spending our time? What energies are we allowing into our lives? Are we really fueling ourselves for success with mashed potatoes for breakfast (ketchup or no ketchup)?

So welcome to the UNBECOMING. Each of you reading this are cordially invited to see where this takes me. I intend to write a lot, and some if it may be total trash. However, I had a short story teacher in college who said, “Sometimes you have to write out all of your bad shit before you get to your good shit,” and that seemed to resonate at 20 years old and still does at 40, so here we go. Glad to have you along for the ride.


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