At the start of this year I wrote about why I had decided to return to Austin. Many of the things I mentioned - starting a business to be one - have become a reality this year as I have completely thrown myself into the vortex of Austin and reaped several benefits as a direct result of my moving back.
I've had the feeling of an up-and-comer all year; maybe not on the level of a Drake in '09 or Obama in '04, but this feeling has persisted throughout the year. And the last two months of this year (and the early months of 2010) have been/will be the culmination of a lot of dedication, imagination, hard work, patience and persistence.
This all makes sense if you know that I pretty much live by Bo Peabody's book Lucky or Smart. In essence, I've striven to smartly make a lot of things happen, good or bad, this year in the effort to create my own luck. So when people hear about Real Role Models or come to Sneak Attack or they read about me in Rare or see the access I got at ACL Festival they think I've been plenty lucky this year, but they completely disregard or overlook the smarts behind it all.
That's OK though. I'm beyond the point of proving things to other people. Everything from this point on is for me and those who care about me and those whom have helped me along the way. And 2010 is going to be a big year for us. The only problem is, big doesn't necessarily mean it's all highs and no lows.
If I've learned anything this year it's that the more I try to control a situation, the more I lose control of the end result. At this point, I'm probably better off letting a few things go, relaxing a little and just letting the cards fall as they may. Which is why, unfortunately, I haven't won on every hand I've played this year. An annual review of the most important relationships and friendships in my life shows a mixed bag of utter joy followed by full-blown strain followed by shades of grey happiness and strife in almost every direction. I'd apologize to each of them, but I've either already done so or don't need to; it's just the kind of year it's been.
But I've also made some great new friendships this year and met some phenomenal people that I feel truly privileged to have spent even one hour with. Case in point, I interviewed Nancy Coplin, one of the chief people behind Austin's being called the "Live Music Capital of the World", for my book the other day and after leaving her house something came over me and I started to cry tears of joy. I felt like I couldn't possibly be living the life that I'm living. Not at 26 years old. That's how good 2009 has been at times. I've always wanted to be in the position I'm now in. I've worked my ass off to be here, wherever here is, but sometimes I still feel like I don't deserve all the blessings God has bestowed upon me.
But then there are the other tears. And the stress. Everyone keeps telling me about all the coals I have in the fire, but I'm sitting here thinking about how many different fires I've had to put out. I have had more stress, more headaches, more heartaches, more confusion, more agony, more tribulations and more clusterfucks than I have ever had in my entire life. All crammed into one rapid-fire speed year.
If there's anything I fear for the new year it's more lows. Sure, the highs may balance it all out...but even in the last week of this year I've had some lows that leave me with the feeling that it'll be a photo finish as to whether or not I can call this the best year in my life or if it was just a year full of ups and downs.
So I'll say goodbye to 2009 and hello to the 1-0.