This might be a mess. I'm not sure where I'm going to be going with this, but something is telling me to write. So, I'm listening to that voice. And, ultimately, I'm going to embrace wherever it takes me - especially, emotionally speaking.

It's funny. I grew up as an introvert. I kept my thoughts and feelings locked down so much that the only people who really knew the real me were my closest friends and family. Whenever I tried to speak in front of people in class - I'd freeze up. I'd stutter. People would laugh. And that? Well, it killed my self esteem.

I shouldn't have let it. I shouldn't have cared what other people thought of me. And yet, I did.

One of my biggest flaws has always been the fact that I've been incredibly hard on myself throughout my entire life. While other people might say, "wow I messed up - oh well, let's move on" I was the one standing outside by himself at night wondering why I was still here.

...Not to be dark, but I'm still wondering that.

But what the hell? Aren't we all?

This is why I've tried so hard to become transparent in my writing. I know I'm not a genius. I know I don't have an amazing vocabulary. And yes, I'm aware that I went into this "thing" blind, whereas other people actually know what they're doing. But, somehow, I don't think it matters.

I just have a lot of faith that this is all going to work out by being me. And reflecting that in my storytelling.

I'm all over the place right now. It's like I want to pick something to talk about... but every time I get close to that initial 'touch' - something else drags me away. I call it the "holidays". And I only have 5 more days left until I've survived another year.

It's been exactly ten years since I had a normal Christmas. That is, what I would define as a "normal" Christmas. My mom's cancer was starting to really get bad. But it didn't stop us from being together under the tree, opening presents and just finding a way to be alive in that moment.

I'm extremely thankful for those memories. They keep me going. They keep me inspired. They tell me, "this is worth it." I'm choosing not to be sad because I know there are too many people that depend on me to be smiling each day.

...that doesn't mean I'm not human, though. And when I write? I think I'm most human. It's not an escape. It's not something I'm ingesting into myself to try and numb the pain. No - it's just me and the page. Mono eeeeeee mono. And it's up to me to try and find a way to make something out of it.

I like that challenge. I like the way it feels when I'm doing it, but above all - the feeling I have when I'm done. Yes, I realize that's almost a direct parallel to the act of sex. And, no, I didn't need to actually write that - but here we are. Wildcard.

How do I segue gracefully out of that? Well, I don't. I just keep writing and before you know it, there's another exit on the freeway for something completely different. Like, for instance, that memory that's been burning inside my head each night:

"Sorry I missed your call, please leave a message with your name and number - and I'll be sure to get back to you."


"Hi, mom."

I remember calling that number almost every night for a while after she passed away. I would leave messages for her and in a way, it was my own way of 'talking to her'. I also have to admit that each time I called... I wanted nothing more than to hear her answer. To hear her voice just one more time. Something other than that personalized voice mail greeting.

I never did obviously because I don't live in a world of Disney. But I kept dialing despite this reality. We have our own ways dealing with grief/death and for me? That was just mine.

I think everyone struggles during this time of year. And I feel selfish talking so much about myself. I know things could always be worse. I know I got the chance to actually say goodbye to my mom, whereas other people fade away in the blink of an eye. So, for that? I can't really be sad. But, I am angry. I do think this is all unfair that right when I'm about to finally become 'somebody' through all these years of trying... the one person I want to make proud isn't going to be standing next to me to share in the moment.

I'll look up. I'll keep looking up. Because I have to. This isn't a time of my life to slow down or go into an abyss. It's okay to feel that way - it's okay to hurt - but that can't be an excuse for not delivering.

If I revealed everything I had planned right now for 2018... you'd be flooded. So, I'm keeping it in my pockets for now. Just know that I'm trying my best with everything I do. And if I fail along the way - I know I gave this thing everything I had.

-Kyle Lambky