- by Tito Bonito / MARCH 7, 2013
photo by kriss abigail
March 7, 2013.
Today is day 365 of my #SelfImprovement initiative. It is safe to say that I have accomplished, and am accomplishing, what I set out to do a year ago; a complete transformation.
One year ago, I had been seeing someone for a while and he ended it. I got my heart broken after starting to fall for him, and I knew that I was going to dwell on it; that is just who I am. He was, and still is, a pretty extraordinary individual. Knowing him instilled a confidence in me that left a great impact. That night, I couldn't sleep a wink. My thoughts raced with emotions, but I didn't want that to be my existence. I wanted to be happy again, on my own terms. How could I achieve that? I had never experienced this level of heartbreak before, but I knew that I couldn't make someone love me when they did not. I had to figure out how to move on. So, the following morning, I decided that I wanted more than a relationship. I wanted to gain clarity about who I was as a person, an artist, and a citizen of this world.
In this time, I have actively tried to better myself both personally and professionally on a daily basis. Every single day. One day at a time. By not dwelling on the past, I started living in the moment. It was a liberating time that allowed me to gain a faith in myself and the universe. I began listening to others more and, in turn, that was a major factor that opened my heart back up. It started to not take things so personally anymore and that helped me love myself. No doubt, it has equally been the toughest and most rewarding year of my entire life.
Since last year, I have more than exceeded my goals. In 2012, I was just hoping to work in New York and Los Angeles. By the end of the year, I accomplished that, multiple times over, on top of producing and managing a two-month tour, alone, where I performed in over 20 cities across the US. I have hosted gigs in two major cities, showcased in three festivals, taught classes in five cities, and produced my first show. Outside of burlesque, I appeared in an ad campaign for Miller 64 that ran for six months in three of the top gay magazines in the US. I am physically the healthiest I have ever been. Plus I moved to LA which fulfilled a lifelong dream for me. For the first time, I know that I am exactly who and where I am supposed to be.
It never left my thoughts that I had been pushing myself so hard because of how much pain I was in. But I have also recently learned that channeling my anger and hurt into art is one of the most compassionate ways of self-care.
We are now three months into 2013 and I have no intentions of stopping. In fact, now that I am a Los Angeles resident, I plan on bigger and better things for the future. I will strive to better myself as I am a continuous work in progress. As far as my personal life, I am starting from scratch in a new city. I get that. While I have no idea what is out there for me, I do know that it is out there. If I were to continue to focus on creating the best version of myself, I can attract the best person for me. Focusing on my career added true joy into my life. It definitely made my dreams come true. Living day by day, has given me an inner peace which allows me to understand that I, happily, accept what it is that I can and cannot control. I will love and know that my happiness is based only on myself.
Champions aren't born they're made.