It’s the end of another year and as with every year, I see post after post of people wishing away the year. Ranting about how awful the past 365 days were. Giving the past year the big eff you. And yes, while this year has been a tough one for many people, it’s time for us all to reflect on the goodness that has come out of all your hard work. It’s time to reflect and show gratitude for a life you still get to lead. You’re alive, people. You’re here.
Bad things happen. They happen all the time. Jobs are lost. Relationships break down. People die. In no way am I saying we shouldn’t grieve, because change is hard and honestly, we have lost some stellar celebrity and musical icons this year, so yes you should grieve.
But…You. Are. Here.
In a day and age where social media rules all hours, news travels fast. And unfortunately, bad/sad news travels even faster. We are constantly inundated with the badness of the world and only every now and then do we get to celebrate the goodness. So, our job, as regular ‘ol shmos is to find the goodness and celebrate it. People are going to die in 2017. It’s a given. Remember the Lion King and the Circle of Life? There’s simply no way of getting around death. People also died last year and the year before and wait for it…the year before that. We’ve lost some amazing people in 2016 and it saddens me to think of who we might lose in 2017…but we’re going to lose some. So, how are we going to get through all the deaths, the sadness, the grief and the turmoil?
I get concerned when I continuously read people bashing the year they’ve had. Okay, sure, you’ve had a doozy. But did you learn? Did you grow? Did you morph into a newer version of yourself because you needed to adapt to your life? Did you laugh? Did you love? Were there births in your life? Anniversaries? Did you celebrate and laugh? Why is it that when people reflect on the year past, anger and bitterness always wins? There were times of accomplishment and joy. Times of silliness and sun. Life was yours all year.
You. Are. Here.
Life is hard. I, myself, have had a difficult year of growth, loss and change, but boy did I laugh this year. I found new friends, new support and a lot of new love. I took comfort in old love and I got to watch my children grow and learn and experience new things every day. When I look back on 2016 I think about how much my son’s confidence has grown. I think about how my daughter is the strongest woman I’ve ever met and she’s only six years old. I reflect on the fact that I had to watch my husband go through a really difficult year and yet we were and are able to look to one another for strength and laughter. I celebrate all of this.
I encourage you to not buy into the negativity that goes around at this time of year. Don’t bash the year you just survived.
You. Are. Here. You made it.
If you want to make 2017 better for yourself, start with some positive reflection on how you made it through 2016. Celebrate yourself. Celebrate others. Grieve death but celebrate the life that was; there is nothing we can do about it, so respect it, grieve it and then choose to celebrate it.
I don’t like being the bearer of bad news, but there are going to be difficult moments in 2017. And you know what? You’re going to handle those too. You’re going to cry and rage and feel like you’ve been run over at times in this coming year. But you’re also going to laugh until you pee your pants, you’re going to dance with your lover and you’re going to be silly with your friends. You’re going to celebrate the birth of new babies and you’re going to welcome new friends into your life.
You are here and you can handle all of it. You just handled 2016. Take a few moments and remember the good of 2016, really think about it. Think only of the good. And smile. Let that positivity guide you into your new year.
Me, I’m going to spin some records from the artists we lost this year and I’m going to dance and smile because ultimately, that’s what I want my life to be about. Dancing and smiling.
I choose to celebrate 2016 for its good, its bad and its ugly. I choose to start 2017 filled with gratitude and light instead of anger and dismay. I hope you stand tall and bright with me.
I wish you all the best in this coming year.