It’s funny how the idea of a “new year” affects us, isn’t it? We say goodbye to 365 days with so much anticipation. The idea that a new calendar will inevitably bring the beginning of a new start, a clean slate, better ideas, new chances at happiness, fresh opportunities. And in a way, it’s not wrong. But the idea that one specific day in time will suddenly spark those chances, without first inspiring a change in ourselves, is unrealistic – at least, that’s what I’m coming to find out.
A new year does, indeed, bring new chances at happiness and fresh opportunities. It could mean a promotion at work or the chance to travel somewhere for the first time. It could drive the opportunity to savor a new taste in an unfamiliar location, seated in an unfamiliar restaurant or spark the coming of a new person in your life with whom you build a beautiful relationship. New Years Eve is celebrated because it means we’re saying goodbye to the opportunities we didn’t take or the ones that failed us, while looking forward to the ones still to come. However, I didn’t see it like that – until today.
Today, I woke up after an exciting evening with my closest friends. An evening spent playing card games around a table of laughter, our tummies full from sharing our homemade dishes with one another; Admiring our strengths, our gifts and our appreciation for the joy and comfort our friendship brings the next person. I woke up next to the love of my life, filled with the wholeness of having found him and being so lucky as to wake up to this kind of love every day. I woke up expecting my life to be ever-perfect moving forward, because that’s what New Years has meant to me – but that’s not how my day worked out.
It’s 5pm. I only just brushed my teeth 2 hours ago. I’m still in my PJs. I am currently ignoring the text messages and calls I’ve been delegating and responding to upon my first sip of coffee this morning. I am heartbroken for my family that is starting this new year one family member short and another to soon have moved on from this world, as well. But I am also reminded of something now: every day, each day, takes power. Takes choice. Takes determination. Change comes with growth. Growth comes through lessons. Lessons are learned through experience and so on. But each day, that’s a choice. A motive to guild you. That’s a goal you have to work towards.
The opportunities a new year brings are the same opportunities awaiting anyone that looks to the future and decides to make a change, invest in a project – invest in themselves. This time of year, it is only a reminder that we must work to achieve greatness, in whatever form you wish it to take. I am choosing to spend the rest of this day with that in mind. I am choosing to accept that life puts obstacles in our path as often as it tends to remind you that only you have the power to choose how you feel, what experiences you take on and what lessons you learn from it.
May 2017 bring us all happiness in the form of laughter, in the form of new adventures, great experiences, life-changing lessons, and deeper relationships. May 2017 be every one of your years, because YOU made it so.