“What a hell of a year!
If I make it through hell and I come out alive, I got nothing to fear.”
– Mary J. Blige
(…I’m keeping this one rather short. Hey, blame 2016, not me!)
I’m going to use this post somewhat as a pep talk for 2017. I’m sure a lot of people feel me when I say 2016 was perhaps the worst year I’ve experienced in a long time. Mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually, etc, this year has drained each of those accounts and demanded even more. From the deaths of those we loved to the depressing election of D***** T****, this year has left many of us in shambles. This isn’t even including our own personal battles. I know personally my hair loss has progressed a great amount in 2016 and I have a meltdown everyday about it. The amount of headaches I received increased, and I even feel like my patience took a hit this year. I didn’t write nearly as much as I wanted to, I did little to no community service, my spiritual life is somehow in shambles and nonexistent at the same time (HOW, SWAY?!), and I wasn’t in my overly festive mood for Christmas like I have been in the past. This year has been trying.
Considering it started out so well, I would’ve called you a liar had you told me this year would end the way it did. I look around me and look at other people, and everyone looks so defeated. Passion, pride, etc, none of that is being shown. People are tired and hurting and this year just packed that on. This year has tested my faith, my optimism, and not only in myself, but humanity, the world I live in. 2016 was bleak to say the least and I am so excited that it is coming to an end.
I know I (we) always say “2*** is gonna be my year,” but I think that is true for many of us this time around. We want to leave behind the cold and emptiness of 2016. We want to leave behind that person that was occupying our bodies that 365 days, because it certainly wasn’t us. In 2017 I want to get back to me. I want to be that optimistic, upbeat person I know so well. I made a promise to make the upcoming 365 about ME. I’ve never done that, but this is a state of emergency and I encourage everyone to do this. We have to start taking better care of ourselves. How on earth can we be of any use to those around us when we ourselves are starving for internal satisfaction. The next few *moments* are some of the promises I’m making to myself next year.
- Let’s make a promise to write more, read more, open our minds and feel comfortable about challenging the status quo and challenging our own deep rooted beliefs.
- Let’s make a promise to be more selfish and make room for more personal time for us. I’m sick of people trying to make me feel bad for being selfish. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH BEING SELFISH AT TIMES. Especially when you make yourself available to others when they need you 24/7 and the same is not being reciprocated. Never let anyone make you feel bad for doing something that benefits you in the end. Never let anyone make you feel bad for putting your happiness on a pedestal.
- Let’s make a promise to go after our dreams harder than ever before. No matter how much the cards may be stacked against you, challenge them. And if you haven’t stopped, keep going; you may just be at the finish line.
- Let’s make a renewed promise to love more. We’ve see how far hate can go (apparently all the way to The White House). As I said earlier, starting next year we’re gonna have to stand and fight with each other. And make no mistake about it, there is a fight to come. If you belong to any sort of minority, your rights will be threatened. It’s why the idea of ‘when we all come together and help each other out, nothing can stand in our way,’ is so important to know.
- Let’s make a promise to take personal care serious once and for all. And this can happen in many ways–in ways that work best for you. This year had begun to take a toll on me so much that I finally began to see a therapist. Before every session, I was always so nervous. After every session, I always felt lighter. I was even lucky enough to come across an intellectual within my therapist. We would start lengthy conversations off of the smallest topics and it fed my spirit and gave me the strength to continue on in my hectic world. I didn’t do therapy the second half of 2016 and I miss it. I plan to start back in 2017. When you meet someone that you connect with, keep that relationship, romantic or not. Those are hard to come by.
You are more than welcome to use some of these promises as a guide for your 2017, or you can make your own list of promises. I encourage it! I know this year was hard, harder than it had to be. We’ve lost loved ones. Some of us lost our sanity. But if you’re reading this, you made it. WE made it through this hellish year. We owe it to ourselves to make the next 365 days better than our last 365 days. I leave you with the perfect quote to get 2017 popping!:
“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called opportunity and it’s first chapter is New Year’s Day.”
– Edith Lovejoy Pierce
**Now, let’s live, daaaaaaahlings!**