What do you choose to feel as 2016 comes to a close?
Tonight, I walked through a silent city.
For once, in the past month, my mind shut up. Finally, I could revel in the quiet and let the streets of San Francisco envelop my soundless footsteps. I peeked in on families having dinner together. Large turkeys sat as center piece's, framed by elaborate glass windows as twinkling lights guided my meandering path.
For the first time in my life, I was alone on Christmas.
December is a strange time, as life slows down and speeds up in that elastic sort of way. It’s a time of juxtaposition. Community and loneliness. Generosity and greed. Love and depression. Perhaps it’s these very comparisons, that infuse this month with that strange nostalgia and sense of finality.
There has been a theme, on social media, of an awful 2016. On a worldwide scale, I understand that. However, if I always determined the success and happiness of my life off of worldwide affairs, I fear I would never be content. So when I start to zoom in from out there, to North America, to the West Coast, to California, to San Francisco and to a girl alone in the dark on a random street-corner, 2016 was a powerful one.
Although the past month and closing of my year has been filled with uncertainty, discomfort, fear, and internal upheaval, standing in the silence, I felt nothing but gratitude. Sometimes it takes plunging into difficulty for me to realize how very strong my backbone and foundation is.
To end this year, I could list my accomplishments here. But when I get down to it, it isn’t all the stuff I did, the money I did or didn't make, the goals I accomplished, the miles I ran, or the books I read. It’s that I have spent these 365 days striving to be better. Not for anything else, not for anyone else, not because of any external pressure, but because that’s what makes me truly, wildly, happy.
I would not do away with the discomfort, stress or intensity of this year. I would not do away with the love, joy and clarity of this year. All these things brought me to this road, in the night, where I felt nothing but thankfulness.
Here’s to another challenging, powerful, and beautifully complex rotation around the sun.
I had the pleasure of hearing Redwood Rodeo, at a house concert, on a chilly night in San Francisco. Maybe it was the wine, or perhaps the candlelight but I absolutely loved this song, particularly the harmony. If you would like to hear more of their songs or see what they are up to, check out at their Facebook Page. They have many upbeat tunes as well if that's more up-your-alley.
This week's creative escapade was inspired by my late Grandpa Jack. I’ve wanted to memorize this poem forever and wish it did my Grandpa’s version justice. Alas, my telling will have to suffice...
Nail Biting Results
Here are the results of my goal to stop chewing my nails. As you can see, it was a failed experiment. However, I did really well for about three weeks and then last week, completely fell off the wagon. So, I know I have the will-power to do it, I just need some help. I realized that now the only time I chew my nails, is when I am driving/looking for parking (a frustrating thing to do in San Francisco) I ordered some stuff to put on my nails that tastes bad and found a finger exerciser thing to keep my hands preoccupied while driving. I will update you next month to keep myself accountable.