it is traditional at this time of year to put together reflections on the year just gone and to look forward to what may come in the twelve months ahead.
I have always loved New Year, a time somehow to start again, to grasp new challenges and to have another chance to get things right. It does seem a little strange, how the turning of a page on a calendar evokes such emotions and feelings, after all tomorrow really is just another day. Perhaps we have a chance every day to make changes, to do things differently, maybe we should think about that.
This year it is more difficult to put thoughts on the year just gone. It began well, dancing with my hubby and daughter, we laughed together, enjoying the atmosphere in our local pub. Walking home, still laughing, we had every hope that the year would be good to us, our little house in the hills would be filled with love and we would delight in watching our family grow and that good things would happen for all of them.
To be fair, some of our hopes and dreams have been fulfilled, others not so much, and I am thinking as I am writing this, that that is always the way of this life. Yin and Yang, Good and Bad, Happy and Sad, one is always close by the other.
If I had to sum up the year just leaving in one word it would be ‘uncertainty’. Throughout the year all things I believed to be true were challenged and the world I though was safe and secure became fragile. We began the year living close to our friends and our family, happy and healthy, I had a job I loved with people I liked, hubby was as constant as ever. Our darling daughter was home from her travels and working locally and looking back now, I had no idea just how fortunate I was.
As winter was ending another job came my way and by Spring I was loving working with a new team of people, and really making a difference. Globally the world continued to be a strange place with people impossible to trust gaining power and the politics of separation abounded. Then an election was called and the hard work of campaigning gave us focus for our energy. We delighted in a successful campaign as our candidate was elected, and as the summer began things were looking great.
A knock on the door in late June set in motion changes that would have been impossible to foresee. Our lovely little house was ours no more, we needed to find a new home. In the midst of this hubby found he was not as well as we always believed, things began to be rocky. Together with friends and family we held tight, moved to another hill in another country and waited for good news. I learned this year that the time spent worrying seems to take much longer than the times we spend in laughter.
Gradually days turned into weeks, and in those weeks our gorgeous Granddaughter continued to grow into a darling little girl, our big girl changed jobs, went on another adventure and on her return dithered with decisions on where her future was to be. The boys kept on being themselves, one also found a new job and life went on. Good friends faced their own challenges, dealing with loss and illness, this summer seemed a tricky time for everyone. Soon Winter was approaching and life on the hill was becoming difficult, we really needed to find a home.
I had sought out a place to spend my time usefully while living on the hill and it was there I made a new friend,who unexpectedly had the answer, and at the end of this year we moved into a sweet little house close to the sea. It is beautiful and perfect for us, albeit too far from those we love.
The week we moved in was also bittersweet. A hospital appointment gave us great hope that hubby will be fixed, his broken heart can and will be mended, and yet almost at the same time, we had the worse news of all about another member of our family. My cousin had been by my side all of my life. She had challenges of her own, which we all struggled with at times, but our love and care for each other was ever present. It seems hard to believe I am living in a world without her in it any more. The tears that fell daily were indeed for the loss of a loved one, but also for the loss of a life I had grown accustomed too. Selfishly I let the fears and uncertainties of the six months before to overtake me, there was nothing anyone could do or say. I now understand how grief, filled with memories and regrets, can truly disable you. The price of love is the pain of loss, and at the end of such a turbulent time, there was little left in my emotional bank to cope. Her funeral, a day of celebrating her life, really helped, sharing the love with others was important.
The next week it was Christmas, a time of joy and love, which seemed impossible to me but actually that is exactly what we found. In the midst of turmoil and sadness my wonderful amazing and gorgeous family made me laugh, smile and be truly grateful for what I have in my life. Sons and a daughter who have grown into effective, caring and funny adults, a husband who has stood beside me through all the emotion, steady as ever, holding me up. Friends and family who invited us into their homes, offering food and fun, love and laughter, and those who travelled to our new house and helped us make it a home. I am blessed.
Later tonight, as the clock strikes midnight the New Year will arrive, full of promise for better things, our hopes and dreams pinned to the turn of the calendar. This time though it will be different. I am older and wiser than before. Lessons I have learned this year just gone have changed me forever. I no longer will wish for a Happy New Year, for I know that happiness is tenuous and fleeting. Instead I will be wishing for a peaceful New Year, for one in which we can find our own way through the challenges that face us all. I will be hoping that we all find strength and love around us, and always have much of what we need and some of what we want. Globally I wish the world could remember we are all human kind, sharing the same planet, we all have hopes and dreams. I wish that we will be able to reach out to each other, to delight in our happy times and to comfort and to lend a helping hand where we can.
So, lovely readers I wish for you all of what you would wish for yourselves, I am hoping that life is kind to you and that in turn, you are kind to others. May you have peace in your lives, your loved ones close by and find laughter beside any tears. Whatever the next twelve months holds for all of us, may we make the best of it, and in turn find the best in ourselves. Thank you for reading my blog and walking with me through the days of my years.