2015 has been… I must admit to being stumped for an adjective. So many things that happened in 2015 that I’m having a little trouble quantifying it all.
There have been both wonderful, and terrible events; terrorist attacks in Paris, plane and train accidents, and senseless violence of many stripes. We have suffered the loss of beloved figures like Leonard Nimoy and Yogi Berra. We rejoiced in the birth of a new Princess in England and the visit of Pope Francis to numerous places, spreading a message of tolerance and love where ever he goes. There have been landmark legal decisions and demands for civil justice. It has been a year for the record books in many ways, the strange weather among them.
On the personal side, my family has grown by a new grandson and I have seen friendships renewed, deepened and begun. I have had my eyes opened to new perspectives and this has, in the main, been a good thing. It is true that I now have a hard time enjoying any version of “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” due to my realization of the rather warped message it sends to young people of both genders. I blame my eldest daughter for that one, but it’s all right. It is good to move forward with eyes open, rather than wearing blinkers.
I published three books in 2015. But, while it is exhilarating to birth three novels into the published realm, I still struggle with marketing, getting reviews, and balancing writing with my day job and my personal life. In the wide ocean that is the literary marketplace, my island is still pretty small.
No matter how I look at it, I cannot categorize 2015 with a single adjective. It has been, by turns, amazing, surprising, horrifying, joyous, and heartbreaking. I have wept over the loss of life, and lifted my hands in gratitude, sometimes on the same day.
But then, the same was true for 2014, and will likely be equally true for 2016. Given that a year is 365 individual days, each one with joys and sorrows as numerous as the people who live them, it is, perhaps, unreasonable to even try to describe it in a single word. Perhaps the only one that fits, in these last hours of the last day, is ‘over.’ 2015 is over, except for the shouting.
But that is not a bad thing. In fact it is cause for hope and rejoicing. Because 2016 is a brand new, clean sheet of paper. With it, we can write a fresh history as beautiful as our actions can make it. I hope more of us will choose to work towards joy and peace this year. I hope that we will, all of us, try to understand more, and blame less. That we will love more, and hate not at all. That more of the humans who share this planet will realize that it does not belong to us, any more than it belonged to our parents. We hold it in trust for our children, as they will for their children. I pray that more of us will remember that, and act accordingly.
In the meantime. Happy New Year everyone, and may 2016 bring you joy and blessings in many forms.