Today marks the first day of 2018. It's a day of change. An opportunity for new. A time to celebrate.
Happy New Year, right?
For some it truly is a happy time, a happy season. But sometimes we find ourselves entering a new year without even an inkling of happiness. Life doesn't always deliver happy at the beginning of a new calendar year.
Sometimes life delivers pain and sorrow and sickness and death. Even on New Year's.
Last year at this time I became very ill. I went to bed at 6pm on New Year's Eve, thinking I had a flu or something. That turned into a year-long (and counting) chronic illness. And so began a health journey that has been one of the biggest challenges I've ever faced. And I've faced some pretty big challenges these past few years.
I'd love to say that today, one year later, I feel awesome. But the truth is, I don't. I feel better, but I'm not the same. My body isn't the same. And it may never be.
If you had said Happy New Year to me last year, I would have probably said "f*$% off". (And if I did, I apologize. I hope you didn't take it too personally.) But my dog was dying, I was going through the first holiday season without my dad, and I was cruelly dealt another health issue.
After a year of hard-core healing with the help of many professional healers, beautiful new souls in my life, and writing and music, I feel closer to a "happy" New Year. I don't feel happy, exactly, but I feel more hopeful and more alive than I have in years. And I suppose that there is a certain happiness in allowing the hope and aliveness to show up and live in me. I haven't felt this way in a long time, if ever.
As I write this, I feel a little jumbled because how can I -how can we - possibly condense an entire year into a few paragraphs? I don't want to go into all of my specific health issues (right now), and I don't want to write about grief (right now). I don't even really want to feel happy (which seems strange to write) because it feels too forced and artificial. What I feel is deeper than happy. I feel open to possibilities. I feel growth. I feel change. And I feel gratitude.
I've made it through another difficult year, and there is now a speck of light, a fire, a new way of seeing and being that gives me a reason to believe. That gives me a reason to celebrate.
In a quiet way.
I know that not all of you are particularly happy feeling right now. (Some of you are, and that's amazing! Woo-hoo! Happy New Year!) But for those of you that are struggling to find the happy in your New Year, I honor you. I honor your pain and your struggle. I honor your dark. I honor your healing. I honor your quiet.
It's a new year. Just another day on the calendar. If it's not YOUR new year, it will be soon.
Love to you all. And big wishes for a Hopeful New Year. xoxo