I can do this

she_turned_her_cants_into_cans-387235We took down the Christmas tree this evening. Usually I dread this activity, but I was more than ready for it this year. Usually, I like to prolong the coziness and the beauty and the feeling of the season as long as possible. Maybe it was our incredibly dry tree with its drooping branches, maybe it was the extra long break we had from school and work, but whatever the cause I am not feeling the usual way about packing it all up and getting on with the new year.

I would like to think that this means I am incredibly hopeful for the new year and am ready to take whatever comes.

2014 was a year of ups and downs, as most of them are. When I began to reflect back, I was struck by how I glossed over the early part of the year which had been rather rocky in parts. In fact, I had been in a nasty depressive funk the likes of which I hadn’t known in many years. I suffered through it mostly alone, not feeling the need to burden anyone with my feelings, assuming it would eventually go away on its own. After all, I blamed myself for even feeling so low because there was no real reason for it beyond a bruised and battered heart and ego. But that’s the funny thing about depression. It doesn’t necessarily hit you when things are so bad. When you might actually be expecting it. No, it knocks on the door like an uninvited guest and tries the door if you don’t answer it, waltzing right in and pouring itself a cup of coffee intending to stay, expected or not.

It was only when faced with the sudden ill health of a friend and the death of a young family member that I was able to dump depression’s coffee down the drain and unceremoniously kick it to the curb because I simply didn’t have the time or energy to deal with all that when there were real issues at hand.

Not that it is always so easy. Not that it was easy at all. But I’ve had a bit of practice dealing with that particular unwanted guest.

The second part of the year was both harder and easier. I opened myself up to second chances and accepted that some things weren’t meant to be. I faced my 40th birthday and took a once-in-a-lifetime trip with the boys. I made memories. And mistakes. I made new friends and said goodbye to others. I made new habits and began to break old patterns.

Maybe that is why I am OK with putting this past year in the books and moving on without sadness or regret or sentimentality. I spent the better part of last year positioning myself for this one. And I don’t plan to waste the golden opportunity.

2015 is now. And now is all that matters. We’ve rebooted. What happens now is up to me.   And surprisingly I find that I can’t wait to see what will happen this year. I’m certain it will be one of the best ones yet.

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