Dear 2016

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Dear 2016,

We started out beautifully. It was the New Year. My beloved and I arrived in Santa Fe. We slept as you entered the world. We embraced you with delight in the morning. We ate our first meal with you at a charming little bed and breakfast on San Francisco Street.

Later, we returned to my parents’ home and hung with family. My beloved flew out the next day and my sister flew in. The great exchange! Oh, how I felt you kissing me, 2016!

January 17th was my beloved’s 58th birthday, the best yet. We followed it with another beautiful Valentine’s Day in February. We were rolling in love.

I got in the flow of blogging at Alice in Authorland and readied myself for more marketing endeavors. 2016, you tasted sweet to me. I embraced the magic moments. I leaned into you like a dog with my head outside the car window.

What adventures awaited—my beloved’s upcoming visit, New Orleans, Ireland!

Then, on March 4, just as you, 2016 began to feel as natural and wonderful as the love in my heart, you gave me grief. You turned me like the Tilt-a-Whirl. You dropped the floor out of my full life.

You reminded me—as if I needed it—how harsh death can be. I’ve heard it said you have two choices: you can learn through joy or through pain. You didn’t give me a choice!

You continued to hand me days and months and enough grief to engulf me. I was a rock you rolled inside a barreling snowball. Yet, it wasn’t just me you grabbed.

2016, you reintroduced our country to the lowest common denominator. You delivered cops danger and death. You made Black Lives Matter an important movement because it appeared they didn’t. You questioned the progress of gay rights and health care, jeopardizing peace, safety, and children’s lives.

2016, I thought your purpose was to move forward, but you took us back in so many ways. You made jokes of civility, social justice, and sexual harassment. You disavowed dignity, respect and kindness, trading them for bravado and bullshit. You turned rhetoric into outright lies.

2016, you mucked it all up! Even after you’re gone, we’ll be paying for your sins. I don’t know if I’ll be able to forgive you for your hurtful ways.

To top it off, you not only took my beloved and my friend’s brother, but far too many of our musical icons and Hollywood stars. Don’t you know we need our heroes? Now, you leave the future to us?

Well, don’t you dare think we’re alone, for 2016, you introduced me to new angels and brought me closer to God and my guides. We don’t need you on this ride. Good riddance!

Baby, I rolled with you and somehow (by grace), I became something new. 2016, I apologize for the times I haven’t appreciated you or I acted angry and dismissive. I was grieving. It’s not your fault.

I see you continued relentlessly presenting morning sunrises, splashing colorful sunsets, and offering many moonlit nights. We tried to dance, didn’t we?

With you, I learned about myself—my vulnerability and resilience. You reminded me some things are temporary. So it is with you and I. Let’s end this. I can’t say I’ll miss you, only that you were an important part of my journey.

Actually, I feel a bit giddy. See, 2017 is winking and smiling at me, even flirting and asking me to dance. Oh, my! I’m saying yes.

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