We’re several days into the new year, but there’s still time for a little introspection on the year that was. And what a weird year it was.
2016 had some high points, but it had a lot more low points, and one really, really low point.
From a “me” perspective, though, I can’t complain. (And I realize how fortunate I am to be able to say that.) I’m still working out on a regular basis, which at this point is just habit. I still have a job that I enjoy, and that enables me to be able to travel and see friends and family. I spent time in New Orleans, Kansas City, England, France, and Austin, and probably somewhere else I’m forgetting. A major highlight was visiting England. I could easily have spent several more weeks (or months) there.
I wasn’t going to talk about the election, but it’d be hard to reflect on 2016 without mentioning it. Especially since my personal reaction to the outcome was not great, a reaction which honestly caught me off-guard. I think it was a combination of politics fatigue leading up to the election, and then legitimate surprise that CASE NIGHTMARE ORANGE actually happened. Also throw in the onset of the cold and sunless days, and, well, things were a little bleak for a while. What helped get me to the other side was taking some small, concrete steps to help support civil liberties, adding Mike Turner’s phone number to my contacts, and using Chrome’s Word Replacer extension in a possibly immature but amusing fashion.
Looking ahead: I’m not really a fan of New Year’s Resolutions, since I think trying to effect major lifestyle changes on an arbitrary date is not a great way to set one’s self up for success. That said, I do have some general goals this year. Fine-tune my fitness, specifically focusing on stretching, so my muscles don’t one day get so tight that they snap like an overburdened tree branch. Travel more, even though I will likely remain stateside this year. There are friends that need a-visiting. Though I can feel my passport getting restless already, so who knows. I slacked off on writing this last year, so I’d like to renew that effort. I have a couple of short story ideas that have been marinating for a few months, and the Thing That Threatens to Become a Novel has been crying out for more attention.
2017 will not be a boring year. It won’t be easy, either, but then it never is. Be kind to yourself, and to others, in the year ahead. I’ll see you on the other side.