Tag Archives: New Year’s

The best we can

December 31st. The day that most of us stop for an extra moment to reflect on the year that’s about to end. Since i’m a naturally reflective and curious person, today has been spent doing just that.

This year seemed to go by in the blink of an eye (don’t they all). And while I could give a detailed list of the milestones that occurred, instead i’ll say this: I did the best that I could.

With everything.

I tried really, really hard at my career. And I continue to do so day in and day out. I left a job in Chicago that I absolutely adored so that I could be closer to my family, and when I started my new job in Rochester, I had to adapt to a completely new environment. It wasn’t always easy, but when it came to my career this year, I do know this: I did the best that I could.

Now that i’m closer to home, my family and my relationship with my boyfriend (and subsequently his family) are a top priority. It can be exhausting, but working to bring two families together has been one of my greatest joys in 2016. We aren’t perfect. There are arguments and inevitably stressful times. But when it came to family and love this year, I do know this: I did the best that I could.

I also put a lot of thought, time, and energy into my friendships this year, as I try to do every year. Some flourished. Others dimmed. In hindsight, I would have changed a few things. I would have stood my ground a little stronger and communicated more often. I think I could have been a better friend. I guess there’s always room to be a better friend. And i’m going to try to do so in the days, weeks, and years ahead. But when it came to friendships this year, I do know this: I did the best that I could.

Every year comes with its own set of challenges. And that’s because life is tough. It kicks you in the ass and it makes you cry and it leaves you bruised and banged up with mud on your knees and a confused look on your face. And it never stops.

It always forces you to learn, reach, grow, transform, and stretch in the direction of goodness and kindness so that you can hopefully become a better version of yourself. It does this every damn day. It’s no easy task, and there are no breaks.

But don’t forget that just being alive and well is a blessing in and of itself. And although the lessons we must learn are tough, they’re worth learning.

Whether 2016 was a joy or a nightmare for you, just remember this: we’re all just doing the best we can. And may we continue to do so in the years to come.



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The year of questions

While 2013 ended up being my “year of mistakes,” I’ve come to realize that 2014 (for the most part) was a year of unanswered questions.

The other day I was reading an interview with Michael Douglas in Success Magazine. When asked about the difficulties in his life, he made reference to the “waves” one experiences throughout the years:

Things happen. When there’s a good wind behind you, sailing is a breeze. But how you conduct yourself during the difficult times is what’s really important. That’s what separates people.

He goes on to talk about how these “waves” typically come in sets of five and seven, and you ride them out until you’re fortunate enough to hit your next lull. But when those forces strike, most of us just try to fight like hell to stand up on our own two feet and not get pulled down by the undertow.

2014 hit me with many more waves than lulls, some much more defeating than others. And as the impatient 25 year old that I am, it’s tough for me to not have all of the answers to the big, resounding questions that fill up my mind – questions of love, loss and the lawlessness of life.

Does the timing of a situation really dictate its outcome as much as we tell ourselves that it does?

How do we balance the grief over those we’ve lost with the frustration of why they’re gone in the first place?

And at bottom, what do we do when honestly don’t know what to do?

My answer to almost anything i’m approached with in life is to follow my gut instinct. More often than not it has led me in the “right” direction. But as this new year begins, I’ll be honest – I’m a little lost, overwhelmed, exhausted and confused. I’m trying to find out what that right balance between logic and intuition is when making a decision, and it’s a learning curve that I didn’t anticipate being so big.

Yet somehow I have a strong faith that these waves will soon settle down and my lull will arrive. Until then, the best I can do – the best any of us can do – is to fight to stand up tall and do what we can to make the ride worthwhile.

Whether 2014 was the best year of your life or the worst, remember to be patient with yourself, because no one is immune to the highs and lows, they just hit us at different times. So instead of a New Year’s resolution, maybe just trust yourself enough to find your way to the answer you’re looking for.

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”

― Rainer Maria Rilke

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