Reflections on 2017
It's been three months since my last post, one in which I promised a weekly series that so far has only seen one entry: its first. I'm afraid keeping up with this blog, even in its infancy, is proving to be a challenge.
I won't make excuses, except for one: it's been a crazy season. Fall always seems to be, for me, far more rife with change than the New Year, and this year was no exception. I began a new job in October full of the types of challenges I've been yearning for in my career for ages, and with it came more seniority, greater risks, and so far, greater rewards. I became more involved with my church, Renaissance Harlem, which has brought a deep sense of community, purpose, and spirituality - more of all three than I've had in years.
It also came with family hardships that perhaps I'll share more about in the future, but for now I'll remain silent on to protect those I love. Amidst the highs of a new step in my career and my rediscovered faith, this particular hardship has opened wounds I thought long since healed, not just for me, but for most of the members of my family, plunging us all to a unique and pronounced crisis we never saw coming.
This whole year, in fact, has been full of highs and lows. I traveled to some of my favorite places and discovered new favorites along the way: London, Paris, Edinburgh, Las Vegas, the Loire Valley. Old relationships I thought were steadfast were suddenly gone without warning while others flourished, renewing my hope in friendship. I had a major surgery, which started off roughly but has now left me feeling stronger, healthier, and more energized than I ever thought possible.
And while this isn't a political blog (nor do I want it to be,) the ebbs and flows of our nation and the world seemed in some ways to match mine: evil, selfishness, hate, and abuse being met by goodness, philanthropy, love, and justice. #MeToo.
As 2017 comes to a close, I am leaving it with gains and losses. I've lost family stability and a decade-long relationship. I've also lost, as of this morning, 73 lbs. It's odd that as the weight has come off physically, there's been an equal amount of weight added emotionally. But with the other things I've gained - my renewed faith, community, a rewarding new job, an evolved sense of what it means to be a loving friend, a colleague, a manager, a daughter, a sister, a woman - that emotional burden is eased, and I'm net positive. I hope your 2017 is as well.
Happy New Year to all, and may your 2018 be filled with hope, joy, kindness, perseverance and most of all, love. Love for each other and love for yourselves. Because love is the most beautiful of all, and the only thing that gets us through in the end.