The thing I love most about 2016 is the overwhelming sense of unity in the world because of our shared hatred of this year. With the American elections finally over and most resigned to four or more years of a Trump catastrophe, literally everyone on my Facebook feed is now gearing up to celebrate the imminent death of 2016 this very evening.
Me, I cannot say that I’m not looking forward to a newer and brighter year ahead. But that hardly means that 2016 was an entire waste. I can only speak as ever for myself, but 2016 meant a lot to me as an individual more than just the blanket horror we’ve witnessed online.
It was the year that I finally took charge of my own life and become independent, while also being the year of the most meltdowns I’ve had since the first days of my healing process. It has been the year that I began to accept my failings with grace and take them for the value of the lessons they taught me.
Most importantly it has been the year that I actually learned to believe in my heart and soul that it is okay to not be okay. I can triumph over my own innate fear of the world and live my life to the fullest without destroying the world, much as my anxiety would like me to believe I am capable.
This has been the first year out of my entire 29 in which I was able to see the simple and peaceful life I dream of as possible. I am sitting now at my table in my modest little apartment looking out through the window where I imagined myself placidly writing less than a year ago, and I feel like I belong.
This year has been extremely painful, beyond my growing pains and doubt there is so much in my personal life that has broken my heart. In just the last week I’ve lost a co-worker to a horrible car wreck, and one of my dearest friends lost her only living sister.
My mother, for all I gripe about her, she is my rock and the solid ground I stand on. She is on the precipice of a big decision which if she so chooses will move her far away from me. And to be honest as always, that scares the shit out of me. The five minutes across town is bad enough some days, but two hours seems like a world away.
But in the same vein, it feels like a natural progression. My mother and I have been joined at the hip surviving this life together for so long neither of us is very good about living life for ourselves. I made my move this year, next year perhaps it is time for hers.
I would never argue with anyone that this year sucked in many ways, but I will say with every fiber of my being that it sucked for good reason. Every tragedy and every victory has brought our world closer to true unity and understanding.
While we still have a long way to go, 2016 showed us just how powerful the love and passion of humanity can be when combined towards a greater good. So let us now learn from the mistakes of this year, and carry forward into the next safe in the knowledge that together we can do extraordinary things!