Never could I have imagined the sea change that would occur in my life this year. Often, this blog has become the repository for angst, foolishness, emotional silliness, and other weirdness. Tonight, I want to dwell on some of the wonderfulness.
I am closer to my family than I have been in a long time. My sisters and I have strengthened our bonds this year. I am so thankful for that, because we have found ways now to really keep ourselves close to each other, even when we are apart. I am so proud of them and the hard work they do with their families and the beautiful children they have raised. They inspire me to be a better brother and uncle. My mother and father, always there for me, always encouraging, and still are.
I am finding comfort in a place upon which I had turned my back. God does work in mysterious ways, and I have found a second “home” in a small Lutheran church. I don’t always agree with everything I encounter there, but the open hearts and kindness of the people I have met there is proof enough to me that this is a good thing. My faith is not something that I am comfortable proclaiming from the rooftops, because it is a very personal issue for me. And I like that it is a personal issue.
I am still quite Liberal, politically. But I have found that having frank and open discussions with the people I meet who think differently than I reveals more common ground than you’d expect.
I have so many friends who through the years have stood steadfast, even though communication has been sporadic. I know that time spent with any of these friends is time well spent. I hope the New Year sees many more opportunities to share time with these amazing people who have graced my life.
My job has its own rewards. It never crushes my spirit or harms my mental health. It’s not glamorous and sometimes it can be repetitive and even boring. But it allows me time to do what I want to do in my free time, it is relatively stress free and I’d be happy to stay there, because they treat me very well. It’s good to feel appreciated.
I have been enriched by the deepest and most rewarding friendship I have ever known. That is not to diminish any of the truly treasured friendships I have, because I adore every one of my friends. But this friendship has transformed my life this year. It has taught me patience and humility, and has offered beauty and deep kindness. I never knew a friendship could change my life, but this one has. In fact, I think this friendship may have saved my life.
Prior to this year, my life was shadowed by doubt, regret, shame and sadness. Now, my life is full of hope, love, laughter and happiness. I have not forgotten my past, but with the help of everyone in my life, I have started moving forward.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. For support, for love, for hope.