I find the passage of time mesmerizing yet astounding. How could another year possibly have come and gone? It seems like two weeks ago I was lying on my air mattress watching a New Year’s Day SVU marathon. How did 365 days pass without my acknowledgment or acceptance? I’m now another year older and, for the first time in a long time, another year wiser.
If you’re anything like me, you are spending the final hours of 2015 reflecting on the last twelve months. I’ve heard numerous people remark about what a terrible year it has been and that they’re happy to turn the page to a clean slate. For me, 2015 has been the most satisfying year I have lived since I graduated college over a decade ago. The real world hasn’t treated me unfairly, but throughout those lengthy “quarter-life-crisis” years I felt restless, trapped, and stagnant. I lost loved ones, watched friendships dissipate, and wondered if I would ever leave my footprint on this world. For most of those years I questioned my life choices because I expected to be a hell of a lot happier than I was. I thought my life would be more developed. I thought I would be making strides in a career. I never had an exact plan but I hoped my life would be different, more like my friends’ lives: complete.
When the clock struck midnight that first morning of 2015, I was newly 32, unemployed, (still) depressed about my failed attempt at life in New England, and clueless about what the next twelve months had in store. But my lease on life quickly renewed when I decided to focus on the things I enjoyed instead of what dragged me down. A year later my life still has some stagnant points (hello perpetual singleness), but it also has experienced significant changes.
I finally wrote something worthwhile, something my heart had been longing to express.
I snagged a good job (which I very much enjoyed) at my former company. Eight months later, I received a promotion (and continue to enjoy my job).
I bought a new house (preconstruction), picked out all the interior design elements, and watched the concept come to fruition in about five months. I moved into the house and have made it a home.
I trained for my fourth marathon and then proudly ran with the Marines in October.
The greatest change I have noticed in my life is that I am finally happy to be content. I used to think that contentment meant settling; now I disagree. Contentment means being comfortable and settled. For the first time in forever I have no plans to travel. There’s nowhere I’d rather be at the present moment than in my home surrounded by my family and friends. I’m content with learning new things everyday at my job. I’m content with writing on the side. I’m content and I’m happy.
I’m sad to say good-bye to 2015. It’s been a wild, windy ride but worth every minute. I never would have guessed that at the end of the year I’d be where I am. This year has taught me that when you focus on what you have, you don’t dwell on what is missing. I have a loving family, beautiful friendships, a stable job, a new home, an able body, a goal to keep inspiring, and my words. I’ll always have my words.
Whether or not this was your best year yet, I hope you close it out with a bang. I’ll be in my jammies on the couch watching movies with a couple close friends. That, to me, is the perfect end to an unexpectedly unforgettable year.
Here’s to the next 365 days.