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The bad is the good – a letter to myself.

moving forward(Photo by Ambitious Creative Co. – Rick Barrett on Unsplash)

Babe,

This is a promise you made yourself a while back. But the last year has muddied the waters, and you appear to have lost your way. So here’s a reminder (and a loving kick in the butt) to put things in perspective.

Tears. Be glad for them — your daughter bawling when she doesn’t get one more story before bedtime. Your son’s voluminous eyes glinting because he heard about your overnight trip. Tears mean there is love. Love of companionship, love for family,. That honest love of doing something meaningful/meaningless with people you care about.

Annoyance. When the husband snaps at you because you’re scrolling on your phone instead of watching the movie with him. Irritation when a friend keeps canceling your child regaling you with a 30-minute “joke.” The exasperation that comes from missed conversations and tired parenting. Acknowledging this annoyance reminds you about the important bits of your life. The parts worth getting worked up about and the people who will always hold your heart in their hands.

Be thankful for unkindness. Unkindness reminds you to inspect how you interact with people. A rude comment, a mean act – helps you check yourself and be the bigger person. To value those who always show you compassion. And to pick kindness the next time you have a choice.

Mistakes. Remorse for choices made, words said. Your past could fill you with regret. That’s one way to do it. Or you could be proud of all the missteps and misadventures. A few bumps in the road make everything more appealing, don’t they? Hold dear those blunders and use them as teachable moments. Hey, when you grow old, you’ll have a few interesting tales to delight the grandkids with!

For a long time, you thought the new year should bring only joy and success. Everything upsetting about the past 12 months should disappear, and Jan 1 meant: BOOM! Positivity and perfection all around, yo!!

All the negative emotions above scared you. Those were signs of failure, symptoms of a flawed person — a loser.

But you’re wiser now. And definitely older.

So this year, cherish everything that happens. Happy and Sad. Kind and Angry. Hateful and love-filled. Every one of those sentiments means someone somewhere feels strongly about you. You cared enough to hurt/feel hurt. And you’re alive and (so) lucky to be here.

Now, what’s the point of this long-winded message, you ask? Simple — 2021 is about HOPE.

Hope that you can appreciate all the awesomeness that life throws at you.

Hope that you make glorious, horrible mistakes and learn from them.

And HOPE that you do better tomorrow than you did today.

All the love in the world,

You.

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