Wednesday, January 1, 2014

How to Be Queen of 2014

I posted this on Facebook as my first thought this morning and hope it was taken in the spirit it in which it was meant:

"If you are still complaining in 2014 about what happened to you in 2013, you wasted a year."

SPOILER: We have no control over when we got here or when we leave. 

To spend what time we have whining and complaining, year after year, shows we haven't learned anything.  It shows we haven't paid attention.  It shows we haven't forgiven, in some cases.  And it shows we haven't made a single move to change anything.  And the years we have pass fast, no?

This is not a dress rehearsal. It's our real life.

I once read that a 'moment' can be a very long time or it can be a matter of a second. 

It's easy to waste those moments when nothing calls your attention to it.  However, a death in the family, illness, childbirth, a loved one who is far away for a time, feeling pure joy or intense pain can all make the presence of passing moments crystal clear.  And you either want those moments to last or to go away quickly.  But you are aware of them.  Any lack of awareness, burying our heads in the sand or conditioning ourselves to ignore it, leads to year after year of ongoing and unchanging misery. 

We are human beings.  No matter how close or intuitive a pet may be or act, they can't feel and act on the same level as we can.  That makes us pretty special.  Not bragging here, just observing.  We can express ourselves unlike any animal who cozies up for a petting.  We can speak.

We can show and tell each another we love.  We can express our likes and dislikes.  We can build relationships or tear them down with our words.  We can lift others up or bring them crashing down with our words, faulting them for all that is wrong in our lives. We can maintain friendships or send people away lonely and unloved.  We can blame and make people pay for what others have done to us or accept them as the individuals they are. We can smile and greet a stranger and that may be the only kindness they receive that day.  We can compliment someone and make their day.  We can criticize another, being unforgiving, making them relive it over and over and over until their self-worth is lost. We can acknowledge one another. And that can make all the difference.

So, this year is not about the usual resolutions.  It's about, yes, recalling the past, but seeing what we can do to change it. It's about forgiving what's happened in the past, and learning from the situation and how to proceed from there.  It's about offering love without fear just because we may have been hurt in the past.  It may happen again and again until it's right, but we can't give up. It's about acknowledging others' presence on this planet with us.  Many people are simply...forgotten.  We forget there are homeless, because we have our homes.  We forget the hungry, because we have our food. We forget the downtrodden, because we have our friends. We forget refugees, because we have our nation.

I guess what I'm trying to say is let 2014 be the year you reach out to someone...anyone.  It'll be worth it and you will be proud of what you accomplished by 2015.

As Father Allan Tupa said last night, we don't know what 2014 holds, but we know who holds 2014.
I'm counting on that.

Happy New Year and may God bless us all!!