2016 Didn’t entirely suck so stop blaming it

Okay, so I don’t think anyone has been able to avoid being upset at this year for some reason or another. We’ve lost a bunch of well-loved celebrities, been disappointed by politics on one end or the other, and had our own personal tragedies. All of this has added up to blaming 2016 for being the worst and for taking away joy and happiness in our lives.

Heck, in my own life, things haven’t gone so smooth this year. I had a car wreck that totaled my car, put me in the hospital and gave me PTSD to the point that I lost my bearings on reality a bit and gave into anxiety and depression so much that I DYED MY HAIR BLACK, among other things. 2016 was a hard year for me on a lot of levels.

But here’s the thing about having tragedies and set-backs in life-they help us see just how good the better times are, when we have the right attitude about it. My car accident messed up a lot of things in my life, but it also gave me a chance to reevaluate what I consider the most important in my life. Would I rather it not had happened? Yep. Absolutely. Can wishing the outcome had been different change what happened? Nope. Until someone invents a real time machine, there is no way to change the past. So, I move on. I enjoy the other things in my life. My hair isn’t totally back to normal, but it’s a lot more red than it was a month ago. My anxiety is still high, but I don’t have PTSD so much anymore. The only ramification from the car accident is that I now have a car payment to deal with, but I really like my Yaris, so it isn’t that big of a deal.

A lot of people were and are upset about the election. There was a recount that didn’t change the outcome. People are angry, hurt, devastated, moving to Canada, lashing out at their friends and family members, and furthering the divide in our country. People have been horrible on all sides. We now have to endure at least 4 years with Donald Trump as the president. To me, that’s better than the alternative, but still not wholly ideal. In my ideal world, we’d have representatives who actually represent the views of what our founding fathers had. For now we are stuck with stupidity, anger, celebrities, coercion, scandals, and all the other what-have-you’s.

So many beloved celebrities died this year, including Carrie Fisher and her mother Debbie Reynolds. I’d be remiss if I said Carrie’s death didn’t affect me. Her role as Princess Leia inspired me from the first time I watched Star Wars. She was the perfect action heroine, in my book. A courageous princess who stood strong and tall in the face of loosing the planet she called home. Carrie Fisher brought her to life. I cried when I found out she died.

Yes, these things suck. Yes, it’s difficult that it all happened in one year. No, it does not mean that this year was entirely horrible. There were good things, too!

What about all the new babies, the marriages, the graduations, the achievements, the great films, and the little victories you made every single day you woke up? Don’t those count for something?

However you saw this year, remember that you survived. It may have been hard, but YOU DID THE THING. You’ll be stronger for whatever 2017 is bringing you.

I don’t know the specifics, but there are a few things I know will happen to us all in 2017. We will experience joy and pain. We will learn new things and do things we never dreamt we could, or would. We’ll meet new people, say goodbye to some people, and go through hard times. All of this won’t just be for naught.

A New Year is time for us to renew ourselves and reset our goals. If you feel like 2016 hurt you, set a goal to be stronger and to have a better attitude towards life. If you change your outlook on life, your life will look better. Trust me, I know.

I love all y’all. Let’s make 2017 the best year yet, no matter what happens in it.

Bring it on, 2017. I’m ready for you.

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