For some 2014 has been difficult - crappy even. Talking to those who have done it tough makes me feel like I dodged a bullet this year. Maybe I got time off for good behaviour. I had a few crappy years in a row, so maybe this year was my turn off the fortune-of-hell-wheel. Or maybe I just got lucky.
This year I've watched friends struggle with illness, deaths of loved ones, failed goals, unrealised potential, choices that turned out badly, unexpected redundancy, relationship breakdown and a million other curve balls life has thrown at them. Then, on top of all that, I've watched undeserved disaster visited upon vulnerable people both nationally and internationally via the heartless and senseless actions of people misusing power.
Today I look back at all my problems and frustrations of 2014 and realise I have very little to complain about. So what I can't see much anymore and need multi-focals? So what I still can't run with my knee two years after surgery? So what I can't shed the spare tyre around my middle? So what I didn't make best seller lists? So what I'm the only member of my household who can remember where the dishwasher is? None of it is that important. It all amounts to first-class first-world whining.
So, as 2014 draws to a close, I count my blessings.
My family is healthy enough to really get up my nose every other day, I am strong enough to stomp around the house in frustration.
I have a hot shower in the morning and food in the cupboards and sufficent income to buy my high maintenance hypo-allergic greyhound special food so she doesn't have to feel billious all the time. My loved ones have made it through another year intact - everyone is well, functioning, healthy and as happy as a bunch of spoilt first worlders can expect to be.
In the scheme of things I've had a brilliant year. A new book out (Being Jade) with rave reviews, I've worked with awesome people like Angela Meyer, John Purcell, Krissy Kneen and the gorgeous New Romantics at major writers fesitvals. I've taught some writing courses and worked for 5 months at Brotherhood of St Laurence on an inspiring project. I've connected to old friends and made a few new ones. My daughter has blossomed, my partner hasn't died of a smoking related illness and I still fit into my wardrobe (just). And my cat loves me (although I'm still not convinced that's something to be all that happy about).
In short, I've lived the dream, so I should look like my too-lovable doggie who only sees the bright side of life, Bear.
In the spirit of Christmas I'd like to share some of my unexpected luck of 2014. I send this post to you with wishes for healing, health, hope in 2015. May the spirit of love be with you. May you discover all the things that count, however small, and appreciate them. May those around you see the goodness in you and love you for who you are. May you shine in 2015.
Namaste. Blessings. May your feet find the path to your dreams.
PS I'll be taking a short break from blogging to spend time with the people who love me enough to put up with me. I'll see you all on the flip side. x