I am part of the many who have had a horrific 2016. I lost my mam and with it I lost a part of me that I will never see again and have had to start the long and grueling journey of readjusting to this. I was not ready for this. The shock in May, the exhausting hospital trips, the bad news, blow after blow after blow, seeing my idol petrified, having conversations nobody should have to have, the tears, the panic inducing lump in my throat that makes me think I will stop breathing, the emptiness, the big goodbye and the ones I have daily; today as the grief crept up on me, I was very much ready to see the back of 2016. To write it off as the worst year ever – as are so many people I see on social media. To swear at the year, stick two fingers up at it and slam the door in it’s ugly face as we step into 2017. To leave it all behind us….
I can’t leave any of it behind me; I cannot forget a single moment or feeling from it. To forget it all and blame it on 2016 is not fair on anyone.
Yes, it saw the most wonderful of women leave our lives, but I cannot be angry at 2016 for that…but I can hate cancer for it and take that with me into 2017. I will raise money for those who are battling the alien in whatever way I can to help their fight, I will raise awareness, I will be there for those I know are going through similar things, I will make sure my family know they can talk to me about how they are readjusting, I will be more giving to those friends who saw me through my time with the alien, I will keep the spirit of my mam alive every day and I will give myself permission to feel whatever it is I need to.
Do not be dismissive of problems and attribute it to the year, wiping your slate clean to start again when the clock strikes midnight. I do not hate 2016, I hate cancer. 2016 has not divided us, but rather politicians, leaders and campaigns. I do not think that 2016 has gone back in time, but prejudice and discrimination have come back to the forefront of society. And so much more. It is not a case of starting afresh (that is impossible) but taking everything that you have learned from the past year, good and bad, into 2017, in the hope that we can improve the things that we really want to.
Also… I got married to the most amazing man in the world who has been there to make all of the above that little bit easier. So it’s not all bad. Let’s give 2016 a break!
I hope you manage to find your own way of taking 2016 with you into the new year and that it helps you shape it into a 2017 you want to be a part of.
At midnight tonight, I will be raising a glass to Lorraine Frances Harper and if you look up into the sky at the same time she will be there twinkling down on all our friends and family. Never Forget. Always carry it with you.