No Time Like the Present

Hello! It’s the last day of 2019, and it seemed an auspicious day to begin to write in this space again. I thought about writing this post about loss; 2019 has been a year or a good deal of loss for a lot of people, including people I know and love. But thinking about the bleakness of such a post made me reconsider. This post, instead, is about balance.

I haven’t had a lot of balance in the last year, and I know I’m not alone. Part of the problem, I think, is the general existential malaise a lot of us feel here in the states right now–the sense of powerless in the face of awfulness, when our voices don’t seem to change much of anything and we don’t know what else to do.I stopped writing here because of that feeling. When we concurrently face immediate loss in our lives, we are already at an emotional deficit–we come at it from a place of exhaustion–and it all gets to be a lot.

We lost a longtime friend. One of our dear friends lost her mom. My grandmother’s been moved to a nursing home, something she hates and faces as a new event almost every day because of dementia. There’s a lot to mourn there, outside of the bigger national stuff.

Good things did happen in 2019, however, and if they happened for you, too, you need to hold onto those things and the strength they give you as we head into 2020. They can help you leap to still greater heights, or they can help sustain you in hard or challenging times.

My greatest hits this year–some of which really goes in my fill-the-bucket list:

  • I was awarded the highest teaching honor at my university.
  • We hit a major money goal.
  • I wrote A LOT of book pages. I don’t know how good they are but they exist.
  • I advocated for myself at work and got what I needed.
  • I landed a huge client and my revenue this year is substantially more than last.

I hope you can take some time to build your own highlight reel as we head into the new year so as to find your own balance amid a lot of challenges, or to understand where you might pick up challenges amidst your good fortune.



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4 thoughts on “No Time Like the Present

  1. Welcome back to blogging, and Happy New Year! Your line about not knowing what else to do hit me hard; I was up late last night talking with a friend about structural inequality, and while it was wonderful to talk with someone who sees the world similarly to me, it was also frustrating to acknowledge that seeing the problems is not the same as fixing them.

    Sadly, I have no answers, although I think there is value in resistance even when it doesn’t seem to change anything (or, at least I tell myself that).

    Congrats on your many big wins of the year, amidst the difficult things. Hope there are many more for you in the next year and the next decade!

  2. Happy New Year! I’m glad to hear that 2019’s “existential malaise” (god, that is such a perfect description) didn’t chew up your entire year. We all need antidotes for the heartbreaks in life — it’s about balance, like you say.

  3. So glad to see this post pop up in my blogroll, friend.

    There certainly is a lot good in my life lately that I can look to when I need to balance out the political and social hellscape that is forming around us. I need to lift my spirits up so I don’t get overwhelmed.

  4. Happy New Year! I don’t think we have much of a highlight reel because last year was about keeping people afloat and it looks like at least 7/12 of 2020 will be doing that as well. But I hope that we’ll have some personal highlights to relish along the way.

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