Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Resolution

Its the eve of the new year and everyone who can will likely head out for drinks and an evening with friends. This morning as I looked through the usual papers there is the same reflection of "this year in pictures" to allow us all to look back at the year in full scope. Most of the people of fb have already started to post their New Year's resolutions. I never really understood the New Year resolution. Of course I have made some in the past. When I was younger I just went with the flow and kind of made a few because everyone else did. A few years ago I stopped doing that. I don't feel the need to have a special day to push the reset button on something. If people see a problem why do they need a special day to embark on improvement? I rather like to take the time when most people are thinking about their flaws and mistakes to recount the good things in my life and to be thankful for all the things I have had, all the wonderful people around me, and all the great things I have learned, seen, eaten, etc. Why lament life? Let's enjoy it. This year has been a particularly hard one and dare I say it isn't over yet. I have to admit that I am very tempted to look back on the year and see the hardships, but it would be foolish to let a few drops cloud the water and so instead I think it best to move into the new year with those good things in mind. Hey, I'm healthy. Lets face it, that is a big thing to be thankful for. In addition no one especially close to me has gotten sick, injured, or died. Now that's a good year. I think this is one thing people tend to be complacent about, but when you are sick you damned well wish you weren't. We should all relish the air we breath and the steps we take because tomorrow we may not be able to. I have a job, and its a good one. I've been able to save, pay off some debts, and generally keep myself and my wife comfortable. I am doing what I love and I have been able to become progressively more and more skilled and specialized in it. I have fought for this, but even so some people have fought even harder and have had to stop short of their dreams. I can be thankful that is not true for me. I've traveled. Anyone who knows me knows that travel is my life blood. This year I went to Japan, then traveled to many different cities in China, visited America and my home town, then to Malaysia via Hong Kong, then Japan again. I traveled more in this year than the vast majority of people do in their lifetimes. I am so lucky to have a life that allows me to explore cultures and experience new things. I've learned many things. I am always hungry to learn and this year was successful as I got my master in education degree (technically last December), completed 60+ hours training in IB Economics, attended seminars, was given a grant to study Chinese Film, and read a lot of books. People tend to put learning into a neat little category like I have, but its really so much more than getting a certificate or reading a manual.Its the people I have met and the knowledge that they have imparted to me that I value most. I've met wonderfully intelligent, humorous, caring, insightful people and some ignorant, bland, hateful people as well. People often discount the interactions they have with those they don't enjoy or agree with, but I think this is a mistake. They all teach me something about myself and about the world around me and often I receive my greatest insights from people who radically challenge me. If nothing else it tells me I am on the right path. I have great family and friends who have been supportive of my choices and have cheered my success. Most of all my wife who has done everything for me from making my lunches, rubbing my feet, and most of all following me around the world. If I didn't have her I would be incomplete. Though my success this year has been modest, I owe it to her. Let's face it, its been a good year and hey, the Mayans were wrong so let us raise a glass and look to the new year. Happy New Year everybody.