I've been reading back-posts from my blog today.
I should be doing all sorts of Christmas-ish things, but instead I've laughed, cried, and rolled my eyes until they feel like they are coming unhinged. I remembered the person who wrote those posts. I like her and I kind of miss her.
Let's face it. 2011 has kicked my trash. We are still recovering from the last year's worth of life developments, and bracing for impact on some things that are coming toward us. I've felt like I've been through a battle... and while I'm still waiting for the smoke to clear... I think when it all settles I may actually be a better person.
Which is the good news and the bad news.
Because I distinctly remember last year about this time being told more than once that "all these things would give me experience"
...like that was a good thing.
And I wondered what the hell the experience was good for, besides just helping other people who would also have the opportunity to "gain experience". And wouldn't it be more efficient (I thought) to just put a stop to the entire cycle, and just have everyone be happy with no experience whatsoever.
And then it would occur to me that I had heard that plan somewhere before... and then I would shut it out of my head and stop analyzing it entirely.
But as it turns out, while "gaining experience" completely stinks when you are doing it, it does tend to give a person perspective, and empathy and compassion.
(For an amazing post on experience and compassion, read this post from Paul's new blog.)
I will probably always wonder if I did the last year as well as I could have. Being a new seminary teacher this year has given me lots of time to think about the different prophets and their trials. There were many of them who walked head-on into their trials without the benefit of good friends, family, home teachers, Diet Coke, Xanax, or even a Sonic (*gasp*), and it makes me a little weak in the knees thinking of all the crutches I have needed - to get through, well, nothing really. I mean, it's just LIFE. -
I look back and see things I should have said differently, things I should have paid more attention to, people's needs I should have been aware of...
but every time I start down that sad little memory lane, one of my favorite running sayings pops into my head:
Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must...
but finish the race.
but finish the race.
This year has been a combination of all of the above. But I am learning to do it better, and DANGIT I will finish this race one way or another. (See? I've even stopped swearing since paragraph 6. I'm doing better already!)
Believe it or not, I'm a relatively private person in real life. (I know.... narcissistic AND private. There's a combo you don't see every day!) I rarely cry or tear up in public. It's here that I allow myself a little bit of public emotion and reflection.
You're so glad you stopped by to witness it, right? ;)