Monday, December 31, 2012

December 31

On January 1, 2012, I wrote the following:

It's a whole new year. Nothing's the same, yet nothing has changed. I can't put my finger on it. I can't articulate it well (which is a shame, seeing as I know a whole heck of a lot of words and can't seem to string a sentence together that expresses how this new year feels to me). All I keep thinking is that everything's the same, yet ... it isn't the same. At all.

I'm curious to see where 2012 takes me. I'm full of trepidation and yet ... hope.

To paraphrase a quote I heard once upon a time, way back in High School English, before I had any idea what this might mean: The amount of joy we feel is, literally, commensurate to the amount of pain we have felt. 2011, literally, brought me more pain than I'd ever seen before. Commensurately, it also brought me more joy than I ever could have imagined.

Here's to hoping that 2012 will be more than a sci-fi hallucination. Here's to hoping that it's a continuation of the joy, and that 2011 put a cap on the pain.

I am truly hopeful that this will be my best year ever. I look forward to the people I'll meet, to the experiences I'll have, to the love that I know I'll feel.

I love my life. I always have. But every year, I love it (and the people in it) even more.

Happy New Year, folks! Let's make it a doozy!

Q: How adorable am I, that I was hoping that 2011 would put a cap on the pain in my life?

A: So adorable. (And hilarious. See if I ever make a wish like that again!)

The pain - the physical pain - that I have been in this year is incomparable to any pain that I had known before. (And, people, this is coming from the woman with the 22.5 lb tumor. I'd had to relearn how to walk twice prior to this year. ... And still, nothing could have possibly prepared me the physical pain of 2012.) I still live in hope that there will come a day that I don't start to hurt where I used to have a kidney if I stand for too long, or sit for too long, or lie on my side for too long. (Or am alive.) But I know that day won't be tomorrow. I'm pretty sure it won't be next month, and I wouldn't be surprised if it took a full year or more. And that's okay.

Because while, it's true that I have known pain this year... I have also known joy. A greater joy and a bone-deep peace that I never could have imagined prior to that pain.

The all-encompassing love that I have felt this year has changed me. The love that I have been shown, the love that I have felt for so very many people whose lives have cross-sected with mine, has changed everything in my world.

This line in my Jan 1 post kills me: "I am truly hopeful that this will be my best year ever. I look forward to the people I'll meet, to the experiences I'll have, to the love that I know I'll feel."

My goodness gracious, how that line came true! (Maybe I should start referring to myself as The Prophet Laur again.) It has been my best year ever. I have met the most incredible people (many of you through this little corner of the www). I have had the most amazing experiences. I have felt more love than I can begin to quantify.

I have the most wonderful life, with the most incredible people in it.

On January 1, I was full of trepidation ... and hope. I was truly hopeful that 2012 would be my best year ever, and it has not disappointed.

Was 2012 a difficult year? You can bet your booties, Granny. It sure was. ... But it also been Awesome, with a capital A.

I am so grateful for both the trials and the triumphs of 2012. I'm so grateful for the emotional and physical difficulties that came through a full six months of knowing that I had cancer - before I found out that it was bad enough (again) that they needed to go in and operate (again), asap.

I'm so grateful for the financial struggles that I had this year, because they led me to write the infamous post of June 16th. That post not only brought in the working capital I needed to face medical bills on top of months of not working, but it showed me that the world is kind (and proved to Dr. G that people do not suck).

I'm grateful for a body that works as well as it does. I am grateful for pain that is a small reminder of how bad it has been, because remembering where I have been helps me to know that I can go anywhere the future takes me.

I am grateful for my friends and my family - for their service and their generosity - and for the kindness of strangers.

My life is truly blessed.

2012 is a year that I will not soon forget. (I'm pretty sure they'd have to take out pieces of brain to lose the memories of this puppy. And considering where my tumors have always grown, that kind of surgery is highly unlikely.)

This has been my hardest year. This has been my best year. ... And I love that those two are so deeply intertwined with each other. (Which is not to say that I wouldn't love it if 2013 proves to be a different kind of awesome than 2012 has been. It would be absolutely fine with me if I could have the awesome without some of the struggles of the past few years. But you know what? I'll take whatever I can get. Time is precious and life is a gift. These things I know, in the very center of my soul.)

In parting, in this last post of the year, I repeat my closing line from the first post of the year:

Happy New Year, folks! Let's make it a doozy!