Sunday, January 2, 2011

Well Hello There, 2011!

"2010 was a...'Rebuilding Year'," Jaunt said to me last night. It came out with a mix of affection and exhaustion with a slight pause to emphasize that, for all of us it seems, 2010 was a bit of a tornado that picked us up and dropped us off in some entirely different location then where we started the year. Some of us a little more scathed then others, but mostly in one piece.

To call it a "Rebuilding Year" is entirely accurate and, because it's Jaunt, it's also a quite intelligible and poetic way of referring to said tornado. I've felt more change in the air- with friends, family, and the world at large. Change is riddled with difficulty, excitement, and a certain degree of learning when to dig your heels in and when to simply let go and allow the winds to whip you as they will.

In 2010, I went to New Orleans and helped rebuild a little corner of it. I started running and completed 4 5ks and the marathon relay. I started a new job with a nonprofit whose work makes me proud and is fulfilling to me in a way I didn't know a career could be. I got simultaneously angry at the state of affairs in this city that's become my home and elated that there is change happening on so many levels to address things. I went back to one of my favorite past times- kayaking, and explored waterways in Annapolis, the Eastern Shore, and Gun Powder. I reconnected with some old friends, made some new ones, and had more fun with my big band of merry girlfriends then really should be legal.

And I watched change in my friends too. I watched broken hearts and new beginnings, big moves, engagements, break-ups, marriages, pregnancies, new jobs, sicknesses and healths. I've started paying more attention to these things, realizing that our problems are shifting as we are all getting older. The things that are most important to you begin to change over time, and the things that bothered us in the past begin to fall away a little easier with these shifts in priorities.

And 2011? Well, if 2010 was the "Rebuilding Year," then perhaps 2011 is the year to experiment with our new selves. Test the steadiness of the foundation, feel the strength of new roots. Shift the focus away from the skeletons we've been building and start to flesh out the aesthetics a little more. Begin to move around and enjoy the fruits of our labors. Face new issues, build stronger safety measures, and perhaps use some of our newfound architecture as a launch pad.

I don't really have any grandiose resolutions- aside from the fact that I intend to train for and run the half-marathon in October- but I do promise to go a little easier on myself. After so many years of breaking and bending and testing, I want to live 2011 a little more comfortably in my own skin. Don't we all?

Cheers, 2011.

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