What a year.
As every year comes to an end, we celebrate the new year with fireworks and jubilation, bidding farewell to what was just a few moments ago. In the final moments, as we chant religiously in every household, every crowd, our minds seem to perform a rapid refresh of our aspirations and attitudes. We strive to do great. Be kind. Achieve. Most importantly, we humans seem to possess a great deal more hope in just a matter of seconds.
Hope is a dangerous and powerful thing. Hope without practicality and reason will result in lofty insurmountable aspirations and goals. Hope without an anchor can lead to crushing disappointment in the face of reality. Hope in the absence of action and self-will is simply a projection of an idealised illusion, quickly and easily dispersed by the slightest gale.
I was hopeful on January 1st 2016. Convinced it would be my year of all my living years thus far. But I was hopeful without direction. I wanted everything but nobody gets everything. I stretched myself paper thin, straining at the stress and pressure I inflicted on myself. By mid-year, I was tearing myself apart and soon into tatters. It took sometime before I found my footing again.
And here we are. January 1st 2017.
There was a lot of self doubt in the past 365 days. But with every cloud, there is a silver lining. Rainbows are formed when sunlight filters through rain. The beautiful things in life are thus beautiful because we have seen the ugly, and when you realise there is so much more awaiting you whether accursed or blessed, everything in the past will seem to fall away into their own rightful place; a small puzzle in the grand scheme of things.
I have so much to be thankful for, and so much more to work towards. Instead of huge resolutions and promises, here’s my daily goal instead for all of 2017; to be patient and forgiving, even when others are not; to only have kind things to say, and give sound advice only when needed; to feel blessed and contented, and still try to do the best that I can for the people around me.
Like the Rebel Alliance, hope is all we have. When used right, it can do wonders. For a better day, for a better future, for a better me.
Places visited this year: Hong Kong (Jan – Sep), Shanghai (Jan), Sydney (Mar), Osaka/Kyoto (Mar), Krabi (Apr), Jakarta (July), Bangkok (Sep), Taipei/Taichung (Sep), Bhutan (Dec)
Song of the year: “Birds don’t sing” – TV Girl