I know I talk a lot. A lot about stuff that is full of nuance and from most people’s perspective boring. I like the intricacies of law, and how things work and fit together; I spend a lot of time thinking about those things. What I’m not particularly good at is being introspective and being reflective.
As we near the end of another year, I’ve wanted to be thoughtful, introspective and reflective about the past year. 2012 was a pretty good year – a very good year all together – for my family and me after a particularly difficult 2011; a fitting comparison being the pendulum that swings one way and then to another.
Some things remain: Family-wise, we’re healthy, we’re together. We have a wonderful home. And we’re perhaps a stronger unit for having followed the journey. Over the years, we’ve weathered ups and downs – 2012 represented a much needed up year.
Our beloved family dog was diagnosed with leukemia in November and we feared we would lose him before the end of the year. Thankfully, we had the resources – including the necessary funds, but not to be overlooked the amazing Tufts Veterinary Hospital nearby – to get him the treatment he needed. We obviously don’t know what the future holds, but we do know that he has more time left with us. We are truly blessed to share our lives with this wonderful creature; his diagnosis has made us even more aware of how blessed we are to have him.
Our children are healthy and thriving. 2013 will see the oldest graduate from High School and onto the start of the rest of her life. We were able to give her the freedom an automobile represents, as well as the responsibility. She has before her a world of opportunity, which includes a world of responsibility and 2012 has demonstrated that while she’s somewhat reticent about accepting either of those things, she’s demonstrating that she has the capacity to accept them.
We’ve been able to sustain and improve our home – the only home our son has ever known. With continued good fortune, it may be the only home he knows for some time. He has expanded our connections here, 2012 had several people enter our lives because he was busy doing what young boys do – make friends. I am so thankful for the people and friends in my life, and particularly thankful for my little boy, who shows me every day the power of imagination and the importance parent have in a child’s life – some day he will no longer be a child and the first part of our jobs as parents will be done. Until that time, though, I intend to love every minute of his childhood.
We were able to share in the wedding of friends who now live a half-planet away. Through the love and affection of people we consider family, though with entirely different lineages and without true blood relations, we shared a wonderful time with two people who mean the world to us, shared the world with our son, and cemented a bond between our two families I hope will last several lifetimes.
The last gift 2012 gave us has been each other. Life as a family has always been challenging, and sometimes people let those challenges pull them apart. Other times those life challenges are opportunities to do hard work and come together. So far, we’ve been successful in navigating life’s challenges; it hasn’t always been easy, but it has demonstrated our capacities to weather storms and emerge together.
Sure, 2012 saw its share of storms, but overall it gave us another year of experience and it gave us so very much for which to be thankful. 2012 represented a year in which the good vastly outweighed the bad; the positive outweighed the negative; and the rough waters never got so rough as to breach the dams. We should be so fortunate every year.