How do you measure a year?

31 Dec

As the time draws closer to midnight and the moment we say goodbye forever to 2014, I find myself, like many others, reflecting on the last 365 days of my existence – thinking about what happened in my life and the world around me, wondering how I’ve changed and grown as an individual, daughter, sister, girlfriend, co-worker and member of society. Did I make 2014 actually count for something – or did I waste those 525,949 minutes?

It is no secret that I love music, and often say life would be much more enjoyable if it were a musical, so it should come as no surprise that for the last few New Year’s Eves, I’ve always been reminded of the song “Seasons of Love” from the musical Rent. Haven’t heard it you say? Not to worry my friend, I’ve linked it here for you. Take a listen – I’ll wait.

I really connect with this song – the lyrics are so thought-provoking because while we each understand that we have one year, 365 days – we each measure the passing of that time differently.

This past year, that consisted of counting down days until Disney vacations, or adding up the miles I ran while training for my half marathon. But I counted in other ways as well – the minutes until I could clock out after a long day at work, the days leading up to the weekend, and I usually underestimated the hours I spent lost in a book or talking to Scott.

There are times during the year where time almost seemed to stop – watching my baby sister give her co-valedictorian speech and then receive her high school diploma, walking through the airport arrival gates and seeing Scott for the first time in too many months, saying goodbye to my very best friend before she moved across the country to chase her dreams and crossing the finish line of my first half marathon.

Other highs for the year, which you may or may not know about include: being promoted at work and receiving a pay raise, seeing my designs featured in the local newspapers and on billboards, leasing my very first car, renting my very first car and successfully navigating Florida traffic, our family welcoming the addition of a number of new babies and completely paying off one of my student loans!

While the big things are important, the small everyday things matter more – the movie nights and bonding times with my family, spending one-on-one time with my quirky, but oh-so-lovable sisters, the late night chats and sleepovers with my best friend, completely nerdy text conversations with another best friend, reconnecting with old friends, rediscovering my passion for journaling and blogging, and discovering what makes me special, happy and 100% original.

While 2014 was mostly a good year by my own personal account, there were some times of hardship – my family had to say goodbye to a few loved ones who’ve passed on, the world has said goodbye to icons such as Robin Williams, Maya Angelou, James Garner and Oscar de la Renta, there have been many world tragedies and sorrows, and a constant reminder in the media that there is great evil in the world, lurking around every corner.

However, with the start of a new year, comes the hope of a brighter and better tomorrow. People feel an internal desire to try harder, dream bigger and love deeper than they ever have before. While many will give up on their New Year Resolutions within a few short weeks, it is my goal, and hopefully yours too, to stick it out this year, to fully commit to making the change.

I won’t go so far as to say 2015 will be my best year ever, because I don’t know what my future holds – but I do know that I will try very hard to wake up every morning with a smile and a can-do-will-do attitude. I will look for more opportunities to serve others and to accept help when I’m stressed. I will measure this coming year by love as the above song suggests – the love of my family, my boyfriend, my co-workers, my friends, myself and most of all the love I have for God and the knowledge that He already knows how my 2015 will turn out, so I have nothing to worry about – it’s in His hands after all.

If you’ve stuck with me this long, I’m so glad you’re still here because now it’s your turn – how did you measure 2014? What are you looking forward to in 2015? The year is yours my dear friend, what will you do with those precious 365 days?!

Happy New Year 2015

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