26 laps around a star called Sol. 26 consecutive years of not dying. Which in the grand scheme of things is pretty damn good luck.
I've always been weird about birthdays. I mean I love having an excuse to gather my friends around and have a good time. My heart is warmed and I am deeply moved by the love I am so very lucky to be given by so many amazing friends and family. But i don't 'like' my birthday. I often find it a time where I get a little lost in myself, worrying over what another year gone and coming might mean. How far have I come? Did I get where I'm going? Is there enough time left to go where I'd still like to be?
Perhaps it's the January Blues. Perhaps it's a lack of energy, still feeling burnt out by the holiday season (I LOVE Christmastime -- but I do find it very emotionally draining). Perhaps it's the nearness of the New Year, a mere 12 days old, that leaves me in a melancholic introspective mood -- remembering the year that was, contemplating that year that will be.
As I look back to 2016 I see a year like many before it, broken by light and shadow. It is easy to get lost in the dark times, on a grand scale of world politics and in a micro scale in my own life and the lives I am interwoven with. But there were some great times too, especially in my own life. And while there are still too many items left unchecked on my '2016 to-do' list, there were many more things achieved that were never on the list at all. And I am better for them. From growing in my music: performing in more places, more often that ever before, finding a welcoming local scene with fantastic artists to work with and be inspired by; to continuing to build ever stronger relationships with my Framily (friendship-family) to meeting so many amazing people and kindling new friendships I hope will burn long into many more laps round the sun. 2016 had its high points along with its low. And while I'm not much of a 'glass half full' guy, i'm not exactly seeing it as half empty either.
So maybe I don't go all in for birthday celebrations or new year's resolutions, in many ways both celebrations of something that is true every day: we are one unit of time/measure further on from where we were, but I can see the value in looking back and looking ahead, if it keeps you walking one step at a time. So I'm happy to have done lap 25. And I'm happy to have it done.
I have oh so many things to do in this new year, and so many of them I won't get around to. But that's okay. I'll fill the time, some with things I'd not dreamed of that will thrill my heart and soul. And some will burn away and leave me wondering 'where did the time ever go?'. And that's okay too. I'm going to try to check things off my list, and I'm going to try to not get upset when I don't succeed in them all. And I'm going to be thankful for the love I receive (especially on my birthday even though I may find it an emotionally confused time of year) and try not to get all caught up in my head about what it all means: Where I have come from, and where i have come to and on to where I will go. Because where's the sense in thinking about it all, when really just one step matters. The one just in front of my foot.
So here's to you. and me. and not dying.
To one more lap around this star called Sol.
Here's to 26.
And after that...well 27 can wait til 27.