Allow me to start off wishing everyone the merriest of holidays. Here’s to an even better 2018.
Even if you had the most fantastic year ever, what made 2017 so fantastic? If it was truly fantastic, I hope it was for the right reasons, such as:
- Getting married. Again, congrats. However, I am a stickler for eternal bliss and not fond of disposable marriages. Anyone who demands a formal wedding in today’s culture will construct huge cynicism from outsiders that you’re just doing it to be “princess for a day.” Most brides don’t care (now) what the outsiders think, but twenty years from now (or less) when you want to file for divorce because you’ve suddenly fell in love with another (wo)man, you’ll prove skeptics—including myself—indubitably accurate. Heed my personal adage: I’d rather be queen for a lifetime than princess for a day.
- had a baby, especially if it’s your first. Congrats! Please teach them manners such as please and thank you. You can even choose to make please their first word, even if they pronounce it “peas.” Cute, no? In addition, as much as you adore children, I hope you are not using them for insurance purposes later when you file for divorce. To me, it sounds like the planning of a person that lacks morals.
- Graduation: high school? Yay! Sadly, the high school mentality stays with us the rest of our life. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer so you can laugh in their faces at every one of their mishaps.
- Graduated college? Yay! Now you are officially out in the real world making your way through life. And a lifetime of student debt. I’m sorry.
I type with genuine honesty that I tend to gloss over such things such as marriage, children, and graduations. Outside of my family, I simply don’t find it a big deal. Humans get married and divorce everyday and children seem to be popping out at every turn (as if the human race think they’re rabbits), after awhile the outsiders get burnt out with the news.
(More opinion about the marriage aspect at a later date.)
Here is what I wish for in 2018 for all, including myself:
- Do a good deed. (Even if that old lady thinks you’re robbing her when you’re really helping her cross the street, apologize and walk away. At least you tried.)
- Make up for that grandma flub and volunteer. Go to Volunteermatch.org where you can enter your location and your area of interest. A list of organizations that are in search of volunteers will populate.
- Continue with the Starbucks “Pay it Forward.” I’ve been a recipient of it a few times, but I’ve never thought to return the favor. That will change in 2018. I no longer get coffee via the drive-thru, I’d prefer to enter the store to order coffee and simply pay for the person behind me. If there’s no one behind me, then I will pay for the person in the drive-thru (there’s always somebody in the drive-thru).
- Initiate forgiveness. This is especially true of family members. Who started the fight or who was right or wrong doesn’t matter. You’ll be rewarded with a greatest sense of serenity and possibly closure. Any words exchanged during that heated argument belong in the past, and none of it matters. That’s why it’s called the past. Leave it there where it belongs.
- Adopt a furbaby at your local animal shelter (but only if you are willing to commit to the time and money). Animals are not disposable. They are messengers of God doing everything they can to instill unconditional love, peace, light, and joy. They are not meant to be treated like your ex-girl/boyfriend. The reason these babies are in shelters because their owners didn’t see them that way. Don’t be the asshole to disappointment them for the second, third, 15th, or 20th time.
- Talk to strangers. You don’t have to become best friends, but sometimes a simple “howdya do” is enough to brighten someone’s day. You don’t know everyone’s story and perhaps they enjoy the interaction from passerbys. Even if you find yourselves stuck in line at the grocery store’s “speed” checkout, poke fun at the situation with a smile just to ease the tension.
In a world gone astray with schisms, narcissism, and avarice to alarming degrees, I believe practicing simple acts of kindness throughout the year is crucial more than ever. It seems our current President works hard at dividing this great nation with every little thing he says and tweets. I take great pleasure in turning that nonsense around and throw it back in his face. Imagine how much impact we can make as a nation if we all engaged in a bit of compassion.
Here’s to a fresh start. Happy 2018!