Today is the first day of the new year. Another year gone, another year lies ahead. Today, like many others, I sit and reflect back on what has passed and contemplate what awaits in the future. 2016 taught me a lot. I was reminded once again that life is too short and needs to be treated for exactly what it is, a gift. I was given the opportunity to realize that my track record for getting through tough times still remains at an undefeated 100%, and those times help me to appreciate the good times even more.
2016 has ended, that chapter closed. But today, today we get to open a brand new chapter full of empty pages. Empty pages we can fill with happiness, love, and memories to cherish. This year rather than making resolutions and things we want to change, Lou and I made a list of promises. Promises we will try to uphold, promises of things we will attempt to do together to make 2017 memorable and successful.
This year, like all those before it, and I am certain many times after this, had it's ups and downs. This rollercoaster of a year was a wild ride as usual, but in the end was a great ride. 2016 ended with some relationships ending, and some left behind. These decisions never come easily, but every person plays a role in your story, some are just not meant to be in the ending. This year my family lost my young cousin, and taught us to appreciate those in your life daily and work hard to maintain relationships. This year brought a new job for both myself and Lou, the opportunity to complete my Master's degree and work towards my BCBA, and new friendships that I truly value. Some friendships flourished and reminded me how lucky and blessed I am to have these people surrounding me. I was able to rekindle and mend broken relationships with some. Some of the events of 2016 gave a new meaning to the vows Lou and I took, "for better or for worse", and we triumphed. We made it through a year that probably may have broken many others, but it made our relationship stronger and closer.
With every gain, there are the typical losses. In a true card game, there are always wins and losses. You have to place your bets, ride it out, and hope for the best. Sometimes you're lucky and your hand pays out, while sometimes you have to just smile and remember it's all a game. Life is like a card game, and while I may not be in charge of the hands that are dealt to me, I always attempt to turn that hand into a winning hand. Many times I have been successful, and even those hands that aren't meant to be winners remind me that we have no control over what comes our way. We must simply sit back and make the best of what we are dealt. So, today, on this first day of this new year, I have placed my bets for 2017. I bet that this year will bring excitement, happiness, love, laughter, and hopefully small bundles of joy. I am sure there will also be the not so great times, but in true fashion, we will overcome each and every one. Like any gambler, if you hold your cards steady and line them up the best you can, put on your best "poker" face, eventually you'll see that the hand you're dealt with and holding onto can be better than what you think.