The time has come again – boxes are filled with memories, piled high and shipped off; rooms are swept clean, dust particles floating through the open windows; broken boards are replaced; the fresh scents of potting soil and lavender christen the yard, and the door is painted red to welcome the new year. Tonight 2013 will come knocking, and I will meet her with a hesitant smile, the hopeful intonation of a question in my greeting.
I had great expectations for 2012, and in many ways I was disappointed… but I was also surprised and delighted by some of its unexpected turns. I met some incredible folks that inspire me to be the best version of myself, I faced setbacks with determination, I moved to a city that has a lot to offer, and I learned that my definition of working hard needs some reconstruction. Through it all I’ve realized that it is truly up to me to make the best of things. Happiness is not circumstantial, I must choose to be happy. Life is really just a sum of your choices – every tiny little choice, accumulated over time. You have the potential to be whoever you want.
Of course the sociologist in me is fighting this American-Dream-esque ideology every step of the way, because for many people potential is simply not enough. Poverty, geographic location, class, race, gender, political affiliation, cultural values, upbringing, oppression, these things can kill even a mountain of potential. I am extremely fortunate. Nevertheless, there is something to be said for the power of positive thinking.
So here’s to 2013! My one (yes ONE!) resolution is to nurture my potential – to be aware that each choice I make has the power to shape the person I want to be.