As I write, the sun will shortly be setting on the last day of 2017. Like most people, I’ve been evaluating the past 12 months and making plans for the next.
It’s been a funny old year, particularly for the Sketches. We began the year in high spirits, with exciting plans, and so many family & friends around us, that organising a wedding guest list became a major operation. Work was looking up, health was on an upwards trajectory and we were riding a long awaited wave of success…
I’d love to tell you that we surfed that bad boy right throughout the year, but as with the good and the bad in life, nothing ever lasts forever. March onwards saw some of the darkest hours of my life, and coming from somebody who has previously planned her own funeral, this is a strong statement.
To put it succinctly, life kicked my arse pretty hard this year!! Anyone who reads my posts regularly will be expecting me to start flipping the negatives at this point, but this post is going to be a slight departure from the norm. This post will not be overly positive, but neither will it be completely depressing. This post is going to be realistic.
So, about that wedding list… well firstly, I remain (happily) unmarried to Mr Sketch, and will be staying that way. Secondly, if I were re-writing the guest list, there would be less of a numbers issue at this end of the year. More than a handful of people we couldn’t even contemplate not having with us on the big day are now noticeably absent from the life and times of the family Sketch.
But hang on a minute, aren’t we all a bit, well, old to be ditching our friends? Well if I’ve learned one thing this year, it’s that a lot of adults never really leave the playground. And so deciphering some of their behaviours necessitates a trip back to the playground ourselves, and before you know it, you’ve regressed 30 years and find yourself gazing wistfully from the sidelines without fully understanding why you weren’t asked to play.
To quote myself, via today’s facebook update, ‘2017 has been waaaay too complicated for me. Life currently feels like a game that I don’t quite understand the rules to. I’ve had so many fundamental core beliefs shaken in the last 12 months that I’m still following the bubbles to find out which way is up.’
Quite simply, I didn’t fight my way through two lots of cancer and a stem cell transplant for this.
‘Life’s too short,’ they tell me. ‘Life’s too short to bear grudges.’ And I must agree, life IS too short to sweat the small stuff. But what about those grudges that serve a purpose? The ones that remind you of why you were so badly hurt, and encourage you not to go there again. Surely they serve a useful purpose?
If life is too short to waste on being negative, then it’s definitely too bloody short to spend on receiving and accepting negativity. And for us, 2017 has been awash with that. From a war which was nothing to do with us, which has slowly but surely dripped its toxicity through the generations, through former friends reverting to out & out bully tactics to have us run out of our home, to other friends excluding us from the circle we so valued with no explanation… we’ve run pretty much the entire gamut of playground politics this year. And so, this year is where all of that will be staying.
We’re striding into 2018 with less baggage and a new outlook. The circle may well be smaller, but the hopes are higher than ever before and the eyes are set determinedly at the horizon. Because life really IS too bloody short. So I’m getting the hell out of this nest of vipers, and you’re all welcome to join me, on the other side of the playground fence, where real life is happening.
Happy New Year x