As it turns out, my lesson on Friday night was snowed out which means that the title of my last post turned out to be correct. We don’t live in a snow belt but we get our share of the stuff. Certainly, we have had worse Decembers so I can’t truly complain. Now we are in the deep freeze for the foreseeable future.
It is actually New Year’s Eve as I write this. What am I doing at home? Well, I did mention that it is really cold out there, didn’t I? We did have a nice dinner but my wife was never a party person and it is cold out there so we will spend the evening inside with the dogs. Kind of how we roll.
So, should we look back on 2017? There were certainly highlights but the back half of the year was rough. Finding out about upcoming job cuts in July and then living under that shadow until things were announced in October was no fun. Watching people I know and like lose their jobs for things that they had no control over sucked. The only positive I can take is that I did part amicably with three of the four people who worked for me and were caught up in the job cuts.
We had the Thanksgiving Day surprise of finding out that Mom was in the hospital with a broken hip. Haven’t said too much more about that because it isn’t a cheery situation. Mom is home and healing but Dad is being kind of a stubborn old fool about getting help for both of them. As the children, we have all agreed that we can’t force him to do anything so we just sit back and wait for the next crisis.
With the turmoil in my personal life, I normally have ballroom but, I went through kind of a major crisis of confidence. I can say that now looking back at it and it lead to a couple of mediocre Showcases and just a lot of “do I really want to do this moments”. The plus is that I closed strong with a good performance of two dances at Studio B and then a solid Showcase and finally the Showstoppers with the Death Drop.
The thing about me and ballroom is my goals are a bit esoteric. I don’t dream of going to comps and taking home first place. It is much more about the experience and what I’m able to feel and do and exploring parts of me that don’t get to come out in my day job. Where else do I get to go perform in front of an audience? I do sometimes have this little thought in the back of my head that I should be getting somewhere but I don’t know where. I wonder if those who are more goal oriented would look at my journey and shake their head about what appears to be a meandering walk through the woods rather than a real journey to a destination. On the other hand, it is my journey and I’m the driver so who really cares what anyone else thinks?
Do we look ahead to 2018? Maybe a bit. All that is certain is that there will be more uncertainty with work and the parents. The transitions at work are not complete and there is no guarantee that we will be able to right this ship which could mean that 2017 was just the first of many such cuts. My parents aren’t getting younger and they will continue to struggle to care for themselves and there will likely be a confrontation at some point where, we, as children, will have to take control over the objections of my father. However, I have little to no control over these events so there isn’t a lot to be gained by worrying about them.
I’ve stated before that I’m not in to resolutions. In part because I really don’t get the fuss about a page in a calendar that was arbitrarily set many years ago. There is no magic that happens on January 1st. There is no new year fairy with a magic wand that wipes away all your problems. I do get the whole idea of a new year being a chance to start again but you can really do that any day of the year. You have to get to a point where you are actually willing to put the effort in to make a major change if that is your goal.
I do often wonder though if the best path isn’t so much wishing you could change something about yourself but learning to love and accept who you are a little more. Nobody on this earth is perfect. We are all works in progress. There are always more things you can do to work on being a better you. But we are all also blessed with gifts and strengths. We all don’t have the same ones (which is actually a good thing) So instead of looking at someone and saying “I wish I could be more like them” why not look at yourself and value what you have and what you bring to the table. (And, yes, I’m painfully aware that I need to be the one taking my own advice but I’ve told you many times before that I’m much better at giving advice than taking it)
And, I do think that is something I could benefit from and something to aim for in 2018. Not just in dancing but in life. So that’s a soft goal for me. Don’t call it a resolution!
Happy New Year to All!