Cruising into a new year

It seems it is time to cruise into a new year.

I welcome it. Like many of you, I’m kind of tired of 2017 and think I’ll see it more clearly in the rearview mirror.

One of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Gilbert, put it in terms I can wrap my head around. Highly paraphrased, she said that new years are great because you get a shiny new one every single year no matter how badly you jacked up the last one.

This gives people like me hope.

It’s like trading in a car at the end of the year, all dinged up with cigarette burns in the seat and an engine that’s knocking. And then we get a brand new one! No miles, so clean, so incredibly undeserved.

And at the end of this new year, what our car looks like will be totally up to us.

I’m kind of fond of this car, but it’s time for a new one.

This year has been interesting, which is an elusive way of saying it has been full of friends, family, worries, surprises, understanding and unimaginable gratitude. And still, my car is a little dinged up. This scenario is probably like most everyone’s, I think.

Some months I’ve slid into sideways on two wheels; and others the most ambitious thing I did was get my tires rotated.

But come Monday, I’m going to wake up and there it will be – my brand new car. I think this is called Grace.

At any rate, this year my new car is a mythical Toyota Land Cruiser I’ve ordered in my mind due to the aura of adventure it has around it, as well as a large seating and towing capacity. I have big plans for the new year.

The best parts of 2017, after I thought about it, were the times I wandered furthest from my comfort zone. That was when I made my greatest strides, wrote the best parts of my story and learned the most about myself and others.

I met the most beautiful people, had the best talks, and took some of my greatest personal risks. And while I took some dings in the process, I still wouldn’t change it.

I haven’t made resolutions since about 1976 when I vowed I would meet Shawn Cassidy while I placed my left hand on the Tiger Beat poster on my bedroom wall. It didn’t work, and I lost trust in the process. But I’m thinking about trying it again.

So if I have any resolutions in the new year, it would be to continue to see what my new car is capable of.

I’m ready for my Land Cruiser, and for 2018.

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