Determined to see hopefulness in new year

Published 8:00 am Saturday, December 17, 2022

By Bonnie Brown


Perhaps it’s the cold weather, fewer daylight hours, or the recent couple of weeks of dreary, rainy weather.  Maybe it’s the stage of my life, but I’m feeling a bit down.  I wonder if maybe I am more focused on sad things these days.  Our world seems to be troubled—negative news, fake news, sad news.  There are natural disasters—tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, fires, mudslides—with so much suffering.  How do you process this?  We hardly recover from one event until there is another event, even more dire than the previous one.  How do we cope?  It’s difficult to see examples of pure malice.  People robbing the elderly, taking advantage of the vulnerable, discrimination, injustice, and more.  Are people more evil than good?  

Email newsletter signup

I have experienced the loss of my parents and miss them so much.  I remember so much about them, and yet I have forgotten some things too.  I so wish I could recall some of the conversations wherein they imparted some piece of information or advice that I failed to absorb and now can’t remember.  

However, lately, I am so sad because I have lost several good friends and good friends’ spouses whose end came too soon.  They had things left to do.  They were not just good people, they were great people who left us behind to mourn and deal with their absence.  The pain is unspeakable.  There is little consolation for my friends’ family members.  I wish I could do or say something truly comforting and noteworthy but alas I seem unable to do so.  

We are a country with so many resources, things we take for granted.  And yet there will be news reports of deaths among the homeless because they didn’t have the comfort of a warm bed, a caring family.  

Maybe because it’s the time of the year when our expectations are higher that we are more aware when bad things happen.  Or maybe it’s the time in my life.  

I don’t make resolutions for the New Year, but I have consciously and very intentionally decided to be more mindful of the happiness that surrounds me.  I have been blessed with a loving family, a comfortable home, wonderful friends, and optimism that there are many more reasons to celebrate.  Yes, I will acknowledge the sad events that are part of our lives—health issues, mortality, unfair situations, inequalities, disappointments, and many other challenges.  But I will try very hard to regain my optimism and celebrate the good times.  I have the power within me to face difficult times with hopefulness and determination to make things better when I can.  I must remember this!  And I am so happy to see those golden rays of sunshine flooding my part of the world.