What's Really Important
To my friends, colleagues, neighbors, constituents, readers, supporters and detractors alike:
Over the past month or two, I have felt like Lemony Snicket, inasmuch as I have been dealing with a series of unfortunate events on a number of fronts. And while it has been inviting to dwell in despair over a number of these things, with the holidays upon us, it has put upon me the realization that now is the time to take stock in the good, not the bad.
Those of you who know me have likely heard me say that it is all too common for people (myself included at times) to sulk in self-pity when things are not exactly as we would like them to be, yet we rarely pause to be grateful for when things are going smoothly. Every day that we can get up with our health and good fortune, and be able to share that with people whom we care about, is a good day.
When I am able to step back from the incidents in which I have found myself enveloped, I realize that my fortunes far outweigh my problems. And in so doing, I feel small for imagining my problems to be so big. This past year has seen a disproportionate number of worldwide tragedies. A tsunami, hurricanes, a child on his way to grandma's house crushed by a plane. To the extent that none of them involved you, be thankful. Sincerely thankful.
We always forget the fragility of life and the inexplicable randomness of the line between life, death or misfortune, until it somehow touches our lives. To the extent that it hasn't touched our lives, we should appreciate and revel in that fact.
And though in the weeks, months and years ahead, we may vociferously agree or disagree upon issues of politics and government, keep in your heads and hearts those things that truly matter, that are truly worth expending energy upon, and that would justifiably mean the most to be without.
It is very easy for those in politics, or for those that follow politics, to become consumed in this arena. Remember, however, that the other 99% of the people, while dependent upon the decisions we reach, are still smart enough to appreciate that there is a world out there that goes on every day. One filled, not with poll numbers or issue formulation, but with friends, family and the riches of life. And remember that what we do is a means to an end, but should never be considered an end in and of itself.
In closing, my year-end wish for all of you is the health and comfort of you and those that you care about and happiness next year and the years to come.
Barring anything that really jumps out at me in the next week, I will likely step away from this blog for a little bit. I have put a lot of time into this endeavor, and have tried to make it something that people find of some value. Thank you for reading my ongoing thoughts and for sharing yours with me.