Good-bye 2011 Hello 2012

The last day of 2011.  Looking back, it’s hard to imagine that this day would ever come.  It’s scary how quickly the year creeps up on you.  Every year they seem to flash by more quickly than the last.  2011 was a great year. Of course there were bumps in the road, bad days here and there, and some tears every now and then.  But, overall when I look at my life, I couldn’t be happier.  I’m living my dream of teaching abroad and it happens to be in one of the greatest metropolitan cities in the world.  I’m traveling the world. And most importantly, I’m surrounded by amazing friends.  Even though I’m not surrounded by my family at this particular time, I know they are with me and supporting me on my journey.  Every year of my life so far has brought new surprises, adventures, and opportunities, and I know 2012 will not disappoint. Instead of saying “good-bye” to 2011 I should say “thanks” for an amazing year.

Today should be a day of reflection on the past year and a day to look forward to what will come in 2012.  Try not to make short-lived resolutions that will last only the first week of the year.  I don’t think I’ve ever made a “New Years'” resolution in my life.  My father once told me (when discussing holiday eating habits) that “it’s not what you eat between Christmas and New Years’, it’s what you eat between New Years’ and Christmas.”  I think that simple quote says a lot about the way we live our lives. Instead of making a New Years’ resolution to lose weight by your spring break trip, make a resolution to start living a more healthy life in whatever way that may mean for you.  Of course we all want to lose that 10 pounds and we always want to start that new diet on Monday (how perfect that Jan. 2nd falls on a Monday this year…I can just imagine how packed my Monday night Zumba classes back home would be), but there’s a lot more to think about in terms of starting a new year.

A new year is a time for a fresh start. I think the key thing is to make yourself open to change and new experiences and good opportunities will come. Take advantage of these opportunities and take risks because those are times that make life exciting and rewarding. Make a resolution to yourself that 2012 will be a fulfilling year because before you know it you’ll be looking back at a year that had passed you by. Bring on 2012 because I’m ready for anything it has to throw at me.