Obligatory (Belated) Birthday Reflection

Wednesday last, I turned the big three-four. As has been my habit since launching A Mild Voice of Reason in February 2006, I post an annual reflection on the year gone and the year ahead. Herewith some points of interest.

  • The last year has been much like the Catholic observance of Advent: A time of watching, waiting and purification; a period of excitement for something not-yet-come. Like most Catholics, I’ve chosen to pass the hours idly than to focus on the pending joy, but still — the last year has seen a deepening of understanding about friends, family, life, the universe and everything. Remaining optimistic when the world nudges you toward cynicism requires a high degree of focus and good cheer.
  • You never really appreciate how few people have your back, until your expectations diverge in the midst of conflict. At this point in my life, the number of people I trust implicitly — that is, the folks I think I could call at 3 a.m. with an emergency and expect a swift and non-grudging response — has declined to an all-time low. But that’s OK. I don’t mind fair-weather friends (or family) as long as I know I have a circle I can rely on no matter how violent the storm may grow.
  • Dreams, once dreamt, become the soul’s chief prosecutor.
  • I’m less optimistic about human nature than I used to be, but I think I’ve done a decent job of avoiding being bitter about it. Part of it may be that my patience has increased. Spending more time walking around instead of driving made me witness people in a different way, so my typical “elitist, materialist” demeanor has faced a major gut-check. This is for the good.

All for this year. I will continue to watch, and wait.

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