Tuesday, January 04, 2011
The First Decade of the Twenty-first Century: Taking Stock
I was so glad to see 2010 go, I almost cried from happiness. The first decade of this century has not been an easy one, in any way. Starting with election of an utter and complete nincompoop as the 43rd President of the United States, to the terrorist attacks in New York City, to the war, to the crushed American economy, the end of a sweet romance I thought would end in marriage, to the illness and death of my father, and culminating in a complete upheaval and decimation of my professional hopes and dreams...
Well, to paraphrase Britain's Queen Elizabeth, this past ten years is not a decade I shall look back upon with undiluted pleasure.
Still, it wasn't a total loss. I started the decade as a pretty unapologetic college drop-out, and ended it with not only a bachelor's degree, but a master's as well. I started the decade with a difficult teenage daughter, and ended it with a beautiful baby grandson. I started the 2000s as a confused Protestant, and ended it as a much less confused (though still searching) Buddhist-y infidel. I began some friendships, ended others, said good-bye to an apartment where I'd lived longer that any other home in my life, but found a lovely new home to take it's place.
I have fallen in and out of love. I have learned I'm capable of more than I ever could have hoped for. I have learned that I deserve more than I ever let myself long for. I have some amazing, generous friends who've bolstered and bouyed me through this period, and I live with a family that is crazy and loud and annoying and completely and utterly lovable. (And I'm speaking mostly about the baby now.)
No, the first decade of the 2000s is not one that inspires nostalgia in me. But I suppose, because time does move for the human race in a linear fashion, that it was necessary to slog through it to get where we're going. Wherever that is.
I'm looking forward to seeing if the second decade of the 2000s has anything better to offer. Peace would be nice. Love would be great. But I'll settle for a job and the chance to watch my grandson grow up.
Happy New Year to all.