Friday, December 30, 2016

The No Good, Horrible really bad year. 2016

I think it is safe to say that 2016 wasn't stellar for anyone. Annus Horribilis. If there was a picture that emulated just how 2016 was for the world, I think a dumpster fire would be appropriate. The sad part is 2016 started out like every other year, with potential and as it progressed, it just got worse and worse. Now I bet there are some out there that would say, "Hey this was one of our better years". I am not one of those people. Cheers to the ones who came out of 2016 feeling good about it. Again I am not one of those people.

2016 saw a lot for everyone.

On a global scale we saw just how cruel the world is to its own people. The people of Syria, being the prime example of that. Now I am not going to get into it with people about how the world has treated and helped the people of Syria. Like any place that is experiencing War and Violence, naturally the innocents caught up in that, would like to leave. I know I would. It is a very a sad reality for those people who have to go to bed every night, worrying about whether or not they will make it through tomorrow. What is even worse, is the world turning these people away from a better life. Many of us sat in the comfort of our houses and watched the horrors unfold in a land far away from us. We watched people struggle and fight for their lives. People just like ourselves. Ordinary people just trying to live their lives as best they could. Now there are countries that pledged to help those in this war zone out, which was heartwarming to see. Sadly it was not the country that I call home. As an Immigrant myself, I did what I could to help with the effort to bring comfort to those wanting a better life. Although, I couldn't do much, I tried with small donations to organizations that helped refugees and their families. It was what I could do with I had. If I could do more I would. As this year has proven, is that small acts of kindness go a long way.

2016 was a violent year, as it brought the mass shootings in Orlando, California just to name a few. It brought Police brutality into the spotlight. Not to mention the other terrorist acts happening around the world.

Even in our own country, we saw how people were forced to fight for their right to clean water, either in Flint or in Standing Rock.CLEAN WATER! Something that all Americans should have.Civilities. How hard is it a concept that if you have a right, then others should have that same right?
  
I will touch upon politics, as politics has influenced a lot of the socialistic views on a lot of things that I hold dear. If you have followed my blog, I am humanist. I firmly believe that everyone deserves respect. I don't care where you are from, who you worship, what colour your skin is, what your sexuality is or what your gender is. If you are in need of help, I will lend you a hand. The only time I will treat you differently, is how you treat me. Now with that being said, the politics of this country have proven to me that a lot of the things that I have held very dear, have come into discussions that have sparked blatant racism, sexism and bigotry. People that I have known for years and loved and respected once, have made bold statements because of which side of politics they are on. Supported one person over another, regardless of comments made. For me, the Leader of a Nation is a role model. Someone our youth can look up to. Now I get that scandal and controversy has riddled this country's political arena, there hasn't been a standout party, which is sad. I will say that it wouldn't matter what side our politicians are on, if you choose to promote hate and discontent only to wake up the already ongoing issues you have with things like race, sex and religion, then being the Leader of the Free World shouldn't be the position you have. I will state, that I am neither left or right when it comes to politics in this country. I support a party that understands my values as a human being. So far there isn't a party in the country that has my vote. The sad truth about this year's political shit show is that is has torn family and friends apart. It has opened up doors that I don't think a lot of people wanted open. Some times I think those doors need to be opened, for you to see people for who they really are. This year's election dumpster fire has also proven just how much people don't really care about research. Things like the science behind Climate Change, thrown out the window by people who can't look at the scientific facts. Medical Science forgotten when dealing with stem cell research. It even comes down the ignorance of people when talking about Autism. Again medical science. All this by just watching the Presidential Debates. 2016, the Year of Political Scandal and Stupidity for this country. Don't get me started on the POTUS-Elect making fun of a disabled reporter.

2016 was the year we saw a lot of childhood idols pass away. From the Musical talents of Prince and David Bowie to the formidable Carrie Fisher. There was a lot of backlash concerning the deaths of so many celebrities. "Why should we care about celebrity deaths?" Here is why we should.For some of us, those people where idols. People that carried us through times that were tough. Whether it be George Michael coming to terms with his own sexuality so very publicly, that helped others do the same or Carrie Fisher being so candid about having a mental illness, thus making the stigma that Mental illness was something to be talked about instead of being ignored. The passing of Gene Wilder was one that was felt. He was a person who was funny on the outside, but on the inside mourned the death of his wife Gilda. Not to mention his iconic role of Willy Wonka ( everyone agrees that his Willy was always the best one) was one that stuck with a lot of us who grew up remembering him in that role, as it brought joy to some who needed it. A lot of those who died this year, whether they liked it or not, had their struggles out on display for all the world to gawk at. Faced with that reality, a lot them owned up to it. Made sure that others who were in the same situations had someone going through the same thing, as to say "You are not alone." So when the ones who reminded us that they are just humans too that they too had  problems us ordinary folks could relate to, their deaths come as a shock. 2016, The Year of Death.

On a personal note,  I am glad to say goodbye to 2016. It has not been kind to myself and family. We saw the ending of my husband's outstanding Naval career, while we celebrated it and honored it in true Navy fashion, the transition from military to civilian life, was a bit rough. For now we have settled in and managing. 2016 presented me with the most challenging parenting choices I have ever had to make. How do I protect my children from those who take advantage of them? As a special needs parent, I have always done my best to safe guard my children and in trust other people to do the same. This was the year when that trust was broken. There is nothing so exhausting then trying to fight to ensure your children's safety when a system has worked against you. It doesn't matter how many hours you log in at a Lawyer's office, in the school or sitting in a therapist office, when the system is against you as you try so desperately to make your children's well being is unharmed only to be told nothing can be done, you go to a place that is dark. SO very dark. This year is the first year in a very long time, that I have been to that place inside myself. I don't like it. Contemplating how to fix things and make things right, so my children don't have to feel the pain they do.  This year has tested my strength.Old wounds have been reopened, it is much harder to close them again. From finally going back to work, only to have to leave to be there for my family.

The good thing about 2016 is the people. This year I have met people who have been genuine friends. People who will be there for support when I need it. It has also shown me the true nature of others. Ones that I thought were there but now aren't. I don't have to waste my time on them.

So I bid Adieu to 2016. When midnight strikes on the 1st, I will toast to surviving the colossal dumpster fire of 2016. I will look forward to what 2017 brings. There is still going to be some baggage from 2016 to sort out, but hopefully I can do it with more of a clearer outlook. I always wish the very best to everyone.I hope that 2017 brings hope to those who need it. I hope it brings happiness when there was none, but most importantly I hope it brings love. Just a whole lot of love. As I think we all need it.  Robert Burns really did say it best, Auld Lang Syne.

Best Wishes,
Andrea