2016Dear 2016,

I’m starting out this letter in an entirely cliché way and I hope you do not mind. How are you doing?  I know I would be feeling pretty depressed if I was in your shoes. I can imagine it’s very hard to take the brunt of all the anger and hatred for what has happened on your watch. I know it isn’t entirely your fault but not everybody sees it that way.

With that being said let me say that despite all the negatives I personally don’t hate you. Without you I wouldn’t be engaged to a man I love very much. Without you I wouldn’t have learned to manage my chronic illness. While I’m not entirely healed I am doing much better than I had been. You’ve brought me through an entire year at a job I love and allowed me to meet some amazing people along the way that will stay in my heart for the rest of my life. There have been plenty of awe inspiring TV shows and movies that were introduced this past year along with teasers for new fantastic ones to come. Not to mention that the Cubs actually won the world series and for awhile the majority of the USA was united.

You haven’t been without your fair share of bittersweet surprises either, however. Jake and I closed on a house this year and a few days later a lady drove through the front bedroom window of that new home. Nobody was hurt, by the grace of God, but I now have a story to tell my future kids that will knock their socks off. Not only that but we had an absolute shocker of an election this year that left people asking, “Why?”

Along with the surprises, you’ve also taught me things. I’ve learned to be  more comfortable with silence. I’ve learned patience with the monotony of life that sometimes occurs when building foundations for fantastic things later. You’ve taught me that God can always surprise me with plot twists and shake up my carefully planned ideas. An even stronger lesson learned has been that it is possible to be loved by that special fella, family, and unexpected friends.

So, in summary, this is actually a love letter. 2016, you really did it. You blew me away with all you had to offer. Of course I’m not happy with all the despair that you brought with you but I can say it made me appreciate the joys. The losses will be something we all grieve but when we heal it will be time to rebuild. Hopefully, 2017 will be a time of building new things and growing in strength.

Go in peace 2016.

Sincerely,

Emilee

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