2012: the rollercoaster year that was

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2012 has been a real rollercoaster year. It contained the most magnificient high as I said ‘I do’ and married the love of my life surrounded by my friends and family. I felt so full of absolute joy that day I worried my body would not be able to contain it. I know it’s a total cliche but it really was one of the happiest days of my life.

But 2012 also hosted my lowest day as my best friend Lianne lost her battle with brain tumours and passed away this summer. I still miss her like I have lost a limb and this world seems quieter, duller and empty without her. At points, I really wasn’t sure how I would survive the tsunami of grief. But somehow I have and battered and bruised it’s time for another year.

2012 ripped back the veil I had been hiding behind ever since I was a small child faced with my sisters accident. As children we don’t have the resources to conceptualise sudden tragedy so I decided that if I looked after people and tried to control everything I could keep tragedy at bay. This belief was a comfort blanket but it cost me in guilt as people I love got hurt despite my efforts. Unable to realise that this is how the world works I thought it was my fault: for not planning better, for not loving more. This year I realised that no matter how many plans you make, or how much you love somebody, you cannot keep them safe. Life is random, chaotic and tragedy falls from the sky. You can love somebody so much and still they might be hurt or die. You can do your best and try with every fibre in your being but your life might still fall apart to ashes in your hand. I had a full-on existential crisis. This was both very exciting (as a newbie counsellor I had read about this in books but to experience one first hand!) and horrifically painful and disorientating.

However as my mother, a very wise lady, reminded me it isn’t just tragedy that falls from the sky but serendipity. Life’s a rollercoaster and sometimes you’re at the top and sometimes you’re down and the only guarantee is that everything will change.

And so my wish for you, all my readers and for myself, is sadly not that the year ahead is smooth upward climb for that is outside of our power. But that when the lows come you, and I, have the courage and resilience to hang on tight to that rollercoaster and get through that low until the climb begins again. And when all is going well, we’ll appreciate every tiny moment of it. Here’s to 2013 and whatever it may bring.

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