In just a few short days, I will bid you farewell. I never imagined that any year would equal 2006 as the second-worst year of my life, but you did. Congratulations.
From you, I learned the depth of the security I had in Christ. Just when I thought I was finished and the year could not possibly get any worse, you would throw something at me from right field, and prove me wrong. From you I learned that it is possible to experience work conflict, personal conflict, and church conflict… all in the same week.
From you I learned that my reality would always be a far cry from the rest of the world, because the majority of the world doesn’t know what goes on within the four walls of my house. When smiling faces ask me, “What do you have to stress you out?” 2011 has taught me to smile back at them, swiftly change the subject, and then allow myself the freedom to think “You have no idea…” as they walk away. Because, 2011, through you I learned that I didn’t need the understanding of all men, just a few, a very few. With those few, I had absolute freedom to be truthful and transparent. With the rest of them, there was no need to share what they were unable to comprehend. And that is okay…
2011, you kicked me and pulled me through breakthroughs in boundary-setting and personal expression. You taught me that I was stronger than I look and stronger than I thought I could ever be. It wasn’t because of some magic formula or even a can of spinach, it was through considering all I have endured and viewing it as a training field for the situations you brought to life. The depth of my own personal hell was far more painful than the little smoke bombs you sent my way.
So, 2011, my wretched year, you tried to win, but you lost. And as I look ahead to 2012, I rejoice. I do not walk alone, and you, well, you can never return.
…and good riddance.