Dear 2017

Dear 2017,

As tempting as it was to leave this at, “Bye, bitch!”…I feel there is more that needs to be said, in fairness.

Thank you, 2017, for showing me that what I thought were mortal wounds — though they be grievous and still-unhealed — weren’t.

Thank you for arranging it, somehow, such that even as I had to say goodbye to my perhaps best-beloved (and last extant) grandparent, the man who was more parent, mentor, and friend, I was granted the honor of giving the last accounting of his life. (Thank you, too, for the strength to get through that moment.)

Thank you for demonstrating the incredible kindness of strangers, through my favorite author and his moving generosity in my time of grief.

Thank you for the inspiration to finish Night Hag in the Flame. (Next time, I’ll be more careful what I wish for!)

Thank you for the strengthening of bonds and the new friendships in my cherished online coven/grove.

Thank you for the opportunity to explore and expand my skills in various areas I’ve neglected for far too long.

Thank you for proving, over and over, that even though the political situation in this country is far more dire than at any other point in my lifetime, there are those — and we are legion! — who will stand up against corruption, governmental overreach, and Other-ing our brothers and sisters of all orientations, genders, races, you name it. We stand together.

I don’t feel grateful that my grandfather died, or that I lost my Etsy shop, or that the purported leader of the United States is a bigoted and dementia-addled orange buffoon, or that the person who knew me better than I knew myself abruptly walked out of my life. I don’t thank you for these, and I still wish they hadn’t happened. But, since they did, I can at least sift through the fallout for the gems among the ashes.

Do not mistake me. I look back on you with loathing. But you did not break me.

I raise no glass to you. I will not sing “Auld Lang Syne” tonight. I do not celebrate you or remember you with fondness. Here’s to your ending, 2017, and here’s to 2018, glimmering brightly just a few hours in the future.


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