2015 has been a year of ups and downs for me personally. It’s a year when a great many changes and tragedies have entered my life. I could write about everything I wish for you in the coming year, but I think Neil Gaiman says it best.
Fifteen Years ago, I wrote:
May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art — write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.
...I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you’ll dream dangerously and outrageously, that you’ll make something that didn’t exist before you made it, that you will be loved and that you will be liked, and that you will have people to love and to like in return. And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be, be wise, and that you will always be kind.And for this year, my wish for each of us is small and very simple.And it’s this.I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it.Make your mistakes, next year and forever.It’s a New Year and with it comes a fresh opportunity to shape our world.So this is my wish, a wish for me as much as it is a wish for you: in the world to come, let us be brave – let us walk into the dark without fear, and step into the unknown with smiles on our faces, even if we’re faking them.And whatever happens to us, whatever we make, whatever we learn, let us take joy in it. We can find joy in the world if it’s joy we’re looking for, we can take joy in the act of creation.So that is my wish for you, and for me. Bravery and joy.…I meant, and mean them all. I wasn’t going to write a new one this year. But…Be kind to yourself in the year ahead.Remember to forgive yourself, and to forgive others. It’s too easy to be outraged these days, so much harder to change things, to reach out, to understand.Try to make your time matter: minutes and hours and days and weeks can blow away like dead leaves, with nothing to show but time you spent not quite ever doing things, or time you spent waiting to begin.Meet new people and talk to them. Make new things and show them to people who might enjoy them.Hug too much. Smile too much. And, when you can, love.
His wishes for this year are pertinent to me, personally. I need to stop procrastinating, wasting my time on waiting to begin. There are already too many dead leaves under my feet. May 2016 be a year I can look back on and say, ‘I did it!’.
Happy New Year.