2017 Reflections

It's the first snow of 2018! We just returned from one free, relaxing, week in Greenville with my family. I had a long list of practical things I wanted to get done during the trip: learn to make idli from my mom, rid my closets of high school era clothes, finish reading a few books I'd started and abandoned -- but none of these things were accomplished. Other than a few excursions out to get coffee and show Sandeep the finer things Greenville has to offer (more coffee), we mostly sat on the couch watching cheesy Christmas movies and playing charades.

Now we are back in DC, and I'm enjoying the cold and more time at home under the blankets. It gives me a chance to reflect on the year that has passed. Unfortunately, I'm accustomed to doing most of my major reflecting right before I fall asleep every night - which is terrible because I can never fall asleep at an appropriate hour. I've always been like this. Sometimes I write my thoughts down, but most of the time I don't. I wrote on and off in a red spiral notebook in seventh grade and continued to do so all throughout college, when my mom threw away my notebook and I transitioned to blogging. This blog is actually an extension of the old blogger I had back in college.

So, in an attempt to break this bad habit, I'm writing this post now, in broad daylight, well before my bedtime. I want to focus on the good things that have happened and personal progress, because there has been a lot. I spend much of my daily life thinking and talking about the not-so-good anyways. Here are some lessons that have really hit home this year:

How to stay true to myself: I've always believed in the power of silence, and I still do. At the right time and the right moment, silence can be golden. I feel like this lesson was one I lived by growing up. I could routinely see the power of silence in action: how silence could nurture growth in other, more timid voices, how it can at once be humbling and gracious. That being said, I was never one to stay silent for things I believe in. DC is saturated with eager do-gooders and passionate activists, where blurring into the crowd of networking happy hours and protests is all too easy. The very nature of this city has forced me to evaluate, prioritize, and vocalize my beliefs to make sure they are not blurred as well.

When to let go: Sometimes things just aren't going to go be okay. This isn't a lesson I learned this year, but I think I'm getting better at accepting the fact that life has ups and downs. The key is to find balance and to keep on finding that balance each day. Small things like leisurely cooking a healthy meal at home, lighting a deepa, taking a bubble bath, putting on a face mask, walking to the library, or watering the plants are ordinary activities that I can build in to my days. They are little comforts that feed the body and soul.