Every New Year’s Eve I sleep in, say goodbye to the past year, get kinda drunk, and party well past midnight. This year was supposed to be just slightly different: I had an invite to a party in a building bordering Times Square AND I knew who I was going to kiss at midnight. What could be better than that? I planned on a New Year’s Eve I’d never forget.
December 31, 2017 is certainly a day I’ll never forget.
This New Year’s Eve I forgot all about saying goodbye to the past year. It didn’t matter. All the political shit that happened during the year, all the jobs I had that weren’t quite right, the places I visited, the blog posts I wrote, the laughs with friends, even the wonderful man I met this year and wanted to kiss at midnight…it all seemed unimportant as I sat at the bed side one of the most inspirational women I have ever known.
My family and I sat around her bed in a beautiful sunlit room, with the white snow sparkling outside, and said goodbye to my remarkable Aunt Margaret on December 31, 2017. We sat with her and let her know she was so loved. Let her know it was okay to say goodbye to us and to suffering. To make a graceful exit and have no use for 2018.
To watch someone so strong, so fiercely intellectual, and so spirited take her last breaths was heartbreaking. And humbling. And so hard. At the same time, what an immense privilege.
We say goodbye to years every December 31st. How often do we get to say goodbye to people?
Every December we reflect on accomplishments of the year, things we wish we had done better, our favorite memories, our biggest regrets. Why do we so often wait til death beds to do this with people we love?
Life is so fucking precious. I hope to remember that ever single day of 2018.
My aunt always had a way with words. You’d learn that from even the most brief conversation. She wrote and published many novels, which I remember thinking was so incredibly cool, even as a kid. My Aunt Margaret, the writer. She was always one of this blog’s biggest supporters. A fact that will always mean so much to me. She always believed in my talent as a writer – that I wrote well. That if I tried, I could write more, write better, share stories. I want 2018 to be the year I stop being scared and go ahead and write to prove my Aunt Meg right.