One day in 2016 a random monkey was accidentally shot in the forest reserve behind my house and proceeded to climb its way to my apartment’s balcony, go on a rampage on all of my herbs and died a bloody death with blood smeared all over my balcony floor and glass door. And with that, it had successfully represented some parts of my 2016 – full of surprises, horrifyingly funny, a little bit sad and unfathomably eventful.
But most of all, 2016 had been nothing short of wonderful.
A quick revision of 2016 resolutions will tell you how it really went, planning-wise – yes, I did finish one personal project, no, I did not explore one new place per month, no, my herb balcony plant idea went to hell, yes, I learned two new life skills (replacing toilet seats, checking car tyre pressure), no, I can’t sleep for less than 8 hours per day, and yes, I moved my butt to try a hand at doing charity.
And now that 366 days have passed, I am baffled at how much life never goes quite according to plan. Most of the big, awesome things that happened to me in 2016 was absolutely unplanned and uncalled for. And so the conclusion here is rather simple and succinct; life will take you places, sometimes places you did not think of being in, but it will be an amazing trip nonetheless.
Some of the things are ones you did not think you could do, but you did anyway and they were life-altering experiences.
Some encounters make you think outside your box, and subsequently change the way you see life altogether.
Some people started off trying to help you fix your broken kitchen light, but eventually they ended up helping you fix your own self again.
Some passions started off as just an idle pastime, and then they expanded and made your life more fulfilling.
Some losses happened so you could finally understand the true value of what you actually had.
As I sat and waited for the NYE fireworks show to start, I began to realise that it was no longer about the surficial novelty of being awed by pretty explosions or the crowd hurrah. I am way past that part of my life now. In fact, if I was just sitting on my own with a cup of tea on a chilly night looking at quiet stars it would be just as wonderful. Rather, standing there watching the bright city lights and colourful explosions served as a physical milestone for me, a checkpoint if you will, to remind me that time is fleeting, and within its fleeting moments we are presented with choices and chances. Some of which will never again occur in our lifetime, and should we choose to allow our fears of being different or stepping into an unknown territory supersede our choices, they will remain as possible future regret of missed opportunities.
So with that spirit, here is my main 2017 resolution. I will try to consciously and bravely take chances. When I am seventy years old, sitting in my balcony facing the sea at sunset, I want to be a content old prune smoking a cigar (this is how I picture it in my head. In reality, I find cigar smells repulsive), with no look-backs in regret about how different my life could’ve been had I been less worried about what people might think and more worried about not living a life as authentically as I possibly can.
Other resolutions are (and may be subject to change) – a full Yoga handstand, quit using cancerous artificial fragrances/products altogether, travel somewhere adventurous this year, learn to make souffle, try something new every month, swim more, smile more.