Farewell 2015, an obituary

I’m writing an obituary to 2015 today.

Farewell 2015.

I’m inspired by Melanie Bates’s article, and especially by this line describing the crap year she had had: “You know how it goes. Everyone is always awesome in an obituary!”
Like Melanie, this one goes out to anyone who had a rough 2015, whether or not you overcame or are still in the dance.

Just thinking that I can see 2015 as awesome is a powerful shift to make.

A shift away from seeing the past year as another failure. A failure to earn enough — again. A failure to recover from a chronic illness — again. A failure to find the love of my life, at least one who thinks the same about me at the same time — again.

Farewell 2015Farewell 2015, a remembrance

Your twelve-month life was, as usual, all over the map. During our time together you brought me moments of peace and joy, moments of fasten-seatbelts jolts and surprises, discouragement, encouragement, and many points in between.

Here are the lights, high and low. They’re all noteworthy, and I list them in order of — I guess in the order of the impact made on my tender heart and seeking spirit:

  • The health front was still rough and rugged. Not content with conditions as they were, you decided you just had to have a big moment in April with a recurrence of appendicitis and a three-day hospital stay. The very good news: No surgery, I survived, things subsided back to baseline. Again, not enough for you because you decided you hadda have your year-end swan song. Seriously? Since November: flu, laryngitis, and then pneumonia. Enough already! Dayenu!
  • You inspired me to clean up my diet even more. I gave what’s called the Autoimmune Paleo (AIP) protocol a six-month try. Want some more mindfulness around eating? Try AIP for a while.
  • You opened up a door in my spirit that I thought was forever closed — the door to Judaism, the spiritual path into which I was born. And what a surprise that was and has been! A full year has gone by and I’m diving deeper and deeper into mystical and sacred Jewish practice and lore.
  • You gifted me with a new community of people I really like and love and with new and hugely fun ways to serve. That’s the big gift, for me, of joining a synagogue, one with as vibrant, passionate, and justice-minded a community as the one to which I was led.
  • You gave me the opening to have a week on Kauai, which was a week of heaven. Thank you.
  • You decided that another year of low revenues from my business was just the ticket! Thanks but no thanks. Not only am I most fervently saying Farewell 2015 to this financial snapshot, but I’m saying Farewell to the mindset I’ve worn like a box of rocks on my shoulders for the last couple of years. Each and every one of those boulders — consider yourself shrugged off, and I’m diving into the work I’m called to do to make 2016 a beautifully prosperous year.
  • You wove the threads between me and my daughter even more snugly, tighter, and close so that she and I could deepen and broaden our loving relationship. For which I am ridiculously and giddily grateful. Considering the tense and fraught and scary years of her first two decades, this is a big fat miracle.
  • You put some new and refreshing and interesting people in my path, some for the first time, some for a return visit. I am so glad that I’ve learned how to walk with my heart forward, my eyes up, and my hands open — all so I can see what’s in front of me. I am glad that I have learned to stop and connect, even when it’s risky. And I am very glad to see whom I am privileged to encounter, to know, and to help.

Farewell 2015

Thank you for everything you have taught me. As you hand me off now to young 2016, I go with an undaunted heart, a strong body, curiosity, passion, and the strongest sense of mission I’ve ever had.

How have you said Farewell 2015?

What have you seen? Learned? Released? What are you keeping with you and what’s gotta go? Let’s talk in the comments.

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I’m a barely tamed hippie, sage, seasoned, sarcastic (not all the time any more, but still). I’m a mom, a daughter, sister, a neighbor, and a friend. I’ve been on this meandering journey — like you, probably — seeking a better connection to and experience of peace, harmony, and fun in every bit of life. I’m single, quite good at it, and mostly love it. I’m here for the conversations I get to have with you, which these days center on exploring the mystery and beauty of life, work, health, aging, and creative expression. Want to know a little more about me and my journey? Explore the site. Read the blog. Connect with me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

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  1. I LOVE this, Sue. I feel such a great power in your words! Ooh, and I want to know more about the autoimmune paleo diet *runs to look that up*.

    Big, big blessings to you in 2016!

    • Melanie, welcome here, and thanks! I’m laughing at myself — just added the week in Kauai to the list above. Funny how I remember a three-day hospitalization quicker than I recall a seven-day visit to paradise.



  2. Love your obituary! It’s important to acknowledge with gratitude the gifts we receive each year that support our growth and expansion. The other key is to release what no longer serves our highest and greatest good in life. It sounds like you are off to a wonderful New Year Sue!

  3. Still loving this exercise. How interesting what you remember about 2015 and the importance you’ve given each event.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Monica, welcome here. It is interesting what is available to my memory. So good at remembering the hard stuff, but I didn’t remember Kauai until I had published. Hooray for being able to add and edit!

      Love and magic,

  4. This is excellent, Sue! ~ What a creative, empowering, and healing way to make peace with what felt like a difficult year. ~ I think I’ll do the same! 🙂 ~ Many thanks for the inspiration!

    • Tina, so glad to connect with you here. Make sure to come back and add the link to your obit for 2015. I want to see it!


  5. I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this. I reflected on 2015 in a recent post and it was my list of all the things I brought into being based on the intentions I set. You inspire me to dig WAY deeper. What did I sink deeply into? What overwhelmed me? So much to … well, I’m off to share this and write in my journal!

  6. I love “year in review” stories… it’s interesting to see what others consider their highs and lows, especially in a year that deadlines have kept me from doing that. So thanks for letting me enjoy your review. I remembered your medical mess and your trip to paradise… but I did not know we were walking the AIP path together last year. Happy 2016.

    • Andrea, I didn’t realize you were doing AIP. Still on it? Did it help you? I’ve shifted a bit, am eating some grains, some eggs, some spices. And so far — I’m still on the healing journey.

      Happy 2016, indeed. Blessed be.

  7. Brilliant and funny, love this post! I do a similar process of releasing and learning from the previous year before planning the new one.

  8. What a lovely tribute Sue! I’m afraid I’m nowhere near this poetic. I conducted my in depth review, celebrated the wins, learned from the losses, and moved on. We’re only a week into the New Year and I’m already stretching my comfort zone even more, so feeling pretty optimistic about the months ahead. Wishing you all the best my friend!

    • Marquita, I hear you. I have jumped way out of my comfort zone already myself. Gulp! Exciting.

      And seat belt tightened.

      Much love to you.

  9. I love your true goodbye to 2015 and how much you are always willing to share. I’m happy that as you move into 2016 it sounds like you know what you want more of and what you don’t want at all!

    You are an inspiration and you give so much. I’m glad to know you. Bring on 2016…maybe you’ll need to write its birth announcement!

    • Deb, thanks. I love that idea, to write 2016’s birth announcement — which is now bubbling away in the creative cauldron.


  10. What a beautiful tribute to 2015… Thank you for sharing the good, the bad and the ugly. Thank you also for seeing the silver lining and reminding us that we all need to do that.
    Have a fabulous 2016.

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