2021 was a year that began with hope- we hoped that the worst was behind us. Only it wasn’t. Our mettle was tested again, during the first quarter of 2021, leaving us shocked and tired. However, by the end of the second quarter when things settled down, our hearts filled with hope again and we decided to move on.
2021 taught me that sorrow is inevitable, and that joy is short-lived; much like sorrow. So, it must be grabbed. I learnt to snatch with both my hands every opportunity I got to be happy. And instead of thinking of what could not be done or what I did not have, I delved into what I did have, and I went out of my way to celebrate the people in my life, do the things I loved doing. I began the year in the southern tip of India- Madurai, the temple city and Kodaikanal, the ‘Princess of hills’. Then, in the middle of the year during the monsoon holidays, we went to Bangalore, the ‘Garden city of India. In addition, we explored places closer to home- Lonavala and Pune and we ended the year in Jaipur, the ‘Pink city’ and Jodhpur, in the west of India. We met friends and reconnected with those we hadn’t met in a long time. And it was that reconnection that created some new friendships and strengthened old ones.
2021 was a year of personal growth. It taught me once again, that time heals. And that you must trust, stay strong and carry on until such time that you feel whole again- there’s no prescribed time that works for all. It also taught me that people are made differently- not everyone can support you in the same way, when you need it. Having made peace with it made me less resentful, more accepting and allowed me to be happy.
2021 continued to be a year of learning-I read, I painted, I wrote- as a way of carrying on. After 5 years and 149 poems (30 every year in April), my poem ‘Do you have dreams?’ was chosen the ‘Poem of the Day on an international level by NaPoWriMo. My poem ‘Omid’ was nominated for ‘Best of the Net’. It did not win but the fact that it was nominated by Borderless Journal, was huge. My art sold, and for the first time in three years after having left banking, I earned again. And though the amounts were small in comparison to a full-time job, it gave me immense joy. With art, each sale felt like the first paycheck.
All in all, 2021 has been a good year and with that said, I look forward to 2022 with hope and gratitude in my heart and prayers. Before I end, I want to thank all those who were with me in 2021- those who read my writing, and those who never failed to comment. Thank you for cheering me on. I cherish your comments and appreciation.
A shout-out to my younger sister, without whose trust, love and strength, I may not have gotten through 2021. The importance of a sibling, no matter what the age difference or the distance cannot be undermined. This, for me, was the most important takeaway of 2021.
For 2022, I want to build on relationships that matter to me and do the things that make my heart smile and I’d like to be the reason behind some smiles- beyond my immediate family and friends. I do not wish to waste time on the superficial for time is precious. I’d like to travel more, write much more and paint much, much more, and keep learning. Here’s wishing all of you a blessed, meaningful 2022. God bless you all.
Now for the pictures because pictures speak a thousand words.
2021 with friends and family
The places we visited
There was a lot more to 2021, but I don’t want to bore you. Before I end this post, I’d like to say, ‘Remember to grab every opportunity to be happy. Nothing is too silly or too small when it comes to smiling. Happy New Year!’
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