Topic #8: New Year's Hopes, Challenges, and Resolutions

  • What LESSONS or INSIGHTS have you experienced in the past unusual ‘trying’ year?
  • Has the last year CHANGED or IMPACTED you?  
  • Do you feel PREPARED for the new year in these times of uncertainty?
  • What are your RESOLUTIONS for the New Year?
  • What are your HOPES for upcoming year?

Share Your Story

See below for submissions

New Years Stories

Mosaic Heart
Mosaic Heart

A fully living heart
In the passing of time
And love, and loss
Breaks and stretches
Heals and shatters.
Striated, scarred,
Misshapen, resilient
Until finally it assimilates
Its wounds and callouses
Into character.
A rare glimpse of this mosaic
(deep in eyes opened in surrender)
Reveals the soul's holy icon
Inscribed on the flesh
Inspired by love
Born of attachment and release
Colored in bits of joy and pain.

— Tina B. Tessina, PhD LMFT

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New Year's Corona Junction
Screen Shot 2022-12-22 at 1.52.23 PM

The post-corona , upcoming 2023 year presents uncharted territory and numerous new challenges to people, families, nations and cultures all over the earth. The world is engulfed with fear of illness and death evoked by 3 years of corona virus panic. The world is split between those buying into the relentless narrative of the medical /pharma complex and its incumbent pressure to take the mRNA vaccinations / boosters, and the alternative medical position that views the virus and its illness as being treatable and as a more normal, medical occurrence in human evolution. I wish I had a vision of how the world could be healed and healthily united… but regretfully and sadly, I don’t.

— AK  

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New Buds on A Tree

As 2022 slips away
Like fall leaves when winter approaches
May we reflect on the new year 2023
Like buds on a tree
To blossom
Hopeful for a year of peace and gentleness


— Magen Pielmeier

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New Beginnings

The old year like a setting sun
Disappearing behind pale clouds
As the New Year's eve moon hangs
In the sky
Glowing over the earth
A new year brimming with possibilities
A time for reflection, discovery and new beginnings

— Magen Pielmeier

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Not Your Usual New Years Letter to Loved Ones -- IN HINDSIGHT

was personally, nationally and globally a shithsorm (that's "shitstorm," spelled differently so as not to offend anyone). We were visited by serial viruses and were sicker than really bad jokes from January to mid-May. Then we were behind on everything for months. David's old truck "Truckles" tried to commit suicide by popping his emergency brake (!) and driving himself across the road and down a ravine. He was repairable until the tow truck hauled him up the canyon, dragging one whole side of him through a tree. Truckles got his wish. And did the tow company make good? HA! Then there were wildfires here. David was sandwiched between two that came way too close even for his comfort while I beat it to friends' refuge for five days. Separation in the face of danger...There was even a quick flood! Felling dead trees, David's trustiest favorite little chainsaw got creamed by a 500 lb. piece of runaway firewood. On a much larger level we had a President who made the worst possible look better than that. People of color were killed for no good reason by the ones who were supposed to protect them. And there is a pandemic that is no joke at all, with an unmasked leader in denial who took a lot of people with him into his insanity of allsorts. People are dying, others grieving. There is fear, anger, loneliness, isolation and the fallout is horrendous. But then…….


. . . was also tender, instructional, clarifying, beautiful, unifying, catalytic. Forest beings sang us awake every day. People shopped for us when we were sick. People fed us. We got well. Our home and our connection were unharmed in the fire. Friends gave me shelter. David watered our evacuated neighbors’ gardens. Some wonderful strangers sold us their used pickup, now our “Frosty,” the nicest truck David has ever had, and they made it easy to do. No one got hurt in the process of felling gigantic sudden oak death trees on our land. It was a year for me of realizing the importance of what I put into the air we breathe, coming to know that outrage and anger, even for just causes, are not the food that children and old ones and all the ones in between need to thrive, to be strong enough to stand up and fight when it is needed. We need love, steadfast and stalwart leadership and stewardship, hope and positive action. Some of us made progress in understanding the prejudices we didn’t know we had. Many of us learned to appreciate the sustaining power of a hug, the connection of a simple handshake, the privilege of sitting next to a loved one, the human need for touch, the medicine of seeing faces we love on a computer screen when that is all that’s safe. People disinfected my shopping carts. People greeted me at the entrance to stores, counting ins and outs to make shopping safer. We learned to wait in line six feet apart. People wore masks. For the first time in my lifetime people all around the world were united by a disease that could kill and no one was immune. And we were all one.

Here we are in the human soup. Since the time of man, there have been killer diseases that no one knew how to cure, terrible despotic, insane leaders who harmed and neglected their people, generations of families who have known nothing but war, financial crashes that brought ruin, homelessness and unemployment. Last year was not the “worst ever year.” It was simply a year of the human condition and here we are. We are glad to be alive in the thick of life. And we are wishing you the same, all of it, the fullness of life for another year. May you be healthy, safe enough, whole and loved.


— Sashana Kane Proctor

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Lessons on loss: I didn't write

I didn't write nor send the letter
To you in the nursing home and now you are gone, though no longer suffering from COVID-19.

I can't forgive myself
For the fact that I didn't say goodbye, or even hello

It was your jovial face that greeted me
Each morning from the recliner
When i would visit my grandparents
And you, my grandfather's sister's husband
Would say hello, and then we'd sit in silence, watching sports. 

This time, as I write you the only
Letter I can, a poem
As tears cascade down my face
Knowing that life is short but missing you,
Longing for more than a memory
A distant star
You, dear star, gone.


— Anonymous  

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Three Things I Learned Last Year

1. Life will never return to how it was pre-pandemic. There is no "going back"

2. So many desperately cling to the idea that we are separate, oblivious to the reality that everything we do in some small way impacts the collective consciousness and collective experience.

3. Rather than become despondent, angry, or placing blame, the way forward is through compassion, and as is possible, practicing unconditional positive regard.

— GRM  

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My Hopes for Next Year

As we enter the new year, after reflecting on the chaos of this year, especially what they are calling a pandemic and how otherwise intelligent people are acting and reacting, I find myself really hoping that it will come to an end and life pretty much will return to a more normal state, with people not being so afraid. Hopefully people will learn to take better care of their health - especially their immune systems. I personally feel betrayed by all the goings-on and decisions being made that affect me and my personal freedoms. The following poem, written in the 1990s by me, shows how this type of chaos affects me and how I feel about it. If nothing else, this experience reminds me of the fact that we have a very powerful God!

Masque of Betrayal

Betrayal is hell,
burning, blazing well;
inferno on water,
gut wrenching slaughter:

I have no heart left.

So feels it
by trust and love.
Masquerade of friendship -
there's no Dove

living here.

Like white trash as flowers,
hatred - guise of towers
of righteousness and strength.
Really, though, a stench

in the cloak of truth
A study of ruse.
Hope, trust, friendship -
is there an end to this?

God conquers all.
Love is too tall
to be squashed and eliminated.
Loyalty, in God's eye
reigns supreme.

You can't take my good away from me.


— Dr. Donna Poppendieck

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I Dream in Glitter

New year, dreaming that the planet can heal
physically and emotionally from the pandemic
Heart beats anew
Hope rises to the surface
I dream in glitter

My resolve to help people who are suffering
To be a better mom
To participate in more video chats with family
To meditate and take long walks through forests

To slow down the speed of life
To a dull murmur
To visit an ocean in a far away place
Sitting on the warm sand
The sun's rays against my face
The beautiful view of where ocean meets sky
Finding hope, though slowly
Feeling at peace.


— MLP  

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