Note: You've probably already received this in your email, but I thought I'd post the letter anyway.
My dear loved ones…
Warning: I'm gonna get smushie on you...big surprise. This is what you get for being in my inner circle, sucka...and there is nothing you can do about it. ;-)
Happy Almost 2005! May it be filled with love, laugher, joy, growth, and the realization of all your potential. As most of you know, I have the annoying habit of being far too philosophical, contemplative, and analytical…it's gotten me into lots 'o trouble in the past. But why change now?!
The beginning of the new year always excites me. Rilke wrote… "Let us now welcome the new year…Oh! the possibilities." The possibilities indeed! What does 2005 hold for us? None of us know…and that is the amazing thing…none of us know! The potential for abundant joy and excitement is limitless. Many of us are in the midst of significant life changes…new jobs, new loves, new births, new homes, re-evaluated dreams, re-evaluated expectations, rediscovered talents, rediscovered friendships…and the burden of all things new and changing can really weigh us down and dull us from the potential and joy of what these changes can bring. Personally, 2004 brought A LOT of change for me, and I know that sometimes I felt consumed by the change process…consumed by the enormity of it all…I felt tossed…a piece of flotsom whirling in an unforgiving sea. I found myself having to repeatedly step back and observe my life from the vantage point of a third party to truly appreciate the enormous gift all these changes brought to my life…the added texture and depth of my life. I mean…really…how many people can say they got stuck in a water buffalo traffic jam in Yellowstone National Park, went snow-shoeing in Tahoe, swam in the Great Salt Lake, watched Radiohead perform live at 1 in the morning in the middle of a polo field in the California desert, or visited the SPAM MUSEUM within a 13 month time frame!!! Feel sorry for my grandchildren...they'll be hearing these stories on a near constant basis when I'm old and forgetful. I guess what I'm saying (and I'm saying this more for myself than for you) is…be not afraid to take risk in 2005…be not afraid of the potential for failure…be not afraid of falling…because you won't…or maybe you will…but who knows where that falling will take you…Live on the boundaries of your life and explore how you can expand those boundaries…Don't be afraid to live boldly…the world needs more bold livers (as opposed to bold kidneys or bladders or pituitary glands…bad joke…sorry.)
I've never been a person for new years resolutions…it's not that they don't work…they do sometimes…but there is something confining about them…something prescribed, negative, fabricated and superficial. I don't set new years resolutions. However, I do set new year hopes…Hopes are optimistic and well-wishing. So, what are some of my hopes for 2005?
> I hope I get to hug you this year and play with you.
> I hope you and I laugh together.
> I hope you have a moment when you are so nervous that your stomach ties up into a knot, your face gets flushed, and you lose your ability to speak English.
> I hope you get to sit back and fall asleep watching a movie under a warm comforter.
> I hope someone cooks you a warm meal from scratch.
> I hope you and I get an opportunity to help someone less fortunate.
> I hope you and I have an opportunity to feel pain and realize that it is an aspect of life that we can't avoid. I hope we learn to fully embrace the heartache and then learn to let it go.
> I hope you get caught in a warm summer shower.
> I hope you have an opportunity to live in your body fully…feeling the pounding of your heart, the rush of blood through your legs, the tingle of wind on your skin, and the wet of your mouth.
> I hope you are enraptured by music…consumed by its celebration, consumed by its universiality.
> I hope you laugh with a loved one until tears come to your eyes and you gasp for breath.
> I hope you get an opportunity to create…create art, create a report, create love, create music, create connections, create a robot, create friendships.
> I hope you get to express yourself…realizing the strength of your voice and your intelligence.
> I hope you feel connected…connected to people, to earth, to me, to a nice bowl of chili, to weather.
> I hope you have a moment to get angry and disgusted…to the point that you are compelled to revolt, to riot, to seek change.
> I hope you eat a whole chocolate bar in one sitting...a nice big chocolate bar with a high cocoa content...marshmallows and graham crackers are optional but oh so delightful!
Above all, I hope you have a full year of experience…experience that you can't wait to share with others.
Thank you for enriching my life. Thank you for the experiences you shared with me in 2004. Thank you for being a friend. I love you. I hope I get to see you this year and hug you and laugh with you...Yeah, that's right, I mean You...got a problem with that.
With all my love,