Many of us bemoan 2016. Tears, sadness, disappointment, despair. We wallow in the sad stories we tell about this year.

Before I stumble into 2017, I’m determined to change the story I tell.

I’m not trying to magically transform the sorrows of 2016. The losses will weigh on my heart for years to come.

I change the story I tell to celebrate the joys that I lived this year, to lift them to their proper place of honor, above the racket and confusion of 2016.

This is not forgetting. I’ll hold the the injustices, hate, and insanity of this year close even as I fill my narrative with joyful remembrances.

I change the story to draw more joy into my life and into my circle of family and friends.

This is not turning away from the problems. The dismay of 2016 will fuel my words and inform my choices as I face the infelicities, as well as that felicities, that 2017 will bring.

I change the story to define the life, the community, and the country I envision.

This is not complacency. I will be engaged, but this is my initial act of protest, that voice that insists: love and goodness must win.

I change the story I tell so that there is less room for bad.

I am not Pollyanna. But I have faith in love, acts of kindness, and goodwill. I believe the more good I do and tell about, the more good will come.

I started out with a personal goal of remembering at least one good thing from each month. Later I made this calendar that highlights one personal joy from each month of 2016. I decided to share because this is a good story about 2016. It’s important to give our joys at least as much voice as our troubles.

I spared you the details of each joy, but if you’re interested, ask! I will be happy to tell you the story!

Change my storyWhat would your calendar look like? What are your 2016 joys ? Tell that story. If you felt disappointment and despair in 2016, be defiant and give voice to the joys you experienced.

© Copyright Pennie Nichols. All Rights Reserved. 2016