The Sun Will Rise (Welcoming in the New Year)


Happy New Year!  I have been a terrible writer this past year.  I have barely written at all, so first and foremost, one of my New Year’s resolutions will be to write more!  

I can’t believe 2013 has ended already.  So much in my life is changing; I’m getting transferred to Hawaii for my job and will be also working out of Okinawa.  My apartment looks like it’s been ransacked due to packing up all my belongings.  As I look back over my pictures from the year I am reminded of all the things I accomplished and was able to experience.  I did quite a bit of traveling, both locally and abroad.  I went to mainland China and Hong Kong, visited Kyoto twice, caught up with high school friends from my time in Shizuoka, ran my first sprint triathlon and first full marathon, and secured a competitive and coveted position at work.  I met a good deal of people, made some new friendships, rekindled some old, and entered into a relationship.

2013 was a year that allowed for growth; there were some truly positive moments (being selected from a large pool of candidates for a very competitive position, crossing the finish line at the Mount Fuji Marathon), and there were also some very difficult times, regarding friendships, relationships, work, and life in general.

I was skyping with my mom recently and I was talking about some of the difficulties I was dealing with in regard to certain relationships and I think the overall sentiment for the New Year will be her advice:

Do good and have faith that good things will happen to you.

So my New Year’s resolutions are as follows:

1. Write more.

2. Be a more dependable person.

3. Be better at keeping constant communication with friends and family.


Two years ago I found a local shrine near my home that was up a small hill; the pathway was illuminated by lanterns.  After walking past the main shrine area a bit there was an opening and I could see out across the bay to Yokosuka, Yokohama, and Tokyo.  I could see the ships sitting there, too.  The lights shimmered against the darkness of the night and I remembered the opening of Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God:

“Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board. For some they come in with the tide. For others they sail forever on the same horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by Time.”


I looked out on to the black ocean as a child, watching the ships sit against the horizon in the night, and I looked out on to that same darkness this night and thought of how my life has changed over the past two and a half years.  Although I am proud of the person I am continuing to grow into, I do not forget that it has taken some very difficult lessons.  

Here’s to another bountiful year!

This New Year’s Post brought to you by David Bowie


I’ve been listening to David Bowie’s “Heroes” recently and have been inspired by its daring declaration of love amidst war. So I’m declaring love amidst war and happiness amidst chaos.

I recently returned home for my long anticipated holiday vacation. The plane ride across the pacific was easily the worst flight that I have ever experienced, with what seemed like hours of clear air turbulence violently shaking the aircraft. I have made that flight about 16 times, and none have been as terrifying as that one. And even though I was sandwiched in between two people but had previously selected an aisle seat when I purchased the tickets, even though things had just seemed to continuously be going wrong that day, I was elated when the plane landed in Chicago and I realized that all the things bothering me were so incredibly trivial.

2012 has been a very difficult year. It started off on a very bad note personally, and blows were thrown repeatedly at work. There were some very low moments where I just wanted to completely give up, but I muscled through and I realized something incredibly simple: my life is very, very good.

2012 started on a bad note because of a hurtful personal experience, but from that experience I started distance running. I also learned what I would accept in terms of treatment by others. Instead of dismissing poor behavior as being too picky, I now know to see what something is for what it presents itself as.

I experienced blow after blow at work. We passed every challenge handed to us, and more importantly, I HAVE A JOB–WITH A GOOD SALARY! I own my own home, travel as I please, and have never worried about anything financially. My job isn’t glamorous, it’s a constant headache, but it provides me with an incredibly good life for a 20-something college graduate.

The only thing I was looking forward to at the end of the year was coming home to see my family. The fact that I have a family who is so incredibly supportive of me and is constant in my life is perhaps the greatest thing of all. Because I could be nothing, I could fall, and they would still be there ready to receive me as is.

So my resolution for this year is to write more, because I’ve been denying myself the thing that has been with me all along. Seeing life and color and experiencing it all, happiness, sadness, boredom, anger, elation. It’s all there, and I’ve been living it all. This is what I am, for better or for worse. I have my problems and my issues (hey, who doesn’t?), but I know that truthfully they aren’t so bad. I’m worse off than some, luckier than most. I can’t remember the exact quote, but I read in a magazine recently something along the lines of, “Happiness is being able to do what you please in the evenings.” And I have that luxury; I can go out to dinner with friends or lounge around in my apartment reading or giving in to my Pinterest addiction (no shame). I’ve gotten my share of heartaches and embarrassments and frustrations, but right now, this New Year’s Eve, I’m doing okay. In fact, I’m doing better than that.

I’m doing pretty well.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from us!