2016 was not the worst year ever.
Yes, we lost a lot of great people (Gene Wilder, David Bowie, Alan Rickman), but death, folks, is inevitable. Think of this: David Bowie is no longer in pain, he came to peace with his death. We can mourn him, yes, but you have to grow from that. You know what Bowie would want you to do? He’d want you to continue to create. He lives on in his music, that is something no one can take away from us.
Are you going to tell a couple (to their face) that finally tied the knot this year, a year they will always remember, that 2016 was the worst year ever? That couple waited all year for their wedding. Maybe someone you know adopted or gave birth to a child, maybe someone you know finally got that promotion, fell in love, left their dead-end job to travel the world. Saying that one year is the, “worst year ever”, is devoid of deeper thinking. What good things happened to you? What did you accomplish? Chances are something unique (and good) happened to you that you’re bound to remember for the rest of your life.
Yeah, the election happened and we’re all in collective trauma, but it’s also mobilizing a lot of activists to continue forth, to challenge the norm, is that the worst thing ever? (No) Think of the good things pop culture gave us this year: Blackstar, Lemonade, Stranger Things, Swing Time, Westworld, La La Land, Moonlight, David S. Pumpkins. How long did it take the creators of these marvelous projects to materialize them? They were bound to come to fruition at this time and like it or not, each project was awesome and did add brightness to the year.
I could have very easily said 2015 was the worst year ever after what happened to me, yet, I ended last year grateful for the changes that occurred because they needed to happen.
Like Beyoncé, the one thing we can do after this year is to go ahead and make some lemonade. I’m not saying I was the biggest fan of this year (PEOTUS is a Cheeto, Standing Rock and Flint are demoralizing), but saying this year is The Worst Year Ever™ (until next year) is hyperbolic.
If one bad thing happens in 2017 are you going to go around acting like that year is horrible and deserves all the vitriol you can muster? Or are you going to just accept that life is a complex and nuanced landscape that is riddled with things that challenge our perception and emotions?