The winners of 2016

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It’s been one of the longest years I can remember, and I’m not the only one who feels that way. I’ve read a myriad of articles this week about how crappy the past 365 days have been, and how many famous people died, and how cheated as a society we are because of it. And while I’d like to lay around a wallow a little myself, it’s too easy. Also, if you lay around too long, the back of your head gets flat, and that’s just not conducive to a well-fitting hat or a big-enough case to carry your brain around in.

2016 flat-out sucked for a lot of people. One who comes to mind in particular is my Aunt Nanci.

Aunt Nanci and Uncle FredAunt Nanci and Uncle Fred

Aunt Nanci is my momma’s little sister, and she’s the kind of Aunt who always shows up when you need her. She’s a retired nurse, and has probably helped and comforted more people during her 30-plus-year career than most of us would in ten lifetimes. She’s worked hard her whole life, and when we found out her husband had cancer, it was bad. But when we found out she also had cancer, it became worse than bad. It became a reason for me personally to question faith.

Aunt Nanci had every reason in the world to lay down and wallow. But she didn’t.

In true Aunt Nanci fashion, she sequestered herself and took care of business. She immersed herself in a book-writing project and took care of her husband and went through all the nastiness of combating her own cancer. And if she ever questioned her faith, she never let it show.

Aunt Nanci won. She’s cancer free and Uncle Fred is back to work, living his life like he wants to, instead of focusing on being sick. These are the people articles should be written about, their determination to win and deep, abiding faith are things we could all take a lesson from.

The mantra for 2017?

No wallowing allowed. Get up, show up, and win.

Happy New Year. Make it count.