It Was A Very Good Year


By Beth Carpenter and Cari Lynn Webb

It’s that week between Christmas and New Year’s when we tend to look back at all the year that’s ending and wondering where it all went. Cari and I thought it would be fun to thumb through all the photos on our phones and pick out one that symbolized 2018 for us.

Beth

One day I was walking around the small lake near our house when I heard a mother duck quacking. Six good little ducklings were swimming together in a tight group behind her, but one duckling was all the way across the lake, paying no attention to his mother’s commands to return to the group. She had to swim over and herd him back into line, and the whole time she was doing that, she kept quacking at the others to keep them from scattering while she was gone.

This whole year it seemed I’d just be getting my ducks in a row in one area when another duck would take off across the pond. But somehow, what had to be done got done, and what didn’t get done didn’t matter all that much. Books got written, promises were kept, and we had fun along the way.
I hope 2018 was a good year for you, and that 2019 will be even better.


Cari

I wanted to steal Beth’s picture too … I felt much the same with getting my ducks in a row throughout the year and then one would inevitably wander off. But I found this picture on my phone from our July trip to Carowinds. And yes, my daughters and their friends are on this roller coaster somewhere. It was the first upside down roller coaster for both girls and they were hooked after their first ride.

Unfortunately, my days of upside-down roller coasters are over – I love roller coasters, but not the vertigo that sets in afterwards. And as my year was its own version of a roller coaster, it was probably for the best that I left the real thing to my teenage daughters. I had plenty of moments of anticipation as we prepared for vacations that would become highlights of the year – just like that climb on the roller coaster before the steepest drop. And then moments where I threw my hands in the air and enjoyed the ride with all the laughter and thrill I could capture. Then there were the times I thought I had regained my breath only to discover an unexpected drop – those times not so comfortable – the ones that make you want to scream to get off the ride. The ones that steal the fun and the joy.

But we have to accept the ups and downs of life. Find our balance and buckle our seat belts. And I’ve discovered – just as I suspect my daughters did on their first ride – that family and friends, right there beside you to hold your hand and offer support, give you the courage to face whatever comes your way.

And so we’ll keep riding that roller coaster called life. And may all of you enjoy your ride in 2019!

It’s your turn. Since we can’t post photos in the comments section, take a look at your photos and tell us about one that describes 2018 for you.

*****

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Comments

  1. I went looking, and I guess my year was a montage. I found pictures of my grandkids, of my brother's obituary, of my daughter-in-law's little carousel she has on a shelf. My year was like yours, Cari, a roller coaster that has left me...well, I'm not sure how. But I also have a picture of a cardinal in there, bright with hope. Happy New Year to you both. I loved the post.

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    1. A cardinal! They're just beautiful, aren't they? Bright with hope is the perfect description. Happy New Year, Liz!

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  2. A wonderful post,ladies! I love the analogy and for me, my photo would be one of the dozens I already have of my granddaughter. Since early Feb., when we learned our daughter was expecting, this enchanting baby has been in our minds and then, after Sept., in our lives. The perfect antidote to the ups and downs of life.

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    1. The bond between grandparents and grandkids is something very special. Enjoy!

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  3. Thanks for this--I've had a good year, but some of those around me not so much. Sometimes we end up mourning or commiserating with people close to us. And the circle comes around again. I enjoyed your photo trip through the year--I wonder what will end up on your phones in 2019!

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    1. Some things we don't expect, no doubt. I hope 2019 is good to you, Virginia.

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  4. Love these two posts. Yep, a roller coaster is about right. My photos would be divided between family and the trip to Israel, which I'll probably share in late January...

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    1. A trip to Israel! That sounds amazing. Can't wait.

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  5. You know, the more I look, the more I realize that roller coaster of Cari's is absolutely terrifying! She's raising some brave daughters!

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