It's always around this time of year, for some reason, when I run into most people who hold the political positions I had during high school and much of college. I always feel so ashamed of my former positions, and remember the heartless policies I advocated. I remember the "right on!" that I heard from the people I surrounded myself with then.
I suppose my positions at the time were actually less weird for an American than those I have now. Perspective-wise I feel very lonely; the twists and turns that made me didn't make many more of me. Thinking of the deep lonliness my father occasionally expressed back when I knew him, I think, despite the chasm between us caused by his actions that I don't see ever being bridged, I can hope that with his new family or further adventures he has found peace. My grandparents discussion of the tiredness of growing older continues to weigh on me, as 2011 hasn't given me much but a temporary solution to some parts of my loneliness. Perhaps 2012 will be the year. I am sure my grandfather would not have lived as long as he did without the awesome relationship he had with my grandmother; perhaps I have lonely and contrarian genes everywhere on both sides.
Hopefully the new year will see me continue to remind myself as long as I need to that the difficulties I made in my life remain a result of my day-to-day actions and personality and expressions, and that while emotionally I find myself blaming a lot of people for not including me, it's significantly my doing for either being hard to include or for needing so much from a few people that never understood those needs. If I ever forget this, my anger at the world will become itself an unbridgable gap.
I need to remember, from moving around a lot as a kid, that every time I move is a chance to reinvent myself. Every new social circle is a second chance, and if I can learn to trust people and let them know when they become important to me, maybe my friendships and relationships will survive the things that killed them in the past. At least, these are the things I hope. The bitterness of Festivus is tempting, but it is not for this year.