I have always been huge on traditions. Whether it’s holiday traditions, silly family traditions or even traditions you create with your friends, I’m huge on them. Enough to the point that I was upset when I was old enough to discover the Easter bunny did not exist and is instead a made-up myth to stimulate children’s imagination. Now trust me, I definitely don’t want to be a 23 (soon to be 24-year old) and still believe the Easter Bunny is real, but I would still have a blast at the Easter egg hunt I did every year with my cousins as we grew up and dressing up and attending Easter church services.
I don’t mean to start this blog off so negatively. The point of explaining my weird relationship with traditions is to simply emphasize the fact that traditions mean a lot to me. Growing up with a very large extended family on both of my parents sides, with my moms side being in close proximation, many traditions were started and celebrated throughout the years, not including the traditions our parents passed down from their childhood. Dressing up for Halloween in the same themed costumes, attending my cousins football and baseball games starting from PAL throughout High school every weekend, and playing “Kick the Can” on our Christmas break vacation that we took as a family every two years, are just a few of the traditions that I have grown up with. I understand growth changes tradition… with people moving away for college or a job, it causes a shift in old traditions due to the inability to attend the holidays and events you created traditions at when you were younger. Maybe instead of celebrating Halloween with your cousins, you’ve grown up enough to want to celebrate with friends. Maybe you have a significant other and instead of attending family members sporting games, you have a date. Again, I understand that growth changes traditions, but I have a hard time dealing with change, especially ones that regard traditions.
Halloween traditions with my cousins
Maybe this is what stemmed my fear of getting older. Maybe this is what stemmed my disliking of change. Why change what you’ve always loved to do just because you are get older? It’s true that the older you get, the more you realize how blessed you were for even having the ability to create memorable moments that turn into traditions.
As 2021 comes to an end, I look back and reflect at the past year of worry, sickness, declining mental health, and political division. I realized that many past traditions have been altered or have come to a halt due to the condition the world has been in for two years. I am not just complaining about my familial traditions, but also traditions for the whole world. For example, tailgating at football games has just resumed, in-person classes were paused for semesters, some concert venues are still only selling half their seats for events, yearly traditional events like Tortuga were cancelled, and the airport has made traveling so difficult that it is almost not worth it. Covid-19 has done its damage to worldly traditions and has caused so much unexpected and unwelcome change throughout the past two years. For me personally, and I’m sure I’m not alone, this change makes it more difficult to adjust. Instead of only looking back and reflecting at the past year that revolved around pandemics, politics, and violent protests, I’d like to reflect on the things that had a positive impact. The things that helped me get comfortable with a world of change. The things that allowed me to adjust old traditions and adapt to new ones.
As we begin 2022, I’d like thank 2021 for…
Landing me a job and expanding my career
Allowing me the opportunity to start a new business
Introducing me to incredible new people that instantly became close friends
Enabling me to save enough money to sign a lease for an apartment that will allow me to deepen my relationship with my Boyfriend and simultaneously move me out of my parents house.
The spontaneous road trips (for safe travel… thanks again, Covid) to see nature and friends.
The monthly girls nights dinners I have with sisters and mom
Taylor Swift re-recording her albums (This.)
Allowing me to cheer my friends on as they achieve their goals
Sharpening my chef skills (Not to hype myself up too much, but I can whip up something seriously good in the kitchen)
Learning how to play golf (well, hit a golf club)
Teaching me in Matthew’s old family traditions and making new memories with his family
A new appreciation for all animals (I have dog fever)
Becoming more outdoorsy by going on daily walks (One time I even walked 6 miles throughout Plantation to Markham Park. Yes, I recommend it. No, I will never do it again)
Road trip with my friends
Making new memories