This article is scheduled for Jan. 2, the day after New Yearís and a day Iím guessing a lot of us will head back to work and officially end the holiday season.
I clarify the date because I write this column the day after Christmas, perched comfortably on a couch at my familyís house in Pennsylvania.
As I sit here looking at gifts still strewn on the floor and feeling the warm glow of the Christmas tree, I canít help but think of the holiday season to be a confusing time.
Some of us have focused on the superficial for months now, trying to get everyone that perfect gift, going broke for the sake of giving presents because thatís what weíre supposed to do. Weíve braved crowds and stressed every little detail, from the tinsel on the tree to the Hallmark card for mom.
But yet, every year it takes me seeing family and re-grounding myself before recommencing the daily grind to get myself back to where I need to be.
Yesterday, I took a picture on my phone of a gift my cousin received. Itís a picture frame that reads, ďLife is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away.Ē
This is overly corny, and I didnít take the photo because I want such a picture frame, but to me the message is a roundabout way of explaining how I think we tend to focus on the day-to-day superficial aspects of life, very similar to the way we do preceding Christmas, when sometimes the holidays actually bring us back.
For example, I focus an incredible amount into my job and paying my bills on a daily basis. I often throw my life into the newspaper and the little, everyday events of life, putting other, sometimes more important things aside. I lose touch with people close to me and blame long hours or stress.
This week, Iíve had a chance to come home and be reminded that, despite the fact that Iíve been spoiled with superfluous, way-too-expensive gifts, the value of my life is defined by the connections Iíve made with my family and friends.
Seeing everyone for the first time in 2012 was the best gift I received this Christmas and all year. Itís been a peaceful, content time.
That feeling doesnít last and, frankly, shouldnít. Itís unrealistic to expect I can hang out with my family all day all year. Work commences and the bills donít stop coming.
But I hope to use the experience of being home to help me narrow my focus as I look forward to 2013.
Iím not going to make a resolution to lose weight or save money; instead, Iíd like to start to make both personal and professional connections of that type in Torrington so I can build a place that feels closer to home here in Wyoming. I also want to use my free time to give back to the community.
And, no, I havenít forgotten about the paper. Iíd like it to be better than itís ever been before. I love what I do, and I hope residents reciprocate the time and effort we put in.
Iíd like Goshen County residents to rely on it for their news updates and photos from the events they attended or didnít have time to. I want the Torrington Telegram to be the best newspaper in the region and state.
This will certainly be a challenge and take time, especially since weíre losing an outstanding reporter and photographer in Adam Louis, but itís something Iíve made a goal and will work tirelessly to accomplish.
And Iíll do it all with a better balance in my life.
Thatís what Iím hoping for in 2013, and I hope the readers of this column also figure out the equilibrium that makes them most happy as the year progresses.
Happy New Year Goshen County!
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