Twenty xiv

And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.

— Haruki Murakami, “Kafka on the Shore”

So it’s finally here. 2014 is almost over.

A lot has happened in 2014. So much so that I wonder how I even got through this year, and whether the things I did really happened. Whether the people I came across this year were really there.

Every year I tell myself I undergo such significant personal growth and change that I find it difficult to fathom the idea that the next year will bring even more powerful storms. Yet storms come — large, cataclysmic ones. Hurricanes.

Every year there are some things and someones to let go. This year is no exception. This has been a year full of hellos and goodbyes.

One of the best hellos and the worst goodbyes occurred simultaneously. Not coincidentally, I believe. Some doors are meant to open while others are designed to close.

But somehow the hello door opened so easily and so seamlessly when the goodbye door has yet to close shut. It’s a rusty old door and a stubborn one. It refuses to stay locked.

I’m hoping the rust will play nice. I’m hoping the rust will become tired and that door will give way, and eventually despite all its stubbornness its time will come and it will go quietly and calmly.

Please go peacefully your way, because I don’t know how much longer I can withstand the rust in my house. Doors like yours are meant to be locked tightly and never opened again.

And when that rusty old door finally closes, I’ll walk away from this all, I’ll walk away from this storm and finally make it unscathed through the threshold of the new door. I’ll look back at 2014 only to contemplate how this storm, whatever it is, landed me to where I am today, because at that time, whenever it is, I’ll have survived and storms like this one will no longer matter to me.

And whether these were storms in 2014, whether they were real and how devastating they were — well that will no longer matter.

Because I’ll be trodding toward new hellos, and when the time comes those new doors will also become rusty old doors.

But maybe, someday, I won’t mind the rust as much.

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