Some good things happened in my life in 2007. My kids took their first trip to Disneyland, and at the same time I made my first visit to the NAMM Show next door, which is like Disneyland for music geeks. I finally saw The Police in concert. My wife threw me a great birthday party. One of my best friends became pregnant with her first child, due in February 2008.
But otherwise it's been pretty rough. Back in January 2007, I first got my cancer diagnosis, and since then I've had four surgeries (one major), two rounds of chemotherapy (the second one is half-way over now), six weeks of daily radiation treatments, and almost a month in hospital, during which I dropped down more than 50 pounds below my normal weight.
To top it off, the year ended with the deaths of my mom's longtime friend, world figures Oscar Peterson and Benazir Bhutto, and my friend Martin, whom I'd known for more than 20 years. All role models, all flawed in their ways.
NOTE: I've now set up a memorial page for Martin, including links to articles about him, copies of the notes from his eulogy speakers, and photos from his memorial event on January 6, 2008.
And yet. And yet.
I have two very different yet wonderful daughters now approaching adolescence, and a wife who is by far my best friend and confidant. I have faced death and, so far, beaten it back. I have things I yet want to do, but also know that if I don't get to do them, I'm satisfied with what I've already accomplished in my life.
I'm glad to see 2007 gone, no doubt. I'm more optimistic now to see the end of 2008 than I was at some times during this past year. I'm surprisingly clear in how I see my place in the world. That's something of a gift.
Next Sunday there will be a memorial for Martin, who did not see the end of this year. I've been asked to speak briefly about his modeming and BBS days. One thing I know of him is that he was always trying to find new ways to have fun, and to be happy.
In my mind, we all have our lives and our families and friends, and we each must try to be happy, because they are all we have. Happy 2008 to you.