In less than thirty hours this year will finish and a new one will begin. Leaving 2009 behind, however, is not as easy for me as you may think. Yes, I will be turning the page on the worst year of my life. But in doing so I will also be saying goodbye to the good this year held.

2009 was the last year Maddie was alive on this earth. As awful as 2009 was, it contained Maddie’s sweet head on my shoulder and soft kisses on her cheek. It included glimpses of the little girl she was to become when she said her first words and starting eating table food. No matter what positive things the new year may hold, it won’t hold any of them with Maddie.

2009 also included the final moments of my life when I can say I was truly carefree. For some of 2009 I only knew, like most people, what it was like to look into the abyss and wonder with dread. For the entirety of 2010 and beyond, however, I will be forever trying to climb my way out.

There’s nothing I can do to change any of that though, so I will look to 2010. Hopefully it will be a good year, but there are no guarantees, not even for those who have gone through a year like we have. Sometimes, as Bob Dylan sang, “When you think you’ve lost everything, you find out you can lose a little more.'” I hope that’s not the case for us, but it would be foolish not to acknowledge the possibility. That’s why when the clock strikes midnight tomorrow I will not make grandiose plans or unrealistic resolutions. Instead, I will take 2010 for what it is as it unfolds, and never take for granted the good things that come.