Dear 2016

by Jen Faulkner

Dear 2016,

I have always been a firm believer in everything happening for a reason. In my life, and that of the people I love, it’s often proved to be true. Even if the unthinkable has to happen, which at the time makes no sense. Like my dad dying of bowel cancer so I would have screening at a young age, which, as it turns out, has saved my life. Or my eldest son needing a middle and lower lobectomy, which enabled the diagnosis of a rare genetic condition for both him and my youngest child, preventing his lung ever needing to be removed. Hindsight has always shown me that these hideous things have happened because of something and haven’t been in vain, even though I’ve only recently begun to understand why.

But when I look at the news, and at what is happening in the world, my theory of reason makes no sense anymore. Events this year have shattered lives, broken families, and destroyed houses and countries. People have lost hope. Lost faith. And lost their homes and loved ones. Terrorist attacks, flooding, and austerity measures to name a few, have all taken their toll.

There may be a logical reason as to why a person becomes perfect for radicalisation, but there is no justifiable reason as to why they kill innocent people. There may be a medical reason as to why a child gets sick, but no justifiable reason as to why they should suffer. There may be an ecological reason as to why storms are battering the UK, but no justifiable reason as to why homes are destroyed.

2015 has made me doubt whether anything happens for a reason at all. And it is hard not to become consumed by distress and doubt. And fear.

And so 2016 I set you a challenge…the balance has been tipped for many into a life that is hard and unfair. Somehow faith, compassion, tolerance and hope all need to be restored. It’s a big ask, I know, but life is so short it deserves to be full of happiness and positivity, for everyone. Good things need to happen for good reasons.

I’m fully aware this letter won’t reach the government, or future suicide bombers, or be able to control global warming…but 2016, for you, I still have hope.

If everyone reading this somehow spreads a little a little kindness, then that’s a start. Change what you can and learn to accept what you can’t. Good deeds are infectious. They spread. They can redress the balance and then maybe the world just might make sense again. And things may happen for the right reasons.

I hope.

Love me x

PhotoHas anything happened to you this week and made you want to write a letter? If so write to me at



Illustration: Jen Howarth

One thought on “Dear 2016”

  1. I’m so with you on this. It’s almost got to the point where I don’t want to put the news on as its seems so unremittingly grim. I cannot live like that, so I try and counteract that with some positivity. Bring it on!

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