Last day of 2013. As I write this, I am in the Ft. Lauderdale airport (which is an armpit, by the way) on New Year’s Eve heading back home to New York. Any other day, it would bother me maybe, but today I am introspective.

This morning, I awoke to the news that a very good friend had passed. She was not much older than me and had suffered from a really brutal cancer for years and is finally at peace.

As we rode to the airport in Bogota, with my mom and dad, navigating our emotions as they arose and abided, I was struck by the beauty of the sunny day. The simplicity of the light, orange, bright, with that glow that only the light near the equator can have… What a spectacular day.

We all tried through the years, including my sister, to support her and her family in their struggle as much as we could. As my mother put it, they have all been in desperate need of a lot of tender love and care for years. But there is only so much you can do. Pain is so discriminatory, it is intimate and individual and no matter how hard you try, sometimes you can’t rescue people from their lot. That helplessness is awful.

As I worked through my own pain at losing her, the fact that I would never hear her laugh or her voice say my name again, I was hit by the elegance, after such a long painful disease, to leave just as the year was closing. The irreverence of it all made me smile as I thought of her, of course, leaving her way: with a bang, on the last day of the year.

After spending the whole day traveling and in thought, my thoughts for the new year are these: live the life you want and want the life you live. Rumi says it more beautifully, “Let the beauty you love be what you do.” If that is not happening, what are you waiting on? It’s time to go out there and experiment with some changes. If it is, great, refine and finesse, make it better and sweeter as the days go by. That will set you up better to love the people in it and make a positive impact. Yoga is all about integration. So integrate your life, make it count. Only you can do it.

Happiest of New Years yogis, let me know if there are things that you want to learn from me or that you’d like for us to study together this year. If there is any way that I can serve you better, don’t hesitate to ask.