Happy New Years! I know I’m a little late on the resolution thing but you know what I always say – better make lofty goals that are almost impossible to keep for 365 days late than never.

So, after living a year as a person born and raised in California who lived her life in a very strong Diasporan community (OC represent) and who then decided to up and move to the place we always talk about, I’ve come up with a handy list of resolutions to keep in mind for the year.

  1. I will show no tolerance for anyone who utters any iteration of this fearful and ignorant statement:

Armenia(ns) can’t ____­­­­__________(something denoting progress or anything actually good) because ____________(choose from list below)

  1. corruption
  2. Turkey
  3. Azerbaijan
  4. Russia
  5. The Genocide
  6. the bad people
  7. Armenians aren’t united
  8. I’m not even sure sometimes
  9. *loud noises *
  10. all of the above
  1. I will do all I can to soak up the words, writings and all around greatness of those who made my presence as an Armenian possible i.e. Monte Melkonian, Raffi, Sose Mayrig, Avetik Isahakyan, Karekin Njdeh, Zabel Yesayan, and on and on in the hopes that their awesomeness will infiltrate aspects of my life.
  1. I will never allow the Gloomy Guses, Debby Downers, Melancholy Marys and Cynical Cyndis of the world stop me from marveling at all the ridiculously cool things happening in Armenia including, but not limited to, Ayb School, UWC Dilijan, voluntary immigration of young Diasporan Armenians, amazing young local Armenians who are kicking butt, the growth of independent small businesses, TUMO, Armenia becoming an IT center.  Etcetera.   Etcetera.
  1. Finally, I will never, ever take for granted that I am living in a country that is called Armenia – a place that is home to Armenians around the world, as long as they choose to make it so. That even though there are some who enjoy thinking this is a given and that as long as “other people” work on it Armenia will be fine, I will always remember that in my parents’ lifetime, independence was a dream.  I will never lose sight of the awesome opportunity I (and you) have to, in some way, take part in the development of this country.

It is 2015, after all. We do not live under the rule of others. We are not rayah. We are not orphans of the Genocide. We are not suffering the collapse of our entire economic system. There is no longer any room for self-indulgent wallowing in pity mixed in with some hand-me-down information dated 30 years.  We are at the helm of a new, independent and exciting nation. It is mine. It is yours. And I can’t wait to see what we do with it.

“We forget that the beggar is given a poor house and not an independent state. Yesterday we were such…today we have a possibility to consider ourselves a political force.”-K. Njdeh