It’s come around again, it seems. Inevitably. After the hubbub of Christmas there’s a very brief pause in the maelstrom, a cessation of tornado-type winds in those few days between the 25th and the 31st.
But then a new kind of chaos builds, and I find myself feeling somewhat pensive. I didn’t used to feel this way — I think it’s a function of age, personally — but increasingly I find myself recalling the past year and disseminating it into “did” and “didn’t do”, and feeling ever-so-slightly dismayed that the “didn’t do” list seems so big. Whether it actually is or not can be the subject of debate — in my head I always intend to accomplish more, but on the practical side it just doesn’t seem to happen.
Unless I someday figure out the secret to giving up sleep.
I don’t know about you, but New Year’s Eve seems to creep up in an imposing, gargantuan sort of way. I find myself both dizzily excited and anxious about the year ahead. Every thing about it says “new” (including its name, amusingly enough ) — and you can use any euphemisms or synonyms you want. Starting over. Starting anew. Clean slate. Empty page. In some ways that feels great. Fresh, right? A chance to set goals, try new things, make changes. We all want to be better than we already are, don’t we?
Actually, it’s intimidating, frankly.
I used to make resolutions almost religiously, but I’m notoriously bad at keeping them. I’ve tried everything from grandiose plans to minuscule tweaks. I think goal-setting is important, but the mindset has to be there. You’re not going to write five books or lose twenty pounds or learn something new unless you’re prepared to make the changes in your life that will help you reach that goal. Chips and chocolate in the cupboard ain’t gonna help.
But it’s important to challenge yourself. Stagnation isn’t good for anyone, either. There’s got to be a suitable happy medium, doesn’t there? Small chunks. Little changes. Focus on only a couple of important things, not a dozen random whims.
So what have I decided? I’m not sure yet. I do know I want to write more books. And now that Ms. Junior Peanut is six months old it’s time to take a little better care of me. I don’t think I need any new hobbies this year — it’s also important to be realistic about time constraints! — even though there are things out there I’d love to learn. Maybe those will be pushed to 2012 or 2013. Who knows? But I think as a general answer creativity and health/fitness are the keywords for this next chapter.
In the meantime, thank you to all the faithful readers out there. I appreciate you coming back regularly more than you know. (At least it means I’m not just talking to myself, here!) So raise a glass with me — here’s to a new year filled with nothing but good health, happiness, love and friendship…and realizing that instead of pining for what could be, maybe what we’ve already got is pretty damned good.
See you next year, my friends.