You know how so many people get depressed on New Year’s Eve because, for some reason, they feel obligated to trot out all the things they didn’t accomplish and stare really hard at all the ways they haven’t been amazing? Well, dammit, I want to get on that bummer-train too! Why should an old hag like me be left out of this tradition of being bummed out at impossible life standards not being met and epic dreams not coming true? I’ve got myself one ticket for the sleeper car reserved for the UN-COOLEST-PEOPLE that offers sparkling beverages that have gone flat and stale.
(Are they completely unaware that I will write books that will be made into movies and shows and that I will write starring characters that kick mother-fucking-ass for both of them?! And that when I accept my awards for best screenplays (shut up – I’m totally going to learn how to do this soon) wearing my beautiful black suit covered in real butterflies I will be thanking them for being such inspiring women?! DO THEY NOT KNOW THIS YET?)*
Clearly I have failed at my coolness goals once again.**
Hang on, you know what? This is bogus. Everyone I know has some day or thing that is magical for them. Some belief that helps them hang on through the rough times. Some of you believe in God. Some of you believe in multiple Gods. Some of you, and may God help you, believe in Santa Clause. Some of you truly believe in elves and fairies and fairytales. I don’t believe in any of that.
I believe in new beginnings. I believe in fresh chapters. Blank pages upon which anything may be written. This day is the symbolic changing of the year. It’s merely symbolic because calenders are a thing humans invented to mark time and get depressed about, not nature. Nature didn’t need this artifice and I think some people could successfully argue that nothing changes between today and tomorrow. The Chinese new year isn’t for another month and a half so for some people the symbolic change isn’t even happening tonight.
Feel free to call this the one little bit of “magic” I believe in. That we can reset ourselves and our attitudes. Yeah, maybe by tomorrow morning reality kicks my ass. No matter how often that happens, I still believe that New Year’s Eve is the night to recalibrate our wishes, our goals, our intentions. It’s not the time to look back at how much you didn’t do but to remember that as long as you aren’t dead yet, you just might have time to do a few more things.
But tonight doesn’t require lists or declared goals or intentions if you don’t want it to. It can be a quiet meditation. One to clear your head completely or one to fill your head with your favorite things. How you view this turning of the calendar is up to you.
I choose to stay home and drink beer and sometimes champagne and think about good things. I think about how I’d like to improve myself as a person. We are always in the process of “becoming” until we die so that even though I’m middle aged now, I imagine how I’d like to be a new improved version of myself each year I’m still stuck on this earth.
I’m not even going to “look back” on this year in the systematic way I usually do. I’m not interested in summing up or keeping score. I’m not going to go look at my post from a year ago to see what I said and see how it compared to the actual year that unfolded. For the moment I still have my memory and don’t need to poke it. I’m more interested in the now and the future and all the possibilities that lie in between those two points.
Maybe a little later I’ll write my version of mapping the future in a series of lists.
If new beginnings was my religion, lists would be my scripture.
*It would seem so. Sigh.
**Clearly they will never read this post and this is an unnecessary precaution but I once said I’d never marry a Sagittarius and you can see how THAT turned out**. So just in case of impossible cases: Jasika and Kirsten, please don’t worry that I’ve pointed you out as top of my cool-women-O-meter. I know you’re human. I fully expect human-ness of you. No crazy-ass fan-hood going on here. Spit-promise!****
***I married a Sagittarius.
****I can see how a spit promise might seem a little on the creepy side. I’m not taking it back though. It’s less creepy than a blood-promise and due to the ick-factor, much more serious than a pinky-promise.