January 1, 2010
Welcome, 2010, I think I love you.
Symbolic and completely arbitrary as it may be, I am grateful for a New Year. Myself, I like ritual. I am a fan of tradition, keeping old ones and making up new ones. I enjoy lists and assessments, taking stock and measuring up. I appreciate the chance to simultaneously look back and look forward, with only my imagination and the truest version of myself.
Passage of time can give us pause, incline us toward regret or doubt, cause us to question choices or rethink past decisions. Sometimes we need to get our proverbial asses kicked.
Good as our lives may be, I suspect we’re often holding back. Something we want to try, to create, to imagine or reinvent. Someone we want to kiss. A baby we’d like to have. A degree, a business, a goodbye long overdue. Forgiveness, for ourselves or another. An ambition we’ve charted out in our minds but never out loud. (I’m speaking to myself here, in case you couldn’t tell.)
Look, I don’t know if you’re scared, but I know I am. I can talk myself out of so many things, distracting myself with dishes that “need” to be washed, telling myself it will all happen “later,” cramming too many things into my schedule as a very clever way of assuring none of it will get done.
But I’m getting to the point where I think, either I do this thing already or I need to shut up about it. And all of the plans I’ve made up to this point CLEARLY HAVEN’T WORKED, so I’m guessing some new strategies are in order. It may get a little radical around here, and radical totally makes me nervous.
(Sharpen your knives, folks. We’re in for a big year.)
My manuscript has been “in progress” for the better part of the last three years. I’ve devoted a part of two summers to the work of it and grabbed small snatches of time here and there during the school years that intercepted. It’s been “nearly finished” for much too long now.
I started this blog in May 2009, having little to no idea what I was doing and unsure if anyone but my mom would read it. Not only have I had a blast, I have made friends, gained readers, and surprised myself by managing to post twice a week, every week. So there’s really no reason I can’t get this damn book written, except that I’m pretty sure I’m standing in my own way.
This blog will be a year old on May 5. And what I can promise 2010 is, by that date, my book will also be finished. So, Happy New Year’s, ya’ll. If you’re interested in declaring something before God & internet, too, feel free to go for it in the comments. The more butts in gear, the merrier.
As for food, I recommend you whip up a batch of Bloody Marys and be sure to eat some black-eyed peas for luck. Some traditions are worth hanging onto, no doubt. But the rest of it, I think we have to make up as we go, even if we’re terrified the entire time.