(almost) This year we enter a new decade as well, although my son contends that technically last New Year rang in the new decade. He’s a Gemini so I don’t even bother arguing with him unless I’m up for it.
I’ve been thinking about my New Year’s post for quite some time and now that I finally sit down to write I feel like there’s too much to say in one post. I also realized there’s a lot of common ground with what I’d intended for my Jenny’s Liver/Hepatitis C experience blog. As we draw to the end of the year I’m approaching the end of my nearly year long treatment for Hepatitis C. Needless to say it’s been an unusual year.
I’ve really come to enjoy New Years, even more than Christmas. Christmas was fun when my kids were little, and when I was little, but now it doesn’t feel like a big deal. And yes, I am one of those people who is irritated by the mass consumerism, the bombardment of advertising for unrealistic gifts (does anyone really walk outside on Christmas morning to find a Lexus with a bow on top? Much less one that’s not covered with snow and ice?)
Christmas has it’s own magic to be sure, but I’ve discovered New Years has a different kind of magic altogether.
For one thing there’s Hope. People make resolutions and regardless of whether they actually keep them it’s kind of nice that there is a day where people think about ways to better themselves.
Many of us, especially if you’re just a little self absorbed like myself, like to take stock of the past year, the highs and lows, the joys and sorrows and if you’re like me you take the time to review what you did well, what you might have done differently and what you damn well will never do again. I like to read back over my journal from the past year, a tradition I repeat on my birthday which is only a few weeks later, to refresh my memories and details that get lost in time.
I stopped drinking 10 years ago and soon after I became a grandmother for the first time. Nearly every New Years since “sobriety life” I have spent either working at the youth shelter or with my granddaughters. The last few years (since leaving my job at the shelter) have been with my granddaughters creating our own traditions as they get older, and keeping alive many of the same traditions from my childhood. We especially enjoy banging pots and pans and whooping at the moon at midnight, It’s funny how at first, having the responsibility of watching the girls was kind of a safety net for me. Any alcoholic worth her salt will tell you that certain holidays are damn near physically painful the first few years of sobriety. I’m not sure when it happened, but the babies stopped babysitting me, and I began to look forward to spending the night with them for it’s own sake and for the legacy of our own traditions. And while I’m realistic about resolutions, I don’t like to make promises I’m not certain I can keep, I do carry on one tradition I had started while still working in the shelter, I would have the kids make 3 wishes for the New Year, one for ourselves, one for our close community and one for the Global Community.
I wonder, if everyone made resolutions that were dedicated to not only self improvement, but to extending compassion and care for others…and kept those resolutions, what kind of a New Decade we all might create.
Peace, Blessings and Happy New Year,
© 2010 Nanakoosa’s Place, authored by Jennifer Hazard