New Year’s Eve holds a lot of promises. Whether you’re hoping to complete your resolutions and hoping for big changes, or just going about business as usual, January 1st marks the beginning of something. The start of a new calendar year, new bills, new paychecks, another school year, birthdays to celebrate.
We are hopeful on December 31, but there is no magic in the clock striking 12. We wake up in the morning the same as we were the day before—with our own bodies, our experiences and our thoughts. There’s no harm in seeing January 1 with fresh eyes, but we must be the agents of change in our lives.
The holidays are a busy for me, between family events and eating leftover food, it’s difficult to find a time to write. But writers learn sooner or later that we can improve by simply reading more. If you’ve seen my “Tranquil Tuesday” posts in the past, you won’t be surprised that I found a poem to bring in the new year. “To the new year” by W.S. Merwin embodies that beautiful feeling of hope that reminds us what is possible, despite what happened the day or year before.
To the New Year
by W.S. Merwin
With what stillness at last
you appear in the valley
your first sunlight reaching down
to touch the tips of a few
high leaves that do not stir
as though they had not noticed
and did not know you at all
then the voice of a dove calls
from far away in itself
to the hush of the morning
so this is the sound of you
here and now whether or not
anyone hears it this is
where we have come with our age
our knowledge such as it is
and our hopes such as they are
invisible before us
untouched and still possible
New Year’s resolutions — you either love them or you really, really hate them. Honestly, I never got the point. My thinking went that making promises that you can’t keep is just a set up for disappointment (sore loser, here). Make no mistake, I have goals but they don’t necessarily need to happen within one year. Though I’ve warmed up to the idea of resolutions, I usually make them at different times to keep my goals in check.
The year does goes by quickly if you’re not paying attention, and if 2013 is the precedent, I do have a few things to remember.
The most popular New Year’s resolution of them all. It’s strange to say but most people I interact with are older than I am. I’ve really noticed that people don’t treat themselves the way they should, whether it’s because they don’t care or they don’t have time. I was on a streak at the gym this summer and fall but, you know, stuff happened. And there were a few late-night junk food dates, since I’m being honest. Now that I have some more time for myself and I know how to cook, I think that I can make this happen.
Lists, I love them. I can make lists all day long, but sometimes I need a bit of inspiration to finally get started. This pretty much applies to all parts of my life. To be more productive, I also need to get better at my job. I’m not ashamed to say that. Given that I’ve changed the field I’m working in, there’s still a long way to go before I feel that I’m producing results. Last but not least, every year I resolve to finish writing a story and send it into the world. May 2014 be that year.
If you read a pop culture blog or website, they might tell you that it was Beyonce’s year. Heck, it’s Beyonce’s world. She had a baby, went on tour, put out an album without even hyping it up. I’m not her biggest fan but there’s something about this lady that exudes confidence and tells the world to bow down. She’s still able to surprise people despite being in the business for more than a decade, and I think that’s an awesome quality to have. I want to surprise people and surprise myself. Although I have a small party every time I successfully multitask projects or when I get dinner on the table at a decent hour, 2014 is going to be a year for the books.
I want to do more, achieve more, see more, but most importantly: own it.
Are you making resolutions for this year? Leave a comment to let me know if it’s related to Queen B.
Cheers! See you in 2014.