The Eve of a New Year

Tonight is New Year’s Eve. Tomorrow morning will be the first day of 2015. Contemplating the new year, it feels bright, sharp, and cold. Possibly I’m just being influenced by my first bleary-eyed look outside my windows this morning. All over social media I see people moving to embrace the new year. Some of them are excited for things to come. Some are just anxious to shake off the dust of 2014 and do something else, because 2014 was miserable for them. I’ll be honest, though 2014 had some really good months for me, the last few were not my favorite. Yet I don’t feel any impulse to rush forward because I know that I’ve got more hard stuff between me and any pleasant months. Just like I’ve got several months of cold before the outdoors becomes hospitable again. Right now I want to hunker down where it is warm, not face the cold.

I don’t get to. I’m going to be dragged into this new year minute by minute. As I reach the appointed time to pick up my regular responsibilities, I’ll settle them onto my shoulders again. Usually I feel excited about that after having a holiday rest. Today, not so much. So I keep thinking about the Winston Churchill quote: “When you’re going through hell, keep going.” I can do that. I can keep putting one foot in front of the other. I can keep doing the tasks as they come to me. Then at some point I’ll be able to look up from my feet and realize that all my walking has carried me into different terrain. It isn’t exactly hope, but perhaps it counts as faith. I believe that if I keep going, eventually I’ll end up somewhere else.

I won’t be making resolutions this year. The last thing I need is a new load of expectations for myself. Instead of new goals, I’m going to focus on acceptance. I need to see things as they are and let go of what I think they ought to be. Written out like that, it looks an awful lot like a resolution, so I guess I have one after all. But only one. And I’m allowed to ignore it without guilt if that is what I need to do.