As expected…

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As expected…

Well folks, it’s time to get back on track with blogging. I know that the “new year” is a contrived starting point for renewing my life, but a contrived starting point is probably better than no starting point at all. In the past, I’ve ranted about the disappointment (at best) and the sadness (at worst) over holidays. Valentine’s Day can suck a rotten egg, for sure. I even breathe a sigh of relief when Christmas is passed now. New Years is no different, big expectations, look over the past year, reset for the new year. Blah. Blah. Blah. Sit on the sofa and watch your dog sleep.
In recent years I’ve chosen to sleep through the revelry, the ball drop. Avoid the risks of driving after celebrating and opt to stay home. Holidays are a natural opponent of mine, simply because it feels like a cultural demand to have a good time, celebrate, remember, reflect, honor the past and set expectations for the future. I effing hate demands, even the useful ones, like keeping my dog on a leash or pants. But I acquiesce, I use the leash, I wear the pants, I honor the holiday.
So, this is the obligatory New Years post, last year was…this year I will…
But last year, like all the years for all the people, was full of struggle and loss and full of grace and love. And next year will be the same….I, like you, know the fallacy of resolutions, the limited effectiveness of starting out new. Yet we collectively (more or less) agree this moment has some power, some specialness.
So here’s my thought…my resolution, of sorts…this year I will just BE more. Not in an altogether passive way, but certainly in a more still way. I will listen, not so much to the nagging, critical voice, but to the gentle voice of truth. If it feels wrong-stop it, if it heals-continue it. I will not vow to lose weight, or even quit unhealthy habits, but I will commit to listening to what makes me mistreat my body, to not care for the vessel that makes it possible to move through the world. I won’t declare my intentions to improve my relationships. I will look on the people I love, and listen, be with them. Be with them in the sense of simply sitting with them. I cannot promise to make my world a better place. Instead I will continue to look strangers in the eyes. I will remind myself that there is inherent worth and dignity in all people…that includes a lot of people that I have blocked on Facebook. My world is broken, our world is broken, it needs healing and attention. I refuse to insist I be a better person this year, but I will forgive myself when I falter, and challenge myself to return to balance.
But my biggest challenge is to let go of expectation…expectations especially of how days should be, or how people should react, respond, feel. Holidays are just days, and days are unpredictable. People too. My challenge is to accept the days as they are, let go of the expectation that they will be harsh reminders of what I have lost, or grand celebrations that are a reward for good behavior. This day just is.

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