New New Year

Although, strictly speaking, for me, it’s the 28th new year since the original. So that makes it new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new new Year.

I have this thing about New Year Resolutions. For one thing, since I have been a part of the fall to spring academic system either as a student or teacher for a slightly alarming number of my twenty-eight years, I always feel that my year begins in September, rather than January. For another, my Birthday falls just a few days after the implementation of this arbitrary start of resolution, so generally half of my acquaintances don’t want to spoil their brand new resolution to save money or lose weight, or stop drinking. Which is not much fun for me.

But there is something about breaking out a new calendar, remembering to write a new year on your checks (does anyone actually write checks anymore?) or at least on the “date” line. There is something symbolic, if only because of the enormous hype about the new year that always makes me feel a bit nostalgic. Maybe it is because my birthday follows so closely– a new year for the world (well, for the ones who follow the same calendar we do) is also a new year for me. Did I just contradict myself there? Yup. I believe in putting contradictions out there in the world, because the universe, and my life, are full of contradictions.

Did you know that losing weight is the most common new year resolution for women? The topic of what that says about our society is a one for another day. People make resolutions about getting organized, getting fit, quitting smoking. Most of the time we don’t have any plan for these broad new habits, and then we wonder why we fail. Year after year.

Maybe what bothers me about Resolutions is the idea that I need to change something about myself. The idea that I need “fixing,” which I don’t. There are habits I want to shed, some I want to embrace, and things I would love to improve in myself, but not fix. At heart, as a dear mentor used to say with love, I am “a unique and unrepeatable miracle.”

So my one New Year’s Resolution, the one thing I want to guide me through the next year, is to be more ME this year than I was during the last one. To be more myself. More free to express myself. Less inhibited by social or familial expectations. True to myself and confident in who I am. Sure, I’m also planning study and workout time into my spring semester schedule, but mostly I want to be utterly, magnificently and unapologetically me. Because I’m pretty awesome, if I do say so myself. And So are You, Faithful Reader. (Or not so faithful reader, or casual reader, or whatever identity you claim. *wink)

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