This is the time of year when we pause to reflect what has gone before and what is coming up ahead, and what we intend to do to change it (hopefully for the better). Thus the making and breaking of New Year’s Resolutions.
Of course, I also do that most years, both making and breaking resolutions.
This year this is what I want to work towards:
- Daily Bible reading. I have done this most days for the past few months, though I was more remiss beforehand. Of course, it is all too easy to skip a day, which then turns into a week, then a month, and then it takes an effort to get it going again.
- Write (and post) at least one poem a week. I’ve been doing those on Sundays for the last couple of months, nearly every Sunday. I’ve fallen behind again during the holidays, but should be able to start it up again soon.
- Write (and post) three blog posts or more a week (not counting the poem). As you can see by looking over my past posts, they are sporadic at best. I’m hoping to improve in the new year. Of course, summer, holidays, and vacations will still make it difficult, but I’m hoping to make it a habit that I can keep up even then.
- Finish at least two of my stories/novels. I keep getting stories bubbling up in my head, two more for every one that I start working on. I need to pin down a story and finish it, while not letting the other ones try to take over.
- Don’t spend any money. This has been one of those years that our debt has grown rather than shrunk. (We’re still better off that way than we were a few years back, it’s just been an off-year, both because of choices we made, and things that have happened). I’m able to put together a budget that will cover everything, pay down our debt, and put a bit aside for savings and vacation, but only if we don’t spend anything.
- Watch the diet and exercise. I’ve got to keep my carbs down, or my blood sugar does weird things. I’ve also got to get back into getting to the pool a few times a week, and work on building up some muscle again.
None of these things are earth-shaking, of course. Pretty typical, actually. Most I’ve been doing, if not as consistently as I should. But the new year is a time to begin anew, and not let any failures of the past count against you.
After presents, after the tree,
Families return to their homes.
A pause to reflect, to remember and think,
A time to rest from our roams.
The snow is gone, soon to return.
The brown grass lies under the leaves.
The trees are bare, their branches show
Starkly as they dance in the breeze.
A pause for thought, before life returns
To its normal, hectic pace.
A pause to consider, to plan anew,
A pause to rest for the race.
Soon the new year will begin,
Back to work and school.
No more to gather with family and friends,
Facing the year’s renewal.
A new poem. Somehow it doesn’t feel finished, but it refuses to add any more verses.
The New Year dawns softly,
As clean as the fresh fallen snow.
No evil has marred it.
The New Year no shadows knows.
A time for beginnings.
A time for promises new.
A time to consider
All you’ve desired to do.
The sun may shine brightly,
Darkness may cover the land,
The storms or the stillness,
I’ll face if you’ll hold my hand.
This is the second day of the New Year.
Have you ever noticed that the calendar has several days set apart for new beginnings? There is New Years day, of course, when it is traditional to make resolutions about what you wish to change in the days coming up. And for kids in school, and sometimes their parents, the start of the school year is another time to begin, and start over, doing it better this time, of course. Birthdays also are a natural time to restart, and make new plans. And the Christian calendar Easter and the Lenten season to reflect, and look over what needs to be changed in your life. Christmas and the Advent season would also be a natural time to do this, if it weren’t so close to New Year’s Day, that the new beginnings aspect of it tends to be subsumed into New Year’s.
I’m sure that other calendars that I’m less familiar with also have multiple times to reflect and begin anew. I’m sure that even the ancient Mayans had much shorter times than once every few thousand solar revolutions to have a new beginning.
You could argue that every day begins a new year, and that has some truth to it. One can start new habits/resolutions at any time. But communal reflections and ceremonies can also be meaningful, and help to bind us all together.
Since I’ve forgotten where I was going with this, I’ll just end by wishing everyone a Happy New Year! (Blows noisemaker)