I’ve never been the type of person to make New Year’s Resolutions. I prefer to spend New Years Eve reviewing and evaluating the year that’s ending. I am always looking for growth – what did I learn in the past 365 days? I’m also looking at myself to see if I’ve become a more complete person in some way or if I simply spent the year dormant and uninspired.
Taking time to reflect on the past 12 months of life provides perspective and allows me to consider the path ahead. I usually do this in a new, fresh-leather handwritten journal – a clean white page, a ritual of sorts. I’m adding a new ritual this year – the Compulsory New Year Blog Entry. Who have I been and who am I becoming as the year transitions?
I have no major complaints of 2010. My formal career in the car business has been productive. Promotions, pay raises, hitting benchmarks, gaining insight and expertise, and facing new challenges with patience and courage have occurred. I’ve reached a place of quiet assurance and confidence in myself and my abilities.
My personal relationships (with husband, kids, grand babies, family, friends) are all flowing smoothly, happy and on track. No major issues there to contend with which is absolutely wonderful!
I resumed my informal career as an artist in 2010 – making time for writing, completing a poetry collection, and planning a new online magazine project for the coming year. I have been a writer longer than I’ve been anything else in my life and it feels good to be back at the keyboard playing with words. It’s a homecoming for my deepest self.
There have been sad and stressful moments in the mix. I miss certain friends a great deal and realize they are lost to me in some odd way – our time together past and the new of life demanding its place now. It has been a year of strange, internal goodbyes – to people and places I will likely never see again, to old beliefs and misconceptions, and to dreams and childish indulgences that have grown dim in the light of a new future. The old pieces of Self wasting away tend to make a fuss about it – the old us we leave behind screams “don’t go” as we walk away.
These are the personal changes in self during 2010 that most surprised me:
* I realize how much quieter I have become in all areas of my life and aspects of my being. Silence, in myself and the world around me, is something I’ve learned to treasure.
* Mourning over the absence of others from my life (due to death or distance or less intimacy than I’d wish) was a dominant part of my emotional journey during 2010. I lingered in deep, sad places of remembrance, wishing, regretting, and eventually letting go during much of the year.
* I returned to my writing with a totally different concept of myself and my work. I have a new sense of peace and understanding about myself as an artist and about my work as art. It’s as if a last puzzle piece fell into place when I wasn’t paying attention. The picture is clear, crisp, and vibrant now.
* I am experiencing life as a “now” experience more than ever before. The past has drifted into misty realms and the future is a shinning cloud – I am living in the moment with an odd sense of calm and contentment even on the rough days. I love this new state of simply being.
So, with remembrances of the lessons and gratitude for the gifts and good fortune – and deep appreciation for all the many blessings – goodbye 2010!
The new year starts as a clean, blank page. We can write our story however we choose. I hope to write in bright, beautiful strokes of vivid ink this year. I hope you do the same. Happy New Year!