So it is December 30, 2010 today. I hear all of the talk of resolutions and big plans for the New Year. Parties are being planned and those with hopes for a better year than the past or continued blessings from those that have reaped the year’s rewards. It brings much to think about, doesn’t it?
For starters, I think about the fact that I always hold out the greatest hopes that I will manage to throw together a festive New Year’s Eve party. I imagine a home filled with glittery balloons sticking to my ceiling with yards of curling ribbons tumbling toward the floor. Trays of yummy appetizers and delicious desserts adorning my tables, while the sounds of Michael Buble and Harry Konick Jr. are piping throughout the house, beckoning eager couples dressed in fancy black dresses and suits to take a whirl around a dance floor. But New Year’s Eve will come and go and none of that will ever come to fruition.
I have children that are busting to be part of a huge New Year’s celebration. Every year they ask the same questions. “What are we doing for New Year’s Eve? Are we having a party? Can we invite some friends?” Each year they get the same answers. “Are you going to help me clean up this Christmas mess? It’s a little late to invite anyone. Most people have made their plans well in advance. Besides, we don’t have any friends.” The disappointment sweeps across their faces.
Eventually they ask if I will make “special party food” for our New Year’s celebration and I will agree. I’ll go to the store and purchase TGI Friday potato skins and mozzarella sticks and make my own buffalo wings. They like me to get sparkling grape juice or make some sort of punch. I will make the annual trip to Party City to buy a box of New Year’s excitement. You know the kind- confetti, party poppers, hats, blowers, leis, cups and plates. We will stay up watching one of the lame New Year’s specials swearing that one year we too will go to Times Square to be a part of the great celebration while my husband mumbles and grumbles about what a nasty crowded place that is. My husband and I are hours past our own bedtime and struggle to tolerate the caffeine-infused children long enough to make it to the countdown. Sometimes we squirrel away a firework or two from the prior 4th of July and my husband will take the kids outside to set them off on our court. The cool air always restores enough vigor and vim to make it to the drop of the ball. At midnight, our children yell and scream, and shoot confetti into our Christmas tree and whoop it up giving lots of hugs and kisses while fist-pumping themselves into a frenzy. Fifteen minutes later, my husband begins walking through the house, turning off all of the lights, telling everyone goodnight. Happy New Year.
So this year as we sit on the cusp of the New Year – I am not really feeling energized. I wish I could find a way to pump myself up and believe that I am at the start of something grand – but it just doesn’t ever feel like that. The clocks tick – midnight strikes – and for a few minutes there is festivity but then…?
Today I was attending my son’s wrestling match. He had to be there early so while I was waiting, I was reading in my car. Reading is somewhat of a luxury that I don’t get to participate in often – well at least not for pleasure. While I was reading, I began thinking about my life…thinking about New Year’s Eve…thinking about resolutions.
I’ve never made a New Year’s resolution. EVER. I don’t know why. I’ve always thought they were silly. What because the current calendar ran out of days, I am supposed to decide to better myself? I am one of those people that walk around with a tremendous amount of guilt tied to me on a daily basis – beating myself up for the person that I wish I was rather than who I actually am. A New Year’s Eve resolution doesn’t work for people like me. It's just another thing to feel like I've messed up.
But I started thinking about time. About how tired I am. About how long I have been tired. It’s been a long time. For years now, I have said that I needed things to slow down. I have whined to my husband that something needed to change. That something had to give. But it doesn’t. It is easy to say but when you are part of a household with 5 other people, it isn’t really yours to dictate. I can look at people and plead with them that we are juggling too much – that I feel overwhelmed – that I am really tired and that I really want to slow down. But all they really want is for me to suck it up and make it all happen.
But I am tired, People. Tired in my bones. Tired in my soul. Tired that I haven’t physically felt well in years. Tired that I need to stop the ride and get off – tired. I wondered if this could be the year I decided to make my one and only lifetime New Year’s resolution. If for no other reason than desperation.
For myself. For my sanity. For my health. For my happiness. For all of those reasons that people say they are going to the gym. Or to lose weight. Or to go back to school. Or to change jobs. Or to start a budget. Or...the list goes on.
It’s hard for me to keep those plates constantly spinning and all of the balls up in the air while I juggle at the same time. I don’t want to do it anymore. I am tired of racing from place to place and feeling like I am always 10 paces behind. I am tired of feeling sick. Sick to my stomach…
So for the first time in my 41 year old life – I want to make a New Year’s Resolution, just like I want to have a big party. I want to make a resolution as grand as I imagine my New Year’s Eve party – but I know that resolution will end up in disappointment; the equivalent of frozen mozzarella sticks with Dick Clark.
So maybe my New Year’s Resolution is to try to make a resolution NEXT year.
Well, at least I’m getting closer.