The New Year came quietly for me over fondue and a little bubbly while Lil E slept soundly at his dad's house while the clock ticked into another decade. The night before New Year's Eve, a half-hour or so before he went off with his father and three tote bags mostly filled with Lego Star Wars sets in various states of assembly, we had our own countdown. We wore New Year's top hats (would you expect any less?), blew noisemakers and (sort of) made our way through Auld Lang Syne.
By the time the ball was dropping (conveniently time-delayed here in Chicago), I felt like I'd already had my big celebration. We'd reminisced about all of the wonderful moments Lil E and I shared in 2009 -- playing in the sand and water and sun in Florida, visiting Portland and Corvallis and the Oregon coast, both of us marveling as this little boy becomes a reader (A READER!), the big Jedi Training Academy, some very fun television and radio appearances, lots of inside preschooler/potty jokes, weekends at the lake, another year in his amazing pre-K class, growing in all kinds of ways, so many happy times with friends and our family and especially together. So, so, so many.
Still, it was lovely to toast to the twelve months ahead and to talk to an adult about all that 2010 could possibly, maybe, potentially hold.
In this moment, I am reveling in all the open space on the calendar, all of the days in front of me, all of the surprises that could land in the middle of our lives. I am happy right here.
Instead of setting resolutions or outlining goals (not even to read more or rest more or practice yoga regularly again or drink fewer cups of coffee), I've decided to continue doing what has served me (and us) well in the last year. Plans will be made and strategies will surface, as they do. New ideas and priorities may even make these things fall lower on the list or fade or maybe even obsolete. For now, here we are, here we go.
In 2010, I want to continue:
- Running. I don't think I would have believed you a year ago if you'd told me I'd be able to run 3 miles at this point, nor that my intention is to run 21 by May. But in the last few months, running has quickly become a big part of my life, fueling me in ways I resisted for years. I am looking forward to seeing where my feet take me.
- Celebrating. In a few days, I will pass the year marking the day my divorce was finalized. It feels like a lifetime ago and maybe it was. But what feels much closer is the divorceabration my mother and grrrlfriends threw me to usher in my new life. I want to continue to toast to all of the goodness that rises up out of heartache or pain or just change.
- Loving. I courageously, cautiously unveiled my heart to love in the last
year. It didn't turn out as I planned, but even in that I really did
discover what can happen when a heart breaks open. After time and many conversations and lots more quiet than I have ever been comfortable with in the past, I want to see where that openness leads me.
- Connecting. I was so lucky to spend some real time with people I've befriended and invested in and come to love online. I am looking ahead to Mom 2.0, BlogHer and many other spontaneous and well-planned cocktail hours, brainstorming sessions, and laughs with my people.
- Giving words to the good times and the tough. I haven't been here on Sassafrass as much as I would have liked over the last year, but that is also a healthy sign that I am making my own wellness, our home, and things other than court dates and craziness a priority in my life. Still, it thrills, soothes, and propels me to write it all down somewhere. I hope that is here. Or here. Or even here.
- Beautiful at the surface (and deeper). Stress, lack of sleep, and attorney's fees all took their toll on my body. I was underfed, exhausted and doing pretty well in survival mode. I decided that I would turn that around and start by investing money, time and care in my skin. What a difference it has made. Getting microderm and peels and spending lots of cash on creams and gels and other potions may not sound spiritual. But the act of shedding skin has been deeply impacting on my outlook about how I treat my body. I want more of that.
- Discovering who each of us is and is becoming. Who knew that I could be a runner? Or that Lil E would so wholeheartedly commit himself to coaching me (even giving me training ideas and tips to keep moving when I so want to stop)? I've loved watching him take to sign language at school, revel in the color pink, confidently explain his two-home situation to other kids, embrace puzzles and drawing and climbing on playground equipment with such zeal. It's the best part of being his parent -- seeing that boy be and become fully himself. It's also a great opportunity for me to catch glimpses of myself in the same way -- with kick-ass music taste, courageously wearing leggings, meditating in a bath brimming bubbles and Epsom salts, spending more time laughing with my grrrlfriends and contentedly alone on a Saturday evening. There's clearly more there to find for both of us.
- Building our home. This began by pitching any remnants of The Ex that irritatingly lingered in the house, from his old dress socks from the Navy in my dresser to vases we got as wedding gifts. It continues by slowly and surely banishing clutter, a cleaning lady (for real this time) and planning trips that set us free from our home and also make us happy to return.
- Beginning. I like to remind myself that I have enough experience, wisdom and bravery to start anew. It doesn't mean kissing off the past or never looking back. It means there's plenty in the bag I carry to get me through. And looky look, January 1st, in whatever way and whatever time it arrived, has already passed, and we've already begun this part. We're already on our way. No need to resolve, just to keep doing what has been working, to keep on.