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Monday, September 6, 2010
January in September
For those of you who have known me for a long time, you know that my favorite holiday each year is New Years. No, not because of the free flowing debauchery that can sometimes define that annual celebration, and my active participation in said ritual(s). That's just a bonus. No, it's always been my favorite holiday because of the opportunity for personal renewal and redemption that January 1st represents.
On January 1st, we reinvent ourselves. The slate of the prior year is wiped clean with a turn of the calendar page, and all things seem possible. Yes, it is true that today can be the first day of rest of your life, but it often feels a lot like yesterday. On New Year's Day, the sentiment rings more true to us. Quit smoking? January 1st. Lose weight? January 1st. Watch less TV? January 2nd (it is Bowl season, after all). And the resolutions provided a shared experience. January 1st is goal setting with a mob mentality. Everyone is starting fresh, and we can all be the best self we imagine that we already are. So let's have a drink!
On New Year's Eve, I prepare fastidiously for the New Year. All laundry must be cleaned, all food shopping must be completed, and the house must be organized. If I am going to feel new, everything around me must give the illusion of newness. I will trick myself into believing that tomorrow is really the first day of the rest of my life by having pressed shirts and full cupboards.
Tomorrow morning, Lucy starts kindergarten, Marra enters high school, and I start a new job. The level of reflection and celebration may be more subdued, but the sense of renewal is similar. It is the ideal of the fresh start that has us energized for the first day of new experiences, new challenges, and new friends.
Lunches are packed, outfits are selected, and school/work bags packed. Look out. We're ready.