New Year’s resolutions


Writing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Typically, I have resolved nothing, which isn’t to say I didn’t think about it. I just got busy, ran out of time and suddenly the deadline passed me by. Resolving after a new year begins simply isn’t protocol and probably is against the rules.

Freed then from the burden of resolutions, I can now take my time while plotting the new year. What I need to do. What l should do. What I’d like to do. What would simply be fun to do. Why some things probably aren’t worth doing. Just really give it all a good long think.

Could take the rest of the month.

In the meantime … purging … because we have a bathroom and dining room to gut and rebuild.

And by “we”, I mean Rob. Goodness knows that during the gutting process, my hyper immune system means that all I am good for is humping drywall and other debris to the truck bed and nothing more. That work is dusty enough.

The rebuild is his territory alone and not just because he is a bit of a fuss-budget about things being just so. Between the Virgoness and the engineer-ness, there isn’t a hope that I could – even with supervision – do anything that wouldn’t make him too anxious to leave me alone with the task.

So I will be responsible for cleaning out spaces in advance and providing support aka food, drink and reminding him to take breaks, which have become my specialties. I am also first aid.

As I won’t be teaching yoga as much as I thought I would in the next weeks, I hope to instead suss out a real writing project for the year.

Yes, the year.

This writing a book in a month thing is nonsense. Mostly, you get crap.

I haven’t picked a topic.

I hear that the world could use decent porn. And no, I don’t consider 50 Shades of Shamefully Promoting the Hapless Female Who Finds True Love Through Submission to an Abusive, Stalkerish Asshole, “decent porn”.

But Rob is really much better writing erotica than I am. If he doesn’t decide to teach chemistry at the community college when he retires, I think he should write porn. We’d be rich.

Maybe I should writing a dating book for the widowed?


Just kidding.

No, actually I have a couple of ideas but I am keeping them to myself. In fact, aside from this blog post, I doubt highly I will be discussing my project again until a first draft is done.

One thing is certain. I am beginning my training to complete the additional hours of yoga training I want to get my 500 Hour Certification in the province. Applied. Was Accepted. Will begin courses next weekend.

It will take a while. Two years? Perhaps a bit more or a bit less. But that is resolved.

The rest? There is no rush. February is still a ways off.

Why is it “ringing” in the year? Is this a bell tower reference from yore? Did bells herald the change over at one time? There is a carillon at the convent near my mom’s home. You can hear it ring throughout the day. I don’t know if they’re real bells or a digital facsimile, but it’s reassuring to hear time passing because sometimes it seems as though time has less impact than we fear and not as much as we’d like.

Traditionally, today is one of resolutions. The gym has been packed for weeks with people getting a jump on the weight loss/shape up new year cliché. Thankfully most of them will fail and I will not have to edge my way around fat women strolling abreast on a track where the signs reminding everyone of the importance of single file are clearly posted. Oh, that read quite cold, didn’t it? And I typed it out loud even. Bad me. But the gym is for exercise and the Starbucks is for prattling on about the latest gossip. Perhaps if I didn’t get those looks. The ones that imply I should simply walk slower and if I was more socially adept I too could be blocking the way with a chat buddy.

But today is the first day in a new you. We are new again on the 1st of every year when possibilities are endless and the slate is clean.

At least that is the theory.

I have goals. Does that count? I have my quarterly calendar posted and ready to direct me on matters such as memoir, blogging, reviews, writing groups, short stories and exercise.

I’ve got the yoga times blocked off and I am going to give spinning a serious attempt.

I made my first column inquiry a few days ago. Pitched me to a provincial magazine for moms and I received clarification on my sci-fi piece at last. It is with the editors, which is better than on its way back to me with a rejections notice, right?

Goals. Dreams. They make sense. Resolutions bring up images of shoeless prisoners being forced to march through ankle deep snow.

I will not be making resolutions again. Ironically, this is the only resolution I have ever made that has stuck.

Last night was movies with the family and homemade pizza. We had popcorn from the air popper Santa brought and later Rob and I toasted the new year together. Our second. No, our third. We exchanged new year’s greetings as 2006 rolled over to ’07 though not on the dot.

At supper Rob related having listened to a CNN piece on the countries which had already crossed into 2009. He listened to count downs in a variety of languages and wondered what all the fuss was about. Years are an arbitrary threshold. In eons gone by our ancestors were guided by the sun and met to mark the solstices, exchange goods and bloodlines. Now we gather to eat, drink – too much – and count, although goods are probably still exchanged along with a substantial amount of DNA.

Happy New Year from the Canadian prairies. Here’s hoping you eat, drank within limits which still allowed you to count, received some goods but remembered to don protection in the event of genetic exchanges (unless of course you were looking to improve your bloodlines).

I have never had much use for New Year’s resolutions. They are usually lightweight and things that a person should be doing anyway or too big to just impose on a whim dictated by the calendar. But, this is an important year.

For me anyway.

I am not going to call them resolutions but goals that I need to work towards now that I am ending a year without Will and starting to seriously consider what shape my life should start to take.

I am at a crossroads with my career – which I hesitate to call it because I am not someone who has ever defined herself by her job. I have a job. It is one of the things that is required of you as a grown-up. I am lucky that I have nearly always enjoyed teaching but it simply funds my life, nothing more.

So, how can I be a crossroads?

I need to decide if it remains a job or becomes a career, I think.

Lately, I have been thinking that perhaps I will not remarry. My single years vastly outnumber my married ones and even my married years when boiled down to an active state of give/take between two people are just a bit more than an eyeblink. I wonder if I truly want to live with a man again and put in the time and effort, make the compromises.

But if I don’t, what fills up that time. My daughter?

Most certainly, but even though she insists she will live with me forever she won’t.

Friends? I have a few and am going to make it a priority to expand my horizons in the coming months.

Family? I think I have struck a happy balance there. I am not going to move home. My sisters are more than capable of taking care of our parents and I think it is time I stepped back from the role of family rock anyway.

So, I need to decide about the career. A career is a labor of love you happen to be paid for too. Is that what I want? I am going to think about it.

I mentioned broadening my circle of friends and that is also a goal for the year. I have acquired yet another babysitting prospect which seems more hopeful than prospects past. If she pans out then I am going to work to find activities to attend, and fun things to do that will help me break out and be a grown-up again.

Finally, I need to decide if I am living in the right place. Assess my compatibility with the area and its occupants. Have my realtor, Tanis, give me a good assessment of the house in case I decide to pull up stakes.

Goals. Things to work on. Positive and necessary. Nothing that requires superhuman willpower or club dues.