What does Christmas mean this year? This year, which is the first I’ve ever completely documented, every last crummy, giddy day, has been hard, but it hasn’t been impossible. I don’t come to this Christmas feeling like a complete failure or in need of an escape. I don’t come sliding in on scabby palms and knees, eyes red, shoulders bowing around my ribcage. I am not a woeful wretch. I can face what 2010 was without the powerful urge to punch myself in the head for all that wasted time. It’s nice. Sure makes for a change.
What Christmas really is about this year is excitement for 2011. I’m looking forward to what I can achieve in the new year, given all that I’ve managed this year. That I’ve proven to myself. I don’t mean to put myself on any sort of pedestal simply for keeping one promise, particularly in light of the fact that I started out with a plan to blog daily about weight loss and in so doing, lose weight. That hasn’t exactly come together and I’ll admit it wholly and entirely. It’s my fault. I balked. I had my reasons every time – but they were always short-term, stopgap reasons. I haven’t rooted out the deep, all the way to China fear yet. I haven’t written to the raw point yet or even opened the medicine cabinet. I am completely afraid of what will happen to my life if I do what I want to do: all the upset I will cause, all the balances I’ll upset, all the difficulty I will place on other people’s already bowed shoulders. But I’ve never thought about all the burden I could ease for others if I was confident and changed in the way I want to change. Or I’ve thought about it and instead focused on the milky-warm security of impossibility.
You can’t move forward if you believe you’re standing still. Or something. Let’s ix-nay on the riteness-tay.
I will be dating someone.
I will have lost twenty pounds.
I will have published my poems.
I will be noticeably more organized at work and at home.
I will not drink pop anymore. (Oh, I waver on this.)
I will have blogged 500 words everyday.
I will have stopped putting my chin in my hands all day.
These are big things to try and do. More than one person really should find herself attempting in a lifetime, but still. It is a relief to have them written down, a relief and it makes me nervous, too, so I know it’s right.
I’ve got Pandora on in my office, with Irish Christmas carols on the channel, planning Christmas Eve in my head. What rises in the mist rolling off our beloved mountain, is a sense of blessing. Honest blessing and not just what you say because it’s Christmas and you’re not dead. Things could be so otherwise than they are. There are so many in the world who do not have the luxuries that I have been able to afford this year. And these are not foreign, invisible people. This has been a hard year for people in America who twelve months ago would have considered themselves in my same boat. Yesterday, we tried to help a very kind man from Indiana try and find a job here.
Nothing is promised us in this life. But sometimes, you can get something by realizing you want it and asking for it. That is, after all, how Santa Claus works.