I used to have major beef with New Years. Like, hide in bed, pretend it's not happening, refuse to come out 'til it's over beef. (Also my approach to birthdays, but that's another story for another time.) You see, I have a habit of dwelling on the past. It's a character trait that serves me well as a writer, since I'm able to recall events and emotions and describe them in great detail. But it doesn't help me much when I'm trying to move on from trying personal experiences, now does it?
And indeed, that was the trouble. Previous December 31's found me mulling on everything I hadn't accomplished in the past twelve months rather than concentrating on the opportunities contained in the coming year. But then again, I'd wonder, why should we so 'fast away the old year' pass? Because hell. I put a lot of blood, sweat, tears, and yes, joy into that year. So for 2012, I decided that before I turn my attention to the future, I'd indulge my tendency to dwell. But I'd only let myself focus on the joy.
Here's a smidgeon of the joy, of what I did accomplish. I watched a school of dolphins jump through the waves from a dinghy in the Santa Barbara Harbor. I hugged a redwood tree for the first time. I learned how to check the oil in my car. I signed a lease on an apartment–only my name is on there, no one else's. I made a budget spreadsheet to be sure I could afford said apartment. I turned 30. I started reading poetry again. I started writing poetry again. I had dinner with friends and we laughed so hard that the sound of our laughter made us laugh even harder. I did the splits on a stage at the Target 50th Anniversary party in New York (no one saw. But I did it.)
So now before ahead, to what we want to do in 2013—and believe me, I have my list—tell me your accomplishments. Dwell in the joy of 2012 just a little longer, won't you?
Photo credits: Me. I spent yesterday taking photos around the house. Calming and meditative.