Now What?

The new year oozed in with little fanfare here. We didn’t go out. We didn’t party. We drank Prosecco while watching Netflix. My husband asked if I wanted to switch over to live tv for the ball drop. I said no. I opened a browser window on my laptop and half-watched the livestream. The moment passed without comment or celebration. Just another year. I felt deflated. Happy the last one was gone, but not at all optimistic about what’s to come.

When the kids were little we spent part of New Year’s Eve writing lists of everything that happened to us in the past year, both individually and as a family. Then we’d create new lists for the coming year. Who did we want to be? What did we want to accomplish? I loved those lists. They made me feel part of something bigger than myself. I had a partner, a family; and together we had dreams and goals.

It’s been years since we’ve done that, but I missed it this year. I needed a ritual. I needed a connection to something other than myself. The truth is, we’re not planning and dreaming; we’re just surviving. And survival, the way we’re doing it, is a solitary activity. I find it exhausting.

So here I am, with a brand new year spread out before me, and all I want to do is sleep. I forced myself to pack up the holiday decorations and put away the Christmas tree. I recycled the junk mail taking over the table. I did laundry. Now what? There’s a lot of year left.

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