On my way to work yesterday, I got hit by another car. It was sudden and unexpected, like everything that happens. It was just another morning. It was just another day. Until it wasn’t.
Bang. My little car was destroyed.
The celebration of the New Year is a celebration of hope. We reflect upon the past. We plan for the future. We count the seconds between one adventure and the next. At midnight we close the current chapter and open a blank page – loudly, colorfully, cheerfully. Year after year we rejoice in promise.
Last night I stood on my porch and watched fireworks. It surprises me, even now, after all of these years, how beautiful and magical and full of wonder they seem. It amazes me that I can still find ways to be amazed. That’s not nothing.
Every year I hope for change, within myself and outside myself. I hope for the hope a new year offers. I hope for the courage to accept it.
Every year I stand and watch the fireworks burst open across the darkness. I watch their sparks fall, like pixie dust. I wait for magic.
Bang. A promise. Bang. A fresh start. Bang. A clean slate. Bang. A new beginning. A new life. A new me.
But every morning I wake up and I am still me, and this is still my life, and this is just another morning on just another day. And reality hits with the weight of a piano. Bang. The blank page isn’t blank at all.
I cannot begin again, not now, not ever. I can only rebuild. And only I can do it. And it is scary and it is difficult and it takes a very long time to do. But I hope to have hope. I promise to keep promises. I believe in magic. I believe it exists in me. That’s not nothing.
What I ask of the new year is not blankness, or emptiness, or a void to be filled. I am not asking for happiness. I am not asking for ease. What I want from this year, for myself, is to be able to say that I kept trying, even when I felt like giving up. What I want is to be able to wake up each morning and still be me, in this life, and for that to be enough. What I want is to be able to do the work – to read, to write, to explore, to discover, to understand, to build and rebuild, to create. What I want is to remember that I can.
I have fireworks inside of me. They are explosions of thought and feeling. They go off suddenly and unexpectedly. They are loud and bright and colorful. They are beautiful and magical and full of wonder. They shimmer across the darkness.
Bang. There is hope. Bang. There is promise. Bang. There is pixie dust. Bang.
There is whatever happens next.