The first day of a new year. Fresh like clean sheets with a hint of soap. Unmarred like the waxy petals of camellias opened wide on this winter morning in my garden. Smooth like the first page of a notebook spread on my desk, the spine cracked and the paper creased, waiting.
A couple of weeks ago, I thought of summing up the things I’d done in 2015. I made it no further than experimenting with a number of clever ways to pull together my accomplishments. Now, after watching the seconds tick toward and then past midnight last night, that effort smacks of a waste of precious time.
Aside (also known as allowing one’s mind to wander) I have not yet abandoned the idea of buying a “countdown” clock–a device you set for what you predict to be your life expectancy and then watch it tick away. I can’t imagine a better to avoid squandering time.
Isn’t it better, though, to look forward, to wonder what might be rather than what was and what could have been? My thoughts are less “new year’s resolutions” than setting out what a winning 2016 is, to me.
Health: Continued good health is a prerequisite to my other plans. In 2015 I witnessed firsthand how an otherwise active and intelligent being can, with one misstep, become completely dependent on others and lose every ounce of quality of life. Accidents will of course happen, but good health will go a long way to prevent a minor incident from becoming a major impediment. Exercise: Three days a week at the gym, three days a week in a serious activity outdoors. More breaks from sitting at my desk, hunched over a keyboard. Nutrition: Smaller portions. Colors. Supplements. Everything in moderation.
Reading: New authors, more non-fiction, adding to and crossing off works from my every growing to be read list. ‘Riting: Complete my novel in process, write more short fiction, submit to and read more periodicals, enter (and win) more contests, make better use of time on social media. ‘Rithmetic: Learn a new skill.
Aside: Post on this blog more often
Friends and family: One thing I’ve learned in life, and it has taken me a long time, is to recognize who my friends are and to value them. It’s time to see them more often, too. Damn the distance! Which of course means… Travel: Visit one new place from my bucket list. Passion: Rekindle my interests in photography and drawing, passions that expand my senses.
There’s little on this list outside my control, perhaps only “winning contests.” So, on to 2016. I’ll try to remember to check back next January. Or, maybe not. It’ll be time to plan 2017.