On the first day of the calendar year, we all get a clean slate. A chance to offer the world a new us. A chance to hit the reset button; to begin a new chapter of our lives.
I’m sorry but…that is a lot of effing pressure to put on one day, isn’t it?
What if, at the stroke of midnight, you found yourself not in a state of optimism and renewal? What if you were not in a position to have a fresh start, but rather, you are right in the middle of a challenging period of your life?
Something beyond your ability to “reset”?
Case in point – last year I rang in the new year curled up on a reclining chair in the ICU. Rather than fireworks and cheers, I lay there listening to the beeping of the IV drip, and the hum of the respirator that unbeknownst to me would keep my father alive for only five more days. The next morning, my sister in law remembers being in the room when someone came in with a power tool and removed the 2016 calendar from the wall, replacing it with a fresh, shiny 2017.
Happy New Year!
As the clock struck midnight this year, I found myself thinking about Karen, who lost her dad just a few days ago, knowing all too well how this year will be for her family. A close friend ushered in the new year from a loved one’s bedside in the ICU. Another is faced with an impending divorce. Yet another is struggling to be understood and accepted as his authentic self.
As for us Harveys, well…with luck, Mom has two more months of intense chemo, then surgery, before we can hope to see her good health return. It is a stressful time, and there’s no avoiding it.
My point is, many people are enduring hard things…things for which there is presently no “reset” button. To many, the words, “Happy New Year” ring hollow this year.
The good news is…to my thinking, January 1st is a completely arbitrary date to have been chosen as the first of the year. A year is a circle, isn’t it? Well…technically an ellipse...it is a rotation around the sun.
There is no stopping nor starting point. We all go round and round. So, how about we take the pressure off of those who might be feeling robbed of their fresh start, as of midnight, on this totally random point in the Earth’s orbit.
We can have a fresh start any old time we choose.
Whenever we’re ready.
In fact, we have the possibility of one every single day.