At the turn of a new year, it is widely regarded as traditional to make resolutions. This longstanding custom, according to wikipedia…, has evidence of existence many thousands of years ago. On the first day of a new year a person resolves to change, alter or adapt their lifestyle in response to a facet of their behaviour that is no longer appetising when the big bells toll on Hogmanay.
It’s now the 5th of January. Have you stayed true to your convictions? Many people do, while many others don’t.
At some point, I can’t remember when, I decided that making resolutions at the turn of a year just isn’t me. I’m not above the proclamations to read more, write more, laugh more, care more, eat and drink less, love thy neighbours more, defend others from collective enemies, etc. All these things are admirable and indeed, characteristics in their own context to be extremely proud of. For many people, a new start, a determination to shape the days and months ahead is strengthening, enlightening even.
They first foot into the calendar with a spring in their step that pushes them into the longer days with a courage that can be difficult to muster whilst in the middle of something in life that is all encompassing. The possibility of new opportunities ahead can be beautiful, a freedom to cast aside the past and shape a new, more appetising future.
From my own perspective I’m too on edge to give too much of myself to a journey that’s unmapped. I’m not a soothsayer but I already know that the year ahead will be filled with moments of genuine happiness where I will laugh heartily, feel proud, courageous and ambitious and for a fleeting time at least be so sure of my place in life that I will be absolutely confident in who I am. But I also know that all this will be balanced against periods of deep sorrow that descend so unexpectedly that no amount of planning will prepare me for the inevitable inevitability.
Sadness, anxiousness, insecurity, a loss of confidence in who I am; the pain, the sorrowful, sorrowful pain of losing family and friends or watching those I love crumble as they lose loved ones… All these creatures of emotional amputation will undoubtedly make their presence felt. Resolutions won’t fend off the inevitability of the actualities of life but hope can make the journey more comfortable.
I hope that my children and grandchildren are healthy, feel emotionally secure and, in the inevitable moments when they face seemingly insurmountable challenges, I hope that they can take strength in abundance from my deep love for them, and their love for one another, and move forward.
I hope that my family and my friends feel the abundant love that those around them bestow each and every day and I hope that they too face the troughs with the same compassion and belief in which they embrace the peaks.
I hope that as a woman I can be strong, not just for me, but for others too. Above all, I hope my determination and my voice can be loud enough to inspire and represent women who have neither the freedom nor the confidence to speak out.
I hope this crazy world of Brexit and Trump isn’t as catastrophic as we fear. I hope I can be part of a concentrated switch towards creating something more palatable for our world. A world that we need to share as equals.
The year ahead, I already know, will bring some professional challenges and consequently, personal ones too. Being a creative means that work and life have little separation as emotion is the driver professionally as well as personally. I hope that 2017, in being both tough and kind, is memorable too.
I hope that I can be the best person I can possibly be. If that sounds like a resolution, it’s not, it’s a fixed resolve. I hope you’ll join me.