keep on keepin’ on

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I know you guys will think this is strange, even odd…but there is something about the New Year that always makes me have a good look at my life and what I’d like to do differently.

I know I am the ONLY person in the world that does this. Right? RIGHT?

Yeah, I know. I’m not. But seriously, there’s something about changing the year that I write on my checks that makes me sit back and take stock and look at where I’m at.

One thing I did over the holiday weekend was to organize my pictures. I have an old, old PC that I suspect is about to take a crap the size of the Hiroshima bomb, so I thought that I should perhaps make use of my nifty wireless network and move some of my precious pictures from my PC to my laptop, and thence to DVD discs.

Not surprisingly, I have a LOT of pictures.

I found gems such as these:

me and my sis. gotta love the poodle look!

and

yes, i’m singing. and yes, i’m in my underwear..

As observers, we can learn two very important lessons here:

  • Never let 2N’s mom perform a home perm on you.
  • Singing is in my genes. Obviously, it’s best in a kiddie pool in my underwear.

Then I found pictures of me older, with Goodman, with my friends, and with my son when he was born. Pictures taken before it all fell apart. When I looked like this:

I look at that picture and I marvel at the fact that that girl has no idea what’s coming up. You know? Like, that girl had her whole life mapped out and figured out and it was a complete world away from where it ended up.

And from there I start to think about what I still want to do with my life, and where I want to be and what I want to do, and I start to evaluate myself, and my faults and my strengths and my relationships, and I am looking for that one thing that tells me, “Yes! You are doing just what you are supposed to be doing.” or that one thing that makes me just shiver and get goosebumps and say, “This is the most important thing. This is your reason for being.”

I feel like that should be my son. Or my family. But I resist thinking that my reason for being should be someone else. You know? Even though my child is important, and I love him, and when he’s not here, I miss him, and I am working to leave him a legacy…he’s not my reason for being. I can’t accept that.

So I look at myself, and find more faults than I’d like, but I know that hiding from reality will only make it worse than it is, so I decide to make a list. Because when you are overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, making a list seems to make it all so clear. So I make a list entitled “Things to Change” and before long I have “stop biting fingernails” and “stop being fat” and “stop being lazy” and suddenly it’s no longer constructive, it’s only depressing, and so I rip it up and I sit there thinking for a while.

And finally I start to write about what I love about my life. What I love to do. My strengths and my capabilities and my accomplishments. And somehow that is so much more empowering than writing down the things that are wrong with me.

That’s why I don’t like resolutions. Not that we shouldn’t endeavor to change things about ourselves, because we definitely need to do it…but seriously. Shouldn’t we be doing that all year long? Instead, why not take the time at the beginning of the year to talk about the good things that we’re going to continue doing? The things that we’re proud of? The things that we LIKE about ourselves instead of focusing on things we want to change?

Here’s a few of my new and improved New Year’s Resolutions:

  • I will continue to love.
  • I will continue accepting love in my life.
  • I will continue to share myself.
  • I will continue to make people laugh.
  • I will continue to expect excellence.
  • I will not stop smiling for no reason.
  • I will keep on loving my son to within an inch of his life.
  • I will continue seeing the beauty in the springtime.
  • I will not stop dancing.
  • I will continue jumping in puddles and driving my car through small roadside lakes.
  • I will retain my passion for independence.
  • I will keep on being creative.
  • I will keep on surviving.
  • I will, basically, keep on keepin’ on.

Happy New Years, everyone. Thanks for being here!

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