So says Charles Dickens. I like it.
First, hopefully everyone had awesome Christmases and Hannukahs and Festivuses (ha). New Year's is coming, faster than I realized (like... tonight. What the fuck?!). May this year be prosperous, loving and happy for us all. Seriously. Even you assholes out there.
I had a thought as New Year's approached--I cannot remember the last time I had a fun NYE. I remember the time I got hammered and jumped into the hotel bathtub with my glittery dress still zipped up. My much more sober friend could only stare in horror. I perfectly (okay, fine, not so perfectly--much cheap champagne was involved) recall the NYE I spent with my cousin, the night concluding with a ride accompanied by her strange male friend in a yellow cab, ranting and raving about what a psycho she was because she wanted us to spend another $300 to go into a separate club so she could hook up with some guy she just met. There was also the time my heel stuck in a crack on the city road and I nearly busted my head open, celebrators looking on with terror. Another I can remember is really the morning after NYE when my friend and I rode the train back home, trying not to speak to one another, keeping our heads perfectly still so we wouldn't puke everywhere.
But none of those were fun.
I kept feeling like I was missing out on something every year, that there was this grand conspiracy I wasn't a part of. Everyone else seemed to have a blast on NYE; the problem is I forget so often that people usually say one thing and mean something else.
So this year I was a grouch and just blatantly said I kinda hated New Year's to a whole slew of people. And guess what? A lot of people agreed. Many said it was a build up to something that was always kind of a let down-- a balloon popping so, so slowly, if you will. My most enthusiastic partying friends even admitted New Year's was never anything as special as advertised, and was really annoying when you thought about it because there was such pressure to do expensive things, and wear expensive clothes, and order an expensive bottle of champagne because that just seemed the thing to do.
It made me feel better, honestly. Not that everyone was so bah humbug about the holiday, but that everyone could admit that New Year's never quite lived up to that glimmering ball dropping at Times Square.
Yet I could remember a few great New Year's, back when my friends and I were still young and innocent and had parties in each other's basements... (though I do recall one friend making everyone a mix CD and Marcy Playground's "Sex and Candy" was inexplicably on it). I remember stealing swigs of champagne and wine coolers (shudder), and everyone feeling hopeful and cozy. I miss that. I think that right now my generation is sorta mixed between hanging out with a few people on their couches, and dropping obscene amounts of money in hazy corners of NYC night clubs. We'll get back to that, I think. That laid back, cozy, "ah, another year" vibe.
I don't mean to douse your NYE plans. I realize not everyone agrees with my estimation. Some people really do having a fucking blast on NYE and I envy the shit out of you. Just speaking from my experience, hoping that as I get older I'll have a fucking blast, too.
Everyone makes a big deal about resolutions. Ushering in 2014, I sat down and wrote a whole list for the first time in my life. I can't remember half the things on it, and I'm lucky if I completed one. I want to sit down and make a more realistic one at some point, but I'm not going to freak over it. These are my main mottos of 2015: relax and appreciate the blessings I have.
Rather than resolutions, I'll offer you some quotes I collected on the ever-handy Pinterest to keep in mind as we count down to a brand new year (that'll take me until at least March to write correctly).... Maybe they'll stick with you, too:
The new year means nothing if you're still in love with your comfort zone.
Holy fuck, do I love this one. I am very comfy in my comfort zone. That's because every time I feel as though I've tried to creep out of it, I've been hurt. But many times I misplace blame, and I think I forget sometimes we need to have pain if we plan on having any pleasure. There are thousands of quotes that basically say that, right? Even Jane Austen slips that into Persuasion, I think. I'm also saddened by people stuck in comfort zones, themselves. I know a lot of people like that. Like my one friend who has never had a different hairstyle, hahaha. She's not suffering from that comfort zone, though, so I guess that doesn't count.
Comparison is the thief of joy.
"Why don't I have that?" I think too often. It isn't healthy, and it isn't cool. Everyone has their own shit. Their own good points, their bad points, etc. What they do and think and feel? None of my business unless they feel like sharing, and if they do, I cannot begrudge them if I'm not in the same place. So my friend just moved into a kickass apartment. I felt a nudge of envy. But she deserved it. She worked hard for it. I cannot compare her life to mine. Just because she has a beautiful apartment in a great area (sniffle), doesn't mean I should think all nasty thoughts, and it sure as hell doesn't mean that every other department in her life is going as swell. Comparison sucks, just like Roosevelt said, and it really does rob us of happiness. So let's try kicking the habit together *deep breath*.
Look closely at the present you are constructing. It should look like the future you are dreaming.
I love this one. Doesn't it just make a whole lot of sense?
Let no man pull you low enough to hate him.
-Martin Luther King, Jr.
While I don't think I "hate" people (I may throw the word around far too much, though), I want to stop thinking about the people who don't think that much about me. It's a waste of my time, and they don't deserve the space in my mind. A light example: A girl cuts me in line at Dunkin. Sure, I want to think a whole host of horrible shit about her. But does it change who she is? No. Does it change the fact I might have to wait a whole thirty extra seconds to be delivered my coffee elixir? No. But it makes me catty and negative. Fuck that shit. (Wait, does that sound negative?)
Let everything happen to you. Beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.
-Rainer Maria Rilke
I want to take a deep breath at this one. Doesn't it feel sometimes like when something awful or disappointing happens, everything just stops? That you might never recover from it? But that's impossible. You're still breathing, the world is still turning and there is always something around the cosmic corner. No feeling is final. And again, we need to feel everything--the beauty, the terror, the pleasure, the pain--because it means we're alive. And isn't that fucking awesome?
Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion.
Kinda wanna tear up at this one. We aren't small, you and me. We are gargantuan. We should be fearless. We are the universe. Let's start acting like it.
And now that you don't have to be perfect, you can be good.
I have a complex here. I always want to be perfect. For me, for men, for friends, for family. That is an impossibility. I need to let myself off the hook. So do you. We all do. What a pressure we all have to be perfect. Isn't it enough to just be good? Good is a good enough word for me.
Finally... (though I have way more)... another favorite:
Remember how far you've come, not just how far you have to go. You are not where you want to be, but neither are you where you used to be.
Powerful right here. Because I have this obsession with looking 17 steps ahead. Why am I not obtaining this? Why isn't this happening for me? In reality, I'm wishing my life away, my present, and totally neglecting to appreciate the darkness from which I pulled myself out of. Which, as the other quotes have pointed out, is mega important when forming the future. Maybe I'm not where I want to be. Somehow, however, I forget where I've dragged myself from, and that place was utter shit. That thought makes me feel a lot better. Think about how far you have come this year, or these past five years, or [insert time amount]. No, maybe you aren't living in a mansion with a butler named Lionel (wink), but you're a hell of a lot better off considering where you used to be.
Have a fucking awesome New Year's, everyone and anyone who happens to read this. You are all special and fabulous in your own way (I guess....... jk). Have a safe night, and prove me wrong about this NYE bs. Just don't jump into any bathtubs clothed.
PS: I have a bunch of stories almost completed so I'll likely do one of those bulk postings I've been known to do in the past. Might wait until after the new year so it doesn't get caught up in the queue or anything. What happens behind the technical curtain is still a mystery to me.