Tuesday, January 1, 2008

2008, how I adore you: already fun, purposeful, contemplative.

I'm so excited by this new year and I hope you are, too. I'm not sad to see 2007 go, though. Usually I can't wait until the New Year so I can forget all the shit that happened. Or at least pretend to. But last year was one of big change and big efforts. Some were successful, others not so much. But I'm proud of everything that I tried and I feel like I learned some valuable lessons. And in the category of Big Lessons, they came in very small ways, almost by accident: calm down and don't worry.

See, for years, I think my word of the year has been worry. I worry. A lot. Worry, worry, worry. When I didn't and/or couldn't do anything else, that's what I did. Worry about life, about death, about what I'm having for lunch. There's no denying I had a lot to worry about for a long time.

Last year, though, it changed. I quit my job right as 2006 was winding down. I started going to the gym a lot. I spent a lot of time concerned about my health. I tried to create my own career path. Indulgent? Risky? A little foolish? Yes, yes and yes.

And this morning, I woke up in and the sun was streaming in our windows and I felt this surge of optimism. Did you feel it? I'm hoping it's a global surge, that where you are, sitting at your desk or wherever, that you noticed it, too. Maybe this optimism will change some things in our collective American lives that have been so terrible. Maybe it's an every-four-year optimism that I'm feeling, when we, as a country, can urge ourselves to try something just a little bit different, a little bit more just. I hope so.

And maybe it's an optimism that for myself, will bring two new themes out of the ground of 2008: creativity and health. That is my New Year's gift to myself. And I wish you, too, the change and the joy you deserve and want.

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