I wouldn’t exactly say that I make new year’s resolutions… but I do make goals for the new year. I view the new year as a clean break and fresh start, and thus an easy (well, easier) way to make necessary changes.

It’s kind of interesting– the whole 2000s have been a learning curve. I think that’s the best way to describe it. I was talking with friends a week or so ago, and I said that the decade has been a bad one, to which my friend wisely said to me– “But how can you say that? This is the decade you’ve spent in New York.” And you know, she’s right. It’s perhaps very naive of me to think that adult life isn’t going to be constantly full of trials and hard times. It’s learning how not just to get over those things but even during those hard times to focus on the good stuff that is happening and to let the quiet peace and the too-oft ignored small miracles have more of my focus. It’s a life skill, I think. Learning how to focus on the good instead of the bad. The bad will always happen and is always there, so waiting for the days/weeks/months/years without it is a losing bid.

I spent a lot of time toward the end of this year, feeling beaten down and realizing that the beating down wasn’t going to stop. It’s life. It’s hard. It’s all in my own attitude and what I choose to take away from each day that will determine, for the most part, how I view the year and the world and my life. And it’s time to perfect this skill. When I said to my friend that this decade hasn’t been very good– I was thinking about the big bad things– world changing events I witnessed in 2001; two robberies- 2002 and 2005; a 2003 ER visit and dramatic change to my health. But I also finally found my home—in 2004 I moved into my current apartment and breathed a sigh of relief. It is the first place in the world that I want to stay. And the peace that came with that realization was immeasurable. My niece and my nephew were born in this decade. I became a godmother- twice. My baby kitties came to live with me. I fell in love and had my heart broken. This is life. This is my life. And it’s good. And bad. And that’s what is supposed to happen. It’s a learning curve, and I may be slow to it, but I’m getting it.

So each year I make a list of the things I want out of the upcoming year. (I really like lists! You should see my notebooks. In fact, I might have to resort to lists to accomplish goal number 1 for this year!) I do not consider these yearly lists to be a way to plan and wait for better times; I just think it’s natural to get mired down in the business of life and a new year is a clearly delineated fresh start and chance to regain focus. Also, I find that the quiet that naturally follows the holiday hubbub really lends itself to introspective plan-making.

In reading my list for last year, the 2010 goals, I did pretty badly. It was a valiant effort, and a really good list. A good list of things I did not accomplish. 2010 turned out to be what I internally have started to call a bad year for grandfathers, cats and feet.

Anyway, here’s what I’ve got for 2011. I’m making it public. Accountability? Maybe.

1. Regular blog posts. Once a week. [Internets and people of the world, get ready!]

2. Regular writing schedule. Fantasy Man book is in the works and WILL be finished.

3. Regular Sunday cooking and back to healthy eating.

4. Get the foot situation sorted. Doctors, sigh.

5. Figure out fitness solutions with foot situation.

6. Join RWA.

7. (the magical 7) Be open to it and Do Things!

And now ladies and gents, once more with feeling!

(I’ve been watching a lot of Buffy recently. If you’re a Buffy fan, then you might know the episode of which I speak and what I’m trying to say here…)

Peace in the new year to you– and talk to you next week!

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