in the aftermath of the holiday season life’s begun to return to that quirky early-year mix of normality and frantic forward-looking activity.
the upcoming six months were a complete mystery behind the veil of christmas and a new year’s excursion to wisconsin, yet seven days into 2009 i’m pretty sure i’m booked until july.
i’ve said before that not only do i tend to be sporadically productive, but i tend to have a to-do list that inflates very quickly until a breaking point and we’re somewhere north of the midpoint on that inflation chart as of late.
the normality of january is a welcome respite from the run up to santa and champagne, because holidays rarely feel like holidays and santa is (*gasp*) not real…long ago the pre-dawn excitement surrounding a cornucopia of shiny wrapping paper in my parent’s living room gave way to a stiff hangover, pots of coffee, and three kids waiting for their aging parents the get the f*ck out of bed so we could look at what we’d be returning.
which morphed into a mutual (yet unspoken) christmas morning laziness that persists today, as the mere fact that everyone in the room has literally nothing to do for 24 hours is gift enough and gifts are hopefully opened by lunchtime.
and if i make all of this sound disappointing let me say that the first two periods of this lifelong journey through christmas mornings was considerably painful for one of the respective parties; the shared adulthood is a welcome state for the entire family.
and so we hop, skip, and jump through the seven to ten day holiday “break” (some of us stopping by our offices to log what anyone would surely consider a laughable workday) and we celebrate a year gone by and the fact that we can now actually stop justifying ten straight hours of food and alcohol by holing up in our own homes and penciling in the gym first thing late next week.
is it better experienced or remembered, the holidays? i’d argue for the memory, if it weren’t for the wonderful comfort and love that i’m lucky enough to feel when i’m sitting around a kitchen debating philosophy, finance, and politics with my family.
i’d sigh and think, “finally…an empty month!” if it weren’t for the pace life can take once you’ve put it on the backburner for a few weeks in the interest of holiday matters that in and of themselves felt urgent.
but here we are looking out onto the valley of 2009 and a year is starting to look like a pretty short period of time again.
last new years seems so close and we’re nearly a decade from 2000 which was a lot of things but it sure doesn’t seem like it was ten years ago.
time demands its focus in january and the universal reset button puts memories, goals, and expectations under the microscope as the fact that we’ve all just lived another year of our lives sinks in and we feel both desperate and incredibly alive as a result.