The house is still dark and for a moment quiet. My family is sleeping off the effects of a late night spent joyfully ringing in the New Year. I should be, but a scary dream brought a child to my bed and gave me the luxury of an early morning.
I am both excited and shocked that it is 2017, it still feels like 2007. I feel as if the last ten years have passed in a wild blur and I'm not quite ready to find myself this far forward in the future. As a child, I wanted the years to go quickly, I was always eager to arrive at some distant life experience. However, this year, my first born will turn ten, and I am definitely not ready for that. This year, I don't want to watch it rush by, I don't want to spend anytime waiting for something that isn't quite time.
My goal for 2017 is to enjoy every day, every minute, to soak up the moments. I don't want a single day to pass that I regret myself or my responses. I want to be present and I want to love well.
I love that the start of a New Year is a clean slate, or white board, or fresh iphone without any photos or history. I have lived long enough that I know not to expect a huge sweeping change. To not try to be something or someone I'm not. Rather, this year I want to carefully structure each day in my memory. I want to linger long over my children's faces. I want to let go of my to do list and rest in my husband's embrace. I want to be completely authentic and I want to be brave.
I am surprisingly excited for 2017. I am eager to hold close to the ones I love. To enjoy family dinners under the stars. To catch butterflies in the spring. To swim in the warmth of the sun. To stomp in the leaves. And before I know it, to lie under the lights of our Christmas tree. I know this year will pass before I am ready. Next year at this time it will feel as if I just wrote this. My goal for the year is that I will have compiled a depth of joy and memory. That I will have been fully present in every day that passes too quickly.
Parents talk about treasuring the years, grandparents hold our hands and whisper, 'enjoy'. That is all I want to do this year. I want to greedily soak up each time my son wants to tell me a secret. I want to hold close the times my daughter asks what I think about her outfit, and really cares about my response. I want to play peek a boo a hundred times with the toddler who will be too busy in just a year.
Before I am ever ready, another ten years will have passed. I will look back and I know this will be a year to which I long to return. I'll remember all of the days when my children were just 9.7. and 1. I will think back, and I will wish to be exactly where I am in this moment. So let's not rush on with this business of living. It is overrated. Let us bravely choose to be. That at the end - it's not a life of regret or desire to return; because we were there - we lived, we loved, and it is wonderful.
Hello 2017. You will bring changes, joy, experience, and memory. I'll be right here, living.