I managed a little walk today. And yesterday, and the day before. I’ve been thinking about making a change for a while. Last year was a shocker. The previous ones weren’t so great either. And a little walk, each day, sounds just lovely. Beginning to move stiff joints. Clearing out the cobwebs from my brain, and all that. Bumbling along the canal, I wondered if this counted as some sort of New Year’s resolution. I decided to walk more, and it just so happened to be the New Year. I didn’t intend it as such, it just…kind of felt like the right time.
But it’s felt like the right time for a lot of things. I woke up yesterday, the 1st January, feeling a lot lighter. 2018 had finally buggered off into the distance, with all its turmoil and illness and politics and general shittiness. I waved v-signs at its retreating back in my mind, and wandered downstairs for a bowl of porridge. And today, I feel, well, I can only describe it as good. I feel good. It’s a bit weird.
The last few years, as part of this slow settling into my self, I’ve been feeling the times of year more deeply, paying a little more attention to the gentle ebb and flow of the seasons, slower shifts, days lilting into one another. I’ve come to feel the time around Samhuinn, October time, as a natural ending. A sort of slow winding down of the year. The time in between then and Yuletide, solstice, Christmas, December’s end… it’s a time for rest. To stop, to hibernate and germinate. For breathing, letting go of expectation. Winding down. And I felt this, more keenly this last year. I needed it.
Right now though, I feel like the momentum is building up again. Is it an emergence from that dark period of waiting? The ‘winter’ of the last few months? Should I even pay attention to what month it is – calendars have changed so often over the centuries. I’ve typically been so cynical about New Year’s resolutions. But maybe there’s something in that feeling. The timing of it all.
I don’t want to shoot myself down, starting something new, in the new year. I hate the forcedness and expectation of typical resolutions. The lack of thought, the desperation, the failure rate. The cynicism of newspaper articles bemoaning the overcrowding of gyms and the fall in alcohol sales in January. I’m just not sure how I feel about any of it. I’m not even too sure what I’m trying to say.
Maybe it’s this. To feel, to begin… it shouldn’t matter what time of year it is, what the date says on the calendar on the wall. If the momentum builds in the middle of summer, hot, sticky and hazy – it’s okay. In the slowing of autumn, golden and crisp – that’s okay. And if that feeling of momentum and new beginnings somehow coincides with a mass societal movement of ‘resolutions’…wherever that comes from… it’s okay. Just begin.